Rockies Ice Conditions: I've left this page up as a lot of people have it linked, see links below for the current pages, thanks.
2004/2005 Conditons here, started October 5th '04.
The Winter 2003/2004 Conditions Pages are HERE, click to 'em!
2002/2003 Conditions are below: Final update of the season, April 2, 2003
It's spring; go rock climbing already! If you're desperate for ice there's still lots around, but I'm sick of it. Thanks to everyone who sent in reports all year, see ya next year!
Avalanche Conditions: This is very relevant, most of these climbs are in avalanche terrain to some extent. As usual the Rockies are an intricate range with surprises. Check the avalanche forecast for Alberta and BC by clicking here.
Please drop an email to [email protected] if you climb something and don't mind sharing it, it's our reports that keep this current. Pictures are good too, I'll resize them for easy loading, thanks.
Golden/Kicking Horse Climbs Construction access problems here This is important for the future of Kicking Horse climbs.
Johnston canyon is now open to ice climbers.
Hydrophobia (Ghost) through the Waiparous approach beta here.
Joe McKay ice updates and photos here. All of these are worth reading if you're contemplating ice climbing in the Banff-Jasper area mountains. Not for the faint of ego. WG Note: Joe is in South America for a month or so, these will resume when he returns, but his commentary on how to build Abalakovs without tools etc. is worth reading anyhow.
Central Rockies Wolf Project WG Note--the Central Rockies Wolf Project is asking for some help reporting wolf sightings, scat and other signs that wolves are in the Central Rockies. I think it's a good cause, please click the link above for more information. This is especially relevant at the moment as the Banff Pack has just had two or more of its members killed in legal trap lines on the BC edge of the park.
GHOST USE SURVEY: The Ghost is in the midst of some sort of government review. I'm sure our government means well, but it's important for ice climbers and other Ghost users to get our opinions in. Go to http://www3.gov.ab.ca/srd/regions/southwest/ghost/ for more info and fill out the on-line survey (it was down recently, but there's a PDF mail-in survey also).. Thanks to Shawn and Jeff for the link. I personally would like to see the government just enforce the existing regulations on the Ghost (don't throw beer bottles everywhere, don't cut down trees for grins, don't do drugs in public, etc) than make a stack of new "protective" legislation that will only penalize those who actually follow the law in the first place...
Click for Conditions Photos:
April 2, Various, Craig Zubris
Went for some fun at the Junkyards on March 27 2003. Ice was still in good condition with some noticeable flowing water. Melt was minimal on and to the left of "lonely tree," and late day sun was softening the rightside area pretty good.
Tangle Creek March 29 2003. Good cloudy broken sun day. All Ice still in good conditions, very leadable. Some rotten ice and trickling water on far right near exposed rock, but really not that bad at all. Real fun day.
Weeping wall DRIVE BY(DID NOT CLIMB) March 29 2003. As we drove to Tangle Creek we stopped and visually inspected the Weeping Wall. Appears to still be in good condition, saw one team on second pitch that had the whole wall to them selves. While looking very climbable the conditions were (visually) alot thinner than the photo in Jo Jo's guide book.
Professors, Mike C. Click for nice shot of avalanche debris in Professor's!
climbed Professors on tuesday ( march 25th). ice was good, last pitch nice and wet and getting bigger by the minute... I just wanted to send this picture in for those who seem to forget that there is avalanche hazard on this climb. The gully below and above the 2nd last pitch is completely choked with debris. Right where the climber is in the photo, there should be a 20ft step of ice that is now completely buried. The snow doesn't come from the gully directly above the climb but from the one on climber's right as you go up towards the last pitch. Just something for people to look out for...
March 24th, Cobra Verde, Chris, Jason and Reid
March 24, Takakkaw Falls, Colin.Wooldridge
Climbed Takakkaw Falls March 23 with a mix of snow, sun, and wind. The thin tube on the 2nd pitch is THIN - picks hooking through the tube (less than 1 cm in places). Good plastic ice for the most part with avoidable sun bleached "ice" in sections. The tube on the exit was very thin too. Extremely fun climb - if you forget about the ski in&out. cW
March 24, various, Will Gadd
There is still plenty of ice around here, but spring conditions are in effect pretty much everywhere. Did Weeping Wall last week, al good, as was Polar Circus. Have fun, watch out for sun-driven slides this time of year.
March 24, Ghost, Martin Reuter
Just thought I'd drop you a line on the ghost.
Climbed Wicked Wanda on Mach 22, it was great. It is still forming, the first pitch to the cave was plastic, and the second pitch was great wave like formations, it is also possible to climb the left side which was not as wind affected. Mag Mushroom looked like it was rotting, Sunshine was half gone, Fearful Symmetry was gone! Couldn't see Aquarius. Dr. Heckle and Mr. Jive looked ok from a distance. Blackrock Falls was a pencil. The Real Big Drip was still, well, BIG!! The driving in was a dream, not much snow and no problems with creek crossings.
Looks like it's time to get out the rock shoes, Phantom Bluffs looked great. Enjoy, Martin Reuter.
March 7, Cascade, Professors, Matt MacEachern
March 4, Louise Falls, Laura Lee
Climbed Louise Falls today, bottom is still forming but the latest cold nights have made for a brittle top surface. The upper pitch is very well used, lots of hooking and big foot placements. No ice for the mixed routes.
March 3, New Route in the Ghost, J.D. LeBlanc
To the right of Dodo Bird in the ghost, there is a new route called BETA BIRD M9 by LeBlanc/Buszowski. It climbs out a good sized roof, about 5 times bigger than Dodo bird roof! Yesterday Louis-Julien Roy (frenchman's and big names) Flashed the route - it was an impressive performance - pretty darn psyched for Louis! The route is in dry tooling conditions right know, but when first bolted had Ice! Dodo bird M8 is in full dry tooling and could use a couple more bolts (Sean are your reading this?) The left route Huissman's Frodo bird M7 could use one bolt between the 2nd last and last bolt.
-PS the drive was pretty exciting going in at the second creek until the valley of the birds BUT going out was riveting! A couple of 3ft ice banks didn't stop OJ!
March 3, Found Tool in Grotto, Teji S. Sandhar
I found an ice-climbing tool in late December. I have tried other postings without success. It was found on aproach to Grotto Falls. I'll return it to whoever can identify it.
Feb 27, Johnson Canyon, J.B. Peters
I do confirm that Johnston Canyon is open for climbing and getting busy, too. Ali and I hiked in there on Monday. The regular twin pillars middle left are in, the Pyramid looks to have about two distinct lines through it and there's a body sized free hanger (approx 30m) middle right. Standard easier ice on the right.
February 22, Lost Pack In K-Country
I lost my pack on Saterday Feb.22 on the
February 20th, Various, Kevin
Sunshine -- partially melted out at the bottom of the pitch
Aquarius -- the top 20ft has melted out (may still be possible with pins and thin rock gear)
Weathering Heights -- a little thin and hooked out on the first pitch, other wise OK
The drive in to the south ghost was still in good shape before fridays snow fall some drifts are getting big but it is easy to find other routes around them.
February 25th, Various, Misha
Central something on the lower weeping wall- with jason b, nemesis- with eammon w, and jason b. a great route, watch out fer the snow! lady killer near golden, sun rotted, mushroomy, quite fun, like climbing a slurpee. sunday seems to be an allright time to climb on the forbidden highway climbs of golden however i never would such a thing masseys in field with clarita, was in classic condition, good ice, good pro ! wandered around mt.hunter near golden with clarita in the big forest looking for ice, eventually found the graduate gully, melted out and thin to start, but fun gr.3. the routes on mt.hunter look great from the highway but pretty invisible once in the forest.
February 20th, Hydrophobia and Cryophobia, WG
Waip. approach in very good condition, both creek crossings are frozen and the snow offers very nice traction due to cold temps. Cryophobia is still in good shape with a little more mixed climbing and some fantastic ice moves, Hydro is brittle but in good shape too.
February 20th, Ghost, Martin Reuter
Just thought I'd drop you a line and let you know that Snowline ,Moonlight and Chantilly Falls are in. Thin on the bottom 25m's or so but able to take stubs for pro. We were in the North Ghost and climbed GBU, the Indifferent and Angel Eyes. There also were some folks up the Valley of the Birds, although we didn't get any info on the climbs. The drive into the ghost was very easy, with little snow and low ice dams on the creek crossings. His/Hers and Grotto Falls up and getting lots of use.
February 19th, Orion Falls, "Han Solo"
this route is in great shape,althuogh we found it to be more like 230 meters,not 150,pillar pitch was good for the grade,and had nice ice...the approach and ski out was devastating!
Febuary 18th, Weeping Wall, Nemesis, Jason Billings
climbed the middle line on the lower weeping wall a few days ago.....poor sun leached ice, hard to find good placements and good screws. There were some guys getting amongst the upper wall though, so maybe the ice is not as bad up there as the lower wall.
