Snowbird Pass


Trip Details
Mountain Range: 
Mountain Subrange: 
Attained Summit?: 
Trip Date: 
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Elevation Gain (m): 
Total Distance (km): 
Quick 'n Easy Rating: 
Class 2 : you fall, you sprain your wrist
Difficulty Notes: 

Mainly a hike with some easy scrambling bits and mild exposure along the Robson Glacier

Trip Report

In order to get to Titkana Peak (my objective for the day), I first had to hike to the Snowbird Meadows and perhaps Snowbird Pass. Considering the number of people that must do this hike each year, I was quite surprised to discover how few trip reports are out there on this relatively easy peak. I think part of the problem for most folks is how far the hike to Snowbird Pass is (over 20km return) and as it turns out - how much bloody work it is! The views from the pass and the approach are so good already that I think most people are content to turn back at the pass rather than continue up Titkana.


The morning dawned clear but quite cold - probably in the -5 degree area! I didn't have my watch but when it got light outside I forced myself out of the warm sleeping bag and into the crisp air outside. Robson looked spectacular over Berg Lake as I drank my morning coffee and got my gear together. I knew it would be a full day and after the long approach the day previous I also didn't want to be pressured to move quickly but rather take my time - as much as it's possible for me to do that anyway... ;)


I'll let my photos do most of the talking for the Snowbird Pass hike, but suffice it to say that it's one of the most spectacular hikes / approaches I've ever done, and I've done more than a few over the years. The trail is obvious and signed where it needs to be. Don't under estimate the length or difficulty - if you're not used to 20km+ days with frozen scree, loose rocks and 800 meters of elevation gain you will feel this one once it's over! But don't panic - even getting half way is well worth it, and the Snowbird Meadows are a wonderful place to spend a warm summer or fall afternoon.


[Frosty, fall morning.]

[Looking back at Robson from the trail past the Berg Lake CG]

[The trail goes past Rearguard Campground. I was surprised how flat the terrain was between Berg Lake, Rearguard and the Robson Pass campgrounds.]

[The route is well-signed where it needs to be.]

[It's incredible how much the Robson Glacier has retreated in 100 years! It's not even visible from here anymore!]

[I found Whitehorn Mountain to be a very striking and beautiful peak from the Berg Lake area. It's on my list.]

[The trail approaches the Robson Glacier - still a long ways off though, considering 60 years ago it covered this area!]

[The trail has an interesting scrambling section which is chained and even has a fence to keep you safe! Note the glacial lake at the toe of the Robson Glacier below.]

[Looking back along the trail towards Mumm (R) and Anne-Alice (L).]

[I love this shot of the Robson Glacier, showing how it curves down and around Rearguard Mountain to the terminal lake. ++]

[When the trail starts to climb up beside the Robson Glacier it eventually flattens a bit and you get an amazing walk high above the glacier on a lateral moraine before turning left up to Snowbird Meadows.]

[The trail continues up the moraine. Extinguisher Tower with Resplendent in the clouds above it on the left.]

[Mighty Mount Robson with the Helmet in front of its east face and the Kain Face rising above The Dome on the left. ++]

[Looking along the excellent trail.]

[Switchbacks up the slope, Rearguard rising on the left.]

[The scenery gets better and better as you hike higher and further. Resplendent NW2 is hiding the main summit of Resplendent on the left, Extinguisher Tower is almost the same height as me here and of course Robson towers over everything and everyone else! ++]

[The 'Snow' in 'Snowbird Pass' is clearly appropriate as I hike into the Snowbird Meadows section. ++]

[The Snowbird Meadows are a wonderful place.]

[Looking ahead to Snowbird Pass. Titkana is out of sight on the left and Lynx rises on the right. ++]

[Snowbird Pass lies ahead of me.]

[Looking back from the trail]

[Looking left at a false summit of Titkana Peak]

[I was following tracks from a couple who went to the pass the day before.]

[Looking back at the wonderful scenery behind me as I crest the pass. ++]

[It's for this view that you go to Snowbird Pass! ++]


The rest of the images are from my descent back down the trail after my ascent of Titkana Peak.


[The trail is obvious and easy to hike on - this is descending the moraine on my way back to camp.]

[Views from the trail down the moraine above the Robson Glacier.]

[Rearguard is impressive from this angle.]

[The Robson Glacier.]

[Looking across the valley towards Anne-Alice (L) and Mumm Peak (R) with an unnamed summit between them. I hiked to Mumm Basin and climbed Mumm Peak the following day - a much harder ascent than Titkana was!!

[I particularly loved the chained up section of trail.]

[The Robson River starts its journey to the Pacific Ocean.]

[Hiking home in the evening.]

[Looking back at Titkana Peak from near the Rearguard CG. ++]

[Robson looms over Berg Lake as I approach camp for the night.]

[Sunset over Berg Lake. ++]


Thanks for this. We head up this weekend and had it in our plans to spend day 2 trail running all of Snowbird Pass, Mumm Basin Loop and Toboggan Falls. With most of those closed this month due to landslide activity, this gives us some distance to add to our Snowbird Pass plan. Great images - you were lucky with your weather. Thanks

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