Monday, March 10, 2008

SnowFest 08 - trip up to Dakota Ridge...

As I mentioned last week, we hoped to get up to SnowFest 08 this weekend, a joint project of the Tetrahedron Outdoor Club and the Sunshine Coast Regional District. Strange as it may seem to our family/friends in Ontario, hit with a MAJOR dumping of snow on the weekend, we chose to go find some.

We headed out just before noon and were amazed at the line of cars we encountered on Field Road, heading up towards Dakota Ridge. We found somewhere to park, then joined the throngs waiting for the first set of shuttles.

They had a fire going for those who felt a little chilly:

Within 20 minutes or so, we were up to the next stage and decided to hike in with snow shoes, rather than wait for the snowcat shuttle. The party atmosphere was alive and well there:

The line was long and there were lots of families with kids who were in far more need of a comfy ride up than we were.

So we strapped on the snowshoes and started the 1.6 km climb. Because of the spring conditions (it was about 5ยบ C), the snow was very soft, so we were glad of the snowshoes. Other people were walking in as well, so we had lots of company and the scenery was great:

It was tough slogging at some points. The snowmobilers began riding the trail and giving lifts to those who had decided walking that distance wasn't quite as much fun as they'd thought. Though I was tempted to take the ride offered to me, I said no and kept going, knowing how good I'd feel when we reached the ridge and I could say I did it under my own steam :)

The snow cat passed us a couple of times:

and we saw some neat sights:

and just over an hour later we reached our destination:

along with many others:

After a burger break we wandered around and took some pics:

and explored a couple of the snowshoe trails:

Then, because Sean still had to drop by the radio station to do some work, we headed back down, knowing the wait for the van shuttles could be a long one. The views on the way down were spectacular:

Only once or twice were we by ourselves on the road:

and there were still people heading up:

It only took us a half hour to get down - here I am just before we reached the main road:

We didn't have to wait as long as we thought to get a shuttle down to the parking area and pretty soon were were back at the car. This little stream was running quite quickly:

Sean always told me about visiting winter in BC, and now I've done it a couple of times, I have to say I like it. From winter to spring all in an hour:

The main road up to the first parking lot also affords some fantastic views:

So, that was our day :) I'm a bit stiff and sore this morning, but we had so much fun, it was definitely worth it.

Hope you all had a good weekend as well :)



Melissa Marsh said...


(If you can't tell, I'm ready for spring!)

Leah Braemel said...

Your pics are absolutely beautiful. My family went out to BC (Vancouver Island, then through Vancouver to AB) in 2006 and we've been dying to get back there ever since. And yes, you're right - us folk here in Ontario are so fed up with snow this year we can't understand people wanting to go look for it. (Not that we get anything close to what they do up in the Rockies, but we like to complain about it anyway.)