I spent a summery September day hiking Gimli Ridge! We hiked this trail last year under ominous active weather, but today the Valhallas were sunny and warm and cheerful.
Some other improvements over last year’s excursion:
- More goats! We met a large, male mountain goat gallomping down the trail to Mulvey Basin.
- Bannock Road is freshly graded, accessible by 2WD low clearance, thanks to a new logging operation near the trailhead. The car-sized boulder has been removed from the road.
- BC Parks has installed a new and exciting toilet at the campsite on the saddle. Nice to see some upgrades, worrisome to see a conveyor-belt used in such a manner.
We hit the trail around 10am and began the arduous forested climb up to the saddle. The huckleberries would have been fantastic a few weeks ago, but they were mostly gone or shrivelled in late September.
We took a break at the saddle and I spent about ten painful minutes trying to twist my hiking poles into their full length. Only one out of four connections opened, leaving me flaunting half a pole.
As we made our way around the left of Gimli towards Mulvey Basin, we met a friend on the trail:
We were hikers who stare at goats. We looked at each other and didn’t move. This carried on for a while, until finally we stepped down from the trail and started to edge forward. The goat stepped up higher, and we maintained a comfortable distance while passing each other.
Then it was a matter of the short and stripy boulder scramble to the ridge:
Mulvey Basin was glowing with fall colours. We stopped at the edge to sit in the sun and enjoy the views. I hopelessly continued trying to untwist my hiking poles.
The trip down went much faster. Me and my half pole managed to descend the talus slopes. We were back at the car within 6 hours, hiking at a moderate pace.