Cover Photo

Cover Photo
Photo by Jeff Lewis

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Apocalypse Cave Update

Update April 17, 2017: Added 2 new bolted projects between Drifter and Box of Souls to topos.

The Apocalypse Cave is a free climbing area. Do not climb these routes with ice tools! The wall is located in the Middle Grotto of Grotto Mountain, the same canyon as The Playground and Silent Auction multi-pitch. The tallest climbs are roughly 25m high and a 60m rope is required.

Approach information: Park at the Ratsnest cave parking. This is a large dirt unsigned turnoff of Hwy 1A. If approaching from Exshaw, once the speed limit hits 80km/h, the road goes uphill and over a bend. The parking is the third pullout on the right when driving downhill, about 2km past the turnoff for Gap Lake. If approaching from Canmore, it is about 5km from the ACC turnoff, just as the speed limit hits 80 km/h, first left after Graymont plant. The majority of the approach is the same as for The Playground.

Follow the Ratsnest cave trail for approximately 5 minutes up a steep hill. The climber's trail forks left partway up the steep hill (see photo). There are many forks and it can be hard to find the proper one, it usually has some flagging. If you are on the correct turnoff, you will reach a clearing and powerline within a few minutes. After about 40 minutes, just before the road goes downhill into the mine site, the trail leads up into the tress and into the Middle Grotto canyon. Follow the canyon and the trails along it's banks to a fork just before the Playground. The right fork leads to the Playground, take the left fork for Apocalypse Cave and Silent Auction. The trail re-enters the canyon to a fork in the drainage. Take the right drainage but do not follow it, instead look for an orange flagged trail that leads to the base of the wall. An alternative to the orange flagged trail is to scramble up the left drainage which will take you to the Afterthought Wall. Approach time is approximately 70 minutes.  The wall gets sun from late morning until early evening.

Topos and photos are shown from left to right. Enjoy!

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