FATMAP difficulty grade
A one day, high alpine traverse that circumnavigates Mt Tupper in Roger's Pass.
High alpine passes, glacier descents & an incredible descent down the Connaught avalanche slide path.
Bring your camera because the scenery is jaw-dropping! Good visibility & stable avalanche conditions are a must! The traverse is normally done from west to east from the Hermit Parking lot to the Stone Arch Parking lot.
It could theoretically be done in reverse but the descent is longer if you finish on the Connaught Slide Path. A car drop at the Stone Arch lot is the most convenient way to do the trip, but many will just hitch a ride back to their car at Hermit. After obtaining a pass from the Glacier Nat'l Park Visitor Center & dropping a car at the Stone Arch Parking lot, begin at the Hermit Parking lot (1.6 km east of the Visitor Center, 1300m elevation). Climb steeply through the trees until you reach the Hermit Meadows Summer Campground at 2120m.
From here, head east & work your way through rolly-polly terrain of Hermit Meadows (very difficult in poor visibility) until you are climbing a large slope, under a large moraine wall known as the Lizard's Tail.
Climb this slope until you reach the Roger's-Tupper Col at 2553m.
Consider roping up here as you are about to drop the Tupper Glacier.
Traverse high & contour under the impressive north face of Tupper.
Descend the throat of the glacier; this can be steep at 35-40 degrees so, be certain of your stability.
Traverse high & hug Mt Tupper until you reach treeline.
Continue down the draw (great skiing here) until you reach a small grotto where the skiing ends & you encounter thick trees at 1760m. Ditch the harnesses, slap on the skins & begin skinning steeply up through the trees until you gain the east ridge of Tupper.
Climb the ridge until about 1985m.
From here, strip the skins & lock in.
You should be able to descend some steep, sparse trees that will spit you out onto the Connaught Slide Path.
This is a massive slide path & good stability is a must! The descent is epic! Ski/ride all the way to an old rail grade at approx 1170m.
Slap the skins on again & trudge south along the old rail bed.
You should pass under two more massive slide paths.
Once you pass over the historic Stone Arch bridge, the trail will fork; take the left, down sloping trail.
After a short distance, you'll see an orange diamond on a tree on the left.
Drop down the short slope on skier's left until you hit a CP access road.
Hang a left on the road & descend a short distance until you see 2 silver CP control houses.
This marks the entrance to the rail tunnel.
Crossing the train tracks is prohibited by Parks Canada & CP Rail.
At the control houses, climb up to the right towards the road, you should find a trail that parallels the road just below the snow embankment.
The trail is marked by orange diamonds on the trees.
Follow this for a short distance until you reach your car drop at Stone Arch parking lot (1082m).
The exit can be confusing...see Parks Canada bulletin for a more detailed description of the exit with photos.
https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/bc/glacier/visit/hiver-winter/ski/~/media/0F89EA66C5E848B781586AD5BF5E79E9.ashx 7-9 hrs car-to-car.