Luke Green-Harrison and Justin Ward made the first ascent of an 80-metre mixed route on Ship’s Prow above Canmore this week. The route first formed in 2018, but was reportedly too thin to climb.

“Last year we got shut down by delaminating ice in the corner, but this year with the flow not touching down we brought a proper rock rack and got it done,” said Green-Harrison. The climb follows a slab of rock to nice left-facing corner to the upper curtain. They named it Devil with an Angel Face M6 WI4.

“Thanks to Justin for bringing me along on this one, and being such an encyclopedia of Rockies ice after his 20 years of undercover crushing in the Bow Valley,” said Green-Harrison. “It protects and climbs well.”

This is the second winter route established on this part of the Ship’s Prow. The first was Little Bobby Onsight, a 150-metre WI4+R by Joe Josephson and Bruce Hendricks.

Ship’s Prow is a prominent peak in the Ehagy Nakoda Range, which includes Canmore Wall, Lawrence Grassi, Miner’s Peak and Ha Ling Peak. Ship’s Prow has a handful of rock climbs, but the obvious arching corning next to Devil with an Angel Face and the steep roof above are unclimbed.

The Rockies have had an early ice climbing season with many classic routes having formed early. Even the Trophy Wall above Banff had an ascent via Replicant. Storm Creek headwall has been the centre of much action in the past few weeks. With cold temperatures in the forecast, ice climbing season is here to stay.

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