HAYSTACK MT 2683m 8800’
Location: Southern Purcells
Elevation gain: 3200′ from TH
Key elevations: TH 1707m (5600’); Summit 8800′
Time: 3.5hours one way
Access: Good gravel HC to bad bridge
Season: July through September
From the Gray Creek Store south of Crawford Bay, drive Hwy 3A south 30.7kms along the east shore of Kootenay Lake. Turn left onto Sanca Creek FSR. Zero odometer.
From Creston (junction Hwys 3 and 3A): drive Hwy 3A north 36kms along the east shore of Kootenay Lake. Turn right (east) onto Sanca Creek FSR. Zero odometer.
0.0 Start east on gravel Sanca Creek FSR.
9.3km Go left to Haystack Mt and Sherman Lake (right goes to Wooden Shoe Trail, short and no very interesting). 9.5km Stay straight.
14km (Left goes to Sherman Lake). Go right for Haystack. Just ahead the road is closed at a deteriorating wood bridge. Park. Walk the remaining 3.8km to the Haystack Mt TH.
15km Another deteriorating bridge. Walk the remaining 3km.
Trail: Depending on where you parked, walk on the road for 3.8 or 3km to the real Haystack/Sanca-Meachen Ck Trail TH at 1707m (5600′). Zero pedometer.
0.0 Cross Sanca Creek in 15 minutes. Gradually ascend the damp valley through cool forest.
3kms. Reach the basin SW of Haystack Mt at a marshy pond and a trail junction. Go left to Haystack and right around the pond towards Sanca Pass.
To climb Haystack, walk the hiker-made trail
To the north and Haystack, the trail fades, go through an open rolling subalpine larch forest heading towards the north ridge of Haystack. Either head to the low point at the end of the ridge or go up the obvious broad, grassy chute to the ridge. Head NE along the ridge to a saddle and then a 40-minute scramble up the big black boulders to the summit.
Views are of many alpine lakes and surrounding peaks in the Purcells – Akokli to the west, Godwin to the SW, Craig Peak to the S, White Grouse Mt NE and Snowcret Mt N.
MOUNT GOODWIN 2440m 8,000′
3.5kms SW of Haystack Mt.
Elevation gain: 733m (2400′)
Key Elevations: TH 1707m (5600’); Summit 2440m (8,000′)
Drive: Park at the Haystack parking lot.
Route: Start on the west ridge off Haystack. Follow the ridge west over a couple of bumps with a fair amount of up and down before begin the ascent of Goodwin. Great views from the summit.
On descent, at the west ridge off Haystack, veer south and drop into the meadows.