We wanted to check out the key to Comox Lake Main (the new ACC-VI access agreement with Mosaic) deliberately on a day with active logging. Mt Ginger Goodwin had piqued my interest for a while - the name and history as much as the mountain, and now we could access it without gate closure restrictions. Then there was the promise of new snow, and the chance to get the first crunches of the season underfoot.
Comox Lake and Cruikshank River from the trail
A successful day on all 3 counts. Parking at 250 m above the Cruikshank River, we followed the Capes Lake Trail steeply up the ridge, at first postholing through fallen bigleaf maple leaves and broken branches before reaching consistent snow at 500 m. Lovely views down and across to Comox Lake, though Comox Glacier stayed elusive through the clouds. From the high saddle we looked briefly and failed to find a marked route to the summit, so the last 200 m vertical was slower going as we negotiated steep bush, second growth, and eventually old growth broken up by steep and slick dripping-moss bluffs. Classic VI stuff.
Enjoyed good views all round from the flat summit, enhanced by patches of blue sky.
The descent was efficient following our steps in the snow, but with some significant DNP (do not plummet) moves on the snow covered rock. The headlamps only came out for the last half hour on the old logging road - so a perfect length trip for this time of year.
(Lindsay confirms that there is a flagged trail to the summit - which we would have seen apparently if we had gone 100 m or so further along the Capes Lake trail before turning north. But I’m sure our route was more fun!)
Participants Erich Schellhammer and Catrin Brown