Lessons of Oka

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Lessons of Oka mixed climb beside Murchison Falls click to enlarge…

A closeup of the mixed corner on Lesson’s of Oka, just right of Murchison Falls & Virtual Reality.

Grade & Length: III, WI4, 5.8, 150m

Approach: As for Murchison Falls: If coming from Lake Louise, drive North along the Icefeilds Parkway for about 45 minutes to the last drainage before a double roadcut which marks the start of a long hill down to the Saskatchewan River Crossing. If it is your first time here, it is easiest to just drive to the roadcut then turn around and drive back to the drainage. Park on the side of the road. The top of the climb is visible from the road and if you will be starting in the dark it is recommended to scout it out the day before.

Hike up the drainage for a couple minutes, then move into the trees on the left side and continue uphill for about an hour until the climbs come into view. Continue up low angle open slopes to the route. About 1.5 hrs total.

Route Description:
Murchison Falls area ice climbs. click to enlarge…

Murchison Falls, My Daddy’s a Psycho, Virtual Reality (WI6 – unformed), and Lessons of Oka

Climb the easy lower pitch of Murchison Falls, hike for a minute up the snow, then climb up and right on low angle ice to the base of the corner. The corner is about 40m long and is some super fun traditional style mixed climbing with reasonably good gear. From the top of the corner you can continue up a short pitch of ice if you like.

Descent: Rappel the route.

Gear: Screws including stubbies, a rock rack (if you had a #4 Camelot you would probably use it), and two ropes.

Objective Hazards: Occasional avalanche hazard on the last part of the approach during really bad conditions. Falling ice from all the hanging daggers in the vicinity of Virtual Reality is probably the biggest threat.

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