Archive:Phelix Creek Trail Workhike 5
This trip is a workhike, and may be the last major construction effort of the Phelix Creek Trail Construction saga.
October 18th - 19th, 2008
Wednesday, October 15th @ 6 pm in the clubroom.
If you're new to hiking in BC, please be aware that this trip will involve significant elevation gain which (depending on your intrinsic toughness) you may find difficult. In addition to hiking the route we'll also be working hard and carrying heavy tools. Not that it will be the hardest trip you can imagine, but it won't be a cake-walk.
In anything but the nicest weather, it will also be cold, wet and dirty. Probably, it will be dirty even in good weather. Some people like it that way. Others need to bring synthetic insulation, good boots, waterproof clothing, and good gloves in order to enjoy it.
The cabin also has few facilities - so bring your own stove, fuel, food, sleeping kit, and toilet paper.
Last October 27 VOCers did an amazing amount of work on the new Phelix Creek Trail. Brushing was finished and treadway was constructed up most of the way to the hut, bridges, boardwalks, switchbacks (with water bars and pinned logs) and were built. This time, we're going to finish it off.
The trail is currently brushed along its entirety, however there are some improvements which could be made.
- The tunnels through the slide alder patches at low elevation should be widened, as the alder lays down across the trail under early season snow. The north half of the first major slide path is the worst section. The southern part of this slide path is good, and should be used to set the standard for the northern part.
- The clearing of mountain azalea at high elevations could be a bit wider in places, and sometimes is cutoff at shin-stabbing height instead of at ground (there was snow on the ground during the last round)
- The markers need to be juggled in places - some are too far off the trail and are deceiving
- extra markers need to be installed at all switchback corners
- People are sometimes only finding the old trail when they leave the hut, and following it down into Phelix Creek. This is not ideal, so some 'deconstruction' of the old trail or some other solution may be required.
- The alpine area in between the top of the trail (ie. the lake) and the hut will soon develop braided trails if we do not make an easy to follow route through the area.
- If you're really ambitious you can crampon your way up the big tall trees in the clearcut and hang some markers there.
Logs And Bridges
- The bridge has a log which needs to be pinned down. Rebar is up there already. A drill, sledge, and hacksaw should take care of the rest.
- Two switchbacks have logs which still require pinning.
- One switchback should get a 'log staircase' installed and pinned. This requires a chainsaw, rebar, a drill and a hammer or axe.
- A couple of swampy section could use big logs or corduroy (many small logs laid on the ground perpendicular to the trail) to keep them from turning into mud pits in the future. The swampy sections are in the meadow just below the west end of the lake, and just before reaching the hut at the east end of the lake.
This is the meat of the trip. Everything from approx 1500m up needs to have a treadway hacked out with mattocks and polaskis. Some places at lower elevations could use a little bit more work than they've seen so far. Drainage control is also an important part of this work - cutting ditches, water bars, cross drains, etc.
If would be really cool if a couple people could hike up early and make dinner for everybody. That way everyone else can work an extra two hours since they know they'll be coming back for a nice warm dinner. Do not underestimate this job as trivial. Dinner for the masses is going to be heavier than tools, although you'll have all day to hike it in.
- Christian Veenstra
- 5 ordinary pruners
- 1 best pruners ever, yes they can cut through 3" slide alder.
- 2 bowsaws
- 3 bent shovels
- 4 shovels
- 3 mattocks
- 2 polaskis
- 1 adze
- 1 big old ice axe
- 1 peavy
- 1 axe
- 2 pr chainsaw chaps
- 1 chainsaw helmet + visor
- 1 large first aid kit
- hammerdrill (with wood and stone bits)
- small hammer (for markers)
- Scott Nelson & Sandra Nicol
- Zack Treisman
- Small Sledge
- Matthew Carroll
- Small sledge
- Large splitting maul (useful?)
There is a tentative (may be lifted later) limit of 40 participants for this trip.
- Christian Veenstra
- Scott Nelson
- Sandra Nicol
- Scott Webster
- Line Veenstra
- Andrei Lifchits
- Adam Robertson
- Hannah Capstick
- Eleanor Humphrey
- Anne Webster
- Em Beach (unfortunately Muffin's Mom needs her pair of "best pruners ever": it seems to be prime pruning time on the island...)
- Zack Treisman
- Madeleine MP
- Matthew Carroll
- Elissa Smith
- Merick Moritz
Any car can make it to the bottom of the logging road, but you will need fairly good clearance to negotiate a rock slide at 0.5km on the road and water bars beyond. If necessary, we can do two trips with the 4x4s to get everybody up to the trailhead.
X spots, leaving from Place, 4x4?
- Scott/Sandra: 5 spots (or 10 if you don't mind standing on the bumper), leaving from Fairview (Oak/7th). 4x4 (pathfinder). Have driven to the end of the road many times.
- Veenstramobile: 4 spots, leaving from Dunbar. Skid plate and trail lights, but no 4x4. No hope of making it to the end of the road.
- Zack - probably a 2wd pickup with space for one passenger and some possibility of making it up the trail with more in the back. Leaving from Pt. Greyish.