Great Northern Mountain lies directly north of the Trout Lake City townsite.
Drive: 2.4 km (1.5 miles) west of the town and turn right where a sign says “Garbage Dump”. Turn right immediately after entering the road, and then the next left (high clearance, four wheel drive, low range; very rough). The road snakes down the hillside from south of the southwest ridge.
Route: Easy climb.
Great Northern Mtn. (2288 m., 7506’; map Beaton 82K/12) May 24
This truly pedestrian peak is part of the Badshot Range and is located behind and to the north of Trout Lake townsite. David Jones and I climbed it on Sat., May 24th.
For very good access, drive about 2.4 km. west of town on Hwy. 31 and turn right or north where a sign says “Garbage Dump.” You will need a 4WD, high clearance vehicle with low-range. Turn right immediately after entering the road. Take the next left (right is gated and signed) and prepare for serious water bars. At km. 5.1, go left. We were able to drive to km. 6.6 (about 4500’) before being stopped by snow.
Leaving at 9:25 and carrying snowshoes, we hiked up the road, cutting off some switchbacks by traveling through a burn. We meandered along the broad SW ridge of our peak, re-joining the road and following it to the end at about 2150 m. (7100’) where the SW ridge steepens (about 617-160). By 12:50, we were on the broad, level, cairned summit to enjoy spectacular views of Trout Lake, the Badshots, and the Lardeau Range on this warm, sunny day.
After a 50 min. rest, we followed our ascent route back to the truck in 90 min. Almost all travel was on snow, and conditions were surprisingly good as we never used the snowshoes. This peak could make an easy summer or fall outing, especially if your vehicle is up to this challenging road used by Great Northern Cat Ski. Driving times from Nelson: 2 hr. 30 min. via Nakusp (but that was leaving at 4:30 am); 2 hr. 45 min. return via Gerard and Kaslo.