Landslide Peak


Trip Details
Mountain Range: 
Mountain Subrange: 
Attained Summit?: 
Trip Date: 
Saturday, June 3, 2017
Summit Elevation (m): 
Quick 'n Easy Rating: 
Class 3 : you fall, you break your leg
Difficulty Notes: 

Part of a long traverse over several official and unofficial summits near Two O'Clock Creek in David Thompson Country.



Trip Report

We had two choices from the summit of Bridge Peak. Turn back and descend via Ernest Ross or fully commit to our traverse and head southwest towards Landslide Peak. Guess which one we chose? Darn peakbaggers. ;) Mike Mitchell and I figured beforehand already that the most complicated stretch of our planned traverse from Mount Ernest Ross to Two O'Clock Ridge was going to be the descent of the west face of Bridge Peak. We were correct on hindsight.


[Note: This trip report is part of a loop traverse that started with Mount Ernest Ross and continued from there over four more unofficial summits including Bridge Peak, Landslide Peak, Two O'Clock Peak and Two O'Clock Ridge. Total distance for the day was around 25km and total height gain around 2600 meters. It took us a total of 15 hours to complete the traverse with some snow on route.]


Thanks to some hard snow and the fact that we were wearing light approach shoes, we had to be careful with our routes this particular spring day. We wondered later if there might be a more direct route possible down from Bridge Peak's south summit and then down to the ridge but based on my cursory Google Satellite view while planning the route, I figured the gentlest terrain was under the north summit rather than the south. We descended from the col between the two summits, slowly trending to the north (right) until it made sense to pick our way back south (left) to the ridge leading off towards Landslide Peak. There was some tricky and extremely loose downclimbing involved with this route - not to be underestimated, especially if you're with a group. I found the downsloping slabs with pebbles and large, very loose boulders a bit ominous and was extremely careful not to knock anything down on Mike.


[This obvious sheep trail in the upper scree on the west face of Bridge Peak had us excited that we'd found an easy and obvious descent to the ridge below. It wasn't and we hadn't.]

[Looking back up at Mike descending the trail that has now fizzled out for me.]

[Lots of this terrain on the west face of Bridge. Looks easy from above, until you get into it and then it's kind of nasty for short stretches.]

[The ridge towards Landslide (R) looks so close from here - but we'll have to do some tricky downclimbing and traversing to get there from here.]

[Loose, cheese grater terrain.]

[Looking up at what may have been Eric's escape gully from near the south summit of Bridge (they never bothered with the north summit).]

[This is the terrain we had to escape from down the west face of Bridge Peak. Not hugely difficult but much slower than we expected.]

[Gaining height to escape the west face to the ridge (note the cliffs below us here again).]

[Downclimbing the west face.]


Eventually we managed to downclimb and work our way left (south) to get back onto the ridge crest again. Surprisingly it took us almost an hour to pick our way to the ridge from the summit of Bridge. Looking back at the peak, Mike was pretty convinced that going south off the south summit and then trending down the west face would be easier, safer and shorter. I wasn't as convinced. This terrain always looks easy from a distance but is a bit nasty when you're in it. We won't ever be going back, so let me know if you try it. :)


[Looking back at the west face of Bridge Peak. We descended a wandering line down the center, working to the ridge. There might be a more direct line down from the south summit to the ridge but beware that the terrain isn't as easy as it looks from here. ++]


From below the west face of Bridge we found ourselves looking far ahead to Landslide Peak. We were getting used to everything taking longer than it appeared from a distance and the next few hours would be no different. I was starting to wonder how quickly Eric was traveling to complete the loop in less than 12 hours! The ridge undulated a lot and we were gaining and losing a lot of height between highpoints. Most of this height gain and loss was unavoidable due to cliff bands and horrible scree on any bypass routes. We followed sheep trails where possible. At least our weather was excellent (not too hot or windy) and the views were stunning in every direction. We commented more than once that the area reminded us more of Jasper due to colorful rocks and the nature of the rock.


[A beautiful day for a hike! These rocks and boulders would get old after a while though.]

[Incredibly colored rocks in this view looking back along the ridge - Ernest Ross is the brown bump at right.]

[Landslide Peak looks snowy!]

[Looking ahead to Landslide Peak - note the intervening colorful hill.]

[Looking back at Bridge Peak from an intervening bump on the ridge. Note the height loss / gains and the fact that we are higher than Ernest Ross at far right. ++]

[Still a long way to go from the top of yet another bump on the ridge. The three obvious high points are (L to R), Whirlpool Ridge, Two O'Clock Peak and Landslide Peak.]

