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Out of This World at Helmcken Falls with Interstellar Spice

Interstellar Spice might be Canada’s longest and most difficult pitch of its kind.

World-class climbers Klemen Premrl and Tim Emmett recently spent a week at Canada’s remote Helmcken Falls in B.C establishing Interstellar Spice.

The area has been on the map for a few years and was first explored and developed by Will Gadd and friends.

Heading up Interstellar Spice. Photo Tim Emmett
Heading up Interstellar Spice. Photo Tim Emmett / Follow on Instagram here

Insterstellar Spice is one 80-metre pitch that overhangs 30 metres and required a 200-metre 9.2 rope. “By far the hardest, longest and coolest single-pitch ice climb either of us have done before,” wrote Emmett on his Facebook page.

The route starts on Clash of the Titans WI10+, which was established in 2014 by Premrl and Emmett, and then climbs left following 28 bolts to the lip of the cave.

Few areas in the world are like Helmcken Falls and therefore it is hard to relate the “spray ice” grades to waterfall ice grades. Many top climbers have visited the area and have confirmed the grades are legit.

Klemen Premrl heading the massive Interstellar Spice. Photo Tim Emmett
Spot Klemen Premrl heading up the massive Interstellar Spice. Photo Tim Emmett / Follow on Instagram here

There is no go-to guidebook or online topo with all of the known routes and the area is only in condition a few weeks every year.

What’s Interstellar Spice like? As Emmett puts it, “It climbs through multiple ice roofs, hanging daggers, mushrooms, snow ice, water ice, verglass and general outrageousness.”

By the end of their trip, Emmett took four goes and Premrl five to send the big rig and no grades have been mentioned.

Watch this short film with Gadd and Emmett at Helmcken.