Sutton/Alston/Waring recce trip

Map for Mountain Information Network report: Sutton/Alston/Waring recce trip


The day was:
  • Sunny
  • Windy


With sights set on expanding our destination repertoire next season, we headed up the Nimpkish valley for a recce of access conditions at Sutton Peak, Mt Alston, and Waring Peak.

Heavy alder stopped us on a previous attempt at Sutton at 50.06560, -126.29235. We need low elevation snow for sled access or a long ski tour. Truck access will need brushing. We attempted a different road today and were stopped by the same situation quite low, at about 50.00733, -126.29767. Bring your brush saw!

Alston and Waring were much more promising, particularly Alston, where we spent a good amount of time cutting back alder with future trips in mind. You could almost push to snowline with a truck, but the alder pinstriping will be real. We walked to about 49.99925, -126.25106, where the road has great snow coverage. That coverage started at about 49.99620, -126.24609.

We didn't have time to venture up the road to Waring, but the situation seems promising there too, if a bit too alder-y at present.

Snowpack observations were minimal today but the thick surface crust we encountered at snowline rapidly became wet with daytime warming. Up high we could see wind effect on exposed slopes and shiny, crusty surfaces on solar aspects. Shaded aspects still appeared to hold dry snow in the trees. North winds were blowing pretty good too!