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Check Out the Hard New Routes Squamish Got This Year

From burly 5.13 sport routes to multi-pitch stem corners to cutting-edge 5.14 trad - it was busy on the coast this year

At Murrin Park, Stu Smith added the 25-metre High Type of Hate 5.12d on Pet Wall, and Kris Wild established Paternity Test, a 32-metre 5.13a. A new crag at Shannon Falls called Interstellar Wall has some amazing new routes, like Austroman, a 50-metre 5.12a by Drew Marshall, that follows a line of knobby xenoliths.

The Chief had several hard new lines added, including Love as a Weapon 5.13 by Stu Smith and the five-pitch Retrospect 5.11b by Kyle Koroll, Ryan Davy and Luke Cormier in the Bulletheads.

On Tantalus Wall, Jacob Cook and Drew Marshall added Balance, a four-pitch 5.13b that was bolted ground-up and has some big run-outs, but has a well-protected crux. The two climbers also made the first ascent of Thousand-Year Storm, a 40-metre 5.13a alternative final pitch to Balance that’s described as high quality. And Tony McLane added an alternative first pitch to Cannabis Wall at 5.11c.

One of the most difficult new routes added to The Chief was Stélmexw (Human Being) at 5.13d by Jesse Huey on the border of the Tantalus Wall and Western Dihedrals. Huey added new pitches up a mostly bolt-protected stemming corners and named tit with consultation from the local Squamish Nation and its pronounced “Stole-meck.” It follows the first two pitches of Warriors of the Wasteland (5.10, 5.11-) and veers right into Bombay Sapphire 5.11d to the base of the Martini Pinnacle with Will Stanhope’s Heavy Fuel 5.13d directly above. Downclimb six metres to the left to the base of a striking corner system. Protect the bottom corner with a small cam and fixed nut to reach the blank corner above. Stem like crazy up the bolted corner to a stance above the roof and an anchor – a 32-metre 5.13d pitch. Next, climb the shallow thin fingers corner above passing several roofs to a difficult switching corner and a thin layback finish to jugs. Pick your way through less-than-ideal rock to a bolt and a massive ledge (5.12c). Rappel or continue up Gin and Juic 5.13 A0 or Stone Free 5.11+.

In the South Gully, Jason Green and crew made the first ascent of The Manitou, a new 5.11+ eight-pitch route. It was a multi-year project started back in the 1990s. In the same area is Bladerunner, a three-pitch 5.14c that had its second pitch freed this year by Ben Harnden, who also made the first complete ascent of the route at 5.12c, 5.14c and 5.11a. Read more about the send here.

At the Top Shelf, Colin Moorhead opened Demon Days, a 40-metre 5.13a trad route that combines sections of Shock Collars for Christmas and Demon Sweat. At the Longhouse, Peter Winter made the first ascent of LKP, a 32-metre 5.12a.

In the Smoke Bluffs, Colin Moorhead and Kris Wild opened Generation X, a 15-metre 5.12c at the right side of Octopus’ Garden. At the Free and Easy area, Jason Green freed White Man Can’t Jump 5.13a and Symptom of Morphology 5.12b.

North of Squamish in Paradise Valley, Gabe Lawson opened Young King Dave, a 35-metre route prepped by Scott Milton, at 5.14c with a burly V11 boulder problem. Top American sport climber Jonathan Siegrist sent a project on the same wall which is a direct finish to Queen Bee. The 35-metre 16 bolt route was equipped by Tom Wright and is graded 5.14b. Siegrist also repeated Spirit Quest 5.14d.

And in Cheakamus, Sonnie Trotter found and bolted a new four-bolt 5.13a on a steep short wall with a V8-ish move. Trotter noted that other routes on the wall have been climbed as highballs. Other hard routes added to Check include Butterfly Mile 5.13b/c by Pat Sweeney, Tim’s Sloper Problem 5.14b by Gabe Lawson and The Scruffening 5.13d by Graham McGrenere.

There were several other new routes and problems added to Squamish this year, as well as many hard repeats. And with the year far from over, there’s still time for more projects to go down.

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