This year we held our Investiture Ceremony of our two new Scouts on the second peak of the Stawamus Chief!
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As we approach Squamish on a bitterly cold morning, the sun is just starting to hit the Chief. In the distance, the Garibaldi Massif stands out without any cloud coverage for the first time in weeks.
Now we just have to get from here to way up high there….
And so it begins…
First there’s a whole bunch of these….
And then a whole lot of this….
And a whole heck of a lot of this stuff….
As well as a whole lot of steep stuff like this…
Higher and higher….
And a few route choices to be made….. On this sign the arrows pointing up are very appropriate.
This looks like a nice place for a little rest break…
A father’s job: showing his son the way…
Back into the pre-historic forest to finish the hike upwards.
This is as high as this trail will take us. We are in the crack between the first and second peaks of the Chief. We now head up the rock face to the right and begin the scramble section of our journey.
The path becomes much more interesting. Chains bolted to the rock help us ascend this part of the wall.
A little gap in the path to be jumped and then we begin to ascend the narrow, more vertical sections with chains.
Single-file from here on up!
Hikers going down have to be patient and wait for their chance to descend the chained sections since it’s one-at-a-time only.
Ladders bolted into the walls help us get past the most difficult sections.
We’re out of the tricky bit and on our way to the summit.
Scouter Alan is pleased to be finally out in the sun and able to enjoy the fantastic views that now open up all around him.
Finally, we ascend the last ridge up to the summit!
The Scouts have a little fun and some lunch before we get down to the serious business we’ve hiked all this way for…
Looking south across at the first peak of the Chief (the location of last year’s Investiture Ceremony).
Ready to go!
Despite the bitterly cold wind, I had to ask the Scouts to remove their gloves so they could hold the flag and salute with their bare hands.
Reciting the Scout Law and Promise 2,100 feet up over Howe Sound in beautiful British Columbia.
The older generation watches with approval as a younger generation starts his life as a Scout.
Their first salute.
Welcome to Scouting Tripp and Keir!
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Before the two new Scouts could be called forward for investiture in our Troop, we first had to perform a ceremony with their parents.You might like this one….
We call it “Busting the Bubblewrap”.
With their sons at their sides holding the flags, I asked the parents if they were prepared for their sons to join our Troop. I told them that they would have to acknowledge their acceptance of the challenges that such membership would entail for for their boys. When they responded in the affirmative, I called upon the senior Patrol Leader to “present the bubblewrap”. He put an 8 inch square piece of bubblewrap (1 inch sized bubbles) at the feet of each parent. I then called upon the parents to “Bust the Bubblewrap” to signal their willingness for their boys to become Mountaineer Scouts. The two parents then stomped out every bubble at their feet. It was hilarious and the Scouts and parents loved it.
Thanks Robin and Jay for being real sports!
Busting the Bubblewrap!
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Here’s the scrambling section of the Stawamus Chief hike recorded on a head-mounted GoPro camera:
And here’s some video taken from the summit of the Second Peak of the Chief with my Nikon P7700:
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Approaching our destination: the second largest granite monolith in the world (the largest is El Capitan in Yosemite National Park). These 700 metre massive cliffs tower over the town of Squamish on B.C.’s scenic Sea to Sky Highway.
Ready to go! These boys are going to earn their investiture today!
A brief rest and then back into the mist-shrouded Jurassic Park-like forest and the grinding trail upwards.
Out of the woods. Getting Closer. Getting more interesting.
Getting a whole lot more fun! Rock climbing Batman style!
A great father and son outing.
Making progress. This 2,000 foot monster isn’t going to climb itself!
Destination in sight…
We have arrived (with style)!
I’ve climbed a lot of mountains, but I’ve never seen THAT before! Gotta love it! Those flags will be visible for miles! We had other hikers ask to borrow the Canadian flag so they could have their pictures taken with it too.
A golden moment frozen in time. What will these boys see when they look upon this picture years from now. I see: Pride well earned!
A little rest and some lunch before we do the investiture ceremony high above Howe Sound and the town of Squamish. Don’t drop your apples boys; they’ll roll off the edge and could hit climbers on the rock face below.
Welcome to Scouts, Max!
Welcome to Scouts, Isaac!
Welcome to Scouts, Tavish!
Welcome to Scouts, Conner!
Let’s not forget about our great Patrol Leaders, Simon & Wojtek!
Four newly invested scouts. The 5th West Van Scout Troop is reborn! (our group’s scarf will be different from these…we needed some “stand-ins” while our real ones are being made – thanks to ZoneWest for the loan – our real scarf will be burgundy & gold)
Time to head home. We will be back with more new scouts for investiture next year. Now where do we go next? There’s plenty of fresh snow throughout Garibaldi Park!
Well, as it turns out, a professional photographer was on the second peak of the Chief the day we were doing our investiture and captured some spectacular photographs of us from a distance. These shots are so cool!
Chris Christie (christie-images.com) has given us permission to publish these photos on our web site. These photos are so cool! Thanks Chris.