Ice climbing season will be starting soon in Ontario, where big climbs can form on remote cliffs far away from the road. Big approaches, lake crossings and hard-to-find waterfalls make ice climbing in southern Ontario an adventure.
A new map has popped up online that allows you to navigate through southern Ontario ice routes and some rock routes, as well as routes south of the Great Lakes. You can find the map here.
Southern Ontario ice routes extend from the Niagara area all the way up to Sudbury, about 1,000 kilometres away. Northwestern Ontario routes include the ice along the north shore of Lake Superior and west to Manitoba.
The guidebook Southern Ontario Ice was first printed in 2014, it includes maps and route descriptions to ensure you get to climb the best ice and mixed routes Southern Ontario has to offer. For more on the book and to purchase visit here.
One of the best areas to visit for ice climbing north of Toronto is the west side of Diamond Lake. A number of classic lines from WI2 to WI5, plus easy access to the top of the cliff, makes this a great place mid-winter. In 2019, a new M9+ mixed climb called Trial was added to the area, read about it here.
Be sure to follow for information and updates on the Nipigon and Southern Ontario ice festivals.