Mount McGuire

Elevation Gain: 1,088m
Distance: 13.31km
Total Time: 5 hours 7 minutes
Date: November 29th, 2023

Alex, Trevor and myself had a spare day off mid week and wanted to go hike up something tame. The snowpack was stable, abeit because there was so little and weather was looking good in the Chilliwack area. Alex suggested Mount McGuire and I hadn’t been up it yet, so why not! McGuire has a well established summer route up the east ridge, although the original ascent climbed directly up the north face. In the summer time it’s an easy hike and in the winter, depending on how far you can get down the Borden Creek FSR, it’s not much different. Although there is some avi terrain to be mindful of.

We reached the New Borden FSR a little before 7am and found a frost covered but snow free road. There was narrow sketchy section which you can find more details on here, but otherwise pretty easy driving in the tacoma. Our final parking spot was at the bridge washout as the next section was too steep and icy to drive. That put us about 6km from the summit so we were pretty happy to have made it that far in the last few days before December.

At the bridge washout

Getting across creek took a few attempts as all the rocks were covered in a thin layer of ice, but we eventually opted for a run and jump off an old 4×8. The road walk from there was easy with minimal snow and we only put snowshoes on about 1km before the trailhead. As we climbed out of the cutblocks we got some early morning views of the border peaks which looked menacing as always. Once we were in the trees we just followed the orange markers from the summer route until we reached the east ridge. We lost the trail at the point, so just picked our own way through the snow and soon stood below the final summit scramble.

Alex and Trevor walking down Borden Creek FSR
First views of McGuire
Canadian Border Peak and American Border Peak. Mount Larabee just poking out far right
Nearing the end of the cutblock
Into the forest
Nice views of Slesse
Minimal snow on the south side
Making our own way now

At this time of year it was all exposed rock and made for an easy ascent up to the final summit. It had only been 3 hours since we left the car so this was going to be a quick outing in the end. On the southern flanks we spotted goat tracks ascending up what looked like a 70 degree snow pinnacle. But as usual around here the Goats leave only their traces to be found. The cold wind prompted us off the summit and we descended back down the exposed rocky slopes on the east side. Then we glissaded a steep section of snow to bypass some loose scrambling further down the ridge.

Time for a short scramble
Alex on the summit and Trevor finishing up the last of the ridge
Church Mountain across the valley
Cheam Peak, Lady Peak, Knight Peak, Baby Munday, Stewart Peak, The Still, Welch Peak and Foley Peak all visible. Just Welch peak to finish for me.
Heading down the final snow slope to east ridge
Fun glissade ahead
Alex in front of the border peaks. Tomyhoi at right

With that we were back in the forest and had a pleasant plod back to the truck simply following our tracks.

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