Climbed nemesis with eamonn, misha and the prolific cusbon on
sat. Awesome! First pitch is thin but with excellent ice and good screws (no
stubbies needed). The last pitch off the ledge was awesome...super steep with
good ice and hooks, even a few mantle/roofs to pull. Snow conditions on the
final slope leading up to the route were poor, but following the moraine makes
it relatively safe, bring skis.....approaching any other routes up there would
be a bit scary due to the steepness of the slopes.
-have fun, jason
February 14, Polar Circus, Gery Unterasinger
Climbed Polar Circus today and it's still in good shape dispite the warm temps and strong radiation from noon on. No avalanche hazard at all, even the steep chutes below Mt. Cirrus have already slit. The Ribbon pitch had 8 Abalacovs already in place! Does that really have to be?
Question: On the way home I saw a really good looking ice flow at the base of the east face of Epaulette Mountain with a demanding looking alpine finish to the summit. Anybody knows something about the route?
Answer to Gery Unterasinger from Rene Cote: Perhaps
the climb with an alpine finish on Epaulette is Mrs Choksondyk, with a lower
13, Marble Canyon and Sorcerer (Ghost), Stephen O'Brien
Climbed tokkum pole last week.
sorcerer still in. Looks way
different than back in October.
Feb. 13, Waterton Park area, Mike, Rob, Aaron, Jarred
Climbed Feb 6-12
Quick and Dirty - in good. The climb above it also looked fat...did not climb it
Feb 12, Gibraltar, Robert Ordner
Had the good fortune to climb the left side of Gibraltar with Al, and Chris Beers and from Revelstoke and Dave Huff. The conditions were good. Pitch two was probably stiffer than usual due to wet chandeliered conditions. Dave and Orville from Calgary ? climbed the right side, it appeared a bit thin but they cruised. The rap anchors appeared in decent shape with relatively new webbing.
Feb 12, Meltout, Lost Rambo, S. Dong
Wondering if you could put a post for a lost crampon on the walkoff of Meltout in Jasper. It's a left Rambo Mono (ouch) crampon, lost somewhere on the walkoff of Meltout on Sunday Feb 9. People can e-mail me at [email protected] As to the climb itself, it was great. Great weather, solid and dry ice, topped out with some sunshine! Thanks!
Feb 11, Sad and Beautiful World, Lost Screw, Dan
A BD Express 22cm screw was mistakenly left (in the ice) at the top of the gully pitch on Sad and Beautiful World on Feb. 9. If someone heads up there and is kind enough to bring it down, I'll make sure it gets back to its owner. The guy who left it behind would be most grateful as well. Contact: [email protected].
Feb 2th, Caroline Falls, Jeff Lister
Drove in to Caroline falls today...It was there but thin and partially detached. Still climbable if you are really confident, which we weren't. Instead we ran up Venus and scrambled up to the base of Devil's Head. What a stellar view!!! From here we could see marion falls, and it looked pretty good from across the valley, but I imagine it gets the same sun as Caroline. The driving conditions were easy, too bad the climbing conditions weren't as generous.
Gibraltar/Hafner, Ryan K., Click for Photos
Jan. 23, 2003 Gibraltar was in fine form with several lines to choose from. Myself and Troy H. did the farthest left as the ice looked the best. Recent temp. fluctuations did some funky stuff with the ice though. Still an excellent climb well worth the trip. Has anybody climbed the gnarly mixed line to the left of Gibraltar just before you get there on the road? Looks fine...
Jan. 24, 2003 Hafner had not so much ice but the rock was in! Good fun. Parties were crowded on the only ice touching down (gd 4). Check out the pics. I Don't know the people climbing in Hafner.
January 27th, Waiparous, Everett Fee, click for photos
Doug Nelson, Wayne Shackleton, and I climbed Caroline Falls and Venus in the Waiparous on January 26. Caroline Falls was in fine shape when we started climbing (~10 am) but the day was very warm and the sun came out, and by 1 pm the route was extremely wet and out of condition. Another party backed off Marion Falls because the upper pillar was detached and the route was being bombarded by falling ice and rock even early in the day. Venus was in good shape even late in the day (albeit very wet).
January 26, Transparent Fool Area, Kevin Dyck
January 19 ? Transparent Fool is big but with a lot of dodgy ice. While we were there the curtain immediately left of the pillar cracked so people should keep an eye on it if they?re up there. The short smear a little farther left of Fool is thin at the beginning but gets good a little farther up. JF figured WI 5 (It?s not in the guidebook.). We didn?t do Bison Falls because it was wet but it?s in full. No snow on the slopes = no avi danger.
January 26th, Midnight
Rambler, Thomas Choquette
just a quick note on the ice climb Midnight Rambler..the bolt station on the top of the last pitch was in poor shape..although people were still using it..man!the hangers were spinners,13 years old and rusted..and they looked just like the one's you tore so easily with your pic earlier this year back of fortress(that by the way was a real eye opener for me)...anyway..my partner removed the hangers..there's loads of ice for v threads on top..which is what everyone should be using,and the rock the bolts were in was very bad..oh ya..the climb is very thin on the bottom pitch..and fat on the last pitch..we also walked off after rappin the last pitch..easy traversing south slopes till you can hike down to your packs.we climber it jan.18/03 thomas choquette
January 25th, Field Climbs, Gery Unterasinger
Climbed Carlsberg on Jan.21st and was surprised that there were no signs of recent acents other than a bail sling 5m up. The route is in great shape and although the ice is thinner than in usual years it takes good gear (no stubbies needed). Temps of minus 25 made the ice a bit brittle!
Also the Pilsner Amphie Theatre is in great shape for mixed climbing with a cool line far left named Sapporo, which was a 50m M7/8 in previous years. Now you can climb the first 10m at M6+, followed by a stunning 35m vertical pillar. Have fun!
Lost Gear on Sinatra Falls Jan 12/03
Lost 2 BD Express 17 cm screws at different places on Sinatra Falls Jan 12, 2003. If found, please conatct Josh at [email protected] Thanks again. Cheers, Josh
January 25th, WG, General
I'm back from northern Thailand and back on updating these pages, sorry for the down time, there was no internet where I was. Thanks to everybody who sent info in anyhow, here's the latest:
January 16, Sinatra Falls, Chris and Reid
limbed sinatra falls.The first 50m there is little to no ice.We scrambled up the rock on the right.For the rest of the climb the ice was fat and the placements were bomber.We solo climbed the entire waterfall. We chose the walk-off route back to the truck.The route could be rappeled with the use of abalakovs. thanks..Chris and Reid. Photo Here
January 15th, Weeping Pillar, Fiasco, Guy Tremblay
-Weeping Pillar (as for January 11th) Second attempt... perfect weather, sunny but much colder than during our first try. Bad ice and sun bleached muchrooms on the first pitch, 80 meters, running belay. Awesome ice on the second pitch, dead vertical pillar, marvelous climbing, 60 meters. A serie of free hanging daggers on the last pitch, probably WI6+, 55 meters, awesome pitch ! When I do the math though, I am missing someting... 80 + 60 + 55 = 195 meters. In the Guide Book it says 170 meters... !?!
-Fiasco (as for January 10th) Past the mixed part (we took a rest on the crux bolts) we got to very, very thin ice... unprotectable, something in between 1 to 3 cm tick. Besides a bad pin inserted in turf... nothing could be puted in in between the last bolt and the belay. That was very stupid to climb it in that shape, unsafe (almost ground falling)... Past the first pitch, the climbing got marvelously interesting... Again, thin ice on the second pitch but the flake on the right hand side allowed us to well protect it with rock gear, cams, pins and nuts. A good pin has been left behind. Upper up, stubbies could be placed. For the last pitch, again awesome climbing, all ice with good protection, the overhanging mushrooms and the small pillar probably bring the rate to WI6-. For the fist two pitches, no idea about grade.
All the best ! Fred and GuyJan 12, New Routes in Kananaskis: Climbed 2 separate WI3 20m pitches up a creek that empties into Galatea Creek (nothing in Josephson, 4th Ed.). Hard left at the second bridge (prior to crossing) on your way to A Bridge Too Far and continue up the creek for 20 to 30 minutes. Both cimbs on the right. Left climb: 10m of WI3+ ice to step, another 10m of WI2 to belay off trees. Right climb: up small step of rolling ice (10m) to 5m of WI3 and finish off with rolling steps to tree belay. These things looked more prominent when viewed from Kidd Falls descent but approach slopes were romps up mixed snow and ice. Zip for avi hazard. Climbers: Todd Dyer, Angie Folk, Jason Kulsky
January 12, King Creek, Found Rope, Dary Kardash
I was climbing at King Creek Saturday, January 11, and found a climbing rope left at the side of the road. To claim it, as long as you can accurately identify it, call Darcy at 938-3983, between 7:00 - 10:00 PM.
January 8th, Guy Trembay
(Sorry, Guy! I deleted the photos by accident! Re-send them and I'll put them up. -S.)
