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P: 705-946-6054
E: INFO@SUPERIOR-EXPLORATION.CA

Ice Climbing Lessons

Join us for the best in Ice Climbing Lessons. Group rates and family rates available.

Try a 3 Hour Introduction to Ice Climbing Lesson for $60.00

Minimum Group size is 3. Climbing introduction is 3 Hours.

Join us for any one of our exciting ice climbing trips from beginner to advanced. Try one of our guided trips to a local icewall.

The following ice climbing areas are near Batchawana Bay

Mile 38 Road- over 100 Ice Climbs

Cerro De Hielo- 36 Ice Climbs

Havilland Bay- 4 Ice Climbs

Searchmont Area- 2 Ice Climbs

Further distant but accessible for Intermediate and Advanced climbing are the following areas:

  • Westfalia Wall
  • Agawa Canyon
  • Lil Agawa Canyon
  • Only 17 Wall
  • Mile 67 Road
  • Montreal River Harbour
  • North Slope
  • South Bay
  • Gros Cap

 

We also can head to Orient Bay- Kama Bay- Ice Station Superior 7 Hours north to climb on many of the routes we developed from 1981 through 2001

          

General Info

General Information for Ice Climbing Course participants.

Our Philosophy

Our courses are set in an environment of teaching, which generates an atmosphere of trust and relaxation, from passive enjoyment to active decision making.

Registration and Payment Schedule

All participants must fill out a registration form and pay for course in advance.

Cancellation Policy

We require full payment of the course in advance to hold your reservation.

  • If cancellation is more than ten days in advance: 75% Refund.
  • If cancellation is five days in advance: 50% Refund.
  • If cancellation is less than five days: No Refund.

If weather or transport does not allow you to arrive at our office for the course, we reserve the right to reschedule your class, as well as hold your deposit.

Course Information

  • All courses begin at 9:00am in Batchawana Bay on the date stated unless delayed by weather or access problems.
  • Be prepared for a unique winter adventure and dress appropriately.
  • Participants that show up for the course dressed improperly will not be allowed to participate, and will not receive a refund!
  • Check out the equipment list provided (link in navigation on right). If there are any questions, please call us.
  • All (technical) gear is supplied for our courses.
  • Food and accomodations are the responsibility of the participant. We offer a BED & BREAKFAST on site!
  • Participants are responsible for their own transportation to the lodge or to the rendezvous point for the courses.

About Our Location

Our office is located at Batchawana Bay. Located 35 minutes north of Sault Ste. Marie on the Chippewa River in Batchawana Bay. We sell Guidebooks to "Lake Superior" rock and ice and have a wide assortment of maps, and Climbing-BETA! As well, we offer a Gear Rental program. The surrounding area is excellent for hiking, sea-kayaking, and mountain biking so consider bringing them with you.

Our Bed & Breakfast

We have a Bed & Breakfast near Mile 38 Road in Batchawana Bay. Located 35 minutes north of Sault Ste. Marie. Our office and "BIVI" lounge overlook Lake Superior. We have a wide range of "Climbing and Mountaineering" journals and magazines. as well as rock and Ice Climbing Guidebooks.

Guidebooks & Gear Rental

We sell Guidebooks to Lake Superior ice and have a wide assortment of maps and Climbing - BETA! As well, we offer a Gear Rental program for past students. The surrounding area is excellent for snow shoeing and skiing, so consider bringing them with you. From our location we have easy access to over 100 climbs in the Batchawana and Agawa Canyon areas.

Snowmachine Transportation

We have 2 snowmachines and a sled. We give clients rides to the more inaccessible ice climbs. Can take a maximum of 4. A service fee applies if snowmachines are used.

Technical Equipment List

A list of technical gear that we supply during the courses. If you have your own gear as below, bring it to the course.

Ice Day & Ice 2 Courses

  • Plastic double boots.
  • Crampons.
  • Ice tools with your choice from our assortment of hammers, no adzes available.
  • Climbing Helmet.
  • Climbing Harness.
  • Belay Device and Locking Carabiner.
  • Belay Slings.
  • Climbing ropes and anchors.

For Ice 2 Course, we add to above:

  • Daisy Chain with Locking Carabiner.
  • Prussik Rope with Locking Carabiner.

For Intermediate/Advanced Ice, we add to above:

  • Gear cleaning slings.
  • Ice Screws and Quickdraws.
  • Ice Cleaning Tool.
  • Rappell Slings.
  • Rescue Gear.
  • Double Ropes.
  • Satellite Phone.

