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Submitted by: Kirsten Maki
Date Added: 19-Dec-2017

A friend of mine was on Ice Stud about 2 weeks ago and dropped an iPhone - 'off to the right in the rocks'... if anyone happens to find it please let me know! (unlikely with the snow, but stranger things have happened!)
Submitted by: Zach Chase
Date Added: 02-Aug-2017

Hi all, 

I am looking for information on the Devil's Crater area. Is there anyone who could point me in the direction of a contact to correspond with regarding this? Thank you for your time! Zach


Please email

Submitted by: alex hill
Date Added: 14-Apr-2017

If you left your cordelette and lockers at the buffs, I picked it up. Let me know and I'll drop it off.

Date Added: 08-Dec-2016

 Hi all,

Looking forward to seeing the Thunder Bay ice conditions. As a southern ontario climber, I would much appreciate the local perspective.


Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 02-Aug-2016

 Hi All,

Unfortunately because of the wet conditions I am going to cancel the Skills Development at the Bluffs tonight. I f you are still keen to go climbing though I am going to go to the gym. If you plan on coming out flip me a text (7088544).


Submitted by: John Lever
Date Added: 10-Jun-2016

Hi I'm a new member of ACC (Thunder Bay) and looking to connect with others to go climbing.  I have limited experience (1st year climbing) but have done top-rope and lead/sport climbing courses and I'd like to try some intermediate i.e. 5.10 outdoor sport routes and more difficult top rope routes i.e. Clagmore.  I have climbed "Hamburger" at Silver Harbour and I can build a bomber anchor.  I hope to make it out on Tuesdays to the Bluffs when work allows.  I cam be reached at and cell 807.629.5774 or on Facebook Cheers

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 22-Apr-2016

 We have copies of the new "Superior Select" ice climbing guide available - member price: $30. email Frank

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 17-Apr-2016

IF you bring your dog to Silver Harbour, please keep it leashed at all times. Residents there have reported some (climber's) dogs running loose and they are not happy about it. 

Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 28-Feb-2016

 Sorry for the late update, access across the Nipigon River bridge has been restored. Get out there!

Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 10-Jan-2016

 WARNING! To all ice climbing planing to climb east of Thunder Bay. Orient Bay or Kama Bay access has been cut off until further notice.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 03-Nov-2015

 Tickets for the Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour, January 24, 2016, are now available from the Thunder Bay Communituy Auditorium or by phone, 684-4444. Don't delay! 

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 22-Oct-2015

 Spooktacular Climb planned for this Sunday has been cancelled due to weather.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 07-Oct-2015

 Two more Fall Events have been added to the calendar - Mt Helen and Pass Lake Spooktacular! Check the calendar and sign up early.

Submitted by: Andrew Bohonis
Date Added: 01-Oct-2015

My black hoodie disappeared at the bluffs today. Did you find it? If so send me a message. Cheers.


Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 17-Sep-2015

Please note date change for Rocktoberfest - Sunday, October 4.
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 15-Sep-2015

 Tuesady evening open clinbing at the Scenic Bluffs - 4:30 - 8 pm. FREE for members, all gear (except shoes) provided. (Please leave your doogs at home.)

Submitted by: Peter Drzymala
Date Added: 17-Aug-2015

Claghorn Long Wall:  New Trail

We have marked a new trail into the Long Wall Area flagged with pink tape and starting at roadside where old blue-flagged trail started.  The new trail is way less flooded (i.e. does not require hip waders) and spits you out at the roof section at the base of the Long Wall to the left of the ascent/descent gully.  At boulder field, follow the red-tipped stakes and pink tape to the right to the developed area.  The trail is still vegetated but better way to go.

Submitted by: Peter Drzymala
Date Added: 17-Aug-2015


Submitted by: Peter Drzymala
Date Added: 17-Aug-2015


Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 17-Aug-2015

Hi Folks,

Just to confirm that Bluffs climbing this week will be Tuesday at 430pm. Hope to see you there!


Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 11-Aug-2015

Hi Folks, 

I unfortunately can't make it out to the Bluffs tonight. I can make it out Thursday evening though. Meet at the Bluffs parking lot at 5pm Thursday. Hope to see you there!


Submitted by: Kevin Shorthouse
Date Added: 04-Aug-2015

Bluffs is on this evening. Meet at parking lot for 6pm. Cheers!

Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 27-Jul-2015

 Hi Everyone,

Just to make sure people know, Bluffs Climbing is on for tuesday/tomorrow. Meet in the parking lot at 530. See you there!


Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 21-Jul-2015

 As per FB post, "Open climbing at the Blufs is on tonight, Tuesday, July 21, starting at 5:30 pm. _Jeff"

Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 13-Jul-2015

 Hi Folks,

Due to scheduling issues this week Tuesday night Bluffs climbing will be Wednesday instead. Meet in the parking lot (Wednesday) at 530!


