At a Glance
ACA Rating: 2C I or 3C I
French Rating: v2a4 I (If jumping first waterfall, v2a6 I) *
Time Required: 1-2 hours
Distance: Technical section – 300m
Rappels: 0 to 2, up to 7 meters
A short and easy canyon, a couple of hours east of Vancouver. Beautiful narrows, nice short swims, and lovely cascades. The canyon can be descended in two styles: rappelling, or jumping.
Standard gear, including wetsuit and rappel equipment, unless comfortable with jumps of up to 5m. Adequate rope for a maximum 7m rappel. Webbing/rapides for up to 2 rappels off natural anchors close to the drops.
To the Trailhead
From downtown Mission, drive eastbound on Highway 7 for 8 km, to Sylvester Road. Turn northbound (big gas station on the corner is a great spot to stock up on last minute supplies.) Drive 22 km, along pavement, then a well graded logging road. Turn left onto a spur, signed Lost-Lease, and continue 1.3 km, to a spur on the right. Turn up here, and park in the incredibly filthy clearing. As you enter the clearing, look to your left – this is where you’ll find the trail.
Drop into the trees, and follow the trail down to the creekside. Follow the sound to the top of the waterfall. There are two ways down, here: follow a trail down and around the falls, to the left, or make the 45 foot jump into the plunge pool below…
From the pool at the bottom of the 12m waterfall, head downstream, scrambling, downclimbing and wading. Follow a curve to the left. The stream is split by a huge boulder in the middle. Keep up and to the right side of the boulder, onto a ledge, and jump into the deep pool beyond. The clear water lets you see the depth nicely. If you’re feeling particularly nervy, go to the left instead, and climb to a high promontory, about 6 or 8m above the water – there are a few options here.
If you plan to rappel this drop, and the water is low, there is a chockstone wedged in the flow on the right side of the boulder – you should be able to thread webbing through, and rap off of this. Otherwise, there is a boulder a little bit above the channel on the left that will provide an anchor.
Continue downstream, swimming through a beautiful, dripping hallway. Some nice narrows follow… Eventually, reach a spot with a pouroff on the left, but an easy downclimb to the right of a boulder into a small pool. Swim out under the boulder – this is a nice, unusual feature.
Round a small fin of rock, up onto a landing before the final cascade to a pool below. Once again, keep right, moving as far out as you can, and jump into the deep pool. Otherwise, to rappel, wrap a rope around the fin, like a bollard, keep the rope low, and rappel off the two strands to the pool below.
Beyond here, the canyons opens and flattens. This is the end of “the business”. The canyon can be ascended without technical gear. Climb both the waterfalls on the left, and make your way back up to the 45’ waterfall. Perhaps try a quick leap here, if you didn’t on the way in…
Sylvester Road turnoff from Highway 7
Road to Lost Creek
Turn on spur for trailhead parking
Shuttle Parking (optional)
* Reasons for rating:
v2 – “Easy climbing / downclimbing with little exposure.”
a4 – “Prolonged immersion causing some heat loss. Moderate current. Easy jumps of 5 to 8 m.”
a6 (First waterfall jump) – “Easy jump of 10 to 14 m.”