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Oh, Canada: Dayhiking the Great White North

Tue, 2018-02-27


Most peaks in the lower 48 can be done in a day. But what about Canada? Access turns out to be much more difficult in our sparsely-populated neighbor to the north, with vast pathless regions reachable only by helicopter. However, many classic peaks in the Selkirks and Rockies can still be done in a day, from the convenient peaks around Rogers Pass and Lake Louise, to Mount Robson, the “great white fright.” Even the more accessible Canadian peaks are wilder and more dramatic than just about anything found in the lower 48, with sheer faces, deep valleys, and big glaciers.

In this talk, Sean presents stories and photos from some memorable climbs in the Bugaboos, Rogers Pass, and the Rockies from two trips in 2014 and 2017. All were done in a day, most using standard fast-and-light gear. Hopefully they will bring back memories for some Mountaineers, and inspire others to brave the border crossing and visit Canada’s spectacular peaks.

About the speaker: A Los Alamos native, Sean O’Rourke grew up hiking the peaks of the Jemez, Pecos, and San Juans, then went to college in Houston, far from anything resembling a hill.  Since finishing graduate school in 2009, he has returned to the mountains, climbing throughout the west and parts of Canada.  He has spent the past few years demonstrating that many of the most remote peaks in the lower 48 can be done car-to-car in a day, culminating in a 28-hour traverse of Washington’s Northern Picket Range last August.  See for reports on over 500 outings since 2010.


Trip Location: 
United States
50° 49' 3.918" N, 116° 51' 7.2" W

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