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skibum1087

Banff questions

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I am heading to Banff for the first time around New Years kind of on a whim and was looking for a little bit of advise. It is a group of four of us going and we are all do quite a bit of skiing, and one of us has some ice climbing experience. We want to spend a few days skiing, and are all excited to go swing Ice Tools for the first time.

We're wondering are there places where you can set up top ropes on ice/mixed climbs and go out for a casual day. Also, any recommendations on good day long ski tours would be appreciated.

Thanks a lot

Spencer

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Haffner Creek has some hacked out, but easily top ropeable ice and mixed climbs. The Balfour Wall and Tangle Creek out on the Icefields Parkway have easy TRing too, plus it's closer to classic longer ski tours and a beautiful place. The Junkyards in Canmore has lots and lots of moderate ice that can be top roped, but most of it is WI2.

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I'd second the recomendation for Balfour Wall- WI2 to 4 or so if memory serves me well. Plus it's west(ish) facing, which means a chance of sun and warmer temps- key in that area in December.

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All the above are good beginner areas. Balfour wall has the most variety of TR difficulties of the above. Two O'clock falls is very mellow multipitch for beginners.

 

There are much better skiers than I around here but I enjoyed skiing on the Wapta. Heading into Bow hut area... For day trips I am sure there are many more places to get in some turns but I enjoyed the terrain on that one.

 

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johston canyon is very cool. It is at the end of a slot like box canyon. A wierd inside of zoo looking at tourist looking in feel. I think you can walk around for tr but if not, there was a very easy ice line up. There are easy, moderate and ice pillars there. Not sure if it has lots of mixed lines.

 

 

 

 

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You aren't supposed to mixed climb at Johnston Canyon because of some rare moss on the rock behind the pillrs.

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Get your shopping done in Kamloops on the way, if you don't plan to go into Canmore...Revelstoke, Lake Louise and Banff are on the steep side of the price tag.

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Thanks for all of the advise. I have been scouring the internet for more on haffner creek and the Balfour wall but have only found pictures. Where are they located in relation to Banff? We will be arriving in the middle of the night and would not be able to procure a guidebook before the first day of climbing, so we are trying to figuire it out ahead of time.

 

Thanks

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We are staying at the rampart creek hostel after our first day of climbing, so it sounds like balfour might make a lot of sense, do you just continue past the hostel until parking for the balfour area?

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We are staying at the rampart creek hostel after our first day of climbing, so it sounds like balfour might make a lot of sense, do you just continue past the hostel until parking for the balfour area?

 

Balfour is about half an hour south of Rampart Cr, on the other (south) side of Saskatchewan Crossing.

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You should try to buy or borrow the guide. It will help you with all the approach details. If not there will certainly be someone with it at Rampart that would be able to lend you a glance, but sounds like you're only going there after a day of climbing.

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