Floral Park Traverse

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ND
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Floral Park Traverse

Post by ND »

I might be late posting this video I found on YouTube. I liked it.
A lot of folks have been interested in Floral Park over the last few years.
https://youtu.be/sawUJ0tkGIY

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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by brindledog »

That was really great. Beautiful sunset views. Wish I was fit (and young) enough to run along that route.

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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by zozeppelin »

Thanks for sharing - incredible.

Long distance and off-trail route finding are one thing, but night hiking on top of that? Impressive.

I was planning an extended inside trail by adding gunsight pass, but this is pretty cool and tempting as an alternate exit to the unmemorable descent to Lake McDonnald.

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Jay w
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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by Jay w »

A great video technically and subject-wise. Obviously they're very fit and articulate, but some nit-picks. Why not start with the Floral Traverse? That's the most likely spot for trouble. Why start so late? They're coming up to the steepest parts of the Floral route and it's nearly dark. It seemed un-necessarily dangerous.

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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by Marmotman »

I agree Jay. Much better to do the hard stuff first. Those guys are animals. I doubt if I could hike that whole loop let alone run it. One thing to also mention is that Floral is one of the more dangerous off-trails in the park. Two people have died trying it. Its very remote and difficult to get help if needed. They also did it the hard way in my opinion. I call it the backwards way. It usually takes me about 12 hours from Logan to Lake McD. We did it backwards once from Sperry Chalet to Logan and it took us 11 hours. The steep parts seem harder to tackle going backwards. Unless you go with someone who knows the route or you have researched the route very well and have route skills, you can get cliffed out or lost very easily. I hate when people post videos of treks which encourage others that are less apt to do the same.

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Jay w
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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by Jay w »

I've only done the hike once....maybe infamously. When we hit the ridge between Hidden Lake and Mary Baker and started heading down into Mary Baker (Todd was flying downhill), I remember thinking it would be really difficult to turn around at this point. The climb would be steep, you have to hit the right point on the ridge, and the downhill into Hidden Lake, well, that start of that is really steep.

I guess having conditioning and no doubt that you're going to get through it goes a long way to getting through it.

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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by PeteE »

Although I've done that hike, I agree with Jay's and especially Marmotman's comment:
I hate when people post videos of treks which encourage others that are less apt to do the same.
Especially so after having seen some really dumb visitor behavior this past season as well as stories from rangers I know.

However, that said, I'm still hoping to be able to do the Floral Park traverse solo.
I've been going out hiking, hunting, camping, backpacking alone since I was a kid--50+ years.
I've always been quite comfortable being "alone in the woods".

I've looked at trail reports, videos, and talked with a number of people who've done Floral park.
I have enough confidence in my route finding ability to make it across the Sperry glacier part of the route.
From my studies, that would be the most difficult part--for me. The rest of the route looks pretty straight forward, again, to me.

The logistics might be the biggest problem for me. I can't do the entire route(~19 miles) from Logan Pass to Lake McDonald as a day hike.
I will need a night, preferably two nights at Sperry Chalet or the Sperry BC campground.
I'll also need to make sure I'm physically fit when/if the day comes I get the opportunity to go.
I'll be 73 in February, so I don't underestimate the challenge of getting in shape for a hike like the Floral park traverse.
I'm not a moron. If I feel I'm not physically fit to do the hike, I won't try.

Part of my plan next year will be to hike over to the ridge between the Dragon's Tail and Bearhat Mt.
I can then scope out the terrain between the ridge and the approach to Sperry Glacier.
Correlate what I've learned with what I see in front of me.
That will also give me an estimate of the time required for that part of the route.

Geezer power!!!!!!
pete :wink:
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And when you're born in America, you're given a front row seat."

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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by paul »

Agree with others here. I did the traverse once in the right direction. When I got down to Mary Baker lake I knew I was commited to going the full distance, going in the opposite direction up to hidden lake pass is ridiculously steep. Obviously these guys were very fit but they did very little upfront planning. This thing could have gotten ugly really fast. Jay was right, starting too late, doing the traverse in the wrong direction, doing the toughest section last.
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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by Jay w »

Pete, probably the hardest part of the route finding is finding the damn ramp up out of Hidden Lake. The hardest climbing or physical part, would be the ridge we're talking about. It's quite steep at the very top, and coming down into Mary Baker, let's say you don't want a heavy pack. Once you're at Mary Baker, you can see where you want to go. You just walk that-a-way. I think you've been to Sperry Glacier. If so, you've seen the area from the opposite direction.

It looks like they did the hike quite lake in the season which means more scrambling up and down the ledges near the Glacier (instead of walking over the snow). That would add to the fatigue of 20 miles (or whatever the total mileage is). So picking a time early enough to have some snow in that area, but not too much snow would be another thing to factor in. Also, if you put out the word on the group, I bet there might be someone willing to show you the route.

Bring the microspikes. :D

Jay
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Re: Floral Park Traverse

Post by PeteE »

Jay w wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 5:12 am
Pete, probably the hardest part of the route finding is finding the damn ramp up out of Hidden Lake.
Yeah, I remember looking for that ramp a few years ago. As I recall, I went too far around the lake before starting up.
Since then I've looked over there many times when doing the Dragon's Tail. I'm pretty sure I can find that ramp now.


The hardest climbing or physical part, would be the ridge we're talking about. It's quite steep at the very top, and coming down into Mary Baker, let's say you don't want a heavy pack. Once you're at Mary Baker, you can see where you want to go. You just walk that-a-way. I think you've been to Sperry Glacier. If so, you've seen the area from the opposite direction.

It looks like they did the hike quite lake in the season which means more scrambling up and down the ledges near the Glacier (instead of walking over the snow). That would add to the fatigue of 20 miles (or whatever the total mileage is). So picking a time early enough to have some snow in that area, but not too much snow would be another thing to factor in. Also, if you put out the word on the group, I bet there might be someone willing to show you the route.

Bring the microspikes. :D

Ha! Yeah I will definitely bring my MicroSpikes. I don't want to be sliding down any ice.

Jay
Maybe I'll never get it done, but it's OK to dream, right?
I'm going to put in for a room at the chalet for two nights. I'll give them a 6 week window and pray. 8) (August 1-chalet closing?)
Camping gear just adds too much weight to be carrying on that route.
If I get bad weather or not fit enough, I'll just use the chalet as a base to hike around for pictures.

I am going to hike to the top of that ridge before Mary Baker lake next summer. That will make a nice day out no matter what.


pete :wink:

This guy "John" and his wife Diane live in Whitefish.
He's from Minnesota and your kind of guy. He's a mountain biker. He has some great snowboarding videos. He "boards" a style that reminds me of slalom water skiing. He has a some really good hiking videos from both in the park and the surrounding area. Good music with the videos too.
Snowboarding video https://youtu.be/XHf6u6daKfc
Check out his channel here:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxUH31 ... Dssce-D5rw

He's done the Floral Park traverse several times. Here's his video from last year.
Diane is wearing grey pants. The gal with braids in the blue shorts and headband is a "regular" in his hiking videos.
https://youtu.be/0b8AgxyZECU
"When you're born in this world, you're given a ticket to the freak show.
And when you're born in America, you're given a front row seat."

George Carlin

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