Online media outlets: please refrain from reposting and distributing. Save it for TABVAR members and guidebook writers trying to make a living. Let it get out organically.
This is the master list of all currently hosted topos and updates for Alberta. This is a temporary measure as I get the topos correctly organized again. Ian.
A fully bolted slab route with generally good friction. West facing aspect. P1 remains shaded most of the morning but P2-4 get sun most of the day when the sun is high.
Park and approach as for the Baldy crag but where the trail turns left, before the single pitch cragging area, you will see a dry rocky creek bed feeding in from the right. Take this right hand fork for two minutes to the base of the route where the large slabs above drain into the creek bed. The first pitch climbs the right hand side of the gully.
A new, old crag originally developed in the mid ‘90s by Peter Arbic and Joe Buszowski. The original two climbs are quite a bit harder than described in Chris Perry’s Banff Rock book and have likely not been repeated more than a handful times due to their sparse to non-existent fixed protection. Even with an easier additional route put up in the early 2000’s this crag likely never saw a lot of traffic.
From Miles Adamson:
Don’t Rock The Boatswain
FA of P1-P6: Miles Adamson and Zach Watson, September 2017
FA of P7: Miles Adamson, June 2018
New Route development at the rainbow wall in Blackfeather Canyon. More info to come.
Delicate Sound of Thunder - 11a 18m 7 bolts
From Jordy Shepherd via Facebook:
New Route! On Delta Wall, above Highway 40 across the valley from Nakiska Ski Resort: More Cowbell, 5.7, 315m, 10 pitches, bolted alpine sport route. See photos for topo, route description and directions to get there.
From Grant Parkin:
Thunderbolt 5.8 75m
F.A. - Grant Parkin, Trevor Jones. (Jul 2017)
A 10 pitch rock climb on the south ridge of Mt. Hector
From Marc Piché
The Alt-Left, EEOR 5.11b A0, 335m
Marc Piché, Steve Holeczi Aug. 15, 2016
Approach: Hike up as for True Grit, Geriatric, Econoline. Start ~15m left of a lone spruce tree at the base of the wall and ~15 m right of Econoline. The first bolt has a black hanger and is ~8m above the ground
P1- 50m,5.9: Climb up on good rock with some delicate moves to a good ledge and anchor after 30m. Either belay here or preferably ascend another 20m (5.8) to a bolted anchor on a loose ledge.
From Grant Parkin:
Quiet Daze 5.8 125m
F.A. of full route- Grant Parkin, Trevor Jones. (Sep 2016)
F.A. for P1 Colin Hoglund, Grant Parkin. (May 2016)
Sentinel, South End. Located several meters left of Ambulance Chaser, the route Quiet Daze is a fully bolt protected five pitch route on generally good rock. Named after a comment I’d made about it being a quiet day when I equipped the first pitch and later realized I must have been in a daze when my four pitch project turned out to have five rappels/pitches.
A long fully bolted route on the Goat Wall, next to Goat Buttress.
Requires one 60m rope, 12 quickdraws, and 6 shoulder length slings.
The approach is 1.5 to 3 hours, depending on how lost you get. Use this Google map to keep the approach time down.
Expect to take 9 to 13 hours on the ascent.
From Chas Yonge:
Heart Line 5.9, A1 - 1.1km
A sport mountaineering adventure which takes you from Heart Creek to the mountain summit! Great views on
the way! Gear: 12 quick draws, 2 long slings
From J Brent Peters
The routes at The Playground are described from left to right. It can be divided into 5 areas: Upper Cave, Playground Left, Swiss Cheese Cave, Rat’s Nest Wall, Mutt Wall, and Recess Wall.
Upper Cave: This cave is located left and above The Playground proper. There is only one route here at this time.
Just The Tip D7 This route climbs vertical terrain to the right of a large cave. FA: Michelle Kadatz, Steve Kovalenko
From J Brent Peters via the TABVAR Facebook Page:
See here for details:
As of 17 October 2016, there are 6 routes at The Drive-In. The first route that you come to starts in up a broken wall to a left facing corner just beyond where the approach trail reaches the cliff. The routes are described from left to right:
From Patrick Jones via the TABVAR Facebook Page
175m - 5.7 mixed trad route
Patrick Jones, Matt Johnston, Nicole Jones, Michael Newman, Matt George - September 25, 2016
Approach: total approx. 20-30 min
Park as you would for Abraham slabs. Walk up the approach trail to the base of the slabs. From the climb "Slicktion" it is approx. 5-10 min up hill. The climb is left off “hidden crack”. The climb starts at tree line. You will see the first bolt approx 5m off the ground.
This is a 12 pitch climb with some scramble sections, all on good rock, up the NW Ridge of The Finger. It has a two hour approach and an efficient rappel descent. Mostly 5.6 or easier with a few short 5.8 cruxes.
From Don McPhalen:
July 2016 Update - Creekside Crag Cougar Creek
The routes listed as #4, 5, 7, 14, 15 and 19 in the Bow Valley Sport book have been retrofitted with permission. Each route now has its own anchor. The bolt positions and numbers have changed to update the routes post flood. In addition a “second pitch” has been added to route #4 - this may be a good setup to practice the up and down of multipitching.
