OverviewA great fully bolted multi-pitch climb. Original ascent by Dave Lussier.
Driving north on Highway 3A turning right shortly after the Castlegar airport onto Ootischenia Road. After 800 meters turn left onto Columbia Road and then left again onto Aaron Road. Drive approx. 600 meters and then turn right onto a gravel road that will take you up to the Brilliant Substation. There are a few forks but just keep taking the obvious route. Park on the far side of the station and head up the side road towards the cliff. After following the road you will come across the remains of a makeshift campsite with a faint climbers trail on the other side. Follow this trail through the trees to the talus slope and up to the start of the climb. The "West Kootenay Rock Guide" book mentions flagging tape marking the start of the route but I was unable to locate it. The walk is only about 10 minutes from the parking area.
Pitch 1-2Climb a faint prow to a left trending gully system. Near the top of the 1st pitch (by the 8th bolt), go right around the steep wall with thin hands but good feet (5.8). 1st pitch: 5.8, 40m, 8 bolts. 2nd pitch: 5.7, 40m, 7bolts.
Pitch 3-4Go left and climb a neat ridge system left of the gully. 3rd pitch: 5.4, 30m, 4 bolts. 4th pitch: 5.6, 30m, 4bolts.
Pitch 5Go up the broadening gully for 10m. Cross this to the right then climb a shallow groove on the steep wall above. This pitch had quite a bit of water on it. Belay on a ledge below a short overhanging wall. A long pitch with few cruxes and micro route finding. 5.8, 52m, 11bolts.
Pitch 6Step right around the corner 5m and climb a short steep wall. Use a long draw on the 1st bolt. Continue up and left on good rock. At the 7th bolt, traverse wildly right 10m to a narrow belay stance. 5.8, 40m, 8 bolts.
Pitch 7-8Climb up steep slabs on right side of rock scar to a ledge beside a large pine tree. There is a neat juggy 5.8 roof on the 7th pitch. 7th pitch: 5.8, 30m, 6 bolts. 8th pitch: 5.5, 25m, 5 bolts
Descent Follow the Brilliant overlook hiking trail back to the substaion. The trail wraps around the left side of the mountain so just stay left at all junctions and you will end up back at your car. The books says 2.7 km but it seemed to be closer to 4. Probably because I was late for a wedding that afternoon.
Essential GearTwo 60m ropes or one rope and a rap line
Standard set of draws
External LinksMegawatts, II 5.8, 280m, Castlegar, BC - Summit Mountain Guides
West Kootenay Rock Guide