American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing
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North America, Canada, British Columbia, Lillooet Ice Field, Coast Range

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1961

Lillooet Ice Field, Coast Range. Long approaches over rough terrain have preserved the Lillooet Ice Field area from exploration. Until 1960, only the perimeter of approximately 800 square miles of mountain and glacier had been explored. While making an aerial reconnaissance for Mount Raleigh (A.A.J., 1960, 12:1, p. 133), we discovered a lake about a mile long which had been formed during the past ten years by the rapid retreat of the Lillooet Glacier. It lies 30 miles up the Lillooet River from Pemberton Meadows, some 100 miles northwest of Vancouver, B. C. On July 16 we set off from there at 2500 feet. In two days we followed the length of the Lillooet and Bishops Glaciers and then climbed up a glacier that flowed into the Bishop from the south. An advance camp was established there on July 17. The next day we made the first ascent of Mount Toba (9000 feet) up 60° to 65° snow slopes. On July 19 we made the first ascent of Mount Compton (9250 feet) and on July 21 we made the first ascent of the highest mountain in the range, which we named "Archbishop” (9850 feet). We returned by the same route to be picked up on July 23. Fine weather assisted us. Many unclimbed peaks of over 9000 feet remain in this range, but large distances must be covered on foot to reach them because of the paucity of lakes in the area.

Ralph M. J. Hutchinson, British Columbia Mountaineering Club

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