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Brew Hut-backcountry ski overnight trip

  • Feb 1, 2014 · 6:30 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

There is NO need to RSVP "NO", that option is meant for people who change their mind and cannot attend anymore.


Distance (one way): 14KM

Time to reach the cabin: 5h.

Ski out: 2.5h.

Elevation gain: 1300m

The new Brew Hut is located at a high col just south of Mt. Brew (as the name appears on NTS mapsheets).

It sleeps about 12 people comfortably, but has been known to sleep up to 19 if you get really cozy. The hut is very well insulated and has a wood stove.



The Roe Creek Ski Route, a new route from Roe Creek FSR up to the Brew Lake has been marked and cleared for easier skiing. This route starts on a branch R-200 of Roe Creek FSR and wraps around the broad ridge running south from Mt. Brew on a bench, connecting with a meadow system just south of Brew Lake. From Brew Lake to the hut there are no flags or markers but navigation is straightforward in good weather. This route offers a mellow ski most of the way, and has very little exposure to avalanche slopes. It is is slightly longer than the historic route from Roe Creek, but is much less steep and does not necesitate crossing an avalanche slope. Also, this route can be descended from the hut all the way to Roe creek without putting on climbing skins.

The historic route from Roe Creek is to go up the Roe Creek logging road branch R-200 to it's end, and then climb up onto the top of the ridge that runs south from Mt. Brew. The ridge can be followed up to the alpine west of Brew Lake, and there are several places to drop off the east side of the ridge towards Brew Lake.

The area around Mount Brew receives huge amounts of snow in the winter - perhaps as much as 50% more than nearby Whistler mountain. This makes it an excellent destination when fresh snow is scarce, and a good place to stay away from during poor weather. If the Whistler / Squamish weather forecast is for a few flurries, the weather at Brew will probably be a whiteout with constant snow and wind.

There are some good ski slopes nearby, varying from mellow to death defying. A high alpine ridge connects this area to Cypress Peak and Mount Fee to the west.

Around Brew Lake

There are big open mellow slopes on the North and West sides of Brew Lake. West of the lake is very mellow, a good area for beginner skiers.

The north end of the lake has some moderately steep south facing slopes with sparse trees that are a good place to ski in bad weather. Usually this area is reached by skiing back along the usual route from Brew Lake. There are also some steep chutes that drop directly into this area from the hut.

West Side

There are two bowls on the west side of the ridge that divides Roe Creek from Brew Lake. Westside Bowl faces W and has some nice moderate runs with just enough trees to keep the visibility in check in poor weather. Sunflower bowl is a bit further north, and faces generally SW. The gladed south facing slopes on the skier's right side of the bowl are a nice place to hang out on a cold day. Getting into sunflower bowl can be tricky due to cornices at the top on the skier's left side. The easiest approach is from the bottom of westside bowl, or from the col with Brandywine Creek.

Into Brandywine Creek

An 1100ft ski run drops NW from the door of the hut down to a small lake in Brandywine Creek. This is an awesome run when it's in condition, but it is threatened by very steep slopes off the skiers left side that avalanche frequently. There are good safe zones to stop partway down the run, but the bottom of the run is an avalanche runout zone. The best climb back up is a longer loop around to the west that uses a natural bench system to avoid exposure to steep avalanche start zones. This run can be a bit of a wind funnel, even down low where it seems to be protected.

The bowl to the west of the cabin (Brandywine Bowl) has some very nice lines that go down into brandywine creek and hit the bench mentioned above. There's a lot of skiing in this bowl on N, NE and E aspects. The run off the top of the 1800m summit on the west side of the bowl is particularly good. Be mindful of the big cornices and wind loading when skiing here. This area is a bit more protected from wind and less committing than the front door run, but is still very much avalanche prone.

• Drivers MUST have winter tires or chains!

• Participants must be competent skiers or boarders.

• Participants must have taken either the AST-1 Course or equivalent avalanche safety course.

• Participants must have a Probe, Beacon and Shovel and know how to use them.



