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UPDATED|Joffre Peak: Three Fatalities (Climbers Identified)

The RCMP reported that one climber has been killed and two are unaccounted for on Joffre Peak.

UPDATE on Jan. 13 at 4:30 p.m. MT: According tot he B.C. coroner’s report: The three climbers who fell to their death from the top of a 600-metre couloir on Joffre Peak have been identified as Elena Cernicka, aged 35, of North Vancouver; Neil Charles Mackenzie, aged 31, and Stephanie Grothe, aged 30. Mackenzie and Grothe were residing in Vancouver; but Mackenzie was originally from Scotland and Grothe from Germany.

The report said they were roped together and ice climbing Joffre’s Central Couloir.

UPDATE on Jan. 12 at 12 p.m. MT: All three missing climbers have been confirmed dead. After one of the bodies was found a search and rescue by RCMP went out this morning. The other two bodies were found shortly after. The climbers have not been identified, but police say they included a man and a woman, both in their thirties, from the Lower Mainland. Another woman in her late twenties was an international visitor.

Trip Report from Ski Run down Central Couloir by Rich Prohaska

They are believed to have been experienced in the backcountry.

CBC reported: One ice climber has reportedly been killed and a search is underway for two more that are missing in the mountains north of Pemberton, B.C.

“From the information that we have it appears that one climber may have suffered a fall, while the other two are unaccounted for,” said a statement released by Sgt. Rob Knapton of the Whistler RCMP who learned of the accident at 1:30 a.m. PT.

Google Maps for Joffre Peak

The climbers were part of a large group that had plans to rendezvous at the end of the day, but when the climbers didn’t arrive the skiers went looking for them.

Recent Avalanche Conditions on Coast
Recent Avalanche Conditions on Coast

Mount Joffre is a popular winter peak for skiers and climbers and the recent warm weather had melted valley snow and stabilized avalanche conditions.

Summit Post describes the peak as: The second highest peak in the Joffre group after Mount Matier. It is located northeast of Pemberton along the Duffy lake road. Most approaches traverse either the Anniversary Glacier accessed by the Cerise Creek Trail to the east, or the Matier Glacier accessed by the Joffre Lakes trail to the west.

Trailheads are about a three-hour drive from Vancouver. This is an outstanding group of mountains offering multiple routes up multiple peaks, all accessible from whatever single campsite you choose. You could spend a week camping on the glacier doing a different peak every day. Nearby peaks include: Mount Matier, Mount Hartzel, Mount Spetch, Mount Howard, and Rex’s Pillar.

No names have been released.

If you're unsure about conditions, hire a guide. Here is a photo of Mount Joffre taken a few years ago by Altus Mountain Guides
If you’re unsure about conditions, hire a guide. Here is a photo of Joffre Peak taken a few years ago by Altus Mountain Guides