ClubTread Community
Register | Active Topics | Top 10 | Search | Guidelines | Report Spam
Username:
Password:
  Login   Donate
Support ClubTread
  Trail Wiki
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

 All Forums
 Trip Reports
 Other regions
 Tombstone Territorial Park, Yukon (21-25 Aug)
Bookmark and Share     Reply to Topic
Next Page
Author Topic
Page: of 2

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  2:08 PM  Show Profile  Reply to this posting
Phase 2 of my trip to the Yukon in August was a sojourn in the breath-taking Tombstone Territorial Park. CWF was with me for this one as well, and we also picked up a friend living in Whitehorse.

After spending the evening in the campground on the side of the Dempster, we woke up to slightly below freezing temperatures and thick, thick smoke.

We began our hike up Grizzley Creek valley following a fairly well marked route. The smoke was combined with some misty rain which made the rocky parts of the route (and there were many) fairly treacherous. The distance from the trailhead to the lake was 9 kms and took an amazing 7.5 hours to complete.



The sun did manage to come out in the evening and gave us some beautiful views of the valley. This on again, off again weather was typical for the entire time in the park.



Day 2: Along with the others at the Grizzley camp, we looked up at Glissade pass and thought huh? Where the heck are we supposed to go? Well, we went straight up. Oh what fun, you can see the smiles on the hiking party and Grizzley Valley in the background:



Looking down Glissade Pass - this was a fun descent as we got to boot ski down a huge section of it. After the cold rain at the top of the pass, we were rewarded with a rainbow over the Tombstone Valley at the bottom.




We were making good time on day 2, so we only stopped at Divide Lake for lunch a few photos before pressing on.




After leaving Divide Lake, we crossed Tombstone Pass which is the dividing point between the headwaters of the North Klondike River and the Tombstone River.



We set up camp at the edge of Talus Lake. Simply amazing. It was still a bit smokey but Tombstone Moutain could be made out throught haze of sunset and the sunrise views down the valley were stunning.



Day 3 started with rain but then turned into a beautiful sunny afternoon that found us lounging around in the alpine tundra forging for berries and taking many photos of the ever changing vistas.



The winds picked up in the afternoon and created some amazing clouds before also bringing the rain... the rain which pretty much carried through until the next afternoon. Did I mention the winds? The sheer pleasure of restaking a tent down at 2:30 a.m. in the pouring rain is one that cannot be described my mere words alone, it needs to be experienced.



We broke camp in the early afternoon of day 4 and made a quick jump back to Divide Lake that we had only paused at on day 3. Just in time for the rain to set in again and clear up for a nice sunset.

The toll collector enroute to Divide Lake:


A cold and breezey sunset at Divide Lake:


Day 5 saw the rain break at about 2:30 in the afternoon. I poke my head out of the tent to find the 3 Rangers packing up their stuff to make a beeline for the highway - 16 kms out the valley - almost all bushwacking. So what did we do? Packed up with them and practically ran along behind them. A trip that shall not soon be forgotten.

The views on day 5 were some of the best - the extra cold temperatures (note the snow on the peaks in the pictures) seemed to bring out the stunning fall colours.



This trip was a real adventure: tough hiking, challenging weather and so much beauty that you don't even realize what you are seeing until after the experience. If you get a chance, go.

Just one more pic, after a night of rest, we drove to the north end of the park up the Dempster to see the Blackstone Uplands - an unglaciated area where the mountains are quite different than those scoured by glaciers.


Edited by - dblakeburn on 09/13/2005 2:52 PM
ClubTread Supporter

Bernbaby
Intermediate Member


Calgary, alberta
Canada

674 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  2:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Probably a dumb question,,,how did you bear proof your food with no trees?

----------------------------------------
The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  2:46 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm glad you asked... with a Bear Vault 300, it is good for about 7 days worth of food. You can pick them up at MEC but they aren't in the online catalouge last I checked.

