Mountain Bikaneering in the Chilcotins – Part 2

Day 3 – Big Creek to Tyaughton Creek via Elbow Pass

Distance traveled, ~9 km; Elevation gained/lost: 404 m/-539 m, Average slope: ±10%

Day three breaks with brilliant sun and a muddy crossing of Big Creek followed by an hour-long trudge through the swamp looking for a trail. Elbow Pass is actually at the head of a hanging valley, so when the climb comes it’s fast and steep. By the time we reach the elbow, the sun is baking us into the 35˚C range and we’re refilling water bottles and bladders at every opportunity. The final push to gain the pass is a steep shot straight up the scree ridge followed by a beauty of a lunch spot tucked in right on the other side. Magnifique!

Tracking the elusive mountain bikaneers

Emily braving the cold waters of Big Creek

Walk in a swamp, anyone?

Fast and steep!

Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus) trying to hide

Photos of flowers in a meadow

Flower-scented drinking water

Tripadvisor rating 4.0 – could have had more flowers.

After a lunch of wildflowers and dirt, the steeds are ready to ride.

Singletrack descent

Fully loaded and ready to slay the trail

Alpine moonscape

Shameless photoshop

The singletrack down into the Tyaughton drainage was some of the best of the trip and kept going and going and going…. Tim’s stoked on it.

Leah, enjoying said singletrack

Emily, with more grin than fear

Christina shredding the meadow

Golden Tim

Day 4 – Tyaughton Creek to near Spruce Lake

Distance traveled, ~8.5 km; Elevation gained/lost: 615 m/-822 m, Average slope: ±10%

Day four confirmed what we already believed, that mountain bikaneering in the Chilcotins is awesome. More fantastic riding and some decent photos from the day.

Mountain goat. (Homo sapiens)

Mountain goats! (Oreamnos americanus)

Shawn working on his pensive face

Some tasty alpine singletrack

Shawn wins!

Riding back in time

A more reasonable creek crossing

Eldorado Wildflowers

Hoary Marmot (Marmota caligata), not to be confused with Hairy Marmite

Lost horse meadow

Our final lovely campsite

Megathistle

Golden Alpine

Fireside relax

Day 5 – Almost Spruce Lake to Tyaughton Lake

Distance traveled, far; Elevation gained/lost: a lot, Average slope: steep%

Our last frigid morning slowly receded down the valley as the sun rose until it finally hit our gear and breakfast area, thawing us all and giving us energy for the final push back to Tyax Lodge. The day promised to be long, but we had it on good authority that the Lick Creek trail was awesome and that wildflowers would be in full bloom. Fortunately, the sun also gave us energy to get back int he saddle and set us on our way.

Early morning drying racks

Dusty trails

Tim and Leah through the last pass towards Lick Creek

Carpenter Lake through the haze

Oh good, we’ve finally entered the falling area

We commandeered the lake from paying guests

The end, and the aftermath

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