The Real Big Drip (as for January 1-2): We did two unsucessfull attemps on Big Drip. On the first pitch, the ice was about 15 feets over the last bolt. After two tries, we manage to get to the ice by climbing a virgin band of rock. We finally got to the first belay at 1pm, too late to finish the entire route, so we fixed a rope for the next day. On our second attempt, we jumared back to the belay and started leading the ice pitch to realise that big parts of the pillar were detached from the rock. While hiting the ice with picks, the whole thing was vibrating all the way down to the ice screwed belay... It didn't feel good so we bailed down. If someone would like to give it a try, we would suggest not to belay on ice but to go straight for a 60 meters pitch doing the first two pitches in one!
Unicorn (as for January 4): Well form, two awesome pitches. Not knowing where the line was, we did a right variation on the first pitch. The second pitch is awesome climbing, well worth it!!
Curtain Call (as for January 5): As posted by two other climbers, the first pitches is in. Looking from the road, we thought that the second pitch was also in... but it is only when you are 5 meters away from the bottom of the upper pillar that you can realy see that it is not touching down, at least not enough to be safely climb... We then try the mixed climb, but that was also not formed.
Weeping Pillar (as for January 6): There seems to be a line formed on the right hand side of the upper part so we wanted to give it a try... After two week of cloudy days, we had our first sunny day on our Weeping Pillar attemp... We got to the bottom of the route at noon, with the sunshines and the warm Chinook Winds. It didn't looked to good so we took a two hours sun bath at the bottom of it to see how things were going. Big chunks of ice were constanly falling on the line we had picked so at 2 pm, we bailed down. Lets hope that the weather will improve in the following days.
Sliptream (as for January 5) : Viewed from the road, see the attached picture.
Riptide (as for January 6) : Viewed from the road, see the attached picture.
January 8th, Bill Passmore
Whitehorse Creek Seep in Cadomin is in great shape. Really fat and lots of lines!
January 8th, Mike Scott
January 8th, Doug Fulford
January 8th, Drew Brayshaw
Based on a trip from the West Coat to the Rockies Jan 30-5,
with a return via the Kootenays:
Gibraltar Wall: fat, blue Weeping Wall area: Lower thinner than most years, stubbies more useful than normal.Snivelling, Left & Right in, Central not really yet. Only Weeping Pillar "in" on upper (hanging curtain at top not touching, but supposedly
climbable). Mixed Master not in. Whimper Wall in. Lady Wilson & W. Major in, fat. Ditto Midnight Rambler. Above MR, Stairway to Heaven and Living in Paradise look like they're in. Kicking Horse: Coughlins and Lady Killer areas are NOT closed. Seeing fairly constant traffic.A few ascents of the closed routes were observed being made
as well..... Field: Guinness is dirt for 1st two pitches. Carlsberg is a tiny skinny pillar more like Pilsner normally. Pilsner is mixed icicles, nothing continuous yet. Masseys 1st pitch is also icicles. Super Bok, Extra Lite, Cool Spring all in, ditto many of the Mt. Stephen mixed climbs. Silk Tassel and Coal Miners are fully in, but note Coal Miners is only about 15-20m long, not the 50m described in Jo-jos book. Yoho Valley road has lots of fat blue ice. There is also some neat looking blue ice a ways left of Pilsner, not in either book, looks like a pitch of WI2 or 3, partially snow covered slab to a steeper set of 30m high smears, 2 or 3 possible routes? This is right above the west end of downtown Field. Warm weather affecting Cascade, the upper pitches are super wet and dripping, almost like a West Coast ice climb. Rogans has lots of scree but the steeper pitches are there and fun, also some anemic beat out icicles giving short mixed sections around chockstones in the narrows. good value for WI2. Other Bow Valley: The Sky Pilot icicle is hanging in, looks like Dogfight could be climbed. Bountiful Drought and Rock On & Off are not there.
Revelstoke: The higher routes, from near Rogers Pass as far west as Greeley, are in, and the non-avvy threatened ones are climbable. Warm rain in town on Jan 5 meant the Hway 23 routes near town, and the 3 Valley Gap lines, suffered serious melt out. Best to wait for renewed cold. South of Revelstoke, the big ice lines on the Slocan Bluffs are also thin and melted
and awaiting the return of warm temperatures.
West Coast: Lillooet is starting to come in, but not worth it as a destination yet - only a few routes are climbable. wait a few weeks for colder temperatures and lower elevation ice to come in. However, alpine conditions are currently pretty good, and will remain so as long as the high lasts.
January 8th, Kristen Schamber
January 8th, Tom Back
With respect to some of the easier climbs, I was in the Jasper
area just before the New Year. Kerkeslin Falls (Dec. 29) was in with a first
pitch consisting of two steps. The lower step was thin; take care topping out on
it . The second step was easy and was followed by a snow gully to the base of a
long pitch (50 m of WI 3) with good ice that took regular ice
screws. There are two bolts at the top, with another 10-15 m of low-angled ice above this. There may be more, but we turned back because it was getting dark. Maligne Canyon climbs were in (Dec. 30), but are not very fat yet. The first climb on the right when facing upstream (Fall of Knight?) is cauliflowered and chandeliered, but can be done at WI 3 if you pick the best line. Lots of people were top-roping it. The next flow (the Queen?) looked pretty fierce - thin and technical; harder than WI 4 - but top-roping is possible. Still further up the canyon is another flow on the right, about 15-20 m of WI 2. Edge of the World (Dec. 31) is also in good WI 2 shape.
January 6th, Chris & Reid
January 5th, Robert Lee
Over New Years--Green Gully (AKA Wetter Than Your Wife)--
couldn't tell from road but drier than your grandmum-- first pitch fine, but
unprotectable mixed second pitch, other upper pitches also partially missing. Graduate
Gully didn't look formed. Saw plenty of climbers on
"closed" (but well-formed) Kickinghorse canyon climbs over New
Years--either they were unaware of construction closure or figured it was OK
because nobody was working. Pretty Nuts looks like a mudbath. Lady
Killer-- great ice but that's a mighty pumpy Grade 3-- did upper steps above the two pitches to a soaking wet pillar and additional curtains on left that looked like they would be great given some cold. "Beer climbs" looked largely anemic. Skied up Yoho road on way home-- most of the Mt. Ogden climbs look good-- Iron Curtain looks awesome but too
stiff for my lead. . .
With regard to "Easier Routes" posting--Cascade- looks fat, Rogan's-looks anemic, Sinatra Falls- thin a few weeks ago, Bow Falls- looks fat, Lady Wilson's Cleavage- thin a few weeks ago-
Others that qualify as easy and are in good shape as of late- dependent on avy danger of course-- Why and Wherefore, French Technique (other than "left fork" is dry), Urs Hole.
Robert C. Lee
January 5th, Colin Wooldridge
I climbed Cascade, Bow, and Grotto on the weekend:
Cascade (4 Jan.) - good shape, some refreeze bauble ice to get up the last
Bow (5 Jan.) - skis or snowshoes for the approach as there is not much snow,
but enough. Very brittle (I thought the climb should be renamed Beyond
Brittle - scary large dinner plates made the climb feel uncertain at best).
Gorby Falls looks really good - if you enjoy climbing underneath a cornice
that sits in the sun.... Jaws is IN, but Uli's ain't.
Grotto (5 Jan.) - virtually a staircase making it feel like a grade 2. Leave
your tools at the bottom and just climb with gloves on - the stairs are that
big! His and Hers are both in, though they require gymnastic and sporting
climbing up wet (thinning) pillars/hanging daggers.
January 5th, Beowulf, The Eagle, Everett Fee
The ACC Calgary section's ice review in the Ghost on Jan. 4-5
was very well attended (~70 people). Conditions were superb, and many great
climbs were done. There are two attached pictures show the two I was involved
with: the first picture shows the first 2 pitches of Beowulf, the other shows
The Eagle (Doug Nelson leading). We also did GBU, which is very fat.
January 5, 2003, easier routes?, Josh
I've been checking the site quite often, and have noticed that most of the route reports are for some of the harder routes in the rockies. I was wondering if you know of any conditions in the rockies for some of the more moderate routes. A buddy and I are heading out next week. The routes we'd like to check out are:
Sinatra Falls in KC
Lady Wilson's Cleavage
Weeping Wall Left
Kerkeslin Falls in Jasper
Thanks for your time. Cheers, Josh McCulloch [[email protected]]
wg note: Lately most of the routes reported seem to be harder, keep the easier route reports coming as they see a lot of traffic, thanks.
Dec 31, Kimberly Area Conditions?
Does anyone know the conditions in the kimberly area. could you please get back to me [email protected]
Dec 31, Sea of Vapors, Nemesis, Suffer Machine Fred and Guy, click for photos
Happy new Year !!! Tonigth, we are celebrating the new year and even more, our yesterday climb... Sea of Vapor... Our biggest climb ever !! :-) Pictures are attached to this email :-)
Best, Fred and GuyDec 30, Curtain Call, Karl Bremer, Laurent Bolduc.
