words and photos by Sharon Bader and Lee Lau unless otherwise noted.
After our 40km ride in on Friday we were going to have a short day today. BUT Jamie, our wrangler asked if we could ride to Spruce on Sunday instead of Monday to ensure that we would get back to Jewel at a reasonable time. This idea made sense since then it would make our ride on Monday much easier. BUT it necessitated Lee and the willing ones to do a death march today. Sean and I opted for a shorter 12km, 4 hour ride with 850m of climbing up Elbow Pass, over Lorna Peak and down Lorna Pass. The remainder of the guys rode 64km in 11 hours by adding a ride from Elbow Pass, up Tosh Creek, around Cluckata Ridge, out Grant Creek and back up and over Elbow Pass. They were back at the top of Elbow Pass for sunset, back at the camp by 9:30.
I think Lee brings me on these trips because he knows I won’t go on these death marches and will have food ready for him when he gets into camp… hmmmm.
Chilly in the morning but nice during the day!
Another view of the camp ~ photo Sean Killen
Iori on the trek up towards Elbow Pass.
nice and I can climb here yeah!
Heading through the trees you eventually enter the vast plateaus of the high country.
heading on up, to the pass
Higher up the climbing gets tougher.
Approaching Elbow Pass.
Pushing up to Elbow Pass
Go Sean only a little way to go!
Lee tailing Kris to Elbow ~ photo Monte Westlund
Elbow Mountain ~ photo Tyler Wilkes.
Lee at Elbow Pass ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Sean and I head up to the top of Elbow – Lorna Ridge to ride down Lorna Pass. Once you’re on the ridges of these mountains the going is pretty easy!
pushing on up with Elbow Pass in the back.
This is what the top of the Elbow-Lorna ridge looks like.
big open spaces in far away places!
Looking down towards Lorna Lake, Sluice Creek and Dorrie Peak.
We camped down end the end of that lake in Aug 2007.
Sharon pointing to Warner Ridge and its glaciers in full retreat ~photo Sean Killen.
Google Earth Image of the ride Sean and I did.
Nice Mellow Day!
Since Lee had always wanted to ride up and down Tosh and Grant Creeks he had to go today. He was told that Grant Creek was clear and easy to ride. Apparently people from Salmon Arm really really like overgrown trails and Lee’s legs came back looking worse then they normally do.
Kevin preparing to drop down Elbow Pass ~ photo Monte Westlund
Riding through the meadows from Elbow Pass to Big Creek~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Crossing Big creek.
Lee stoked because he’s on yet another deathmarch ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Iori crossing Grant Creek ~ photo Tyler Wilkes Kris and Monte riding up Tosh Creek.
Uni-cycle and a 29er…only in the BC BC.
Tosh Creek is a visual overload. Our jaws were dropping all the time every corner we rounded, The best route IMO is an out and back on Tosh Creek with a climb to Powell Pass.
Views aren’t bad.
Monte riding Tosh Creek ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Monte – Tosh Creek ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Lee approaching the head of Tosh Creek ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
More views of Tosh Creek ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
View looks back down Tosh waaaaay back down to Elbow Mtn ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Tosh Creek is 90% rideable – Kris on his uni
Fastest hike a biker EVER!
Kevin near an old trappers cabin halfway up Tosh Creek. He’s wondering how a golf course will fit in with this decor
Maybe he can stay here for awhile!
View further west looking towards Powell Pass and vestigial glaciers. We cut to lookers left hugging Cluckata Ridge to get to the col between Grant and Tosh Creek.
meandering single track!
After the ridable Tosh Creek you still have to hike to the col!
Tyler being the shirtless hero!
Magnificent view looks down Tosh Creek. Elbow Pass looks so very small in the distance and so far away. Obviously, our camp at Tyax is even further
Tyler learning how to bushwhack at such a young age
Kevin and Kris striking the three-wheeled pose
Why are they smiling? There’s 2 hours of daylight and 4 hours of riding left
As it was when we crossed into Sluice Creek and the Dorrie drainage in 2007, the views towards Warner Ridge and its retreating glaciers are still magnificent
Kris in the mountains in his natural environment
More pushing ~ photo Monte Westlund
Tyler approaching the 2350m col ~ photo Monte Westlund
Finally some shots of Tyler friskily playing in the alpine
Kevin and Kris ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Monte and Dorrie Peak ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Lee hopping and skipping alpine meadow ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Unfortunately Grant Creek was still as bushy as I remembered from my last time here in 2006. All the time we had gained by Tosh Creek being such a fast climb we gave up and then some scratching and scraping our way down Grant. We made the Big Creek crossing at twilight, climbed up to Elbow Pass as light faded and did the Elbow downhill with headlamps. Quite a day!
Chasing the light back down towards Big Creek
Grant Creek looking E to Big Creek
Group enjoying the sunset at Grant Creek ~ photo Monte Westlund
Elbow Pass ~ photo Monte Westlund
Elbow Pass night ride ~ photo Tyler Wilkes
Lee, Kevin, Kris, Tyler and Monte beat themselves into the ground over this route.
64kms of riding