Technical Gear is expensive! If you lose it, you buy it!

Personal Equipment List

For the Ice Day and Ice 2 Courses, this is the gear that you need to bring:

  • Goretex or other type of outer climbing shell.
  • Warm pile pants for climbing.
  • Polypro underwear.
  • Toque or wool hat.
  • Two pairs of mitts, wool or other, for climbing.
  • Clothes for the campsite.
  • Camera, video, reading material, boniculars etc.
  • Snowshoes for approaches. Can be rented from us at $5.00/day.
  • Gaiters for double boots.
  • Several pairs of warm socks.
  • Glasses or goggles for climbing.
  • Down or fibre filled parka.
  • Personal first aid kit.
  • Internal Frame Pack.
  • Headlamp with spare batteries.

For the Multi-Day Trips (overnight), this is the gear that you need to bring:

  • Good sleeping bag.
  • Thermarest Sleeping Pad.
  • Insulated boots, such as Sorels.
  • Gaiters for double boots.
  • Goretex or other type of outer climbing shell.
  • Warm pile pants for climbing.
  • Polypro underwear.
  • Toque or wool hat.
  • Two pairs of mitts, woll or other, for climbing.
  • Clothes for the campsite.
  • Camera, video, reading material, binoculars etc.
  • Snowshoes for approaches. Can be rented from us at $5.00/day.
  • Hand warmers, foot warmers.
  • Several pairs of warm socks.
  • Glasses or goggles for climbing.
  • Down or fibre filled parka.
  • Personal first aid kit.
  • Internal Frame Pack.
  • Headlamp with spare batteries.

If you are dressed improperly, you may become cold and will not enjoy the experience. We will not allow you to participate, for your own safety and comfort, and you will not receive a refund! Please call us if you have any questions about clothing or equipment.

Non-essentials you may want to bring:

  • Thermos of hot drink.
  • Toilet kit, swimsuit for sauna.
  • Clothes for town/lodge/entertainment.
  • Camera/camcorder/film.

Ice Gear & Equipment Rental Prices

We have ice climbing gear which we rent pending availability. All rentals are subject to damage and replacement deposit payable in advance. A waiver must also be signed. All prices are in Canadian dollars.

Rental Item Rental Cost / Day Replacement Cost
Ice Tools $15 $150 / tool.
Crampons $15 $150 / set.
Helmet $10 $50
Pair of Boots $20 $300 / pair.
Waist Harness $5 $50
Chest Harness $3 $25

Ice Screws
(Each)

$5 $45
Quick Draws $5 $20

Ice Climbing Prices for 2014-2015

Instructional Courses

The following is our price list for all our instructional classes from the ICE DAY course to the ADVANCED ICE course. All Gear Supplied for Ice Day through Ice 2 and Advacned, although we recommend you have your own gear for In termediate and Advanced.

  • 1 Person: $175 CDN / Day
  • 2 People: $300 CDN / Day
  • 3 People: $450 CDN / Day
  • 4-6 People: $500 CDN / Day
  • 6 to 10 People: $750 CDN / Day
  • Children under 14 are half price.
  • Family of 3: $300 CDN / Day
  • 3 Hour Introduction to Ice Climbing for $60.00/Person Based on Minimum of 3
  • H.S.T. of 13% to be added to these prices.

Guided Courses

The following is our price list for all guided climbs.

  • 1 Person: $225 CDN / Day
  • 2 People: $400 CDN / Day

Two person maximum with guided climbs. If snowmobiles are used to access the climbs, a surchage is added depending on distance to Ice climb.

REGISTER HERE

Winter 2016
Special Programs

Agawa Canyon- ON HOLD "NO TRAIN ACCESS"

Agawa Canyon Ice Climbing Expeditions. Accommodation is in a Prospectors tent with bunkbeds for 4, oil heater, and lights.

ALL Agawa Canyon Trips via the TRAIN begin on Thursday (Train heads north) and return on Sunday (Train heads south)

Accomodation is in our heated Prospector Tent with 3 Bunks.

Trip 1: Northbound from Sault Ste. Marie - 4 Days in length, Thursday to Sunday (Beginner-Intermediate) Course or guided trip.
We catch the train northbound from Sault Ste. Marie and spend 4 days ice climbing in Agawa Canyon from our basecamp at Mile 112. E-mail us for the detailed program.