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  • Michael

    perfect weather and good snow: excellent weekend!

    February 3, 2014

  • Justin

    Sorry guys looks I'm gonna have to sit this one out.. enjoy!

    January 31, 2014

  • Justin

    yo Adam any room left in yr car?

    January 28, 2014

    • Justin

      ok.. any thoughts on when you'll have a sense for that?

      January 29, 2014

    • adam b.

      My friend is coming. Sorry you'll have to find your own way to the trailhead

      January 29, 2014

  • Elena

    Hi, is there a chance to stay in a tent? Does the hut get lots of people for the overnight stay? We are considering to join, me and +1. Have the fear and AST-1. I am a border with snowshoes (so far was able to keep up with skiners).

    January 26, 2014

    • Michael

      the trip is full..sorry.

      January 26, 2014

  • Chris T.

    Hey Michael, I'll try to tag on a few more day tours, as I haven't done 14k touring in one day before. Also it would be good to get to know everyone in a before a overnight trip.

    January 5, 2014

  • Michael

    I skied before with Adam, but the other people are new to me, so please confirm that you have your avalanche training done and are comfortable carrying a backpack for 5h or so.

    January 2, 2014

    • Chris T.

      I have my AST1. I have done solo day tours at Mt. Baker and did an early tour at Coquihalla this year. I didn't get any notification on the questions...

      January 4, 2014

    • Chris T.

      I splitboard, have a beacon, shovel, probe, sleeping bag and a 31L pack. I don't have a vehicle for snow other than going to resort areas.

      January 4, 2014

  • Michael

    Chris T.: I had to move you to waiting list, as you never answered my questions.

    January 4, 2014

  • adam b.

    im curious if with the low snowpack this year and the first long bit of the FSR being low elevation if we can drive in quite far. Would save time on the skin up

    January 3, 2014

  • adam b.

    I've got my SUV with 4wd and winter truck tires. I can help as a second driver. I usually have room for myself and two others with space for long powder skis, overnight packs, etc.

    January 3, 2014

  • adam b.

    I've got my SUV with 4wd and winter truck tires. I can help as a second driver. I usually have room for myself and two others with space for long powder skis, overnight packs, etc.

    January 3, 2014

  • Justin

    hi Mike I don't have my AST 1 but we spent a couple days on beacon / probe / digouts in a 12 day ski-mountaineering course I did in Alaska with AMS last summer (before summitting Denali). I also was on the India / Pak border ski touring last Feb where we repeated all the avi stuff. Would this be enough?

    ? - I can drive; would that make us able to expand trip numbers?

    January 2, 2014

    • Justin

      OK. I've signed up for the AST-1 course for next weekend.. get it done.. maybe after the course a spot will free up.. just back to Van and this trip looks great

      January 3, 2014

    • Michael

      cool:)

      January 3, 2014

  • Barbs

    Hi Michael. I confirm that I have my AST-1 and that I am comfortable carrying a backpack for 5 hours (or more). This trip looks like lots of fun, I'm really looking forward to it.

    January 2, 2014

  • Michael

    From carpooling perspective: who has a car, who needs a ride?

    I need a ride from the meeting spot.

    January 2, 2014

  • Rob

    I might be interested. Just got a splitty, and doing AST-1 last week of January, and in the process of tracking down some avi gear. Is it hard technically? Not worried too much about going on the way down, but mainly on the touring part. I don't have any experience skinning yet.

    January 2, 2014

    • Michael

      Yep, this should not be your first trip in the backcountry: I would suggest get a few days of day-touring first, before doing overnights.

      January 2, 2014

  • Rebekkah S.

    Hi Michael, I haven't taken any avalanche safety courses & it's been a few years since I've skied back country but i'm a good skier and think this sounds like fun! Would love to chat with you about it a bit more... Give me a shout at[masked]

    January 2, 2014

    • Michael

      Sorry Rebekkah: AST1 is mandatory.

      January 2, 2014

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