Castor Peak (Mount Jupiter)

May 26, 2019


Rogers Pass, BC

Castor Peak is one of the three (separately named) summits on Mt. Jupiter near Rogers Pass. This isn’t the highest of the three, but is definitely the most popular because the NW Ridge forms a short and easy climb from Sapphire Col and is doable all year around. The traverse to the highest, Pollux Peak requires a lot of 3rd class and some 4th class scrambling hence most ski mountaineering parties are satisfied with just attaining Castor Peak. On the first day of this past weekend’s Rogers Pass peak-bagging trip I decided to climb several summits in addition to the Sapphire Col approach. Earlier in the day I had already ascended The Dome which involved some spicy borderline scrambling.

The Dome and Mt. Jupiter via Sapphire Col. GPX DL

The ascent of Castor Peak is the easiest among the three peaks I did. From the hut I easily snowshoed up the lower NW Ridge on snow and once the ridge narrowed down I bailed climber’s right onto rock. The snow condition was far better than what I’d encountered on The Dome a little bit earlier in the day. Once onto dry ground I ditched snowshoes and proceeded on the mostly class 2 ridge with occasional easy 3rd class steps here and there. The actual highpoint was on the massive cornice so I didn’t manage to get a full panorama, but I did touch the cairn.

The NW Ridge of Castor Peak from the south ridge of The Dome

The typical scrambling on Castor Peak’s NW Ridge

Looking back from partway up the ridge.

The ridge starts to get steeper near the summit.

Summit Panorama from Castor Peak. Click to view large size.

Hope Peak and Charity Peak far to the south-west

Mt. McBean at center with Findhorn Peak on left and Tomatin Peak on the right

This is looking towards Pollux Peak with Mt. Fox and Mt. Dawson behind

The classic Youngs Peak that I ascended 4 years ago, with Mt. Macoun behind

Mt. Donkin in the foreground; Purity Mountain is the big peak behind

Me on the summit of Castor Peak

I wasn’t sure if I’d want to traverse to Pollux Peak (true summit of Mt. Jupiter) but upon seeing the connecting ridge I made a spontaneous decision of why-not. It appeared that I could stay mostly on rock.