Coire Dubh Integral
Coire Dubh Integral is the best introduction to winter alpine mixed climbing that the Rockies has to offer! This route has it all with nice ice climbing, moderate mixed climbing, a southern exposure and a great alpine setting. Previous ice & mixed climbing experience as well as good fitness is required to be successful on this route.
A one hour approach brings us to the base of Goat Mountain. The climb starts with 300 meters of snow and ice up a cool gully leading deep into the mountain. Above this the rest of the climb is on rock where we will use ice tools, hands and crampons to climb rock corners and cracks for the remaining 8 pitches of the route. The first pitch is the hardest and although the climbing is never too difficult by Rockies standards it will feel plenty challenging unless you have done alot of this style of climbing before! As an added bonus all the belays are quite comfortable on good ledges between pitches. From the top we begin a scrambling descent along the rocky ridgeline back to the road. Expect this climb to take 8 to 12 hours round trip depending on fitness and snow conditions. This climb is a perfect start for those looking to climb alpine mixed routes in the Canadian Rockies! For those with lots of mixed experience there are also a number of more difficult routes on this wall, most of which were first climbed by CRAG’s head guide Jay Mills.
Location: Exshaw, AB. 10 minutes from Canmore or 50 minutes from Calgary.
Difficulty: WI3, M4
Logistics: Coire Dubh is best climbed with just one guest per guide. Coire Dubh Integral is in reasonable condition most of the time from November through March.