Brian Waddington Hut

Enjoy spectacular terrain and skiing in an alpine setting with a wide range of aspects near British Columbia Canada's Birkenhead Lake about an hour north of Whistler.

getting there

The approach to the hut is somewhat demanding—a 7-hour drive from Seattle and then a 6-mile, 3,000-foot elevation gain ski approach.  The inexpensive Hostel Shiloh-Works about an hour from the trailhead can separate the long drive and the ski approach.

approach

The first four miles of the ski trail into the hut follow old logging roads and are easy to follow except for some large "wheel stops" built into the roadbed towards the road's end. Once past the end of  the logging road, the route enters the forest and starts climbing in earnest (~1,000 feet/mile). The route is marked with bright orange reflective diamonds, so hardy souls equipped with a strong headlamp and a GPS could follow the route after sunset.  After climbing 1,500 feet in the forest, the trail reaches the shore of Long Lake and an half-mile  ski across the lake to the hut.

about the hut

The Brian Waddington Hut is a large hut that sleeps up to 24. It is equipped with propane lanterns and dual burner cook stoves. There are no heaters, but the hut is well insulated and the sleeping loft is upstairs so  it is fairly comfortable hanging out wearing a down jacket, but not a T-shirt. There is an outhouse about 100 yards from the hut. Water is obtained from the lake—a small area about 1/4 mile from the hut has a strong inlet stream that usually doesn't freeze over.

ski routes

Good skiing can be found in several directions from the hut.  North aspects of slopes to the south of the hut can provide superlative skiing.

notes

  • Guidebook: Exploring the Coast Mountains on Skis, 3rd ed. by John Baldwin (John Baldwin 2009).

information for leaders

Considerations for international travel

  • Start by reviewing the latest regulations.
  • Everyone will need a passport or other valid ID such as a NEXUS card.
  • NEXUS cards can save a lot of time but only work if everyone in the car has one.
  • Make sure your vehicle insurance is valid for Canada.
  • Make sure your health insurance is valid for Canada.
  • Border crossing regulations are strict in both directions. Know what you’re allowed to take and declare everything to avoid problems.
  • You may be able to save time by checking alternate border crossings. Find apps that show updated times and other good tips.
  • Difficulty: *Varies*
  • Length: 12.0 mi
  • Elevation Gain: 3,000 ft
  • 7,000 ft
Map
  • CNTS Birkenhead Lake 92J/10
Activities

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