Dec 30, Waiparous, Patrick Knoll and Ryan Hokanson
Took a little trip to sample some fine Canadian 4x4 action for X-mas. Climbed a bit in the Ghost to warm up, then drove over into the Waiparous and did Ice Funnel and Kemosabe. Drove to the parking spot across the big bog for Hydrophobia on Boxing Day but it was nuking over there and we decided to bail. It was a good thing because the creek crossings were getting a little hairy. A big rig with 3 ATVs on a trailer got stuck at the small crossing and turned it into a gnarly trough with an ice wall at the exit. After two more rigs went in up to their headlights and were pulled out the other side we chopped an exit ramp and snuck the Toyota around the side. The driving was cruxier than the climbing this trip! The idea of getting stuck in there worked on my nerves.
Thanks for the excellent driving beta. I especially liked the "cravasse" in the bog. I should have known the standard of the driving would match the standard of the climbing up there.
Cheers, Patrick Knoll and Ryan Hokanson, Missoula, MT
Dec twenty-something, Riptide, Karl Bremer, Laurent
Riptide is in fat shape this year. We did not use any rock gear for the climb, but, we use some on the approach. I beleve that we choose the wrong gully. We ended up doing some wild traverse over rock cover of snow. The first pitch is the crux with section of technical over hanging mushroom.Grade 6. Pretty fun! Second pitch climb over a wall cover with a shield of ice.Grade 5. We done two 60m pitch and a third one is found above. Stubbies are helpful. We add to use a bolt on the descent in the main gully. It took us 17 hours car to car so, be prepared.
Dec 30th, ACC Ice Review in the Ghost
The Alpine Club of Canada, Calgary section, will be holding there annual ice review Jan 4 & 5 in the Ghost area. Camped at the bottom of the big hill will be 70+ climbers. If you want to get out and climb away from the crowds... this is NOT the place to be!!! If you're a Calgary section member... this is the place to be!!! Check the ACC web site for more details.
Dec 27th, lost camera in the Ghost
Hi...I had the unfortunate luck of loosing my canon elf camera
in the ghost valley just before Christmas. It would have been between the 15 and
the 17th of December...It was lost in the north ghost..at the campground before
the river or up at the sorcerer... If you could please put a little note on the
site about a lost camera during that time it would be greatly appreciated... If
there is any information on it could you please contact...250-562-1270 in BC or [email protected]
There is a reward for the return..as the pictures on the camera were badly
WG Note: Camera found, I really can't get over the amount of stuff lost and found here...
Dec 25th, Whitemans (found gear) and Hydro, Guy Tremblay
(sorry, forgot to link the photos until now)
This is Guy Tremblay, the Quebec climber that used to be worried about global warming, specially in the canadian rockies... You were right, there is plenty of stuff to do up here, plenty of ice and rock to climb ! I have two messages for your web site, the first concerning ice condition in the rockies (Hydro and Whiteman, see the attached pictures) and the second concerning found gear at the bottom of Whiteman.
Found gear at the bottom of Whiteman Fall on December 24, shoes, google and stuff. We would be please to give it back... call, email, or come to see us at the Canmore Alpine Club [email protected], in Calgary 238-0180, Guy Tremblay and Fred Maltais
All the best ! -Guy
Dec 23rd, Goldstream (new route near Adamant Lodge), Eugene&Louise Rande
Yvan Sabourin Al Ducros FA" Oban" Single Malt.WI 5+ in present conditionWI 6.This is the major pillar of a broken curtain that has undercut cliffs that will no doubt prevail in the current contemporary style of mixed ascents.The ambience of the surrounding Cedar forest creates a mellow mood enjoy. How to get there,Take highway toward Mica Dam and turn right up the Goldstream.Go to appro.KM33 at the fork in the road stay right instead of going across the bridge over the the river.Look up hill on the right and the ice uphill 200m is your destination.
Dec 23rd, Valley of the Birds, Louis and Brett
When to Valley of the Bird on Sunday and climb the Eagle and Seagull both in good shape although the ice is very cold and brittle. The approach pitch are cover in ice. Merry Christmases to all and Happy new climbs!
Dec 23, Dry Tooling safety tip, Tony Webster
I discovered a neat trick that might save some facial lacerations, eyeball punctures, etc.. while dry tooling, in the gym or outside. I'm not sure if I am the first to do this but find an old tennis ball, cut a slit in it just large enough that you can slip it completely over the hammer or adze and it will "grab" by itself. Provides some great cushioning in case of tool slippage and also you don't have to spend ages unwrapping all that friggin' duct tape. Just squeeze the tennis ball, pull and it's off!
wg note--you're not the first, but this is a good idea especially if climbing with leashes--leashless tools don't flick at your face in the same manner because there is no fulcrum where the leash attaches. Still good for leashless tools too though, I've covered mine in foam and duct tape for some routes.
Dec. 23, Polar Circus, John IonescuPolar Circus is in great shape right now. The low snow pack eliminates completely the avalanche danger. Crapy ice on the first three pitches above the pencil, last two pitches were plastic and nice in the afternoon sun. We raped over the pencil, which made the descent faster and this may also be safer in high avi conditions (rap anchors in place). The Pencil is far from touching the ground. All the rap stations are 10+ feet above the ice, the crux of the route was feeding you ropes through them.
Dec 23rd, New Routes by Sean Isaac and friends, click for link.
Dec. 20th, Linda Ice nine; Tim, Hamish, James
We heard this route was in so we had to check it out (thanks Tony). I honestly thought it was a classic, especially if you enjoy rambing routes with beautiful views! There is some snow but avalanche hazard isn't to extreme at the moment - be wary of day time heating and additional snowfalls! Perfect cross country ski conditions would have made for allot of fun on the approach! Even your touring gear would be worth it to speed up the appoach..which isn't really to bad, it just would be fun with skiis! The ice varied allot but generally was in good shape in my opinion. Be really carefull if it snows any more, the snow will cause eggshell ice on this route and also the avalanche hazard IS A SERIOUS THREAT, with more snow...on that note, besides 10-20cm of storm snow, the snowpack is all facets with a large depth hoar layer occuring in most places - yikes! You can walk off the top two pitches then 2 raps with a single 60 meter will get you to the point where you can walk off the last pitch.
Dec 21, Missing Guy, Jeff Lister.
Maybe you can help me, I'm trying to locate an old friend of mine, He goes by the name S.O.B. He was last seen at Galletea, and supposedly he is still in the area. Pass this Photo around to as many as you can and with a little help from the internet, I'll find him.
Ghost ? December 19, 2002, JD
GBU ? thin, but climbable - next week it?ll be close to it?s
Angel eyes ? a bit better than GBU, all the way down, but again a bit thin.
Valley of the birds ? approach ? full there!
Dodo and Frodo bird ? bottom pillar to the roof there, relatively thick, about half of last year, but the ice goes from the top down to the roof! Thin but looks pretty darn good.
House of sky ? dry ice, but fully in ? up to the last 2 steps where it becomes plastic. The upper pillar is pretty darn good ? really wet!
Looking from the road ? Big Drip ? reforming; Joker looks thicker than a month ago, where it was pretty darn big.
Alpine Spam # 7 December 18th 2002: Redneck Rules for Ice Climbing, good recent parkway photos from Joe McKay and friends, good beta.
Dec 18, Johnson Canyon Access, Jeremy Frimer
Didn't see it on the webpage but Johnson is closed (construction on the walkway). Tried to walk around on another trail but didn't have much luck.
Dec 16, Waterton,
Experts Choice: All three are not even close to being in
Compund Gullies: a loong wak for some suspect ice.
Quick and Dirty: It's thin and looking pretty detatched from the wall.
Dec 14, Cosmic Messenger, Yves Sabourin
Road condittions were bad on Sat. but the approach was quite bare.The storm was quite something in the alpine as the wind was blowing ,moderate and spin drift would engulf us on the pitch.
The bottom of the route had artichoke petals that were quite fragile,Start right as it is dryer to attain the pillar. The route has good feet through the mushrooms and is chandeliered .My BD vipers worked like a dream as the climbing was sustained and a bit technical.Monopointing was a disadvantange on this route in the chandeliers.