Agawa Canyon - Climb the Classics - 4 Days
We catch the train from Sault Ste. Marie to our basecamp. From there, we snowshoe to climb several of the classic climbs found in the canyon.

Agawa Canyon - First Ascent Expedition - 4 Days
We catch the train from Sault Ste. Marie to our basecamp. From here we ascend several new ice climbs in the secret parts of the canyon.

18th Annual Agawa Canyon Ice Climbers Reunion
The Agawa Canyon hosts over 56 ice climbs, some more than 200 meters in height. The canyon can also have over 3 meters of snow in March. Join us as we take the train from Sault Ste. Marie or Frater to Mile 112 for a weekend of ice and frolic. We camp in a group setting and spend the days snowshoeing, exploring and climbing.
Date: March 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 2015.

Cost: Round-trip Train Fare is approximately $138.00. Guiding and gear rental is available.

2016 Montreal River / Batchawana Area / Mile 38 Road / Cerro De Hielo

ALL THE FOLLOWING TRIPS ARE FROM OUR OFFICE IN BATCHAWANA BAY AND MIGHT REQUIRE SNOWMACHINE ACCESS.

Montreal River - Climb the Classics - 3 Days
We visit Montreal River and climb the classic routes there over a three day period.

Montreal River - Batchawana - First Ascent Expedition - 3 Days
We take you out to some of the areas we are developing and we ascend several new virgin icefalls. Routes chosen are based on the experience level of the clients. We travel daily by snowmachine.


Montreal River/Batchawana - Intermediate Ice (Special) - 3 Days
This is the normal 2 day intermediate course but we add an extra day for a First Ascent. Travel is by snowmachine to the site. All gear supplied!


Montreal River/Batchawana - Advanced Ice (Special) - 3 Days
This is the normal 2 day Advanced course but we add an extra day for a First Ascent. It is our hopes that the client gets to do the leading on the first ascent.
Travel is by snowmachine.


Cerro De Hielo (Mountain of Ice) Expedition - 3 Days
We head to this awesome site by snowmachine and climb more first ascents of various level of difficulty depending on clients ability.


Winter Adventure Weekend - 2 Days
Join us for a two weekend days of adventure activities including Snowshoeing, Map & Compass, G.P.S. Navigation and Ice Climbing. Activities will include both theoretical and practical sessions, and will take place near Batchawana Bay on Lake Superior. A great trip for your group of adventurers.


Ascent of Stratosphere (Highest Climb in the Mid-Continent) - 2 Days
We spend the first day doing a review of Intermediate Ice, and then on the second day we Ascend the highest Ice climb in the Midwest. This route has only been climbed three times since January 2004. At 775 feet high it offers one the excitement of a semi alpine mountain feel. Offered in February until mid March.


Snowmachine Exploratory Expedition - 3 Days
We will pack up two snowmachines and head out to explore and climb in our most secretive area. This is a serious Snowmachine expedition where anything is possible from a 600 foot new route to a broken down snowmachine. We camp out on this trip or stay at one of our secret hideways. Along with we take our satellite phone just in case! Clients wont know where we are heading until we are in our loading our snowmobiles and our gear!!


Ice Climbing Rescue Course - 2 Days
This two day course teaches you how to rescue a fallen lead climber, as well as an injured belayer and second. The two-day course is held on the site of one of the local icefalls in the Batchawana Bay Area. It is a hands on course, requiring participants to have at least a solid background in belaying and leading to a grade 3 level. This course is recommended for climbing partners wanting knowledge of quick recovery of an injured partner.

Ice Climbing Seminar

Presentation Outline:

We can arrange to show your club or group the sport of ice climbing, the equipment that is used, and the techniques required. An exciting presentation in a one hour slide presentation and equipment demonstration. Show also covers the ice climbs of the area of Lake Superior.

Cost: $250 CDN plus expenses.

Ice Rescue Course

This two day course teaches you how to rescue a fallen lead climber, as well as an injured belayer and second. The two-day course is held on the site of one of the local icefalls in the area of Batchawana Bay. It is a hands on course, requiring participants to have at least a solid background in belaying and leading to a grade 3 level. This course is recommended for climbing partners wanting knowledge of quick recovery of an injured partner.

Ice Day Course

This course will introduce you to the sport of ice climbing. By the end of the course you will have learned the basics of ice climbing in a top-rope setting.

