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Sir Sanford Group

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Sir Sanford Group Rock Climbing 

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Location: 51.6561, -117.874 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 2,523
Administrator: Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Ken Trout on Dec 13, 2010

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BETA PHOTO: Mt Sir Sandford, circa 1911, with Modern Routes Ad...


The Sir Sandford Group is deeply tucked away in the middle of the Northern Selkirks. Seven sub-ranges block access from the Rogers Pass area. To the north, the Adamant Group and three other sub-ranges screen easy viewing of the most impressive and highest summit of British Columbia's Interior Ranges, Mount Sir Sandford (11,580'). The common analogy is 'The Robson of the Interior Ranges'.

Named after Sir Sandford Flemming, the man who invented time zones in 1884 (David P Jones, Selkirks North, 2001). First climbed in 1912 by bushwhackers extraordinaire Aemmer, Fuez Jr, Holway, and Palmer. This kind of detail would normally be in a route description, but their line is now a serac bowling ally.

The rock is not the best. Marble, micaceous schist, and phyllite predominate. Sir Sandford is famous for it's sharp but rotten ball-bearing marble. The 1955 first ascent team of Palisade Peak, described unreliable rock that: ..."resembles an overhanging sand dune." Luckily, much of the group is covered by numerous (retreating) glaciers. On the positive side, David Jones states: "Rockfall is not a big problem, since surface rocks disintegrate into sand as soon as they start moving."

John Scurlock's Gallery has the best pictures of Mount Sir Sanford.


There are only two recommendable ways to get into Sir Sandford, helicoptering or Moberly Pass.

There is an outdated and very difficult way third way that crosses the Adamants. Washed out roads and glacial retreat are making the old way less fun. Let's hope the logging roads used to get to near Moberly Pass don't get washed out or decommissioned.

Climbing Season

Weather station 28.9 miles from here

3 Total Climbing Routes

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

Featured Route For Sir Sanford Group
Rock Climbing Photo: Mount Sir Sanford Route contour interval: 100 feet...

Northwest Ridge/Standard Route Easy 5th 1+ 3 I 5 M 1c AI2  North America : Canada : ... : Sir Sanford Group
ROUTE DESCRIPTIONThe Northwest Ridge didn't catch on until the 1980s, after several near misses with serac avalanches crashing down the 1946 Hourglass route. Why did climbers keep choosing the obviously dangerous lower Hourglass Route? Probably because of the easier approach from the Great Cairn Hut (approx 6,250'). The Northwest Ridge is a safe way to reach the 50 degree ice pitch of the actual hourglass feature above most of the big ice cliffs. From the hut, traverse to the Sandford ...[more]   Browse More Classics in International

Photos of Sir Sanford Group Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Moberly Pass Approach Map contour interval: 100 fe...
BETA PHOTO: Moberly Pass Approach Map contour interval: 100 fe...
Rock Climbing Photo: Traditional Sir Sanford Approach contour interval:...
Traditional Sir Sanford Approach contour interval:...
Rock Climbing Photo: Mount Sir Sanford Photo by Wikipedia contributor T...
BETA PHOTO: Mount Sir Sanford Photo by Wikipedia contributor T...

Comments on Sir Sanford Group Add Comment
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By Robert Hall
From: North Conway, NH
Mar 18, 2016
Slightly better photos of the maps were posted to the "Adamant Group" site.

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