Dec 14, Various, Dale Remsberg and Steve Broscheid
dec 12- Climbed Replicant. 1st pitch thin, protected by stubbies for the first 90 feet. a brief overhung section but good ice and better pro on the second part of the 1st. A full 60 meter got us to the overlap. 2nd pitch started thin with stubbies again for about 30 feet then pull the overlap onto thick plastic ice to the top. a full 60meters gets you to the thread where the ice emerges. Great route!!
dec 11- Linda ice still in great shape.
dec 10- got stuck in the waiporous. had a great epic!!!!
dec 9- Climbed Sorcerer. Still there and in great easy shape.
dec 8- Climbed Candle Stick Maker. 1st pitch dry and steep with good gear and hooks. 2nd pitch wet and not as steep. great route. We used hidden dragon for the approach.
dec 7- Climbed professors. fat but beware of the last pitch if grade 4 is your limit as is still a little stiff. we climbed it on the left and pull onto the curtain with good gear in the tube behind it.
cheers and happy holidays, Dale Remsberg and Steve Broscheid
Dec 12th, Kitty Hawk and Unicorn, Gery Unterasinger
Both climbs are in excellent shape! The curtain on the last pitch of the Unicorn is wet and formed wider than usual, which makes it harder to get around and the last bolt is covered in ice.
14, New Route on Chephren, new route in Kootenay NP. Click for links.
Joe McKay Alpine Spam # 7, December 15th 2002: How to build an Abalakov without a thread puller, photos and reports on various routes.
Dec 14, Jasper Area, Tony Webster
Spent the period between 8-13 Dec climbing some of the easier
routes near Jasper.
-Edge of the World - both pitches in good fat condition
-Maligne Canyon - go see for yourself, Queen was very wet and a cauliflower fest on the 9th but was getting better daily.
-Melt-Out - in OK condition at best, the full gamut of ice conditions experienced here (brittle, plastic, chandeliery, rotten, etc...)
-Shades of Beauty - pitches 1 and 3 are fine, the steep middle pitch was very wet and cauliflowery, tough to get good pro. We and another party that day elected to walk around it.
-Swartz's Falls - good conditions.
14 Dec, K-Country, Brent Peters
The road to Whiteman Falls is devoid of snow, particular after yesterday's sun... We cycled it in about a casual 20 min. Approach pitches are wet and interesting, but hey, if you are there to climb Whiteman Falls or anything else, you won't have a problem. Whiteman Falls is in excellent conditions right now. It felt like a steal for WI6. Get there before it gets cold and freezes up again as it is nice and dry throughout!! (Redman Soars, Green Man Gronks etc all look in but we didn't have time to climb them...)
Dec 12--New routes in gully #3 on Rundle.
Dec. 12, Ribbon Creek--Wherefore and Why, Robert C. Lee
Doesn't match guidebook description very well (e.g. seemed at least as long as Sinatra, Linda Ice 9, etc. to us) but fun, easy, and fat, despite anemic appearance from trail. Great cruise in scenic surroundings.
-Robert C. Lee
Dec. 12, No See 'Um Creek, Rob Kozarchuk
Seriously, there is a creek by this name. It is the next large drainage north of Hector Creek on the Parkway. Park at a pullout on the right just past a guardrail at the obvious drainage. Walk up the right side of the valley for about 45 minutes to a headwall with a wide WI2 curtain on its left side. Just right of this is a narrow gully. Climb a couple of short, thin ice steps in this gully to reach a tiny amphitheatre with two separate and pleasant WI3 routes. The right hand route seems to form thicker and rises in three steps to a large flat ledge after 55m. A short 10m pitch of easy WI2 leads to the top of the headwall and very pleasant surroundings. The second route is immediately left of the previous climb and starts out as a wide flow of slightly thinner ice which becomes quite narrow near the top. A full 60m pitch of fun and varied climbing.
It is easy to walk off from both climbs by heading left (north) for a short distance and then descending easy slopes and ledges between the described climbs and the big WI2 curtain. Both of these routes are good, easy climbs which form early and offer a nice break from the crowds. A couple of slopes threaten the approach for a short distance in normal to heavy snow years but the climbs themselves are free of avalanche hazard. They may not quite be the 'Ice Porn', but hey, what is, I ask you?
Dec. 12, Nemesis, Stevo,
Nemesis in engaging conditions. A bit of a gear battle for a lot of it. Really fun and sustained. 70 m ropes make for 2 enduro pitches.
Dec 10, Nemesis, Darran Chaisson and Chris M.
hey just a quick note to state about the stanely glacier climbs. Nemesis is in fairly hard shape. crux pitch has overhanging mushrooms and very interesting ice. It really makes you think when trying to put in protection. Suffer is in it's normal shape(?) with the mixed route looking fine. Upper pitches look like they would be a blast. Hardly any snow on the approach make for a really enjoyable 1.5 hr stroll into the climbs. have fun and play safe
-Darran C and Chris M
Dec 9, Sorcerer OK, Parkway, Erik Sandelin
Spent last week climbing at ice-fields parkway and the ghost and have the following to report:
Dec 4: Tried Polar Circus. No snow equals no avalanches. 2nd pitch was thin with questionable pro. Some mushrooms on the pitch up and past the pencil. 1st pitch of the upper tiers shut us down. Rock gear would be helpful here. However, the ice was very thin and started to delaminate from the rock when the sun came around.
Dec 5: Murchison's fall. Excellent conditions. Wet in places, excpect some showers.
Dec 7: Wicked wanda, the ghost. 1st pitch looks thin and doable but hard to protect. Got there late in the day and decided to not try it.
Dec 8: Sorcerer. It's in. Nice and dry with good ice. The two mainwall pitches are featured with mushrooms and chandeliers, offering nice rests.
Joe McKay Dec. 9 2002, Alpine Spam #6/Slipstream/Echo Madness/Resident Evil/Weeping Wall
Photos and words to ponder...
Dec 8, King Creek, Bill Passmore
Climbed at King Creek on Dec.7. All 3 seepages in and pretty fat. A good fourth line around the corner from the third seepage.
-Bill Passmore, Edmonton
Dec. 8, (Dec 5., I'm late posting it) Colin Woldridge, Ghost
Nov. 30, Waiporous:
Kemosabe - fallen down
Slurpee - gone completely
Ice Funnel - top pitch many meters missing - bottom in, but thin
Hydrophobia - thinning somewhat, but in
Cryophobia - it had reverted back to phobic (mixed) conditions
Sorcerer - bottom missing
Dec 8, David Thomson Highway, J Mills
David Thompson Corridor Ice Conditions from East to West:
On Mt. Stelfox, "Good Luck and Bad Dreams" has been in for nearly a month and is climable but thin in spots, take a bit of rock gear for the first pitch. The mixed climb "Macbeth" in a gully farther to the right is looking not too bad but still needs to fatten up a bit.
In the Cline River Gallery, "Pure Energy" is in good shape, as are the easy routes to the left. "Nightmare on Elm Street" is also in but the river below it isn't frozen so you have to rap onto it.
Further West on Mt. Elliot "Kitty Hawk" is starting to look pretty good but I haven't been up to it yet. "C'est la Vie" is in nice shape and avalanche hazard is low so this is a good time to do it. The final pitch is solid WI5 right now. A week ago Mike Adolph and myself did a FA of a 300 or 400m route we called "Cool Climbing"(W4 X, M4 R) on the large face above the gully approach pitches of "C'est la Vie". The line takes the right hand smear of ice and is very thin the entire way, the gear that we did get was in the rock. Rappel descent on piton stations. "Elliot's Left Hand" is also in and finding a dry line is possible.
"Nothing but the Breast" was climbed yesterday although the approach pitch was more or less missing and the climb itself was pretty sketchy. A few more cold days and it should be good (unless it falls down!).
The ever popular "2 O'Clock Falls" has been in for a couple months now but unless you can get a hold of someone at the Bighorn reserve for a key to the gate you must now approach from the highway.
A week ago "SAR's on Ice" and "570" were in decent shape but pretty wet.
Just outside the David Thompson Corridor, "Murchison
Falls" is in great shape and not too wet.
Dec. 8, Pigeon Falls, Chris Pooley
The practice area "Pigeon Falls" is closed. I was there yesterday, Dec 07, and after a couple of lines the manager of the Thunderstone Quarry said that it was off limits due to liability issues. One of the workers told us to go ahead and climb, but the manager seemed a bit upset that we were given access. He was quite polite, but I guess if people keep showing up he might get less pleasant. On this note, maybe I can claim the coveted "last ascent."
Dec. 8, Kitty Hawk, Mike
good going on the snow free approach, thin at the start. solid grade 4 first pitch, and then the knarly pillar. lots of cleaning and hooking, some overhangs, some crappy screws, some wet ice after the pillar. 5+
Dec. 7, Replicant, Brent Peters, Jeremy Kroeker
Just a quick update... For those looking for interesting ice: As of 6 Dec 02, "The Replicant" is still in. The first pitch is a little thin, but isn't that usual? (Stubbies bottom out about half way...) pitch two has thicker, featured ice and requires some fun, well protected moves to get past the roof. the last, short pitch is classic WI 4+ or 5.
