Rogers Pass Base Camp Skiing

By:  Ben
September 1, 2010

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The next day was our last big day at Rogers. We hitched back to the same trailhead as the day before and skinned up to the massive Illecillewaet glacier. The snow had been baked by the sun the day before, but we still found some excellent pockets of shaded fresh powder and other spots of decent snow.

Skinning up toward the Illecillewaet glacier

The coolest part of the day was the scenery – once we had negotiated the massive toe of the glacier and made it up to the glacier proper, the view was breathtaking. I’ve never been on a glacier that size before, the sense of wide open space is incredible.

The space up here is insane!

Higher up the glacier

We finally got to our chosen high point and began the long ski down. The snow as nowhere near as good as the day before, but the skiing certainly did not suck!

Time for a 5000' descent...

This time hitching back from the trailhead proved difficult. The TransCanada highway is a lonely road, and no one seemed to want to give us a ride. We finally opted to hike back, as the sun began to set. Three miles of road walking in AT boots after an already long day was pretty brutal! We were happy to finally get back to the Lodge and a well-earned rest day the next day.

Thanks for looking! The snow will be flying soon, and it’ll be time to have more adventures in snow-covered mountains!

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Read about the author:   Ben


  1. powhounddd
    wrote on September 1st, 2010 at 8:06 pm  

    Thank you. Between these TRs,watching Ice Road Truckers and snowboard trailers, I think I can survive both this ridiculous heat wave AND the rest of ragweed season. Thankyouthankyouthankyou!!!!!!!! Bring on the snow!

  2. Harvey44
    wrote on September 2nd, 2010 at 7:51 am  

    I’ll admit I had to Google Rogers Pass to figure out where it was. Having skied the west only 25 days in my life, it’s hard for me to grasp the feeling of being disappointed in cloudy snowy days. I mean I understand it, logically … blocking access to the terrain you were after. Love the skintrack pics and all the shots from the last two days. Must be great to ski so much that you don’t get all your TRs up until Labor Day. Great for us too. Let the temp dropping begin!

    • Ben
      wrote on September 2nd, 2010 at 11:19 pm  

      It’s a tricky question – you’re never really AGAINST new snow ;) but between visibility and avi conditions, it’s really the sunny days that let you get up high and ski the cool stuff!

  3. Patrick
    wrote on October 26th, 2010 at 10:30 am  

    Hey, sweet trip report. The pics were awesome.
    Some buddies and I are going to be doing some winter camping up at Rogers Pass this winter. I was curious what kind of camping gear you guys used and if you slept warm/comfortable through the night. Was a 0 Deg F rated sleeping bag warm enough, or did you need something rated below that??

    • Ben
      wrote on October 26th, 2010 at 10:39 am  

      Thanks Patrick! We used a 4-season Mountain Hardware Trango 3.1 tent. It worked great, even with all the snow (make sure you guy it out really well if it’s snowing a lot!). It wasn’t particularly cold, we had 0 F bags and were fine, although I’m sure it gets colder sometime. Make sure you’ve got plenty of food and a nice puffy and I think you’ll be all set most of the time, unless it’s a particularly cold spell. That place gets enough snow that the 4-season tent is pretty key though!

      Another good option is to check out the huts run by the Alpine Club of Canada. You have to reserve them way in advance and they’re more expensive, but that would definitely be a sweet option that would keep you warmer (and allow you to carry less up!)

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