I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference
The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
It’s just speculation I admit but I’d wager good money that Robert Frost never bushwhacked in coastal BC. The idea of taking the less well travelled path seems an absurdity when you have been battling devil’s club, slide alder and other assorted triffids for a couple of days. No, when you have bushwhacked in BC, any path is welcome, but the more well trodden the better.
Myself and Stu took the road less travelled to Phantom Lake. We are two of the very few people who have ever got there overland and it is very likely we are the first to have walked there from Squamish.
Our goal was to see Phantom Falls and then make it to Phantom Lake. I first set eyes on Phantom Falls when scrambling Ossa in the Tantalus Range in September 2012. I was intrigued, to say the least, by this waterfall, hundreds of feet high, that so few people seemed to have seen or even know about. Surely it should be one of BC’s most famous? Have a search around the internet and you’ll find very few photographs of Phantom Falls. Then, in researching the falls, I began to discover about Phantom Lake, another seldom visited jewel of the Coast Mountains, and a plan to get there one day was born.
Eventually the opportunity arose when a planned trip to do the Stein Valley Traverse was cancelled at the last minute. We had the time and we had the weather so we hiked over Zigurd in the Tantalus and bushwhacked into the Clowhom Valley which is usually accessed from the Sunshine Coast. It was hot, very, very hot. There were bugs galore (flies more than mosquitoes) and the bushwhacking was pretty tough but on day two we set eyes on the falls for the first time and on day three we made it to the lake.
It was well worth it. Even the two more days we spent getting out couldn’t dampen the excitement of these wonderful views. It was so good in fact that we think our guests should see it; so we’ll be running a trip there on next year’s tours when we’ll be staying overnight in this remote spot. If you think you’d like to go then take a look at our ‘Glacial Lakes’ tour. And don’t worry, this time we’ll be flying in.