-Brent Peters, Jeremy Kroeker
Dec 6, Joe McKay, Nemesis, Louise Falls (no slagging, nice new footwear on Dana) Click here for link.\
Dec 5, New Route on Kidd, Jeff Relph-also White Man's
Last week, Dave Marra and I climbed a
really fun easy alpine route on Mt.Kidd. It was long with lots of fun ice and
mixed climbing. It is still in great shape I'm sure and should definetly get
repeated. I have included some photos as inspiration to anyone who may be
Also, we climbed Whiteman falls on the 31st and it was in fantastic condition with lots of very cool overhangs. The approach pitches were missing but we bypassed them on the right.(easy but run-out) Worth the now long walk to get there. Another party climbed Redman soars, and it appeared to be in quite good shape as well.
Dec 5, "Candle Stick Maker" - Ghost ..... the
Scotsman & Shackleton (done Dec 1).
Climbed "Hidden Dragon" to start on wet ice, but excellent , plastic ice. Good pitch. Continued on to Candle Stick Maker - another superb climb in a deep, tight gully ....awesome situation. Ice was detached at top of 2nd pitch affording some delicate moves to surmount - fun ! Very cool climb - a classic !
Dec 4, Joe McKay, lots of Parkway pics plus how-to
Dec 4, Hans Solo (Thomas), Elliot Left Hand, Sunwapta Canyon,
elliot left hand is in and thin,last pitch is more like grade 5,nice not to have to worry about the great white wave right now,kitty hawk looks pretty good from the road,JD 85 in sunwapta canyon was in,nice ice,getting to the route via the canyon was more fun than the route,its old school grade 2,route's more like a 120 meters to,great finish into the moss and trees leaving you right by the road...did JD on nov.30,elliot dec.3...consolation prize looked like it was pretty much gone. attached a few pic's..post if ya like um, cheers. -thomas
Dec 4, Various, Alex Krawarik
Here are some more things to add to your page:
Thurs 11/28 Sinatra Falls in, very wet almost mixed first pitch, last pitch not really there. Kidd Falls, only the 20m approach pitch was in.
Friday 11/29 Ghost, North Ghost. GBU non existant. This House of Sky, we climbed the first 3 short WI 2 steps and then it seemed like the ice peetered out, so we didnt go past the large slope on the left, but reading the additional reports it sounds like we should have! Dont let the lack of ice discourage you i guess! Valley of the Birds approach pitch very wet, still climbable though. Didnt go upvalley. Big Drip is in. Looks like someone was on the Sorcerer/Hydro too.
Sat 11/30 Linda Ice Nice. Stellar! 5 parties, but only ours climbed the crux, steep and pumpy WI4 with nice sticks and screws. The climb is holding up very well.
Sun 12/1 Waterfowl Gullies, what fun!! Louise Falls is in and a party climbed the crux pillar sunday am.
Field: Silk Tassel is in. Masseys out. All climbs on Mt Dennis out.
Cheers, Alex Krawarik
Dec 3, Ghost, Steve HolecziClimbed the candle stick maker (Ghost) today, Dec.3. Very hard, brittle ice but in great shape. Cool climb in a cool setting.
Dec 2, Found and Lost, Dan Doll-Found in the Fortress Bowl, November 30, one small key on a "Pac-Safe" key chain.
- Lost on Waterhole (Lac des Arcs) November 10, navy blue Kluane inner parka (down) in purple stuff sack.
Contact Dan - 403-541-0570 - [email protected]
Found, Dr. I.R. Hunt
Could you post a message about the ice gear we found yesterday (dec 1st) in the Lake Louise area ? If the owner wants it back, they can email me the details of what was lost and where and I will make arrangements to get it back to them. Thanks, Ian Hunt [email protected]
Dec 2, Sorcerer, Mike Stuart
climbed the sorcerer yesterday. got about half way to the lakes before we hit ice on the trail and had to park. no snow on appraoch until you get into the drainage, then it gets slippery. hero ice from bottom to top, one swing sticks the whole time. the top pitches were showers with ladder rungs to walk up. fun - a gimmee 5. mike stuart
Dec 2, O'Hara, David Dornian
Climbed 'Sad and Beautiful World', Keith and Jag's Simon Parboosingh memorial route on Wiwaxy Peak, on Saturday November 30th. Excellent warm conditions, and more fun than you're allowed to have on an ice climb up that final 70 metre slot. Could see many, many other good and probably unclimbed possibilities (including a Weeping Wall-sized set of seeps to the left of Tarrant Buttress on Odaray) from the route. V. good traveling in the O'Hara valley right now, with little snow and no avi danger. Get after it!
Nov 30, Murchison, Chris Meyer
went to climb murchison falls, the approach is completely snowless. there were parties ahead of us so we climbed two lines to the right. I think it was the first part of the unformed virtual reality. Both lines are 55m and grade 4/4+? and they are really fun,definately worth the walk. Murchison falls is formed to the top and the last pitch looked like it was a pretty solid grade. To all you dog owners, please leave the poor things at home. They dont understand"ICE".
Dec. 2, Sorcerer, Mike Stuart
climbed the sorcerer yesterday. got about half way to the lakes before we hit ice on the trail and had to park. no snow on appraoch until you get into the drainage, then it gets slippery. hero ice from bottom to top, one swing sticks the whole time. the top pitches were showers with ladder rungs to walk up. fun - a gimmee 5. mike stuart
Dec 2., Cosmic Messenger/Imaginary Voyager, Gery Unterasinger
Both climbs are in good shape as of Dec. 1st and the approach is snow free( 1-1.5h )! Cosmic Messenger is a little wet at the start but the rest is dry, the last easier 15m are a little rotten due to strong radiation in the p.m., from a 3 pin anchor at the top you will reach the ground with 55m. Imaginary Voyage makes a fine warm up on the right and the hike up there more worth while.
Nov. 30, Stanley , Jeff Honig
Climbed The Suffer less variation to suffer maching yesterday. Good condition right now. M7 pitch very good with good turf here and there, some bolts could use tightening someone should take a wrench up. Ice above on suffer machine is brittle and steep. Definately solid WI5+ right now. Nemesis looks good, WI6 shape. French Reality looks doable but not as fat as usual. Other than that the headwall is very lean!! Good walking though right now 90 min to Suffer machine.
Nov 30, Ghost, Grant Hvizdos
We went into the Ghost today I climbed House of Sky and then went rock climbing on Borderline Buttress. House of Sky is still good but everything else looked dodgy. Wicked Wanda looks to be gone. Weathering heights still looks fat high but might be gone down low. GBU is completely devoid of ice and valley of the birds looks like somebody left the cage open.
Nov 29th, Borgeau area, Joe McKay (older updates here too).
29th, R&D, Christian
Hi attached 2 pics from today (Nov 29th) Still in good to decent shape, lower pillar is detached and quite hollow. Added an baby-angle to the 2 rotten pins under the pillar. longer screws bottomed out on the lower part. All the other stuff in the bowl was only wet streaks. Should be popular if the warm temps are holding over the weekend. Cheers, Christian
Nov. 29, Waiparous--the major crossing, Grant_Hvizdos Photos
Looks like the ice dam is building back up again...
Various, Nov 29th, Sylvain Vanier
Murchison Falls: Great shape, a must do...(as of Nov 28/02)
Cosmic Messenger: Looks like you could climb it but would be harder (as of Nov 17/02)
Kitty Hawk and the Unicorn: Crux pitch looked thin, chandeliered and not very protectable. Climbed the Unicorn via an all Ice variation on the right dubbed "Flirting with the Unicorn" since we didn't DO the Unicorn. Hard?? I though so but what do I know. Unicorn is fully doable (excuse my French) (as of Nov 17/02)
Balfour Wall: Looks fun? (as of Nov 17/02)
Riptide: Couldn't quite see but looked all Ice (as of Nov 17/02)
Linda Ice Nine: Still good. (as of Nov 20/02)
Louise Fall: Good climbing. Maybe solid WI5. (as of Nov 28/02)
Professor Falls: Good but very wet and slushy. (as of Nov 28/02) Note that the gate is closed from Nov 1st but sometime, the gate is open for construction on the Golf course. If you get locked in, phone in the parking lot and phone # to call on gate.
Sacre-Bleu: Still good. 20min bike to drainage of Sacre-Bleu from Trail head (lucky us in but locked in back) (as of Nov 25/02)
Replicant: Looked good but no info. Anyone? (as of Nov 25/02)
Amadeus: Still holding but seemed skinnier in the middle. (as of Nov 26/02)
King Creek: Always good. (as of Nov 26/02)
Kidd Falls: Not there. (as of Nov 26/02)
Photos, Nov 26th, Paul Taylor Very nice shot of the Candlestick Maker
Various, Nov 26, Joe McKay
Good reading on conditions, accidents and philosophy. Click the title above to go through, this guy is prolific enough that he gets his own page.
Nov. 26, various, Jeff Honig
Here is some recent beta--climbed the Candle Stick Maker Via Hidden Dragon. Very Good shape right now. HD WI 4, CSM P1 WI5 Bolt anchor on R. P2 WI 5- Bolt anchor on L Rap route and downclimb the skiers R side. The Joker is in as well, The Hooker is not. Approach as per Waterfal Ice, except drive 3km to reach the cut line which you can drive up with a truck. I would suggest not driving up the last 100' of the cut line, park below and walk. 20 min to easy approach ice from here.The big drip continues to form, nowhere near completely however.