From Paul Taylor via Facebook:
5.11c, 5 pitch sport
Echo Canyon, Tall Story Wall (far left)
By: Paul Taylor and Paul Gardner, August 2015
Location: Right of the Moose Patch area, this route forms the 2nd pitch of an existing bolted line 15m. right of "A Moose Once Bit My Sister", or it can be combined with the 1st pitch of that route (as an alternate finish), or it can be accessed by scrambling up the the middle ledge via easy steps 40m. right.
Name: Moose Bites Can Be Nasty
Length: 40m. Grade: 5.10b/c
From Grzegorz Tos via Facebook:
Bit of heads up for those heading into Echo Canyon this spring. Since the last print of Bow Valley Sport guide book a lot has happened in the canyon. To avoid confusion look through all the updates on TABVAR page for walls that you are interested in. From what I can tell all guys involved have been good at posting updates here. Some sectors have more than twice as many routes as in the guide book. Example is The Balcony. Attached is a nice topo put together by Bonar McCallum.
From Gerry Drotar
A new sport crag with 10 routes and one gear climb. Bolted spring 2016. 8 quickdraws and a 60m rope.
Either park in the large pull out overlooking the small island with flags and picnic table in Lac des Arcs
(westbound lanes, necessitates a sprint across the highway – not recommended). Alternatively, from the
eastbound lanes pull off just before the guardrail begins. Park in the ditch or at a small clearing just
From Grzegorz Tos via Facebook:
The Shield area (page 160,161 Bow Valley Sport)
This little gem of a spot is often overlooked but offers a great spectrum of grades of routes with five star quality. Perfect in Spring and Fall. Gets sun from 9:30 till 4:00.
Location: Right of the Moose Patch area, 15m. right of "Spring Moose". Look for bolts leading to a v-groove just left of obvious overhanging roof.
Name: A Moose Once Bit My Sister.
Length: 75m. Grade: 5.11b
Description: P1. 30m. 5.11b (9 bolts). Crux moves through the v-groove. Belay on ledge with an assortment of 6 rusty bolts and pitons (relics from Mountain Rescue courses).
The Cupcake Conspiracy.
Hungry Tiger Wall.
This new crag is a great addition to the shady side of Echo Canyon. Save it for warm summer days when the other side is baking in the sun. Hungry Tiger crag is located on the same cliff band as The Notch, but is accessed from below. The routes tend to be long and offer steep climbing on beautiful, featured stone, albeit sometimes sharp. Bring a 70m rope and lots of draws. Grades range from .11b to .12b. Those looking for an easier warmup can start at Sunset Crag, which you pass on the way to the Hungry Tiger crag. If it’s a colder morning, a warmup at The Hideaway is a sunny option. All the routes dry quickly after a rain.
The following routes were updated:
Take It For Granite
Three pitches were also added to Cheese Grater, making a 5 pitch route that links into Aftonroe.
Fixed pitons replaced with bolts. Chain anchors to facilitate a rap descent.
A few bolts moved/replaced, new rap anchors, and a variation pitch to bypass the crux on Valleyview.
Craig Doram writes on the TABVAR Facebook page:
Attached is a guidebook for Unicorn Canyon, a new climbing area being developed just on the outskirts of Kananaskis. A handful of people have put in a lot of hard work over the last couple seasons to get what I think are some pretty awesome routes assembled. There is still a long way to go before its a well travelled place, but for those who are looking for a magical adventure, please enjoy.
Blackheart Amphitheatre Summer 2015 Topo (update from Marcus Norman)
Blackheart Amphitheatre has a history of reconnaissance, route building attempts, aid ascents and looser rock. Expect cerebral routefinding on bands of alternating excellent and not-so-excellent rock. It is advisable to wear a helmet until these routes see enough traffic. It is also advisable to have a full 70m rope for all longer routes.
The Sunday before the 2013 rain and flood, we put up two new routs at Bighorn Crag in the Sunshine Valley. Hopefully we can go up there again soon.
A number of new sport routes have been added to STD Wall Left in the Ghost. This part of the wall offers shorter climbs than the rest of the STD Wall, but provides some great climbing in the 5.8 to 5.10 grade on the same kind of amazing rock as the Central and Right walls.
User "marcus" writes:
Pools in the Wind 5.11c, 110m - a new 3-pitch sport route on Saddle Mountain.
Actually titled "Fools in the Rain"?
Phasmophobia is a great 3 pitch route located in the Phobia Amphitheater (Hydrophobia drainage) in the Waiporous wilderness area. We approached from marker 38 in the North Ghost and followed quad tracks on mountain bikes for a couple of hours before dumping the bikes and hiking the last couple of kilometers to get there... an approach from the Waipourous side might be quicker. The setting is stellar... think the Ghost about 15 years ago, before it became a haven for random camping and OHV use and the climbing and rock are pretty good too.
EEOR'S TAIL ADJUSTMENT!
The following is intended to bring some clarification and adjustment to my MCR regarding Castle Mountain and EEOR’s TAIL that I posted on the 2nd.
Mt. Doom (CMC Valley)
Back to Basics 5.9, 170m
FA: Brandon Pullan, Matt Roy April 2, 2010
East Face of Second Buttress of Rundle
Eastern Posers 5.9+R, 450m
FA: BP and MB Sept 09