The Sigurd Creek Trail in Tantalus Provincial Park near Squamish is a kilometre longer than it was this time last year thanks to the efforts of a small crew of BCMC volunteers. After spending five days extending the Sigurd Trail into the Moraine Camp in October 2014 (and another several days building the Sigurd Creek Bridge in 2012), a work party of three returned this past August to construct a new trail to Ossa camp near the west ridge of Ossa Mountain. The project was funded in large part by a FMCBC Member Grant.
“The main challenge was in organizing the flight in and the gear flight out,” said Paul Kubik of the BCMC.“Weather was not cooperative on the Sunday going in or the Sunday going out.” He also noted that there was a lot of smoke in the area from the Elaho fire.
Fortunately, the crews were blessed with sunny, warm days, and a cool wind of the glacier while they worked. They spent the majority of their time clearing the route to Ossa Camp using pry bars, brush cutters and a chainsaw. They also scouted a route west to Sigurd Lake, and may return to clear that trail next year.
The final day was spent was spent drilling and hammering trail markers along the new route to Ossa. “A couple of plaques were put up with directions signs,” said Paul. “Where there were no trees, we drilled into large rocks and anchored trail markers and directional signs into the rock faces.”
While the previous trail to Ossa was very steep and crossed a lot of streams and wet ground, the new line is more level and dry. The trail is also now located on less sensitive ground.
Kubik says that the one week camp format is much more effective for trail building than shorter trips. “Allow one week to build one kilometre of trail through difficult terrain,” he said. A good leader, experienced volunteers, and the right tools for the job also contributed to a successful work party. Of course, a few “creature comforts” back at the camp don’t hurt either, and “a large central tent makes for a better camp experience.”
Thanks to the BCMC for sharing their photos and words with us! We look forward to bringing you more reports of member grant projects as they come in.