November 24-Went into East fork of claw creek to climb Fang and fist. Only the 1st pitch remains climable. Upper 2 pitches had fallen down, some reforming occuring however. Also climbed a couple short smears and pillars in the canyon, as well as the first part of Chilkoot Passage, however WI 4 pitch not climbable. Also noted the sliver is now gone, Burning in water still looks fine though(more ice on the initial back wall than there was a few weeks ago).
November 15-Went into Bow Headwall.
With or Without You and U2 Both in, Beware of Grade!!!!!
Nov. 26th, Borgeaus, Gery Unterasinger
I saw the infos of Joe McKay and went to the Borgeau area today, but unfortunatly I had leave without touching ice. There is absolutely NO ice on the first two pitches of the left hand and the right hand is VERY thin with 5 meters of the second pitch unformed. Not worth the drive up the sunshine road, although they serve really good cappucchinos at the base there!
Nov 28th, Two O'clock Falls, Tanya Binette.
The Stoney Trail Administration has put a "No Trespassing" sign up on the locked gates to Two O'Clock Falls. They ask that you call for permission to access this area. The number is (403) 721-2255.
Professors and Sacre Bleu, Nov. 25th, Gery U.
Did sacre bleu with professors approach, still in exellentconditions, the recent warm weather didn't do any damage to it. The secondpitch of professors is in really bad shape, the last pitch is formed nicelybut wet.From the top of Professors to the base of sacre bleu it's a pleasent45min walk with a bit of scrambling along a treed ledge. The bike ride in isice free and pleasant. Gery U.
Golden Area, Nov. 25, new routes and a house warming party Dec. 6th at Ren? C?t?'s new place in Golden. What more could you ask for? Click the underlined text above for info.
Canmore/Little Bobby Onsight, Nov 25, Brent
This route looks like its a long way in from the "sunny side" of Canmore, but from the Peaks, it is only about a two hour hike in. Right now there is minimal snow. The route is climbable, albeit it a little sketchy for the first twenty feet. Take some KBs for the initial belay on the left. The ice gets better, marginally. Expect a thin ice adventure. (When we climbed it yesterday there was continual spindrift to contend with...)
Various, Nov 24, Joe McKay
Click here or the title above for his latest reports, they had to go on their own page 'cause it's so extensive and very worth reading! Lots of Parkway Photos -wg
Ghost, Nov 20th, WG
Spent two days in the Waiparous, all crossings are OK and the driving is good in general. Raphael Slawinski and I did the second ascent of Sean and Shawn's Cryophobia, which is in really fat shape--less than 10M or rock, with some fantastic ice climbing. The Ice Funnel is in with a bit of rock in the chimney, wet at top, and Kembosabe is wet and interesting but in. Also climbed a new short and easy and fun route, Slurpee, just up the valley about 40 minutes from the Ice Funnel. The Chinook is definitely making things wet (except Hydro/Cryo), but all that water will have to re-freeze sooner or later!
This House of Sky, Nov. 16th, Tanya Binette--and lost leash (Leash Found, Tanya says Thanks!).
I know this will be totally a long shot, but I lost one of my android leashes yesterday (Sat Nov 16) on the walk off of This House of Sky. The clip part has been slightly modified (bent and filed a bit) and that is the only identifying feature. I am thinking it might have been hooked on a tree in which case there is a (small) possibility that someone may find it.
The climb was nice, very wet at the bottom. Nice ice in very windy conditions in the ampitheater. We were nailed with a small slough slide up top (not too much) - and that looked as though it wasn't the first up there.
Thanks! -Tanya Binette WG Note--this is the fourth piece of lost gear reunited with its owner after posing on this list, very good to live in such a place!
Nov 19th, Malemute Valley, John Iionescu
Malemute Valley is in, with lots of good routes. We climbed Fang & Fist, sustained climbing requiring a lot of cleaning. Three pillars of vertical ice followed by two shorter and easier pitches; a long and fun route. Also climbed Chilkoot Passage two weekends ago, which has only one pitch or real climbing and was very wet. This weekend there were people climbing Tuk Taku, they said is in good shape.Happy climbs, John Ionescu
Sacre Bleu, Trophy Wall, Nov 17th, Anonclimbed the link-up between professor's and sacre bleu today. good all the way around. Highly recommend this approach for that climb. 4.5 hrs to sacre bleu but REALLY WORTH IT!!
The Replicant is climbable and I even heard of a link up between it and the top of termiantor.
Sacre Bleu, Nov 16th., Jeff RelphThe ice was quite fat, and the climbing superb. The crux pitch has a cool ice tube feature that you get inside and then make overhanging moves out of. The photo on the left shows Jon Walsh just getting into the feature. Very aesthetic climbing!
Wicked Wanda, Nov 13, Steve Birch
Went in on Nov 13 the climb is good , the first pitch is plastic and low angle, the second pitch is straight forward , and nice and steep, just watch out the last 15 feet is very thin and detached. Take care .
Linda Ice 9, Nov 15, Everett Fee
Andy Paul and I climbed Linda Ice Nine yesterday (Nov. 15). The attached photos show the two crux pitches at the top; *4241 is me on the penultimate pitch; *4281 is Andy on the last pitch. There is excellent ice throughout the route and no avalanche hazard now. This route will be in prime condition until we get a substantial dump of snow, which will render it unsafe.
K-Country Ice, 13 Nov, Brent Peters
Moonlight and Snowline are in. Climbed both this morning. They are holding together fine. Moonlight is quite thick for early season, Snowline is marginally thin, there's a 1 foot section of ice missing 8 feet off the ground.
The upper section of Amadeus was still up this morning. Hopefully it will survive the warm temperatures. Saw climbers returning to their vehicles yesterday from the Water Hole (McGillvary slabs area). That ice looks alright.
Fortress Avalanche, Corey Brealey
Climbing out at the back of Fortress, an avalanche from the A Bowl, took out all our packs and other equipment. If anyone happens to find some random bits and pieces, could they e-mail me at [email protected]
thanks, corey brealey
Ghost (Valley of the Birds), Nov 12, Everett Fee
Doug Nelson and were in the Valley of the Birds on Nov. 12. Access up the stream was dicey -- lots of thin ice and open pools to get around. The air temperature was warm and routes were melting out. We climbed the first pitch and half of the 2nd pitch (to the base of the pillar) on Yellow Bird. The left side of the pillar (i.e., the normal route) was not formed; the right side (now a free-standing pillar) was very scary -- thin and poorly bonded to the rock at the top and chandeliery. We also climbed a couple of unnamed routes (2 and 3+ on the left side of the valley between Albatross and The Eagle). The Eagle is not in.
Sorcerer, Nov 12th, Steve Birch
WENT INTO SORCERER ON NOV 9 AND IT IS FAT , THE FIRST PITCH IS THE BIGGEST I HAVE EVER SEEN IT REALLY FUN CLIMB .
- Steve BirchNov. 9th : Fang & Fist, the Scotsman
Checked it out on Nov 3rd but ice not holding tools/screws), now one of best routes in Ghost ! Steep, sustained pillars for first 3 pitches - superb climbing and situations. Very cool route. Great find Dunham !
Coffee Sucking, Do Nothings', November 9th, Kevin Wallis,
The bottom still is not in at all. So we climbed 70 m of snow covered rock up to 5.7; poor pro. Then a nice WI3+ (wet) pitch the natural arch is covered with ice (see Oct 26 desc). Followed by a nice WI3+ pitch to the gulley.
Jasper Area, Nov 12, Margo Talbot
For anyone who wants to make the drive up, Shades of Beauty is in excellent shape, Rick Black Memorial Route is 4+ and rarely comes in as a pure ice route. It is thin but you can get pro the whole way. There are also a few mixed climbs in the area.
Evan Thomas, Nov. 11 Kevin Wallis - Moonlight & Snowline are both losing their lower pitches, thin wet ice separated from the rock, upper pitches or OK but wet. Chantilly (sp) upper pitch has not formed.
Ghost Nov 11, JD
David, Brenda, Blaise and i went into the ghost on sunday nov. 10th - drove all the way to the valley of the dogs (Claw creek) decided to go for the for sure thing - went back to Burning in water drowning by flame - well grade 3+, maybe the last 10 ft before the rap tree! the pillar is down, but shit it was thin! DD did an awesome job! after brenda and i did the pillar, dd went to work on the original, or close to, version, then brenda did it, only to leave me to come sailing off - but my ejection propelled me beyond the pillar, so it is still there! a couple of guys who had just done the Sliver came and sent the pillar!
Shaun H's Mist? looked good, but just not enough time in a day! The drip - looks pretty far to the ground if someone's done it this year, let us know!
