Ascent of Grouse Mountain on 2016-09-16

Climber: William Musser

Other People:Solo Ascent
Date:Friday, September 16, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Grouse Mountain
    Location:Canada-British Columbia
    Elevation:4039 ft / 1231 m

Ascent Trip Report

Grouse Mountain via the Grind:

I got up early to drive from Vancouver to North Vancouver at the base of the Grouse Mountain Ski Resort. I had heard so much about the “Grouse Grind” which all the locals use to train on. A grueling nearly 3,000 foot gain of steps made of rock, dirt, logs, and boards. In about 1.8 miles it gains 2,800 feet. I got there in the dark and put on my headlamp. I started at 6:15AM and passed one local and that was the last local I passed. The hardcore get up early to beat the “tourists” like me and see if they can beat their personal bests. I would guess 20 to 25 people passed me on the way up. The internet says 90 minutes is considered a good time for a fit person and the record is under 30 minutes. I promised my wife and heart doctor not to push my heart like that again so I took a nice pace keeping my heart beating between 80 and 100 bpm and able to breathe most of the route through my nose. People passing me were breathing heavily through their mouth huffing and puffing and looking down at their watches! Hard core! I was pleased to see my time was 70 minutes – still very good since I did not want to over tax the ol’ ticker, and I had a full agenda ahead of me past this warm up exercise.

My big surprise, was all these early morning trainers, then either ran back down the BCST trail, or grabbed the Gondola and came down. I thought with all that traffic early sunrise and all I would have company on the next phase of my expedition but no – it was solo peakbagging after that. Sun had just come up as I hiked past the grizzly bear habitat pen and found a maintenance road up Grouse Peak. It looked so close but by the time I found the summit near the chair lift and was back down again, I was now approaching my 2nd hour since leaving the car. I note this as the folks that do the Grind are not on the summit. The Grouse summit for those that peakbag is off to the north of the Gondola.

The Grouse summit has some decent views but is cluttered with man-made objects. I started down the ski slope and then thought otherwise. Legal mumbo-jumbo signs were everywhere protecting the ski resort from dumb hikers and doing dumb things and they just started exercising the ski lifts for all the tourists to come up later in the morning where I was descending, and I could envision some security guy blowing a whistle, sending up an SUV with a flashing light and ending my day of fun so I took the conservative course of action and hiked back up to the summit and came back down the maintenance road. I figure, I was going to leave the resort area soon any way.

See TR for Dam, Little Goat, Big Goat, and Crown Mountain for additional details of all day peakbagging in the area.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3252 ft / 990 m
    Total Elevation Loss:364 ft / 110 m
    Round-Trip Distance:3 mi / 4.8 km
    Grade/Class:1,2 very steep
    Quality:5 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3202 ft / 975 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3127 ft / 954 m; Extra: 75 ft / 22m
    Loss on way in:75 ft / 22 m
    Distance:2.3 mi / 3.7 km
    Route:Grouse "Grind" to maintenance road
    Start Trailhead:Parking Lot  912 ft / 277 m
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:289 ft / 88 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 239 ft / 73 m; Extra: 50 ft / 15m
    Gain on way out:50 ft / 15 m
    Distance:0.7 mi / 1.1 km
    Route:maintenance road to wilderness
    End Trailhead:saddle   3800 ft / 1158 m
Ascent Part of Trip: Grouse-Crown-BC

Complete Trip Sequence:
1Grouse Mountain2016-09-16 a3252 ft / 991 m
2Dam Mountain2016-09-16 b626 ft / 191 m
3Little Goat Mountain2016-09-16 c198 ft / 60 m
4Goat Mountain2016-09-16 d976 ft / 297 m
5Crown Mountain2016-09-16 e1589 ft / 484 m
Total Trip Gain: 6641 ft / 2023 m    Total Trip Loss: 6644 ft / 2025 m

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