Practical Skills Learned Durinng This Course

  • How to climb, traverse and down climb an ice wall.
  • The tying and use of basic knots in ice climbing.
  • Recognition and the use of natural anchors for belaying and top-rope anchors.
  • How to belay properly using a mechanical belay device, as well as the use of belayer / climber signals.

Essential Information

Group Size: 6 Participants, Minimum of 4.

Cost: See Price List on right. 6 climbers for the price of 5.

Course Length: 1 Day.

Climbing: Most students in this course climb an average of 300 feet!

Location: Batchawana Bay - Mile 38 Road.

Prerequisites: None, but an adventurous spirit is welcome!

Theoretical Skills Learned During This Course

  • What is ice climbing, top-roped climbing and how it relates to the sport of climbing and mountaineering.
  • History and development of ice climbing in the region and its significance.
  • Ice formations, crystal structure, bonding, and strength of ice faces.
  • Safety considerations in ice climbing and the applications to the top-roped environment.

Ice 2 Course

With the completion of ths course you will gain the skills and understand the concepts required to ice climb safely in a top-roped environment. You will be capable of setting up a sling-shot top-belay system with climbers of equal or greater ability.

Practical Skills Learned Durinng This Course

  • A review of skills learned in Ice Day.
  • Techniques required to ascend, traverse and descend steep ice safely and quickly.
  • How to establish and monitor a sling-shot top-rope system.
  • Instroduction to ice climbing protection.

Essential Information

Group Size: 6 Participants, Minimum of 4.

Course Length: 1 Day.

Location: Agawa Canyon - Batchawana Bay - Mile 38 Road.

Prerequisites: An Ice Day or equivalent.

Guidebook: See guide for area of instruction.

Personal & Technical Equipment: See Lists (Link in right navigation).

Theoretical Skills Learned During This Course

  • What are sling-shot top-rope systems and how to they relate to the sport of ice climbing.
  • Safety Considerations in ice climbing and the recognition of subjective and objective hazards.

Intermediate Ice

In this course you will learn the skills and concepts required to 'second' a single or multi-pitch ice climb to grade 3 in difficulty. Upon completion you should be confident and capable of participating in a multi-pitch climb and a rappel descent with a greater ability, capable of leading a grade 3 ice wall.

Practical Skills Learned Durinng This Course

  • A review of skills learned in Ice 2 Course.
  • Techniques required to ascend, traverse and descend steep ice, safely and quickly.
  • The various types of ice climbing tools and hardware used in ice climbing. Their placement, removal and maintenance.
  • Technique of Single vs. Double rope, racking and sorting of hardware.
  • Seconding a lead ice climb and removing protection.
  • Entering and departing multi-point anchors on multi-pitch climbs.
  • Team movement in pitch climbing.
  • Rappelling down an ice wall.

Essential Information

Group Size: 4 Participants, Minimum of 2.

Course Length: 2 Days, 1 Evening.

Location: Orient Bay - Agawa Canyon - Batchawana Area.

Prerequisites: Ice 2 or equivalent.

Reference: See Guidbook List

Theoretical Skills Learned During This Course

  • What is pitch and multi-pitch climbing on ice and the role of the seconding climber.
  • Understanding the principles behind the placement of protection and multi-point anchors.
  • How to plan an ice climb, selection of gear, role of guidebooks, route finding and partner selection.

Advanced Ice Course

Upon completion of this course you will have gained the skills, concepts and experience necessary to lead a single or multi-pitch ice climb up to grade 3 in difficulty.

Practical Skills Learned Durinng This Course

  • How to plan your lead, route selection, and selection of gear and equipment.
  • Quick energy saving techniques for placement of ice protection, clipping, cleaning and racking.
  • Technique of Single vs. Double rope.
  • Lead climbing of a grade 3 ice climb with a top-rope safety.
  • Basic self-belay while rappelling and basic rescue, and tie-off of leader and seconder.

Essential Information

Group Size: 2 Participants, Minimum of 1.

Course Length: 2 Days, 1 Evening.

Location: Orient Bay - Agawa Canyon - Batchawana Area.

Prerequisites: Intermediate Ice or equivalent.

Reference: See guide for area of instruction.

Personal & Technical Equipment: See Lists (Link in right navigation).

Theoretical Skills Learned During This Course

  • Understanding the principles of lead climbing.
  • Planning and ice climb as a lead climber. Partner selection route selection and safety considerations.

A Field Test of Albaklov Anchors

Click below to download a PDF file for our test of Albaklov Anchors.