Ghost Nov 8, WG (Creek photo here)
Went on a full-on driving tour of the Waiporous yesterday, could see Hydro and Sorcerer upper pitches, can't see lower but the routes looked very good. Last creek crossing took some work, but OK with studded tires and the right angle, click for photo. We climbed nothing but had a good time looking for ice.
Jasper, Nov 7, Margo Talbot
Just to let you know that Shades of Beauty, Rick Blak Memorial, Echo Madness, Virgin No More and Choksondik are all in. The scouts are out and we should have a report from further afield.
-Jasper Correspondent Margo Talbot
Sinatra Falls, Nov 6, Everett Fee (click here for photo)
Doug and Isabella Nelson, Lucille Doucette, and I did Sinatra Falls today. It's melting out fast --- the ice was quite thin and rotten in many places. Any more warm days and I'd recommend waiting for another cold snap. The last pitch was very sweet, however (3+ conditions, see attached picture of Doug leading it). All in all, we feel lucky to have gotten this route in under these marginal conditions.
Ghost, Nov 5, Jeff Honig
Went into wiaporous today, river crossing not passable without monster truck, but hydro only 90 min walk from there. Hydro in grade 6 shape, sorcerer in as well(couldnt see the first pitch however). Marion falls etc not in yet but wet and promising.jeff honig
Thanks for posting the photo.
Southern Wind and Hurly Bird and unclimbed routes thereabouts, Nov. 4, Larry Stanier
Southern Wind and Hurly Bird are in and in good fat shape as of Nov. 1. Suprising amount of snow already in the bowls and gullies there. Might get a bit serious there when we finally get some more snow. The whole trip from the Lougheed-Windtower col down to the route, up the route and back to the col is in gnarly avalanche terrain with HUGE Kcountry wind effects. Four unclimbed one pitch routes are formed on the lee side of the col, they look OK.
Urs' Hole, Ghost, Nov 3, Jeff Relph,
Checked out the urs hole yesterday. Some tricky spots avoiding the open pools but the ice is good. The final pillar was quite wet but very cool climbing. Super chandeliered and technical but not too hard. Went to the ghost today to do the sliver. 3 parties ahead of us. Busy day. Did the rarely formed phantom falls. It is really fat and super cool. Not R rated like the book suggests. The ice was however very dry and given the low volume nature of the flow, I dont think it will be around for too long. Get it while you can.
Urs' Hole, Nov 1, Blue Falconer and Dave B.Looks like lots of traffic on the urs hole already. climbed it on saturday, wet and thin in spots, crux is the thin ice on some of the pools. lots of fun. the grade 5 finish looked wet and chandelery (sp?) and overhanging. not fun.
---blue falconer and dave B.
Amadeus, Nov 1, Rich Canning
Andrew Q, Sarah H and I went up to amadeus on friday (nov 1). New rap tat at the top proved we weren't the first this year. The ice pitch is beautiful and plastic. Gaining the smooth 15 degree ledge on the first pitch was sketchy. The ledge only had a dusting of snow on it with an inch of ice right on it's edge, but I hear that is "normal." The first (3/8 angle) and last (med. la) pins seemed a little suspect. No need for stubbies.
Nov 1, Cascade/Rogans, David Dornian
I saw that Cascade was frozen and fat looking on Wednesday October 30, so ran out about 2 pm. to have a go. Didn't want to tow a rope, so decided to check Rogan's for the descent. That route is a gas - mostly icicles and algae, maybe M4 or 5 at the moment, and you can't get a screw in anywhere on it. When I came down and traversed over to Cascade, however, I discovered that the middle had peeled out of the route in the hour or so I'd been around the corner.
Arterial Spurt, Oct 31, Marshall/Kemp
This was climbed 31 Oct in thin, dry conditions. It is certainly not 'fat' There is not as much ice there now as there was in the morning, making it a little sketchier (especially on 2nd pitch). A new bolt was placed at the top of pitch 2 and there was sufficient ice (finally) to place a v-thread. Quite the hike up.
-geoff marshall, andrew kemp
October 29th, Grotto, Derek W.
October 29th, Various, Tony DevonshireJust a few things I saw/climbed nothing really of great interest but anyways here goes:
Arterial Spurt- in and relatively thick, there is a line to the left that was attempted and abandoned (crap)
Water hole - somewhat thin but protectable, feels like 4
Heart creek practice area - doable and really thin but lots of flowing water so it should be fattening.Irish Mist- super thin, not really climbable
October 28th: Coffee Sucking, Do
Nothings' on October 26. Stephen OBrien
The bottom wasn't in at all. So we
climbed 60 m of rock up to maybe 5.7. Then a nice WI4 pitch through a very
small natural rock arch, this required some squeezing and akwardness.
Followed by a nice WI3+ pitch to the gulley.
Climbed a new route on Sunday, working out the map references for this baby. I can tell you that this new route had a very interesting geological formation that was exploited.
October 28th, Heart Creek, Lac Des Arcs, Tim M.
Attempted Arterial Spurt on McGillvery. It was a spooky day, with thick fog and heavy clouds, very humid as well. We thought we had found arterial spurt but later realized it was a line to left of arterial spurt. The two lines are only 100 m or so apart, but thats how foggy it was! Bad cohesion between ice and the slab, very thin, and hard to protect; very little rock pro or decent ice if you had to say a grade I guess it would be 2 X. Our leader retreated about 45 M up, rapping of a nasty pin and a slung piece of ice...yes it was sketch. Not really worth the hike, but doable by a party with more experience (especially thin x rated climbing). We did see arterial spurt after the fog cleared at one point and it is in ready to go thin but dry, much nicer than our accidental line unless you like that sort of thin.
October 27, Waterhole in front of Lacs Des Arcs is in. Thin but plastic ice for much of the route, very fun, I'm going back. 13 cm screws were placed completly in 4 spots and a pillar was slung half way up, not to bad of pro considering the date. Still running water on Irish Mist, not as much on Waterhole. Irish mist looks hard to protect in places.
October 28th: Shawn Huisman, Ghost. New Route, Myst, too.
Burning & Drowing is up, and so is the Sliver. Both look thin but should get better with this cold weather. Doing all three routes would be a great day out.
Bold prediction for the season: the early snow we had this year is going to make the Ghost amazing, Silver Tongued Devil might even form if we get a real cold snap.
Later, Shawn Huisman
October 25, hiking accident, lost crampons near R&D--Oct 27th Note: Found!
On Thursday we did R&D and on our way back one of us wiped out in the creek and broke some teeth so things got a little epic ...
I probably left my crampons in the creek bed after giving first aid...So can you post something on your site please... the crampon are Simond Pitt Bull Cup with modified heel spurs. I will give a reward to the person that brings them back to me .. they can e-mail me if they like at [email protected] .ca or call my cell.: 403-609-1004 I'll see you at the comp at the Vsion on the Second.
October 22, Misha Solomon, R&D area
October 22, Grant Hvizdos, Ghost, K-country
We climbed the Joker on Sunday in the Ghost but it was wet, thin and detached with nothing to put pro in. Just climbed the rock and threw a top rope over it. It should be in and climbable quickly with cold temperatures. I have pictures of it and the Drip from up there. Nothing that we could see up House of Sky although there appears to be some marginal ice in phantom falls. Amadeus was pretty much completely gone as of Saturday.
October 21, General, Shawn Huisman
Not sure if your updating your page with ice conditions yet (Yes!), but here is what I saw lately. Drove the Spray on Saturday (Oct 12), R&D is starting to form, looks like it should go anyday now. Looked like winter up around French Creek so there probably is some ice up there too. Went into the Ghost on Tuesday (Oct 15), not much happening there yet. The Real Big Drip is forming, but it looks thin. Nothing by GBU, just wet rock. It seems the warm air isn't helping the Ghost right now. We rock climbed at Silver Tounged Devil and it was pleasent.
October 21: Twisted Sister, Everett Fee
Doug Nelson, Doug Leonard, and I climbed Twisted Sister on Thanksgiving day. Instead of the standard rock pitch described in JJ's book, we climbed a thin smear of ice to the right (grade 2, tied off screws provided marginal pro'). The last (grade 4) pitch was in great shape.
October 20th, Marshall Arts Area , Terminator, Will Gadd
The first two pitches of the smears to the right of Marshall Arts are in with several variations possible, good climbing. Bring Stubbies. I had an interesting experience with a bolt, click here to read about it. It was probably an old Leeper hanger, these have been recalled but are in fairly wide use in the Rockies, especially on routes put up in the 70s or so.
All the ice from about two-thirds height down fell off the Terminator wall in the last couple of days, this sucks as the Terminator was pretty much in...
Sept. 23: Terminator, Scott Semple
Old Conditions Reports: Oct-Dec 1, 2001,
Fall 2000/Spring 2001, etc. These may be useful if you're planning a trip and want to know what's in at various times of the year.
Also check http://www.compusmart.ab.ca/resqdyn/current.htm, this is Cyril Shokoples conditions page, lots of good info, good site.