Now infamous for the controversy over the Jumbo Pass Resort (still not a dead issue in 2017), Jumbo Pass is the only place in the Purcells accessible as a day hike from both sides. The resort is proposed for the headwaters of Jumbo Creek, 50kms west of Invermere. Lake of the Hanging Glaciers is immediately to the north and the Purcell Wilderness Conservancy is south, both pristine wilderness.
The best views are along the ridge to the north of the pass.
Location: Watershed of the Purcell Mountains 50kms west of Invermere.
Elevation gain: 671m (2200’)
Key elevations: Parking Area 5300’; TH 1670m (5500’); Jumbo Pass 2280m (7500’); cabin 2330m (7650’)
Time: long day or overnight
Access: Any vehicle. Road difficult in wet weather.
Season: July through September
Map: 82K/7 Duncan Lake
Drive: From Hwy 93/95, turn west into Invermere. At 2.3km turn right at signed Panorama Ski Resort/Wilmer Road. Zero odometer
0.0 Drive north on Panorama Ski Resort Road
1.6km Turn left (west) on Panorama Drive, also called Toby Creek Road.
19km Continue past the Panorama Ski Resort
37.5km Past the tailings of the Mineral King mine, turn right (north) on signed Jumbo Creek FSR. (left goes to Earl Grey Pass). Stay on main road past minor forks.
43.6km Turn left (past the 5km sign) signed Jumbo Pass and cross Jumbo Creek. The road here is muddy in wet weather.
50.8km Park before the Leona Creek bridge at a large sandy campsite.
Trail: Cross the Leona Creek bridge and stay straight on the main road for 2km to the Jumbo Pass trail sign at 1670m (5500’). Head west on an old road, cross a creek, turn left at a skid road and recross the creek at 1.2km. The new trail starts here. It heads steeply heading south. After a 300m climb through dense forest, cross after an orange blaze. The trail continues under the east face of Bastille Mountain. Climb through alpine meadows to a tarn at 4.5kms. Views unfold of Glacier Dome above the headwaters of Jumbo Creek and Jumbo and Karnak to the east. Reach the pass at 7500’. Horseshoe Glacier is impressive across Glacier Creek. Hike along the wide ridge to the right for a kilometre to the Jumbo Pass Cabin at 7700’ and 3 hours hiking.
What to do?
1. The ridge to the north entices one. Hike to at least the second bump for the best views of the proposed Jumbo resort. The sixth bump along is Mt Isis, the most southerly of the Egyptian Peaks.
2. Bastille Mt. From the pass, climb 1000 feet SE up the steep ridge for about .8km and turn left (east) onto the west ridge of Bastille 8555’.
3. Peaks South of Jumbo Pass. Refer to post.