So here's our game plan:
This is probably a good time to mention the importance of having a rough outline of a plan before doing anything that involves a lot of planning. Whether you are able to stick to it or not, just having it conceptualized is very beneficial.
(5:30 am) Leave Vancouver and drive to the entrance of Garibaldi Park (apx 1.5 Hrs)
(7:30 am) Start hike to Garibaldi Lake (2-3 hours, probably longer if we stop and plan some shots)
(11:30 am) Arrive at Garibaldi Lake. Time for Lunch, activities, swimming (if you’re ballsy enough), drone flying, time lapses, all the good stuff.
(1:30 pm) Leave Garibaldi Lake for Panorama Ridge (3 hours, but plan for more).
(5:30 pm) Arrive at Panorama Ridge! Get all the shots of initial reactions, setting up camp, drones n stuff. The main focus here would be to capture sunset, golden hour and all that beauty which will be around 6-7pm. (Sunset at 7:40 pm)
(Nighttime) We feast, we shoot the stars, we tell campfire stories (the fire ban hopefully will be lifted after this rainy weekend), and get some rest.
(6:30-7:00 am) We wake up and shoot the 6:37 am sunrise. Parker leads us in a mountaintop morning stretch and yoga session. We make breakfast, chill, pack up and eventually make our way back down to our starting point. ⅓ of the hike will be something we haven't done before since we made a detour to stop at Garibaldi Lake. Should add to some more fun shooting and epic views. (apx. 6-8 hours, depending on breaks and lunch)
(4:00 pm) Get to our vehicles. Head to the spa. Or dim sum. Or both.
What to pack:
Everyone is responsible for their own:
- Tent w/ waterproof cover
- Sleeping Bag
- Sleeping Pad
- Tent pad (not 100% necessary)
- Backpack (Travel bags are ideal for storage and back support. Waterproof is preferred)
- Waterproof jacket, clothing
- Hiking boots (waterproof is preferred)
- Flashlight, headlamp
- Extra clothing (definitely socks!)
- Personal camera gear
- Comfy shoes/sandals for chill time
- Extra water, water bottles
- Water purification tablets (drink from virtually any water source)
- Food, snacks
- Cups, cook gear, cutlery
- Portable camp stove
- First Aid Kit
- Insect Repellant
- Sunscreen (for Justis only)
- Shared camera gear
- Toilet paper, wet naps
This is the essential list, but PLEASE add if you think of something else. I would like to have a team meeting with the members going to source everything we need for the hike. I am sure we have enough outdoorsy friends among us that we shouldn't have to buy too many big-ticket items.
*Plan for hot and cold temperatures. We will most likely be shedding the layers during the hike and bundling up in the evening. Gets to about 0-5 degrees at night.
Now with all of this in mind, here's how it played out...
We left Vancouver 30 minutes behind schedule (not surprising) and were on the road by 6 am. Not, bad honestly.
We arrived at the entrance to Garibaldi park on time, but we spent much longer unloading the car and making sure we were all prepared. So starting the actual hike, we were approximately an hour behind schedule.
The hike was basically what we expected it to be, in terms of difficulty and challange; however, two issues came into play that we weren't prepared for.
1. One of the pairs of hiking boots we were wearing was not fitted to the foot it was on, and began causing heavy blistering and discomfort.
2. Parker's double backpacks (and the weight of them) were beginning to wear him down, and cause him to struggle to keep up with the rest of the team.
We swapped shoes, removed some layers (which were now too hot to keep on) and shared carrying extra bags. We kept going and had lots to film along the way.
We made it to Garibaldi Lake much later than expected and spent more time resting, filming, and eating lunch than we had allotted time for. On top of all that, the weather had taken a turn for the worse and the rain began. Most of us had waterproof covers for our bags, but Parker's bag didn't have that option.
So fighting time, fatigue & exhaustion, and the unpredictable weather, we pushed ourselves ever higher along the path to the ridge.
The rain has not stopped yet, and we are looking at the last part of the hike to the ridge. The problems we are now facing are:
1. It's getting darker, and the ridge is at least another hour of hiking. This will affect our shots and footage.
2. It's snowing up on the ridge, and we will be trudging through snow to get there. Not only is that a challenge fighting the cold, but it makes it significantly more dangerous to climb the ridge.
3. The fog had rolled in and caused limited (if not zero) visibility.
4. Garibaldi Provincial Park is a no-drone zone! We were not allowed to fly any drones.
With those four issues in mind, we now have to decide if it is even worth it to push for the ridge, or just set up camp at this last campground.
In the end, we decided it would not yield any good footage by making the final trek, and we were right. We set up camp and made dinner, got ourselves dried off and warm, and then just enjoyed our rest and relaxation for the night.
We had many issues sticking to plan for this hike, but we made sure to give it everything we had, and to make the most of it. In all honesty, it was still a beautiful hike and an incredible experience with good friends. We were able to still get a ton of amazing footage, which we encourage you to check out in this video below.