Chilcotins – Shulaps Traverse

Lee’s initial trip to on the Shulaps traverse had him wanting more. Unfortunately future attempts on the Shulaps never went without incident. This trip was no different. Instead of missing the ride because of numerous Hurley induced flat tires, or taking a wrong turn, the mishap for this trip involved the drive up… We went up in two cars, Lee and I were in the Volvo, Sean and Bryce in Sean’s Nissan Pathfinder. After getting to Pemberton Lee decided to trade places with Bryce and drive with Sean so that each vehicle had a person who knew where to go and we wouldn’t have to wait on the logging roads to play catch up.

Bryce and I head off in the Volvo. We suffered no mishaps other then two or three four wheel drifts and maybe a few fishtails. The Volvo stayed the course and we successfully navigated the Hurley.

We made it to Marshall Creek Forest Service Campground by 10:00pm with Simon already there with a fire on the go.

We set up our tents and Bryce just had to wait for his stuff to get there in the Nissan! Eventually it did! Sean and Lee nonchalantly came to the fire and told us that they were late because Sean rolled the Nissan! There is a sharp right hand corner just before the descent into Goldbridge that should not be taken too quickly… While Sean and Lee were regrouping in the recently rolled Nissan another guy came up to tell them that he rolled his truck there just last week! To add insult to injury they also had to fix a flat tire.

After heading over to check out the Nissan and seeing its missing windshield, missing passenger side window, rear side window and various dents it was amazing that Lee and Sean didn’t suffer any injuries. Great testament to Nissan Pathfinders! It even drove straight afterwards!

As we walked by the Volvo, we noticed that it now had a flat tire! Since Lee was adament that we would ride the Shulaps this time, we fixed the tire that night despite bending the Volvo piece of crap jack, fortunately the Nissan jack worked great and we got the tire fixed. We were even able to fix the flat so we would not be without a spare.

The busted Pathfinder and Volvo with the spare tire

On the Right Track we start the climb up the logging road on 5 hours of sleep to the dreaded hike a bike!

The start of the hike a bike! It’s at 1630m and NOT at 1510m as stated in the Maurer/ Vrba guidebook

hike a bike… from 1620 to 2100m

Finally at the top we are rewarded with our first views! Bryce is taking it in!

Sharon at the start of the traverse at about 2100m elevation. In the background are the north face of mountains overlooking Carpenter Lake. The prominent peak with the snow is Rex Peak (2684m).

We will be heading across the slope on the left of this picture at an altitude of 2200m. A guidebook shows that you can gain the ridge in the background by hike-a-biking to the top and then riding along the ridge line.

More riding across Chilcotin tundra

Lee in his natural environment

Never ending singletrack climbing to Shulaps Pass and the highpoint!

Bryce having a good ‘ol time on the Brodie Nemesis XC bike!

View from the high-point looking south to Rex Peak.

You can see the trail in the back traversing across the scree section. Lee is the only one to make the downhill and the uphill to the pass

A group of 8 from Whistler and Pemberton was also on the Shulaps. We kept passing and getting passed by them all day. This view looks back from Shulaps Pass back to the mountains and foothills just west of Lilloet.

After the pass there is more singletrack through this barren alpine setting

The singletrack ends as the plateau drops off down to Hogg Creek. Its not often you get to ride a flat plateau for that distance at that elevation

The start of the descent into Hogg Creek is fast and loose.

This shot was taken in honor of my friend Steve who fell on to some of these massive talus blocks and shattered his hand. Somehow the rest of his group got him out safely. You’ll come back and get this done Steve!

You can see our start point in the lunar landscape saddle in the center of the picture. It didn’t take long for the vegetation to dramatically change.

This pano is taken at the Hogg Creek trail junction later on in the grasslands singletrack. We’re at 1950m or so but its amazing how many trees and meadow vegetation there is compared to the Shulaps plateau proper.

Heading into the meadows. The descent from here went from trees to meadows to trees to meadows and on and on and on!

You have to descend to Hogg Creek then ascend a ridge, descend again and then make one last small ascent before you drop down to Brett Creek. Fortunately the creek crossings at this time of year were pretty mellow!

Again you can see where we came from in the background! Rex Peak, this time seen from the south, is in picture right.

As you start the Brett Creek descent the trail gets even more narrow and the sidehills just a bit more exposed.

The Brett Creek descent was pretty much like this for quite awhile – fast, ripping, with enough switchbacks

ahhh Chilcotin Singletrack!

Be good to it if you go!

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