Trip Dates

May 20*, May 21-June 10, 2018 *pre-trip meeting

Price

$6950 + GST (price based on group of 6) *flight from Canadian side

Group Size

max of 3 guests per guide *small group service

Skill Level

Advanced ski skills with big overnight pack

Related Trips

Mount Waddington
Ski Traverses
Ski the European Alps

Mount Logan (from Cdn side)

Remote, giant & surreal, Mount Logan provides a unique landscape experience...

Mount Logan, 5960m above see level, is located in the remote St. Elias Range of North Western Canada in the Yukon Territory. It is the crown jewel of Kluane National Park and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Logan is the highest peak in Canada, and though second in North America only to Mount McKinley, is a more spectacular mountain without the crowds. This 20 to 25 day ski mountaineering expedition is serious and rewarding, it is best done in May and early June.

The Ski Mountaineering route of choice up Mount Logan is the famous King’s trench. This route features generally straightforward ski touring terrain on large broken glaciers and involves winter camping at high altitude. The ascent gradually climbs 3500m over 23kms, from base camp to summit, and offers a fantastic panorama on some of the biggest glaciers in the world. Mount Logan is for advanced ski mountaineers wishing to push their skills on a challenging summit.

Itinerary

The weather and conditions will have a significant effect on our exact itinerary.  Below is a sample itinerary from from the Canadian side via Whitehorse and Kluane Lake. We also offer an option from the Alaskan side, contact us for more details on this option. 

The ascent of mount Logan via the King’s Trench is a high altitude ski tour with no technical climbing. It gradually climbs 3500m over 23kms, from base camp to summit, and offers a fantastic panorama of some of the biggest glaciers in the world. From our Base-camp at 2800m, our ski ascent will gradually take us up the King’ Trench to King Col (4000m). The lower angle nature of this section will allow us to pull a lot of our supplies with sleds right up to King col (camp 2). From King Col to our high camp near Prospector Col (5500m), we will be carrying supplies and equipment with our back packs. On this section we will ascend no more than 600m per days using the “carry high-sleep low” method. This method combined with some strategic rest days will help the team acclimatize properly to higher elevation. From our high camp, we will wait for the best weather window to make an attempt to the main summit (5960m/19560’). If the team acclimatize well and the weather cooperates with our progress, we should have a full week worth of supplies and time at high camp for our summit bid.

Here is a sample itinerary:

  • (Pre-trip meeting): We will meet at the day before the trip at a predetermine location. We will share a relaxing dinner followed by a final gear check. We will go over last minute changes (weather & avalanche conditions) and logistic for the following day(s). We will also sign a liability waiver
  • Day 1: We will take a shuttle to Kluane Lake where we will set up camp near the airstrip before heading into the mountains, his will also provide opportunity to pack and review our gear before the expedition.
  • Day 2: After an early breakfast, we will fly in to the basecamp). Flights into Kings Trench base camp are often delayed, please be prepared to camp for up to five extra nights at Kluane Lake in anticipation of flight.
  • Day 3: After an early breakfast, we will begin our ascent (or if delayed, fly in to the basecamp).
  • Day 4-20: These 17 days will be spent ascending the mountain. Here is the strategy we will use on the mountain: From our Base-camp at 2800m, our ski ascent will gradually take us up the King’ Trench to King Col (4000m). The lower angle nature of this section will allow us to pull a lot of our supplies with sleds right up to King col (camp 2). From King Col to our high camp near Prospector Col (5500m), we will be carrying supplies and equipment with our back packs. On this section we will ascend no more than 600m per days using the “carry high-sleep low” method. This method combined with some strategic rest days will help the team acclimatize properly to higher elevation. From our high camp, we will wait for the best weather window to make an attempt to the main summit (5960m/19560’). If the team acclimatize well and the weather cooperates with our progress, we should have a full week worth of supplies and time at our high camp for our summit bid.
  • Day 21-22: The descent down the mountain, to our pick-up location and flight out will take 1 to 2 days. From the air strip, depending on time, will either camp or shuttle back and enjoy a well deserved shower, group Dinner and celebratory evening. Program could end 1 to 2 days earlier.
  • *Depending on pilot flight schedule & weather, return to Whitehorse may be extended by 6 days.

 

A successful ascent up mount Logan is not guarantied. Whether we successfully climb to the summit or not depends on many factor including: the weather, avalanche & snow conditions along with individual participants fitness level. We are experienced guides & passionate mountain climbers. While keeping safety as a top priority, we will do our best to reach the summit with as many participants as possible. In our mind, a successful expedition is one which you safely return from to tell the tales.

Prerequisites

This is an advance ski mountaineering program.  You must have previous overnight winter camping experience and be an advanced intermediate downhill skier. Previous high altitude mountaineering experience is an important asset. Guests are responsible to self evaluate their skills as groups need to be matched together based on prior experience and ability.