I think if you search you'll find some threads on here about bear canisters.

dyukon
Starting Member


whitehorse, yt
1 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  4:50 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Great Review... It was a spectacular trip.

mick range
Extreme Hoser

Trail running, bike hucking, fast packing, beer drinking collector of pine cones on a day pass

AKA

Dances with Trees

Forest Gnome Cabin
Canada

13441 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  5:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
What fascinating terrain, a one of a kind place to visit. A group of Cters were up there last year and really enjoyed it...
ClubTread Supporter

Dru
Mountain Grammar Police

Sardonic sandbagging scoundrel, Cascade Climbers lobotomized spraymeister, space blanket flyer, new millennium vulgarian betaboy and friend to all squids

Climbing, a mountain
Canada

∞ Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  5:48 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Even though I have heard that the rock is covered with lichen and unpleasant to try and climb, I still want to go there and climb Tombstone and some of the other peaks
ClubTread Supporter

Jeffster
Advanced Member

Terminator shade wearing, summit questing, double Grinding, Gordo voting self annointed 'dumb ass' and Aconcagua Bagga who dreams of Robson, Teton, The Judge, and.....and....

Port Moody, B.C
Canada

2217 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  5:55 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Awesome looking terrain. The colourfull rolling valleys with rocky spire like peaks scatered around give it a mythical feel. Very nice TR!!

mick range
Extreme Hoser

Trail running, bike hucking, fast packing, beer drinking collector of pine cones on a day pass

AKA

Dances with Trees

Forest Gnome Cabin
Canada

13441 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  6:05 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
http://www.clubtread.com/sforum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=7706

Here's a link to the fine report posted by Beersnob and company last year
ClubTread Supporter

BeerSnob
Intermediate Member


Vancouver, BC
655 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  8:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sorry to hear that you guys had smoke in the area - there appears to be a curse of some sort.

Out of curiosity, when you followed the rangers back to the campground, did they follow the GPS track that I sent to CWF, or is there a better route that I don't know about?

It's great area - looking forward to returning next year! (as long as there isn't smoke around - grr)

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  9:00 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm pretty sure we didn't follow the GPS coords. But if I can try to describe it would be stay as high as you can on the south side of the Tombstone valley after you pass the valley that leads to Glissade Pass. Stay high until you reach a really big boulder field that has a log of orange lichen on it (this is about 2/3 of the way back from Divide Lake to the Dempster) - then head down to the valley bottom and attempt to follow the boggy, braided, swampy horse trail for the last 5 kms.

I got the sense that they (the rangers) were just winging it for most of the time themselves and we were pushing through a wall of buckbrush almost the entire time for the first two thirds.

I'd say that heading downhill on the way out made it a bit easier. When I go back, which I will, I'll probably take the same route in to Grizzley Lake and then over Glissade Pass to get to Divide.

Let me know if you need more details and I can probably throw some grid coordinates together of my old fashioned topo maps.
ClubTread Supporter

BeerSnob
Intermediate Member


Vancouver, BC
655 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  9:19 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
OK - I'm pretty sure I know where you went. On the way in when we made the rough version of the track, we "fully experienced" the brush and a big swamp and fine-tuned the route on the way out - I figure it's about 95% accurate for following the horse trail plus a few foot trails. There's fairly solid footing most of the way, and it weaves route through the worst of the brush.

Tough to tell for sure, but the I think the GPS track is a bit easier than what the rangers led you on, but the GPS track is only useful if you actually have a mapping GPS - it's too hard to follow otherwise..

Anyway, hopefully the smoke goes away and stays gone for both our return visits..

trudel
Junior Member


North Vancouver
149 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  9:21 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Very sweet TR! Nice photos - way too inspiring! I've heard all about the area from friends in Whitehorse, but haven't seen shots like that, even despite the not-perfect weather. What amazing colours; and those mountains look sooo inviting! That re-staking the tent in the rain and wind at 2:30am is quite an experience, isn't it?!

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/13/2005 :  9:27 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Staking that tent back down is a story I'll be tellin' for years to come. I had even gone out and bought the extra long and fancy schmancy Anderson pegs for this trip.. luckily enough.

I can't really complain about the weather - it made the trip what is was. Wet and miserable puts a bit of a sadistic smile on my face.

I'm looking forward to going back and spending even more time there and exploring some more passes and tarns and getting deeper into the park.

