Another one of those what does this symbol mean on a map. Hey it says it's an old mine. Let's go! Only one person brave enough to join me on this one. Okay I don't drive! Chris now better known as Bugs.
It was a dank morning when we headed off for Squamish and the Ashlu. I was having doubts about this one, I don't own any gortex and I wish I had hit M.E.C for some. Man I was hoping the weather would get better. It wasn't by the time we pulled up to the Starbucks in Squamish for fuel. I could see Chris smiling and I started thinking what the hell we made it this far, how cold could I possibly get. Famous last words. So with trepidation I got back into the truck and started wishing I had brandy for my tea. I know it doesn't really help with thawing you out but it would sure raise my spirits.
By the time we were leaving Brackendale the sun came out and the cloud cover started to disappear. Yeah! So the riding gods were on our side this day. After a short while we were on the Ashlu access road. Time to check the map and see exactly how far to go. With this accomplished and to our astonishment we were only a kilometer away, off we go. But due to it being me and Chris we missed it. Go figure. Back track, park the truck, and get out the bikes, we're not that far away.
On our bikes and riding up this supposed old road. It looked freshly worked on and there were dirt bike tracks that didn't seem that old. After about a 10 minute climb we encountered a gate with a sign on it that read Minefield! First impression was yeah right, let's go. So over the gate and start the climb ahead of us.
The climb was nice and not overly taxing on us. The sun by this point was forcing us to take layers off. So we needed a break and a spot to rest. Off the side of the road was a little lake and this looked as good a spot as any. Well the lake was an old sludge pond (I think that's the correct term) that drained into another pond about 50 feet lower than it. We had to keep Chris's dog Sky from drinking from it and wanting to take a dip in it. Well our rest didn't last long, Sky was a bit to much for us to handle around the lake so to stop her from getting at the water we decided to head out and continue the climb.
After some more climbing we came across a closed mining operation that wasn't on the map. So as people are opt to do we started exploring and checking out the equipment that was lying about. First was the mining vehicle. It had big wheels and big scoop, wow a larger version of a Tonka toy. Way cool! Next up was the building marked Laboratory Danger Keep Out. Well there is an invite if I ever seen one. So in we go. Nothing here, damn they cleared out all the good stuff. We checked out a few more buildings and finally got bored and the search for the mine's adit was on. No luck in finding it but we think we know where it is. Next time.
Since this wasn't the actual mine we were looking for we continued up the road. Funny thing with the road at this point, a clearing vehicle had been sent up. All the brush and trees within 3 feet of the road had been sliced off about a foot from the ground. This road was being reactivated.
We climbed even further until to our astonishment the most spectacular waterfall I have ever seen came into view. I did a double take when I saw it. The water wasn't cascading over the top of a rock lip but had bored a hole through it and was shooting through it. It sort of looked like a donut, hard to explain but it was weird. I took several pictures but alas I forgot to turn on the flash and the pictures didn't turn out. I'll be making another trip up this way just to see this waterfall.
Standing there in awe for awhile, myself and Chris decided to head out instead of up due to the time. It was getting late and both of us didn't want to be up there in the dark. Off we went back to the truck. Another great epic under our belts. This is what mountain biking is about, riding off the beaten track and finding something spectacular.