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Huge New Ice Climbs in Newfoundland

A group of New England climbers have established several new routes on Canada's east coast

Newfoundland has world-class climbing, but it’s so remote and complex that few people outside of the area explore the 300-metre test-pieces. In 1997, the late Tim Auger, who was a Banff Park Warden Rescue Specialist at the time, visited to assess if a plan would be needed to deal with a potential onslaught of ice climbers. He concluded that the logistics and atrocious Atlantic coastal weather would keep most away, so no plan was needed.

Fast forward 26 years and Auger was right. While some climbers visit, most head to more casual areas like the Rockies, where approaches are quick and the conditions less Atlantic. However, some have visited over the years, including Alden Pellett, who first climbed in Newfoundland 15 years ago. He returned several times and became one of the leading experts on the area. For a detailed history about Newfoundland ice climbing, check out his 2021 story in the American Alpine Journal here.

Pellett recently reached out to us, saying, “Our crew of strong guys from New England have been putting up a fair number of new routes in Newfoundland this past week.” A few of the new routes include a 270-metre WI5+, and Whiskey and Weed, a 130-metre M5R WI5. We’ll have more from Pellett about his recent trip and Newfoundland ice climbing in the fall issue of Gripped magazine. In the meantime, follow him on Instagram and check out these wild climbs.

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