Not many people realize that Powderface Trail the Road is open for public driving from the north end to Canyon Creek. (Well, you do have to read K Country’s snowmobile report for the Sibbald Area to get this info.) Spray Lakes Sawmills is currently pulling out logs and when that is finished, the road will be closed again.
Sunday seemed a safe day to go take a look, so we drove it yesterday for 16 km from Hwy. 68 to the Jumpingpound Summit trailhead. The road was in good condition, either bare or snow packed. There was a widening at Lusk Pass trailhead where vehicles could turn around and park. The next widening was at the Jumpingpound Summit trailhead. Not because it was a trailhead. Just a few metres down the road at the blue 16 km sign, a logging road heads off from the west side of the road and provided a good place to turn around. Noticably, there was a lot more snow up there than down at Dawson and Lusk Creek trailheads.
Strapping on snowshoes and carrying wind gear—the wind was fairly howling on the road, so we could imagine what it was like on the summit ridges—we started off up the winding Jumpingpound Summit trail. The trail was unbroken and the snow deep and quite heavy. After 2 km of slow going (though time was passing far too quickly— 2 1/2 hours to be exact ) we were zonked and turned around. We decided a whole fleet of trail breakers was needed.
For anyone wanting to build on our paltry efforts, there is another 600 m of trail-breaking to go to reach the ridge line. After this we reckoned that the wind will have scoured the open slopes to the top. But best go there soon. K Country is not sure how long the window of opportunity will last. Contacting SLS during the Christmas New Year period proved futile, but hopefully I’ll have more answers on Thursday.