Avalanche Conditions

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Mountain Conditions Reports, good resource from guides in the area.

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#19106 - 03/05/17 08:23 AM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
ozman05 Offline

Registered: 09/26/08
Posts: 153
Loc: Canmore
I'm an infrequent visitor to the Ghost but feel a post on driving conditions is in order. These observations are from our trip into Beowulf on Mar 2.

Firstly, you need a 4x4 with generous clearance; I was driving a stock Tacoma with 10" clearance & the underside of the vehicle was 'rubbing' the centre of the 'road' most of the time. The snow is deep.

The first issue is the blue low level bridge that always seams to ice dam. The road is blocked by an 'olympic sized swimming pool'. The better route is to detour through the trees on the right. How long this will last is unsure as it was rutted & covered in water in the afternoon.

Although we got through 'stumpland' without issue there is a healthy wind there & tons of snow to transport.

The stream crossings are as obvious & straightforward as you would expect for this kind of adventure,

We were the first ones in yesterday & drove to Beowulf with only one incidence of digging out the trail (5 mins of digging, so almost not worth reporting).

A collection of 'good ol' boys' drove to GBU & back out in the afternoon. Their efforts basically created a 'lane & a half' highway out of the Ghost.

Fun times.

Edited by ozman05 (03/05/17 08:26 AM)
Edit Reason: date included in edit

#19114 - 03/09/17 09:11 PM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Ian Greant Online   content


Registered: 11/07/07
Posts: 249
Loc: Calgary & Canmore AB
FB report from today (not me)

Took a drive today to climb THOS and the checked out devils gap after. blue bridge crossing went well and required little effort to stay on the main track instead of the forest. All crossings still frozen to junction 39. 39 to THOS had easy crossings through the water. The crossing at ether 36 or 37 is starting to sag and I imagine will be the first river crossing to break, and won't be long.

South ghost to devils gap is in excellent shape and easy driving.
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#19120 - 03/14/17 10:42 AM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Grant P Online   content

WI 10

Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 1026
Loc: Calgary
Mon 13-Mar-2017
Got a call from a friend stuck in the Ghost so took a drive in there late afternoon. Here are some observations.

*3km bridge area. Bridge is getting buried in ice. Right after the bridge is a bit rough. Some folks have bypassed the bridge across the creek but look for the hole near the bridge if you do that. After the bridge there are some folks diverting through the trees but you can take the road too. The road is covered in ice then has water over the top. The bottom of the hill has two pools that aren't too deep with the ice under the water but might be if that bottom ice melted. The pools were relatively mellow yesterday and a stock Blazer followed me out without issues. Two others used the trees.
*TA road. Snow covered and reasonable traction. Ruts beat in nicely through any drifts. With warm days ahead watch for potential early morning freezing making ice.
*Big hill. Good traction and easy yesterday but did note a couple tracks in the side snow indicating someone may have done a little sliding recently.
*Big hill to Wully crossing. The track was decent without any real problems. When you get to the Wully crossing the ice bridge is quite a dip and it might be worthwhile taking a close look. Coming out my downstream wheels went through a hole which could get snowed over again. I saw one stock vehicle lightly scrape a hitch leaving.
*Wully to diversion structure (38). Tracks set and ok to drive.
*38 to 38+. Going in I guess the Monday climbers had tracks but coming out there had been drifting across this stretch. This drifting is over the flooded road and this is what got my buddy stuck. The snow wasn't deep enough to high center him but was deep enough that when forward motion was lost, the ice gave zero traction to get going again. My first attempt I tried reversing through the snow multiple times to make tracks but was still a ways away to hook up straps. Second attempt involved weaving across the gravel on the NE side of the drifting and coming at him from an angle up to where the gravel became ice. Two 30ft recovery straps then reached him. Multi tugs got him out and onto gravel. Two other climber vehicles joined us and avoided the drifting via gravel and walking the route looking for large rocks, deep patches. My guess is the heat this week will settle the drifting and allow passage again but my advice is to walk it and evaluate it with bypassing via gravel as your alternate.
*Beyond 38+. Didn't drive it so don't know. I believe there may have been some minor drifting but some climbers were on THOS so passable to there at least.

The big take away here is be prepared to get out and walk the line and evaluate wherever there might be issues. Stock 4wd can make it if you're smart. Be prepared for if you hit problems.

Have a buddy to send a text to - "I'm fucked in the north ghost" if you don't make it out. laugh

#19131 - 03/25/17 09:32 PM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Grant P Online   content

WI 10

Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 1026
Loc: Calgary
Sat 25-Mar-2017
Since I last went in there the road just after the 3km bridge has been graded/ploughed/dug out. Large piles of ice line the road which at a glance at least seem to block the between the trees option. There is a channel that is a tad bumpy through which it looks like a lot of the creek is flowing. Just after the channel is a long pond now. Seemed a little deeper leaving at the end of the day but stock vehicles and even a sprinter van made it through. Be prepared to check the depth.

The TA road was icy in places but easy enough. It had gotten rather muddy by leaving time. The big hill was mostly ice free except for a strip down one side on the off camber bend.

Didn't go into the north ghost so don't have an update on that direction. Devils Gap was passable with a stock 4x4 but some holes/ruts were deep. Heard a stock Taco had to do a little winching Thursday but I think they would have fared better by today.

#19141 - 03/30/17 09:11 AM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Glen Fielhaber Offline

Registered: 12/14/13
Posts: 38
Loc: Airdrie
Just a reminder for anyone making plans for the weekend. The Seasonal closure beyond marker 39 begins on April 1.

#19150 - 04/09/17 12:54 AM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Grant P Online   content

WI 10

Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 1026
Loc: Calgary
Sat 8-Apr-2017
*3km bridge has quite a flume of water right after the bridge. There are two drain channels though and with upcoming temps they aren't likely to ice jam so the pond you have to drive through will remain manageable.
*TA road mostly good.
*35, 37, the ice plains, are all supporting vehicle weight so far. The lottery has started though and someone will win the breakthrough eventually.
*Wully crossing ice bridge has collapsed leaving quite a deep hole to potentially catch someone. The better option is to use the standard ford crossing. You'll probably need to stop and chop unless your clearance is good.
*Diversion to 38+ was supportive ice today although follow the ice track because 38+ itself, still looked ugly.
*Ramp crossing had holes opening up at the base of the ramp. I hugged the upstream side of the ramp to avoid the holes but it was still bumpy.

A quick chat with some non-climbers and they reported talking to a "bush cop". I was surprised to hear the CO's were braving the "winter" road conditions. I bet they didn't try going in back in January laugh

#19159 - 05/22/17 11:43 PM Re: Ghost Road Conditions - winter 2016/2017 [Re: Grant P]
Grant P Online   content

WI 10

Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 1026
Loc: Calgary
Mon 22-May-2017
River levels.
I don't know how many folks might want to know the water levels in the north Ghost over the next few days. Sunday I was in there and levels were up a little. I don't think there was too much difference from morning to afternoon. Monday was a different story. Levels had risen overnight, then with the warm temps (significantly less snow on Blackrock from Sun to Mon) the river was noticeably deeper by evening when I left. Probably around the 2ft mark judging by the water reaching my door sill. I have 4.5" lift and 33" tyres, plus snorkeled, so maybe not a great idea to try heading into the north Ghost with a small or stock vehicle over the next few days. Especially if we also get the 5-10mm rain forecast around midweek.

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