Carlsberg Column 2007
60m III, WI 5
March 18, 2007
Peter, Rob (CA), Steve (CA)

I had wanted to do this climb for a while, and some friends from California were in town looking for something to do (Rob and Steve were on a 3-day climbing holiday). I decided to show them the Beer climbs and that motivated me to go all the way to Field to give Carlsberg a shot. The day began as somewhat adventurous, as we got stopped on the highway just past Banff. We found out the Trans-Canada was closed due to major rockfall (which they had still not cleared in the afternoon). Thankfully, the closure was just past Field, and that was our destination! As most people got turned around, we had an empty highway to ourselves. After some hesitation, we found the right pull-out on the backroad, from which the climbs are accessed. Surprisingly, we got to the base of the climb on the first try!

The climb looked steep and intimidating on the approach, which I expected, but it was also extremely wet! It was raining hard, and there didn't seem to be a dry line to climb. After getting the gear out, I decided I must suck it up, and started up the left side, getting completely soaked. It was hard to look up and see where I was going, since the water was in my face... I learned my lesson for not carrying my goretex, what a mistake! After a very thorough soaking, I moved up to the right, finding a drier line, and finished the pitch (I split the climb into 2 pitches up to a bolted belay on the right). The ice was really plastic and the climb was quite featured, which made it quite fun. I brought Steve and Rob up, and they both seemed to enjoy it, despite the shower. The second pitch was just as steep, but shorter. I had a big smile on my face!

After descending, we stopped by Lake Louise on our drive back. Strangely, there was some sort of disaster there too, with dozens of police cars and a few fire trucks busy. However, the actual crux came later, when I neared Calgary - there was freezing rain, and there was a bad accident on top of Scott Hill. Traffic stopped again... then due to the skating rink of a road, our speed was about 40-50km/h all the way to Calgary. Bleh, evidently it wasn't a good day for some people, but I had a huge smile from the climb!

  Carlsberg Column, WI 5 Carlsberg Column, WI 5 The first pitch of Carlsberg Column  

  gearing up, photo by Steve Starting up the climb, photo by Steve starting up, photo by Steve  

  me halfway up the first section, photo by Steve me pondering the next moves on Carlsberg Column, photo by Steve me in action, photo by Steve  

  photo by Steve me in action, photo by Steve swinging, photo by Steve  

  swinging, photo by Steve putting in a screw, photo by Steve Steve at the top of the first pitch  

  Rob at the top of the first pitch the second pitch! The first pitch, Carlsberg Column  

  The first pitch, Carlsberg Column View across the valley View across the valley  

  Overview of the Mt Dennis climbs Pilsner Pillar on the left, and Carlsberg on the right left to right: Pilsner, Carlsberg, ?  

  Carlsberg Column Pilsner Pillar  

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