climbing general trip reports

the heartbreak of a moose-less canada trip

My trip to Canada was notable for its complete lack of mooses. I thought British Columbia would be a hotbed of roadside and campsite moose activity, but it wasn’t to be. I feel cheated. There were quite a few chipmunks however. (The more interaction I have with chipmunks, the more I’m convinced that they’re vaguely evil. They have a tendency to try and stalk you, which is more unnerving than it should be.)

On arriving in Vancouver, we received a rather alarming grilling from the immigration official – it went on from the fairly reasonable ‘So how do you know each other?’ (we met in the training camp) and ‘What are you planning to do while you’re here?’ (capture all of your mooses and train them to do my bidding, so that they may be my minions in my quest for global domination) to ‘So… what sort of knives are you using?! {insert ferocious glare}’ (someone’s been watching Vertical Limit).

I came to the conclusion that Canada was relatively civilised though. They have $1 and $2 coins, their money isn’t all the same colour, it has the queen on it, they can actually spell ‘cheque’, they use metric measurements, and they have Mars bars. Although they still drive on the wrong side of the road.

Squamish is the most fantastic climbing destination. I’m developing an unhealthy enjoyment of crack climbing. And slab climbing (despite the protestations of my climbing partner, Mr. Boer ‘Did I mention I don’t like slab climbing… I can’t do the move even if I use the bolt’ Zhao). The only unfortunate part is that it seems to like raining there. Rather a lot.

Skaha on the other hand, is a less salubrious destination. No snow capped mountains in the background there, although there are lakes and rolling hills. Unfortunately the warmth and lakes brings hoards of tourists in RVs, who fill up the town. The climbing is crimpy, which could be fun if your finger tendons are in full health – but an alarming number of holds sound hollow.

Boer climbing against the backdrop of the Squamish logging


Sweet sweet granite cracks


On top of Stawamus Chief


Views from Stawamus Chief


Conclusion – I must go back to Squamish. More photos are up in the gallery here (ok, fine, they’re not all up at the moment, they might be by the end of today).


nice day, eh

Dear site – I’m in Canada – Squamish, in British Columbia. It’s raining. Haven’t met any mooses yet.