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Mount Robson Provincial Park

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Mount Geikie 
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Mount Robson Provincial Park Rock Climbing 

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Elevation: 12,972'
Location: 53.111, -119.1495 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 57,573
Administrator: Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Ken Trout on Dec 11, 2010

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Emperor Falls on the approach hike to Berg Lake

The Mount Everest of North America* 

Rock Climbing Photo: Mt Robson Park Boundary (red)
Mt Robson Park Boundary (red)

Split by highway 16, Mount Robson Provincial Park protects a spectacular one hundred kilometer stretch of British Columbia's side of the Canadian Rockies.
The original park boundary was expanded southward to include the headwaters of the Fraser River. This is an interesting change because now the Ramparts, are partly in the provincial park.

The south face of Mount Robson is famous for having 10,000 feet of steep relief that can be seen from a paved highway:
Rock Climbing Photo: Ministry of the Provincial Secretary and Travel In...
Ministry of the Provincial Secretary and Travel Industry, 1968.

Mount Robson (3,954m) is the highest mountain of the Canadian Rockies and a world class technical summit.
Rock Climbing Photo: MOUNT ROBSON CLIMBER'S MAP My free use map is in E...
My free use map is in English units for elevation, so that's why the anachronistic elevations.

The blue grid lines are kilometers.

Resplendent Mountain (3,246m), climbed in 1911 by Kain-Harmon, is easy enough to have been skied half a century ago, via the standard West Ridge. It can be a rewarding consolation prize since it is much easier than Robson. Jeff Lowe and Mike Weiss climbed the 1,000m East Spur in 1973 (IV, F7). The Munday's of Mt Waddington climbed the north ridge and reported good rock in 1920. It is possible that the south ridge has never been climbed!

Whitehorn Mountain (3395m) is one of the twenty or so Rockies peaks higher than 11,000 feet. Conrad Kain soled the first ascent in 1911. The Northwest Face was climbed by the Lowe-Weiss team also in 1973 (III, F4, crux ice unrated).

Rock Climbing Photo: The green routes are in Alberta
The green routes are in Alberta

The northeast faces in the photograph give the Ramparts their name. The peaks out of view to the left, curve south and Maybe routes on the northeast faces of Oubliette Mountain, Dungeon Peak, and Redoubt Peak should not be posted here and instead be on an Alberta page for Mountain Project. Of course, there is no Alberta Mountain Project page for the Ramparts just yet.
Rock Climbing Photo: The Ramparts  contour interval 100 meters
The Ramparts

contour interval 100 meters

You can see how the are Ramparts cut in half by the big black line on the map. And then there's Mount Geikie - wholly in the British Columbia and Robson Park. The north face is one of the biggest and hardest in the Canadian Rockies. Two grade VI+ routes so far; Lowe-Hannibal and Honky Tonquin (Shaw-Simper). BTW, because Geikie is in Mount Robson Provincial Park, helicopters have been used. Seth Shaw wrote that they hiked in 18 miles (with bathooks etc!).

For simple sport climbs, the nearest rock climbing to the park is in Jasper, at the Rock Gardens.

A little farther north is Mount Colin, marked on the introduction map above. It's a hike that can be shortened by crossing the huge Athabasca River with a boat (Kruszyna-Putnam 1985). There is a small hut (Centennial). There are lots of good slab routes. No MP pages yet.
Rock Climbing Photo: Mt Colin, Alberta from Canadian Alpine Journal
Mt Colin, Alberta
from Canadian Alpine Journal

And just a bit more up Highway 16 is the Roche Miette. If your a Mountain Project type, who likes the Black Canyon of the Gunnison and stuff like that, then check out the 2,000 ft face of the Roche Miette. Quite visible from the road. No MP pages yet.

A handful of waterfalls have been climbed on the side walls of the Valley of a Thousand Waterfalls. Near the Whitehorn Campsite there are easy ice smears nearby (maybe a shelter still?). A little further up is Conrad's Column, a freestanding grade V pillar. Almost to Berg Lake, Emperor Falls has been climbed too (85m, III). There are rumored to be good first ascents still too.

Rock Climbing Photo: The good old days at the Berg Lake Chalet- before ...
The good old days at the Berg Lake Chalet- before visitor quotas!

The chalet was once the most beautiful dude ranch ever. However, the horses made the trail a muddy disaster for hikers. Today the dudes have been replace by self-sufficient heli-hikers. Summers, the chalet is open to everyone for cooking, but not for sleeping at night. In the winter it should still be possible to stay the night inside but check with the park authorities to be certain and get reservations.

A new reservations-only system starts in 2016 for all the sites along the Berg Lake Trail. Starting January 2nd, reservations will be taken for the whole year. Since good conditions are unpredictable at that time, this system seems to favor Helicoptering in to higher glacier bivouacs, for example at Extinguisher Tower. Again, check with the wardens, rules about bivouacs and heli-landings can change.
Rock Climbing Photo: Camp near Berg Lake Chalet 1950's  by Mountain Pro...
Camp near Berg Lake Chalet 1950's

by Mountain Project Contributor Debra McCarthy (AAC?)

Robson Helimagic Inc, based in Valemont, is one local service: 250-566-4700. In 2011, the charge was $150 each, for a party of four, to fly in to Berg lake and then hike out.

Call ahead. One September, when the park road was closed for construction, we tried to fly instead but no one was answering.

Mount Robson Webcam

Mount Robson Provincial Park Weather

The best pictures ever of Mount Robson can be viewed at John Scurlock's gallery. The photos of Robson have dates, so I can tell you they were taken right after a big storm in May, 2008. (Canmore got 60cm)

Climbing Season

Weather station 7.9 miles from here

5 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',2],['3 Stars',0],['2 Stars',2],['1 Star',1],['Bomb',0]

Classic Climbing Routes in Mount Robson Provincial Park

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Mount Robson Provincial Park:
South Face/Schwartz Ledges   Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c AI2-3 Steep Snow X     Trad, Ice, Snow, Alpine, 10000'   Mount Robson
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Mount Robson Provincial Park

Featured Route For Mount Robson Provincial Park
Rock Climbing Photo: Climbing the last gargoyle before the summit

Emperor Ridge 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b AI3 Steep Snow  North America : Canada : ... : Mount Robson
This historic route was nearly climbed in 1930 by Underhill and O'Brien before the successful 1961 scent.You would be crazy to get your information on this route from a website. This is a serious route that requires significant commitment. I'll share my story but the difficulty depends greatly on conditions and my experience may not be typical.My full experience is at - take this for what it's worth. The difficulty of...[more]   Browse More Classics in International

Photos of Mount Robson Provincial Park Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: North Face from Berg Lake 1984
North Face from Berg Lake 1984
Rock Climbing Photo: goosing the goat for good luck on Mt Robson
goosing the goat for good luck on Mt Robson
Rock Climbing Photo: Berg Glacier and Berg Lake March 2007
Berg Glacier and Berg Lake March 2007
Rock Climbing Photo: Routes on Mount Robson contour interval:  100 feet...
BETA PHOTO: Routes on Mount Robson contour interval: 100 feet...

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