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9 of us from ACC got together at St. David's church at 9:00am to attempt Garibaldi summit via south east route(PD+). We made it to the parking at 11:00am and started the hike in. The snow line looked quite low and started at 5 min past the trail head. The weather was overcast but no precipitation until we reached to Elfin Lake cabin. We expected to have some snow that night but hoping to have a rather clear day on Sunday for our summit bid. Soon we found out it was just a dream as it snowed pretty much all night long and yet there was more to come. We started the hike on Sunday at 5:15am under poor visibility and light snowing. The visibility turned into extremely poor as we gained some elevation. Poor visibility resulted to an unintentional summit of Columnar where we found out GPS is the only way to get around. Having no visibility and reference point made compass and map basically useless. Upon getting to Gargoyles we realized summit of Garibaldi is not feasible due to complex rout-finding effort and slow progress in deep fresh snow. We agreed to alter the plan and shoot for summit of Diamond Head. Having re-correction on the course of travel every 5 min by a contour map loaded GPS allowed us to get to the top of Diamond Head (2061m). We also had a share of excitement having had to cross a 10m tall cornice along the way. By 4pm we were back to the cabin while the visibility was still very poor and there was no sign of stop to the snow. In general, even though the summit goal was not achieved, the trip was a great learning experience on navigation in extreme white-out condition and use of GPS. The team spirit was great and we had a good team work. Amir Khanlou, May 28 2010
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