Mount Cain Weather Station Installation

November 27, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

In the fall I had the opportunity to accompany a Vancouver Island Avalanche Centre Society (VIACS) work crew heading up to Mount Cain to install weather station towers. This is part of a larger research project on weather and precipitation on Vancouver Island and the British Columbia coast.

Although the day started pretty miserably with rain and snow coming down at the Mount Cain lodge parking lot, by the end of it we were treated to glorious sun and views.

Special thanks to the lovely folks at VIACS for having me along for the ride!

For more information, and to learn about backcountry and avalanche safety, contact VIACS

http://islandavalanchebulletin.com

 

LJ_20170930-B9301067LJ_20170930-B9301067Rustic cabins are the accommodations of choice on Mount Cain. LJ_20170930-B9301118LJ_20170930-B9301118Bill Floyd wrestles a chainsaw at the base of Mount Cain. LJ_20170930-B9301124LJ_20170930-B9301124Bill Floyd uses a chainsaw to cut plywood templates for the bases of the weather station towers. LJ_20170930-B9301275LJ_20170930-B9301275The heavy lifting was done by the good folks at West Coast Helicopter. Rain and snow featured at the beginning of the day. LJ_20170930-A9300024LJ_20170930-A9300024The parking lot at the base of Mount Cain made a good staging area and helicopter landing pad. Reaching for the skyReaching for the skyBill Phipps attaches a load to a line on the helicopter under dark and cloudy skies. LJ_20170930-A9300164LJ_20170930-A9300164The kind folks at West Coast Helicopter saved us a hike up the mountain. LJ_20170930-A9300225LJ_20170930-A9300225Bill Floyd hikes up into the fog to the location of the upper weather station tower. LJ_20170930-B9301326LJ_20170930-B9301326The new upper weather station tower is located next to the old one along the ridge on Mount Cain. LJ_20170930-B9301329LJ_20170930-B9301329The new upper weather station tower is located next to the old one along the ridge on Mount Cain. LJ_20170930-DJI_0043LJ_20170930-DJI_0043Aerial photo of the site of the upper tower. LJ_20170930-DJI_0047LJ_20170930-DJI_0047Aerial photo of the site of the upper tower, located adjacent to the ridge run trail. LJ_20170930-DJI_0048LJ_20170930-DJI_0048Aerial photo of the site of the upper tower, located adjacent to the ridge run trail. The blueberry bushes are in their scarlet fall foliage. LJ_20170930-A9300269LJ_20170930-A9300269Building the tower foundations requires a variety of tools. LJ_20170930-B9301338LJ_20170930-B9301338Dave Kallai and Haj consult over the hole they are digging for the new tower foundation. LJ_20170930-B9301346-PanoLJ_20170930-B9301346-PanoPanorama of the upper tower site LJ_20170930-B9301427LJ_20170930-B9301427The lower weather station tower is in a beautiful meadow LJ_20170930-A9300300LJ_20170930-A9300300Much digging was required for the foundations of the towers LJ_20170930-A9300307-HDRLJ_20170930-A9300307-HDRThe lower tower was located in a beautiful meadow. LJ_20170930-DJI_0064LJ_20170930-DJI_0064Aerial view of the site of the lower tower. LJ_20170930-A9300344LJ_20170930-A9300344Large boltsr are used to anchor the towers to their foundations, rebar reinforces the poured concrete foundations. LJ_20170930-A9300347LJ_20170930-A9300347The anodized blue of the nuts stands out against the autumnal sub-alpine colours. LJ_20170930-A9300365LJ_20170930-A9300365Megan Burns and Bill Phipps pour concrete for the foundation of the lower tower. LJ_20170930-A9300387LJ_20170930-A9300387Several bags of concrete went into the foundations of the tower, all hauled up by helicopter. LJ_20170930-A9300451LJ_20170930-A9300451The skies cleared and the weather was wonderful on the hike down the mountain. No helicopter for the return trip, so all the equipment and materials had to be hand-carried down. LJ_20170930-B9301553LJ_20170930-B9301553The team: Haj, Megan, Bill, Dave, and Bill LJ_20170930-B9301554LJ_20170930-B9301554All done!


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