Photo: Joshua Lavigne

Mount Yamnuska

Climb above the clouds

Climb

A little tougher

Full day

Time to get above the clouds and see the Rocky Mountains from a new angle. Yamnuska (also known as Mount John Laurie) is a classic destination for the climbing community; you can see its dramatic 2240m face from the Trans-Canada Highway. With traditional, multi-pitch and bouldering options, it’s no wonder this is a favourite local and global climbing spot.

Mount Yamnuska

Mount Yamnuska, Bighorn No. 8, AB, Canada

Get Directions

Driving time from Calgary

1 hour

Multi-pitch routes

100+

Elevation of Yamnuska

2240m

Planning your climb

Scout your route and find your preferred climb

Pick your battles

Yamnuska attracts all kinds of climbers since it has lots of trad, sport, multi-pitch and bouldering options to choose from. There are many sections to Yamnuska, and each one has different climbing possibilities. Yamnuska’s West End is a great place to first experience multi-pitch climbing, while the Forbidden Corner route follows a very steep cliff over 300m long, which makes for a full day of trad climbing. Big Choss, named for its loose rock, is a great bouldering area at the base of Yamnuska.

Pick up Rock Climbs of Mount Yamnuska guidebook to help narrow down your choices and plan your day.

 

Get some trad climbing in

Yamnuska has been popular for traditional climbers for over four decades. In 1952, Leo Grillmair, Isabel Spreat and Hans Gmoser were the first to summit the face of Yamnuska with the ascent of Grillmair Chimney. These three climbers encouraged the exploration of other great climbs that are found today throughout the Rockies. There are trad climbs in multiple places along the Yamnuska face, and they range in difficulty.

Feeling sporty

Yamnuska offers sport climbing for all levels, and it’s a great place for sport climbers to learn about multi-pitch climbing. With a southern and completely exposed face, climbers at Yamnuska can stay warm and dry as they hit multiple pitches and gain in elevation.

Set up some crashpads

Bouldering at Yamnuska is accessible year-round, if you’re able to brave a little chill and are okay with your hands getting a bit chewed up on the cold rock. Occasionally, warm winter winds allow for winter climbing if snowfall is low.

Big Choss gives climbers an array of bouldering problems to tackle. The Warmup Boulder is a great place to get comfortable before you move on to tougher areas.

Essential gear

The forget-me-knots of rock climbing.

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