The Canadian Rockies around Banff are less than a hour’s easy drive from Calgary and may well offer the best ice climbing on the planet! Backed up with an unbeatable accommodation offer. So before global warming gets really going thanks to certain ginger haired, small handed, climate change denying, tweeting idiots pulling out of the Paris climate change agreement book yourself on ASAP…
|Here are a few images to get you thinking along the right lines – that is, world class ice! (Please click on any of these thumbnails to see them big!)|
2018 Meet Details
|Dates:||Saturday 3rd to Saturday 17th February 2018
(Note, these dates have been specifically picked to avoid the CC AGM)
|Accommodation:||Superb accommodation for nine is arranged in Canmore, staying with Terry Kenny. It doesn’t get better than this – book early to ensure you take advantage of this unprecedented luxury!|
Believe it or not Canada is actually a relatively cheap climbing destination. Food, gear, beer, etc. are all really good value. Thanks in part due to the exchange rates. So lets hope that neither Trump nor May mess that up too! However, obviously the most expensive thing is getting there. And this in part is at the root of this early posting to get people interested in coming along… Perhaps oddly at this time of year, summer, some of the cheapest flights to Canada are released by the airlines. So get looking now for flights to Calgary! After the flight the only remaining significant expense is transport, a 4×4 vehicle is recommended.
Summary 2017 Trip Report
There were six climbers on the 2017 meet – Peter Frost (meet co-ordinator), Terry Kenny (host), Rob Gray, Alister Bignell, Laetitia Sterling, and Peter Sterling. It was a good gang! And we managed to visit a surprisingly large number of venues – Canmore Junkyards, Grotto Canyon, Wedge Smear, Lake Louise, Haffner, Evan Thomas Creek, Bear Spirit, Banff, the Ghost River Wilderness, the Icefields Parkway, Field, Kicking Horse, and Johnston Canyon.
Not a bad tally of venues considering the epically cold first week (down to -29°C), terrible avalanche conditions (heavy, cold, and un-consolidating snowfall), and a warm second week (up to +8°C). Who would believe a 37°C temperate variation over just three days! Well not Trump obviously. 🙄
With a temperature of -24°C, made worse with a brutal wind chill, on the middle Saturday of the trip we decided to keep moving to stay warm and so a mass solo ascent of This House of Sky was agreed upon. Thanks in no large part to Terry’s mates (John and Alvin) from Calgary for getting us in to the Ghost River Wilderness in their 4x4s with studded tyres etc. The route in to the North Ghost is much trickier than the last time we visited in 2007 due to the awful floods of 2013.
There was also a great big North American sized helping of hospitality too. The Canadian Alpine Club said “Hi” with a dinner thanks to Joanna Croston (who also coincidentally is a director of the Banff Mountain Festival), we helped Will Gadd celebrate his birthday (these days they say life begins at his age, so who knows what he’ll do next!), and Laetitia and I watched some NHL ice hockey at the Saddledome.