I'm headed east from the Rockies to Mont Tremblant to spend the Christmas week with family. We will mostly ski, but I gather that there is legit ice climbing all over that neck of the woods and I'd love to sample some of the goods. So I'm looking for recommendations on the best way to do that. I see that the resort itself offers ice climbing trips (or at least has trips through an affiliate), but I'm wondering if there is a better, less-touristy option out there.
I am reasonably experienced and competent on rock. But - and here's the catch - I've only climbed real ice (up to WI4) once, though I've spent time in crampons on steep snow/glaciers. Any suggestions for the best way to get out for a day? Any cool guides that I could hire to take me and my rock-climbing girlfriend up some of the local flows? Or maybe there is an easy to top rope ice crag nearby and I should bring my own gear and just top rope without a guide.
For an easy top-rope crag, I'd consider Montagne d'Argent -- this is a climber's park, and for ice climbing, they've even got tubing setup to "create" ice where there might not otherwise have been ice.
I'm pretty sure Gaetan Castilloux is still doing guiding at MdA.
I have old contact information for him -- I don't know how current it is -- but you might try:
Pour imformation 819-429-0501 email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Having failed French in college may make this a bit more difficult... email (so you can enlist google translate) may be the way to go.
there’s a motel / bar with a small indoor wall in st adolphe called la chèvre. the owners are guides that take people all over the world, from the torngats to the himalaya. you can give isabelle a call over there to see what their schedule is and whether they can outfit you, my guess is that they can. they run that business by themselves it seems, so don’t hesitate to leave a message and they’ll get back to you (i’ve never climbed with them outdoors but stayed there several times / consumed alcohol / talked to them about their charity work at their brick and mortar).
if it doesn’t start snowing, you might want to do more than one day of ice. and if it does, consider a day at La Reserve instead of Tremblant. it’s a rowdy little hill with awesome steep terrain, good vibes, and a slack country side.