Analysing terrain data
7 - 8
The exposure grade describes the potential consequences of falling or slipping off the path.
Low Exposure: The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.
Medium Exposure: The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.
High Exposure: Some trail sections have exposed ledges or steep ascents/descents where falling could cause serious injury.
Extreme Exposure: Some trail sections are extremely exposed where falling will almost certainly result in serious injury or death.
Due to its prominence and spectacular appearance, Black Tusk is one of the most popular scrambles in the Whistler/Vancouver area.
The ascent is strenuous, but earns you terrific views over the glaciated Garibaldi mountains.
Be warned that whilst initially on a trail, the last part of the route involves difficult scrambling, and a helmet is recommended.
Most hikers choose to end just before the true summit, which is separated by a steep notch and is a Class 5 mountaineering objective.
The map shown here runs all the way to the top of the mountain, but be sure to only attempt the final pitch if you're adequately prepared. This route runs concurrently with the Garibaldi Lake Hike.
The Black Tusk trail heads up through meadows.
Creeks here provide the last water source.
You then hit scree slopes and follow them to the ridge at 2150m.
The views are great even from here, making it a good place for non-scramblers to stop. Once you reach the chimney/ascent gulley it’s best to climb one at a time to avoid being hit by falling rocks.
Keep right to find and follow a narrow gully which leads to a well-worn path finishing at the south summit.
Be sure to return the same way! Make sure you access the weather conditions throughout the day and be prepared to turn back if needed. Sources: Scrambles in Southwest British Columbia by Matt Gunn; 4th Edition, 2017; Cairn Publishing