Experience with carrying a big overnight pack while pulling sleds is very useful. Unlike Nepal, where Sherpa’s can help you carry equipment, Mount Logan requires that you carry all your personal equipment up the mountain as you go. At times, you will even have to carry some of the group equipment.

Prior experience with Summit Mountain Guides is not required however it is highly recommended. This helps you anticipate the difficulty and style of our programs. It also contribute to building a better relationship with the guide before heading out on a long remote trip. Please contact us to discuss your goals & background.

Equipment

Click here for the Equipment List

Weather

The weather on Mount Logan generally comes from the Gulf of Alaska, 90km away, to the Southwest. Due to its close proximity to the ocean and high latitude, the weather on Logan is a mix of moist maritime pattern with cold arctic temperatures.

It is not uncommon to have big snow storms with very high winds, even in the Spring. The temperatures can vary widely in the springtime. They usually range from –15C overnight to 0C during the day. At higher elevation, temperatures will be colder and often drop below -30C overnight.

Location

The Mount Logan massif is located in the Southwest corner of the Yukon Territory in Western Canada, just above the 60th parallel. The massif is inside Kluane National Park and is the crown-jewel of the St-Elias Mountains. Logan is difficult to reach by foot as it is surrounded by some of the largest glaciers in the world and that it is 140km from the nearest road. Due to the remoteness of this expedition, the higher altitude and latitudes encountered, careful preparation is required.

The starting point of this expedition will be Whitehorse, Yukon. From Whitehorse we will take a 5 hour shuttle to the landing strip at Kluane Lake. From the airstrip, we will fly to the mountain by a small ski plane. The King Trench base camp is a lengthy flight and can accommodate two guests at a time. There are very often weather delays and other groups waiting in a queue when flying in from the Cdn side, be prepared to camp for up to five days or more before the flight in.

Services Included

  • Pre-trip planning support
  • Fully certified IFMGA guide(s) services and costs for guide
  • Shuttle from Whitehorse, return
  • Ski plane access fees, return
  • Winter camping equipment (sleds, kitchen and sleeping tents, stoves, fuel, cooking supplies)
  • All group breakfasts and dinners while on the glacier and trip, all hot drinks
  • Park Permits and Liability Insurance
  • Group safety equipment (satellite phone, ropes, rescue kit, high altitude 1st aid kit, GPS, maps)
  • Alternative plan based on current conditions

Not included in price:

  • gst 5%
  • B&B / hotel nights in Whitehorse(1 before & 1 after the trip)
  • camping and meals while on standby to depart flight, 4 to 5 nights
  • Lunch & snacks, cold drinks
  • Personal ski and technical equipment and expedition clothing
  • personal winter camping equipment (sleeping bag, thermarest)
  • Air travel to/from Whitehorse
  • Any additional costs related to itinerary changes, any extra fees incurred if beyond trip estimated dates
  • Trip cancellation insurance (highly recommended, see booking page for ideas), adventure travel/rescue insurance, medical insurance

FAQ

Alpine Ski-touring or Telemark gear? Which should you use?

If you are a downhill skier then you should use Alpine touring gear. Only if you are already an advanced Telemark skier should you use Telemark gear.

Spring skiing the high alpine environment offers variable snow conditions. On one particular run things may go from perfect powder to challenging breakable crust and or variable wind affected snow.  When compounded, the variable snow conditions, the long ski touring days and the large overnight packs all call towards the use of an easier skiing set up like alpine touring.

Mount Logan provide a fantastic mountain travel experience. The skis become a traveling medium in the greater goal of getting from A to B. Alpine touring makes for fast and efficient travel hence contributing to a safer and more successful experience.

Can it be done on Snowshoes?

An ascent of Mount Logan can be done on snowshoes. For non skiers with previous high altitude mountaineering experience, a snowshoe ascent may be advised. At SMG, we feel that the best way to ascend and descend Mount Logan is on skis. It is a mountain that leads itself to skiing much more than snowshoeing. For safety and efficiency reasons, we feel that everyone in a given group should be using the same mode of transportation and for our ski program, this is ski based. For use of snowshoes, please contact us for custom trip.

We would certainly consider guiding a full group of snowshoeers up Logan. We would need a minimum of 3 participant on snowshoes. Please contact us for more info on this topic.

How heavy are the packs or sleds?

Unlike Nepal, where Sherpa’s can help you carry equipment, Mount Logan requires that you carry all your personal equipment up the mountain as you go. At times, you will even have to carry some of the group equipment. Participants need to have at least an 80 litters pack on this trip. Once fully loaded with your personal equipment and some of the group gear the pack could be as heavy as 40-50 pounds.

Sleds will be supplied by SMG. They will be used on the lower half of the mountain, from base camp (2700m) to King col (4100m). Once fully loaded, sleds can weight close to 50 pounds. Because the sleds have more capacity than backpacks, we typically try to load them heavier than the back packs.