Alpine Adventure #5 – Slide Mountain
by Tom Koleszar, 8 August 2022
Our scheduled field trip day of August 6 had beautiful weather, however, our helicopter was taken to fight wildfires near Bute Inlet, so we could not go! After much discussion and planning and rescheduling, we managed to get a full trip up to Slide Mountain two days later – still in wonderful weather with no smoke!!
Twenty members were landed by helicopter near a small lake just NE of Slide Mountain at 1350 metres elevation. The weather was sunny and warm (quite warm in the afternoon!) with excellent visibility. The views were spectacular. After everyone was assembled at our destination, we spent a hour before lunch learning about the local environment (flora and fauna, rocks and landforms, etc.). The area was mixed sub-alpine forest and open areas of rock and low bushes (mostly heather and blueberries). There can be impressive wildflower displays in some years, unfortunately the late snow pack this year meant little was blooming when we were there. Indeed, the lake was still almost completely frozen! A few birds were seen, and some goat trails and droppings were noted – but by far the most abundant wildlife species were the flies and mosquitoes!
After an enjoyable lunch in the sunshine, we had a couple of hours of free time to explore. Some relaxed near the landing area, while others explored around the lake or along adjacent ridges. It was a wonderful day, and I think everyone enjoyed themselves a lot – whether they were new to the alpine country or just renewing an old acquaintance.
Thanks again to our drivers who got everyone to the staging area safely and to Nancy for bring the extra helicopter fuel, and especially to Ben, our Oceanview Helicopters pilot, who got everyone on and off the mountain safely.