[The weather was perfect for a long traverse with some clouds and a cool wind, but not too strong most of the day. This is looking back along the ridge.]

[Two O'Clock Peak (L) and Landslide (R), looking pretty darn snowy.]


As we approached the northeast ridge / face of Landslide Peak, we were a bit apprehensive. There was an easy, but large snow slope leading up to the ridge and once again we wondered about our choice of footwear. We also noted that Eric had traversed under Two O'Clock Peak's north face before turning up an easier ridge, and this was not going to be a safe option for us, thanks to a loaded snow slope. We were really hoping for a route up the NW ridge of Two O'Clock from the Landslide col - but even this wasn't looking easy as we got closer and closer.


[The terrain is bigger than it appears from a distance. We constantly underestimated how long it took to traverse to certain highpoints along the ridge.]

[Grunting up a loose, muddy section.]

[Finally approaching the main massif of Landslide Peak about 3 hours after leaving Bridge Peak's north summit. ++]

[It doesn't look like a 3 hour hike to Bridge Peak (L) from here - but it is.]


For some reason I was feeling pretty good as we hit the large snow patch and started kicking steps up to the summit ridge on Landslide. I kept the ax on the pack and managed to use hiking poles alone, thanks to supportive snow but soft enough to kick small steps and feel secure. Mike was falling behind a wee bit at this point but it wasn't a huge issue considering the route was very obvious from the ridge top. Naturally, the summit of Landslide was a long traverse from our access point on the ridge. Also adding to the theme of the day, it wasn't fast traveling thanks to snow and an expanse of loose (VERY loose), large boulders. Boulders are always fun for about 5 minutes. Then they're a PITA for the next 5 hours. The Landslide Traverse has a fair share of very loose, very large boulders on it. You've been warned.


[Looking along the snowy NE face of Landslide Peak.]

[Looking back down the ridge (L) to Bridge Peak and Ernest Ross. Two O'Clock Peak at right and Ridge at center distance. ++]

[Traversing loose, blocky and rocky terrain to the summit of Landslide Peak - which is of course as far away as possible!]


Just when I thought for sure I was done traversing to the summit I noticed I wasn't. I stumbled along the ridge and finally reached the apex in slowly worsening weather. It took just over 8 hours from the car to the summit of Landslide and over 3.5 hours from Bridge Peak. Landslide Lake was barely visible to the west, thanks to the coverage of snow, but the peaks were impressive with clouds and snow now swirling over them a bit. I hoped the weather wasn't getting nasty, but a few very strong gusts of wind, including a strange twister that almost blew me off the ridge, were starting to become worrisome as I finally gained the summit of Landslide Peak. I snapped the requisite summit photos before tackling the endless boulders that I'd just crossed. As I passed Mike we agreed to stop for a bite to eat and a break at the Two O'Clock Peak col.


[Finally the summit comes into view! Note the building clouds. Cline at left.]

[The skies are still nice to the east and south in this view from the summit of Landslide Peak. From L to R, Elliot, Bridge, Ernest Ross, (Mike on the ridge), Ex Coelis, Two O'Clock, Whirlpool, Siffleur and the Murchison Group. ++]

[Looking directly north over Entry Creek and the Cline River Valley towards the White Goat Wilderness (L) and the First Range (C).]

[Tele shot towards the First Range.]

[View up the McDonald Creek Valley towards the Cloister Mountains and the White Goat Wilderness Area.]

[White Goat Peaks (L to R), Troll, Dasent and Gruff.]

[Wilson, Owen, Resolute and Mount Cline (L to R).]

[Even Mount Forbes, with Outram in front, shows up to the west.]

[Whirlpool Ridge at left with Peskett and Loudon at center.]

[Looking over our next peak (Two O'Clock) towards the Siffleur Wilderness Area.]

[Mike looks small on the bouldery ridge of Landslide Peak.]

[The many folds and shades of rock in this view of Allstones Peak is pretty neat.]

[Mount Murchison's twin summits with the left one being the 11,000er.]

[A telephoto towards Peskett, Loudon and Siffleur showing off their heights, all above 3120m and Loudon at 3220m.]

[Looking west over the barely noticeable namesake of the peak - Landslide Lake. Mount Hensley rises west of the lake.]

[Another view of Landslide Lake - still covered in snow and ice with Mount Hensley rising above it.]

[Starting the tedious, rubbly traverse towards the Two O'Clock col. Click for our approximate route up that peak.]

[Interesting rocks near the col, looking back up at Landslide Peak's SE ridge.]

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