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Club Activities

    The Calgary Section is active all year round. The ski season in the Rockies and other local mountains ranges can stretch from November to May and rock climbing can happen year round if you are willing to drive or fly somewhere warm or climb locally on the warmer winter days. The slowest season is typically October and November which is kept busy with dry land training. There is lots to do!

Alpine Climbing / Mountaineering

    Section members participate in a wide range of mountaineering adventures during the Rockies summer. Climbs on Event Schedule range in location from Waterton Lakes National Park north to Saskatchewan River Crossing, from Exshaw west to Rogers' Pass, with occasional trips farther afield such as Jasper National Park and Mt. Robson. Mountaineering difficulties range from an easy hike up Heart Mountain early in the season to the more demanding peaks around the Columbia Icefields or many of the high peaks along the Great Divide.

Rock Climbing

    At the same time as members are surmounting the high peaks, other members are out basking on dry, steep rock. The Event Schedule contains a selection of day or weekend trips on a wide-variety of rock crags generally located in the Bow Valley from Yamnuska to Castle Mountain. Typical section rock climbs include Esgargot Corner on Mt. Norquay, Brewer's Buttress on Castle Mountain, the NE Face of Chinaman's Peak, and Grillmair's Chimney on Yamnuska.

Annual Rock Review

    The Rock Review, held annually, usually the first weekend of June, is a chance for section members to get together and warm up on rock early in the season. Novice members have a chance to try out their rock climbing skills while more seasoned members provide encouragement and support. More than anything else, it's a weekend on the section's social calendar where members meet in the mountains and make plans for the summer while swapping stories (or tall tales) about their winters.

Backcountry Skiing / Ski Mountaineering

 

The Canadian Rockies remain one of the finest destinations in the world for backcountry skiing, touring, and ski mountaineering. With this veritable winter playground only an hour to the west of Calgary, section members have no shortage of ideas for how to spend their weekends in the winter. Trips on the Event Schedule generally visit locales in Kananaskis Country and Banff National Park during the early part of the season before venturing farther afield for longer day or overnight trips later in the season when the snowpack, weather and length of day improve. Ski touring and mountaineering difficulties range from an easy tour up Paradise Valley to a day of telemark turns around Helen Lake, from lots of vertical feet of skiing at Rogers' Pass to ski mountaineering routes on the Wapta and Columbia Icefields

Ice Climbing

    Ice Climbing If the skiing doesn't get your attention, the ice climbing possibilities in the Rockies most certainly will. With several hundred possible routes within a couple of hours of Calgary, from pleasant grade II routes to longer, more technical grade V routes, the Event Schedule covers the complete gamut of Canadian Rockies ice. Classics like Professor Falls, Louise Falls, Bow Falls routinely find their way on to the trip schedule while new areas are explored and sometimes, new routes are found. The Ghost River valley always has a special place in the hearts of Calgary ice climbers and the schedule generally has at least a few weekend trips listed for the Ghost.

Annual Ice Review

    The Ice Review, held annually in early January in the Ghost River valley, is a chance for section members to get together and warm up on ice early in the season. Novice members have a chance to try out their ice climbing skills while more seasoned members provide encouragement and support. More than anything else, it's a weekend on the section's social calendar where members meet in the mountains and make plans for the winter while swapping stories (or tall tales) about their summers.

Climbing Wall

    Most Wednesday nights, from the end of September to the end of April, the section meets at the Calgary Climbing Center for indoor sport climbing. The CCC offers a traverse wall, huge bouldering cave, campus board, systems board, self belay machine, fully textured climbing surfaces, and 60% of the routes are between 5.5 - 5.10. These events are posted on the Event Schedule when they are going to take place. There are also regular climbing nights at The Crux in NE Calgary. This is a unique venue with extraordinarily high walls to climb - about 20 metres!

Ski Leadership Shakedown

    Every January, the Ski Committee hosts an annual get-together in the mountains for a weekend. Intended to give ski leaders an opportunity to refresh old skills and discuss new ideas and techniques for winter leadership, the weekend demonstrates the section's commitment to winter leadership skill development. Generally the first day is spent both inside, discussing soft skills such as group management, downhill leading, emergency management, and avalanche rescue skills, and practicing outside on mock avalanche rescue exercises and transceiver drills. The second day is spent skiing with the leaders separating into different trips to several destinations, each trip with a slightly different focus on winter leadership.

National Club Training Week

    To promote the leadership skills of winter trip leaders within The Alpine Club of Canada, the the National Club has inaugurated a series of week-long leadership training courses. One week is held in the winter while a second week is held during the summer months. These courses are designed to supplement the existing skills of a trip leader and provide additional information and guidance on some of the less technical skills of the mountaineering or ski leader, such as group management, pace, route analysis, subjective hazards, and guiding rope techniques.

National Club Trips

    In addition to a wide range of section trips offered each weekend during the winter, the the National Club offers a number of other ski trips into some spectacular regions of the Canadian Rockies. These trips are normally professionally guided and managed, and provide a fantastic opportunity to enjoy a ski touring or mountaineering holiday in the Rockies with top-notch service.