Mount Doupe
Kicking off an extended weekend car camping trip in the Flathead region of southeast British Columbia, Zosia Zgolak and I ascended Mount Doupe on 20 June 2020.  The mountain is named after Jacob Lonsdale Doupe (reference courtesy of, a highly respected chief surveyor for the Canadian Pacific Railway.  My inspiration for this rather obscure objective came from a trip report by the late Rick Collier in  Despite being one of the highest peaks in the area and having a relatively straightforward ascent route, Mount Doupe has been largely ignored most likely because of its remoteness and somewhat difficult access.

From Highway 3, turn east onto Morrissey Road about 8.8 kilometres south of the turnoff to Fernie Ski Resort or 17 kilometres east and north of the junction with Highway 93.  Cross both the bridge over Elk River and the train tracks before turning right at a T-intersection.  Stay on Morrissey Road and keep right at a split about 3 kilometres south of the T-intersection (there is a cut-off road 560 metres further along the left fork if you miss this split).  From the split, drive 9.1 kilometres along Lodgepole Road to a junction with Wigwam Forest Service Road (FSR).  Turn right and drive for 19 kilometres to a Y-junction.  Take the left fork (the right fork is the continuation of Wigwam FSR and leads to Ram-Wigwam Creek Recreation Site) and drive along Cabin FSR for 19 kilometres to another split.  Take the left fork onto a slightly rougher road (high-clearance vehicle recommended) which makes an immediate S-curve (ignore the side road going left) and drive for 2.0 kilometres to a junction with a skid road heading north (ignore another skid road about 85 metres before this one).  Park on the side of the road at this junction.  Depending on how determined a driver you are, it is possible to continue driving further up the valley along the skid road, but in my opinion, the extra walking distance saved doesn’t justify the extra beating that your car will take.

From the junction, we walked up the skid road for about 1.2 kilometres before turning left onto a seemingly more overgrown road (the bushiness is short-lived).  This branching road continues up the valley and makes two hairpin turns before reaching a dead-end.  We hiked all the way to the dead-end before bushwhacking up onto a broad forested ridge, but in retrospect, it would have been simpler to gain this ridge by abandoning the road just after the second hairpin turn (there is flagging tape on a tree here).  Once we gained the ridge, we enjoyed some easy off-trail hiking for awhile before running into an increasing number of snow patches higher up.  Fortunately, the snow was very supportive on this day, and we were able to continue ascending without missing a beat.  The snow patches petered out shortly before we reached the first of two false summits along Mount Doupe's south ridge.  There is a significant dip between the two false summits which entails some mildly exposed down-climbing, but we had no serious problems traversing the connecting ridge given the mostly dry conditions.  There is a very slight dip past the second false summit, but otherwise, the remaining plod to the true summit was easy.  Despite overcast skies, we still enjoyed far-reaching views from the top, and calm conditions allowed us to have a pleasant extended stay.

For our return, we simply retraced our steps back along the south ridge and over the two false summits.  We took full advantage of the supportive snow we had climbed earlier and boot-skied most of it for a quick descent back into the forest.  By following the crest of the broad forested ridge to its end, we ended up back on the skid road near the aforementioned second hairpin turn with only minimal bushwhacking.  From there, we enjoyed an easy and uneventful walk along the skid road back to our starting point.
Sure, I could've driven further, but we're here to hike, right? Zosia begins hiking up the skid road that leads up the valley towards Mount Doupe.
Hmmm...that snow at tree line doesn't look very inviting... Access to the top of Mount Doupe is via the ridge on the right.
This could have turned out a lot worse! Zosia encounters a lot of lingering snow near tree line, but fortunately, the snow is very supportive on this day.
Too bad we didn't bring skis or a toboggan! Sonny makes good progress up the snow-covered slope.  Stretched out behind him to the south is Inverted Ridge.

Photo courtesy of Zosia Zgolak

Looks very doable! Zosia gets her first clear look at the top of Mount Doupe from the first of two false summits.
A bit of easy scrambling and lots of nice ridge walking. Zosia traverses the connecting ridge leading to the second false summit.
Fun stuff! Sonny descends a short step along the connecting ridge.  In the background is the first false summit.

Photo courtesy of Zosia Zgolak

Easy stuff! Zosia easily descends to the low point of the connecting ridge.

Looks like clear sailing from here...

Zosia approaches the second false summit with the true summit further to the right.


Probably very few people have ventured into this bowl. The top of the second false summit provides the most comprehensive view of the bowl southeast of Mount Doupe.

Photo courtesy of Zosia Zgolak

I think we'll make it! Zosia makes her way up the summit ridge.
Thumbs up! Zosia and Sonny stand on the summit of Mount Doupe (2663 metres) and are supposedly the first visitors here since the summit register was placed on 27 August 2019.  The register also acknowledges that Rick Collier and others ascended this mountain on 1 July 2009.
It's surprising that the unnamed snowy ridge in the left foreground is unnamed. The view to the west includes Soowa Mountain (distant left behind the unnamed snowy ridge in the foreground), Mount Swope (right of centre), and Overfold Mountain (right with big snow patch).  Mount Broadwood can also be seen on the right horizon between Mount Swope and Overfold Mountain.
Possibly unclimbed? To the north are some unnamed peaks that are nearly as high as Mount Doupe.
Piaysoo Ridge is another potential future objective. The most prominent peaks visible on the eastern horizon include Syncline Mountain (left), Mount Haig (right of centre), and Castle Peak (far right).  In the middle foreground is Piaysoo Ridge.
Looks like we might get some rain... Zosia leaves the summit to retrace her steps back over the two false summits.  The snow-capped peak on the far right horizon is Mount Mahaney.
Even easier going back! Zosia climbs back over the first false summit.
Almost as fun as skiing...almost... Zosia takes advantage of the firm snow to boot-ski down the slope.
Just one more round of Tetris... After emerging from the forest and regaining the skid road not far from this flagged tree, Sonny marks a waypoint in his GPS unit.  This is the recommended spot for leaving the road to climb up Mount Doupe.

Photo courtesy of Zosia Zgolak

Possibly the best scramble in the area! Total Distance:  12.3 kilometres
Round-Trip Time:  8 hours 16 minutes
Net Elevation Gain:  954 metres

GPX Data