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Seven Rockies Ice Climbs With Low-to-No Avalanche Hazard

Some fun options for when avalanche conditions are keeping you away from exposed climbs

Photo by: Brandon Pullan

Ice climbers shouldn’t travel into avalanche terrain when the avalanche hazards are high – check Avalanche Canada here before heading out. Even if hazards are low you should always carry avalanche gear – read more on that here. The Ice Climbing Avalanche Atlas is a project that aims to document as much avalanche information as possible about classic climbs in the Rockies – read more about it here. Here are seven Rockies ice climbs that have next to no avalanche hazard with links to their Mountain Project pages.

Tasting Fear

This short WI5 is found up Galatea Creek in Kananaskis Country. There are often several lines that form, including Tasting Little Fear WI3. The approach is mellow and the setting is great. Beta.

Grotto Falls

Located up Grotto Canyon near the hamlet of Exshaw, this 45-metre WI2+ is a fun, rolling ice climb up a narrow slot. Bolted anchors so you can do two rappels with one rope. His WI4 and Hers WI4 are nearby, as are some fun mixed routes. Beta.


Located up Evan Thomas Creek, This two-pitch WI4 is one of the best in the area. The approach takes about 45 minutes up the creek and you can combine it with a number of other routes, including Snowline WI4. Beta.

Moonlight WI4. Photo Tim Banfield

Tangle Falls

Found near Tangle Ridge on the Icefields Parkway north of Mount Athabasca, this is a fun, close-to-the-road WI2/3 that offers lots of fun options. Beta.

Tangle Falls WI2/3. Photo Takeshi Tani

Tokkum Pole

Located in Marble Canyon on Highway 93 South near Haffner Creek, this rappel-in WI5 single-pitch climb fun to lead when in condition or to top-rope. Beta.

Tokkum Pole WI5. Photo Tim Banfield

Maligne Canyon

This is the go-to ice cragging area near Jasper. There are a number of half-pitch ice routes that form over the river. The main routes are: The Queen WI4, Last Wall WI2 and Original Route WI3. Beta.

Maligne Canyon. Photo John Price

Pure Energy

This might be one of the best pitches of WI4 along the David Thompson Highway. Found in the Cline River Gallery, there are several outstanding climbs that make for a great day out. Beta.

Pure Energy WI4
Lead photo: Brandon Pullan