Jumbo Pass And Bastille Mountain
Jumbo Pass in the Purcell Mountains of British Columbia has been the subject of much public controversy in recent years because of proposals for the development of a year-round alpine resort at the head of Jumbo Creek valley.  Hoping to catch a glimpse of paradise before it is paved over, Kelly Wood and I paid a visit to the area on 14 August 2006.  The more popular approach to Jumbo Pass seems to be from the east, but because Kelly and I were camping at Duncan Lake in the West Kootenays, we drove up Glacier Creek Forest Service Road and hiked up from the west.  It took us a little over two hours to hike up the well-maintained trail to Jumbo Pass.  Kelly and I went in opposite directions at the pass.  While she headed north past Jumbo Pass Cabin to the scenic ridge beyond, I turned south and scrambled up the four distinctive summits of Bastille Mountain.  Other than the initial grovel up to a high col west of the mountain, the scrambling is excellent with each summit providing its own unique challenges.  I reached the easternmost and highest summit less than two hours after leaving Jumbo Pass.  The summit views were unfortunately marred by smoke, but I thoroughly enjoyed the scramble nonetheless.  I bypassed all the lower summits on my descent and rejoined Kelly at Jumbo Pass a little over an hour after leaving the true summit.  A long and uneventful march had us back at the trailhead after a round-trip time of just over 7.5 hours.  Returning to camp, Kelly and I went for a refreshing evening swim in Duncan Lake to round out our day.
The trailhead is a 27-kilometre drive from Duncan Lake.  A SUV pulled in shortly after we arrived, and six hikers piled out including an older guy who had been sitting in the trunk! From the trailhead, there already is a glimpse of Horseshoe Glacier.
Further back on the access road, there is a sign urging motorists to slow down for toad crossings! For some reason, there is an abundance of boreal toads in this area.
Views are limited, but huckleberries can be found. Kelly hikes up the well-graded trail to Jumbo Pass.
The elevation gain to Jumbo Pass from the west trailhead is 685 metres.  It's about 80 metres less from the east trailhead. The terrain opens up as Kelly nears Jumbo Pass.
A couple of impressive-looking 11,000 footers! Kelly reaches Jumbo Pass (2270 metres).  At left are Karnak Mountain (3411 metres) and Jumbo Mountain (3437 metres).  The pointy peak behind Kelly is unnamed.
The second summit is not visible from this angle. This is Bastille Mountain as seen from just south of Jumbo Pass.  The high col just right of centre is the normal access route.  The summit at far left is the highest.
Although hard to see here, there were lots of people scattered all over the pass environs on this day. From the gully below the high col, this is looking toward the ridge north of Jumbo Pass.
The first summit is nothing more than a steep hike. This is looking southwest from Bastille Mountain's first summit.  On the horizon are (L to R) Cauldron Mountain (3230 metres), Truce Mountain (3260 metres), and Toad Peak (3085 metres).
The second summit requires some traversing across downsloping slabs. This is looking east toward the remaining summits from the first summit.
Some route-finding is required to get up a rock band guarding the third summit (it's lower down and not visible here). Sonny takes a break at the second summit.  The third summit is visible behind him.
Easier than it looks! This is the view of the fourth and highest summit from the third summit.
So far, so good! The view west from the third summit includes the first two summits of Bastille Mountain (foreground) as well as Mount Lady Macbeth (2891 metres) and Mount Macbeth (3054 metres) in the hazy distance (upper right).
Down-climbing from the third summit requires some route-finding.  The rest is easy. Sonny approaches the fourth summit.
There's more to life than just Kane scrambles! Sonny holds up a loose survey marker on the 2610-metre summit of Bastille Mountain.
These mountains are also known as the Shining Range. To the southeast are Mount Earl Grey (3149 metres) at left and Redtop Mountain (3156 metres) at right.
The ridges in the foreground would likely be easy walk-ups from the same high col used to access Bastille Mountain. Here is another view of Cauldron Mountain, Truce Mountain and Toad Peak to the southwest.
Please e-mail me and correct me if I'm wrong! This is probably Blockhead Mountain (3073 metres) to the south.
Darn that smoke! The view to the northeast include The Lieutenants (3272 metres), Mount Karnak, Jumbo Mountain and unnamed.
Shame about the view.  A bigger shame about the impending ski resort development. Here is the ridge north of Jumbo Pass as seen from Bastille Mountain's summit.  Glacier Dome (3021 metres) is barely visible at upper right.
Looks like more fun scrambling... An impressive ridge separates Bastille Mountain from Blockhead Mountain.
This area definitely warrants a future return visit. Putting Bastille Mountain behind her, Kelly begins hiking back to the trailhead.
Not the same toad as in the earlier picture! Another boreal toad is caught lurking around Sonny's car at the trailhead.