ClubTread Supporter

Bernbaby
Intermediate Member


Calgary, alberta
Canada

674 Posts

 Posted - 09/14/2005 :  07:09 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
with a Bear Vault 300, it is good for about 7 days worth of food. You can pick them up at MEC but they aren't in the online catalouge last I checked


I had read that thread on the bear vaults, was just wondering if this is the type of situation where they are used. Obviously it worked!

----------------------------------------
The only reason some people get lost in thought is because it's unfamiliar territory.

Shadee
sweet n innocent

ass wigglin, cheese lovin, 4x4 drivin, apostrophe hatin, hiking chick who loves camping on snow

spaceship..
Canada

7209 Posts

 Posted - 09/14/2005 :  07:28 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow I love the colors, certainly makes a person consider a trip there.
I thought getting up to visit mother nature in the middle of the night was bad enough, now after reading your story I'll try not to cuss and complain next time I have to do that

I really like this rainbow picture



----------------------------------------
I am a backpacker, and I wear hiking boots - don't diss my boots ;)

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/15/2005 :  2:13 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Shadee

Wow I love the colors, certainly makes a person consider a trip there.
I thought getting up to visit mother nature in the middle of the night was bad enough, now after reading your story I'll try not to cuss and complain next time I have to do that

I really like this rainbow picture



----------------------------------------
I am a backpacker, and I wear hiking boots - don't diss my boots ;)




I would say that if you are aiming for the colours, don't go any earlier than the last week of August - they seemed to be coming out in full force then...
ClubTread Supporter

northernalberta
Senior Member


Anchorage, Alaska
USA

1340 Posts

 Posted - 09/15/2005 :  3:40 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
All I can say is AWESOME. What an amazing place. A little reminiscent of my traipsing through Denali, except with fall colours. I would love to re-trace your footsteps. Could you possibly post a map with your route superimposed? There's not a lot of info on the net about this place compared to other hiking destinations.

----------------------------------------
Behind the blue Rockies, the sun is declining; the stars, they come stealing at the close of the day...
ClubTread Supporter

BeerSnob
Intermediate Member


Vancouver, BC
655 Posts

 Posted - 09/15/2005 :  6:09 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by northernalberta

All I can say is AWESOME. What an amazing place. A little reminiscent of my traipsing through Denali, except with fall colours. I would love to re-trace your footsteps. Could you possibly post a map with your route superimposed? There's not a lot of info on the net about this place compared to other hiking destinations.

----------------------------------------
Behind the blue Rockies, the sun is declining; the stars, they come stealing at the close of the day...



Although it's not online, there's a ton of info in the book "Along the Dempster" - highly recommended!

Shadee
sweet n innocent

ass wigglin, cheese lovin, 4x4 drivin, apostrophe hatin, hiking chick who loves camping on snow

spaceship..
Canada

7209 Posts

 Posted - 09/15/2005 :  6:20 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dblakeburn


I would say that if you are aiming for the colours, don't go any earlier than the last week of August - they seemed to be coming out in full force then...




Thanks - maybe I'll plan the last week of august for next year then

----------------------------------------
I am a backpacker, and I wear hiking boots - don't diss my boots ;)

dblakeburn
Junior Member


Whitehorse, YT
Canada

223 Posts

 Posted - 09/16/2005 :  12:08 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Shadee: I might just see you there then, I think I'll be back in the 'stones about the same time next year but I think I'd like to spend a full 9 days there.

NorthernAlberta: "Along the Dempster" has great route maps. CPAWS has a book out too and it has a great history of the region, ecology, etc. (Cdn Parks and Wilderness Society)

I'd be happy to trace our route, but I don't have a digital topo map... but wouldn't mind if one were to land in my email.
ClubTread Supporter

northernalberta
Senior Member


Anchorage, Alaska
USA

1340 Posts

 Posted - 09/16/2005 :  07:15 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hope you don't mind, your pics were so amazing I made one of them my desktop image. Thanks for the tip, I'll browse book-shopping sites for "Along the Dempster". I'm serious about wanting to go up there next summer. I know topo maps are available online, I just don't know where....

----------------------------------------
Behind the blue Rockies, the sun is declining; the stars, they come stealing at the close of the day...
Page: of 2 Topic  
Next Page
 All Forums > Trip Reports > Other regions Bookmark and Share     Reply to Topic

Register | Active Topics | Top 10 | Search | Guidelines | Report Spam