The popular Shannon Falls in Squamish rarely freezes, but when it does it clocks in at WI2+ for 400 metres. The roadside tourist stop freezes during coastal cold snaps, such as the one the West Coast is having this December.

Less than an hour drive from Vancouver, climbers have been swinging tools at it since New Year’s Eve 1978. Two parties, John Knight and Malcolm Macfadyen, along with Don Serl and John Wittmayer climbed it together.

An ascent was claimed in 1976, but the late Jon Chilton, to whom the report was made, and Serl, who saw the falls twice that day and has photos showing the lack of ice, were skeptical. Serl and others admitted that an ascent was possible in 1976, however unlikely, because the falls is quite easy to climb.

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A number of lines have been climbed in the area, depending on ice coverage. Steeper lines can form to the left and right during a cold season. To follow ice climbing conditions on the West Coast, visit here

Climbers on Shannon Falls, February 2014 Photo Leigh McClurg Photography

Richie LePenotiere and friend on Shannon Falls. Photo Leigh McClurg Photography


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