Submitted by: Jeff Gilpin
Date Added: 13-Jul-2015

 Hi Folks,

Due to scheduling issues this week Tuesday night Bluffs climbing will be Wednesday instead. Meet in the parking lot (Wednesday) at 530!


Submitted by: Joe Duncan
Date Added: 11-Jul-2015

 Thanks to the ACC group leaders for today's clinic. What a great refresher course and definitely learned new safety techniques for lead climbing.. Thanks guys

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 16-Jun-2015

 With the start of another peregrine falcon banding season, (our twentieth!) we were off to a good start with 4 chicks near Oliver Creek Rd, for a total of 553 birds total, and a peculiar new record - the most hits on my helmet by an agitated parent. More than a dozen solid slams, each one of which would have destroyed a Hero cam or knocked my helmet off if it wasn't secure! What have they been eating??

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 14-Jun-2015

 Thanks to everyone who helped make the Silver Harbour climb/lead clnic + BBQ a great success today! We finally had some stellar weather and the BBQ was long overdue. Watch for the next such session . . . maybe a "traditional" Rock, Rack 'n Ribs? Mmmmm. . . .

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 14-Jun-2015

 Thanks to everyone who helped make the Silver Harbour climb/lead clnic + BBQ a great success today! We finally had some stellar weather and the BBQ was long overdue. Watch for the next such session . . . maybe a "traditional" Rock, Rack 'n Ribs? Mmmmm. . . .

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 11-May-2015

 Thanks to the crew who helped with the annual spring clean up at the Scenic Bluffs, May 9.  We focused on the trails above and below the crags, collecting 6 bags of trash for the dump run. No couches hauled out this time!

Submitted by: Robert Farrow
Date Added: 11-Mar-2015

Super big thanks to Frank and Terry for making my very first Lead Climb happen and we also did a first ascent on a new climb...see the new routes section under local climbing. Video of the climb can be seen at Thanks Guys!
Submitted by: Robert Farrow
Date Added: 01-Mar-2015

Big Thanks goes out to Frank and Terry for putting on the Fest'v/Open Ice climb on Saturday at Orient Bay on Cascade Falls! Super weather...for once! Great bunch of climbers and awesome food later on at the Nipigon Café! Thanks Guys!
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 23-Feb-2015

 Please use the February 28th calendar date to sign up for Festiv'Ice, which was originally scheduled for February 21.

Submitted by: christian schlumpf
Date Added: 31-Jan-2015

Hey thunder bay climbers,

I'm an ACC member that just this moment arrived in your town for a short stay, until thursday. I don't know anyone here yet and am very keen to get out ice climbing, snowshoeing, or just meeting for a drink! Please let me know if you're available ! My phone number is 647 880 0202.


Christian Schlumpf



Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 26-Jan-2015

THANKS to Frank & Judy for organizing another excellent BMFF! 25th Anniversary!  Through their dedicated efforts we can keep the costs of belonging to and participating in events in the Thunder Bay ACC Section to an absolute minimum.  Great job!

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 12-Jan-2015

 Big thanks to Terrry, Monica, Adrienne, Joey and Dylan for helping with the second beginner's ice clinic. Participants were warned that it might not work because conditions were at the extreme end of the spectrum, but it DID work and we had a great time!

Submitted by: Thomas Trist
Date Added: 01-Jan-2015

 Hey Guys! 

Looking to get out on some Ice. Im not too familiar with Ice so im looking to tag along and learn the basics if anyone is heading out and wouldn't mind showing me a thing or two.  Give me a shout on fb or text at 807 707 3750. Cheers. Tom.

Submitted by: Kurt Schmidt
Date Added: 24-Nov-2014

Looking for a seconder this winter for those times when your buddy is busy? I am looking for opportunities to get out with some experienced climbers!  I am in Northwestern Ontario,  but am down climbing in Thunder Bay and Nipigon fairly regularly throughout the season.  email me at or message me on facebook.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 21-Oct-2014

 The final night of Tuesday night open rock climbing at the Scenic Bluffs is "No-Go" due to the low temps. Watch for the winter schedule of events in mid to late November. If you have any ideas for our winter schedule or want to organize/lead an event, give me a call! Frank 807 577-7950.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 18-Oct-2014

Rocktoberfest has been cancelled due to the poor weather forecast for tomorrow, October 19.

Submitted by: Brad Hughson
Date Added: 10-Sep-2014

Anyone looking for some new cams?  I have a new set of Totem cams i'm looking to get rid of.  Pretty unique little devices, you can place and clip into a single set of lobes. $250 OBO for the set.


Give me a shout if you're interested.


Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 08-Sep-2014

Shovel Point this weekend - campover option for Saturday night has been cancelled only.  We will leave early Sunday morning and return that evening. Shovel Point is about a 2.5-3hr drive from Thunder Bay down the North Shore towards Duluth. Passports are a must!

Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 02-Sep-2014

Climbing Cancelled Tonight. Scattered intense rain cells passing through the area.
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 19-Aug-2014

 Climbing at the Bluffs tonight, August 19th, is cancelled due to rain.   _Frank

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 27-Jul-2014

 Thanks to Terry and Monica for answering the call on such short notice to work with Thunder Bay Toursim and PBS television on Friday to shoot a segment on climbing in Thunder Bay as part of the multiple national Emmy Award winning series, "Travel Scope."  It was a lot of fun with a great crew!  See    

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 27-Jul-2014

 Thanks to Terry and Monica for answering the call on such short notice to work with Thunder Bay Toursim and PBS television on Friday to shoot a segment on climbing in Thunder Bay as part of the multiple national Emmy Award winning series, "Travel Scope."  It was a lot of fun with a great crew!  See    

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 28-May-2014

 Thanks to everyone who helped out with our first Tuesday night open climbing at the Bluffs and welcome to our new members! Finally, winter seems to have left us!

Submitted by: Peter Drzymala
Date Added: 26-May-2014

 Claghorn Long Wall approach Alert:  DON'T  follow the blue tape approach! A muskrat or such animal has flooded the approach. Water to knee/hip level in spots. Better to park beside 1st clearing on right before blue tape approach. Then tromp/bushwack along tree line on right to far right side of wall.

Submitted by: Patrick Martel
Date Added: 24-May-2014

 Left a new rope in Pass Lake last Monday. 60m Blue Beal in beat up black and green rope bag. Went back on Saturday and it's gone. If someone found it, please contact me.


Patrick Martel 

Submitted by: Gabriel Thompson
Date Added: 20-May-2014

 Any Tuesday night bluff sessions coming up? Maybe next week with the warm weather coming? 



Submitted by: Peter Drzymala
Date Added: 19-May-2014

 I was just wondering if anyone has better directions to"The Winkles" or "The Kennel" then what is printed in the guidebook.  Thanks, Peter

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 11-May-2014

 Thanks to everyone who helped with the annual Bluffs cleanup on Saturday. The trails and area weren't in too bad shape so it was a pretty easy go this year. The ground and routes are still pretty wet so if you're checking out the area, be careful atop the cliffs - the wet moss can be a real surprise when you step on it.

Submitted by: Robert Farrow
Date Added: 30-Mar-2014

A BIG THANKS to Kevin, Frank, Terry and Jeff for putting on the "Lead Ice climbing Clinic" today in Orient Bay! We had all kinds of weather there today but still learned lots!! Thanks again!! Rob
Submitted by: Gabriel Thompson
Date Added: 13-Mar-2014

 Super fun trip last weekend out to Poweline Falls! Meet lots of great people and had a great day climbing in the sun.  Thanks to the trip leaders - Frank, Terry and Kevin for such a great day and an awesome supper at the Nipegon Cafe.  Alpine Club of Thunder Bay rocks! 

Submitted by: Robert Farrow
Date Added: 08-Mar-2014

Shout out to the Club for putting on a super event today...awesome day of climbing today! Thanks!!
Submitted by: Lou Hibbard
Date Added: 06-Mar-2014

 Looking for ice climbing partner Orient Bay area this weekend March 8-10. Backup plan is the event on Saturday and hope to meet people. 

 A long time partner had medical issues at last minute and had to cancel planned trip this weekend. Used to lead WI4 and have done 25 routes at Orient Bay. BUT haven't led waterfall ice in 15 years as I've been focusing on rock. Now looking to start on WI2 for my leads and working up to WI3+. Can follow anything as I've been toproping at Sandstone, MN all winter. 

Former very solid, safe,  all around climber having climbed well over a 1000 routes. Have profile on Mountain Project and But shoulder issues forced a long break and now I'm getting back into it. 

Lou Hibbard

651-733-9672 day or 612-247-1817 cell

Submitted by: Kevin Shorthouse
Date Added: 09-Feb-2014

We are planning on running an ice leading clinic in the near future. Please contact Kevin Shorthouse or Frank Pianka via email or sign up to a Flex Schedule event on March 30th (and specify you want to participate in the ice lead clinic) if you want to attend. This does not mean that the lead clinic will necessarily run on March 30th. We will contact all those interested and pick a date then.


Submitted by: Joe Duncan
Date Added: 06-Feb-2014

 Why doesn't the club offer lead ice climbing clinics?


Submitted by: Joe Duncan
Date Added: 02-Feb-2014

 Wow, another beautiful day for ice climbing with the club at white lightening!  Glad everything went well and seeing new faces.   Glad to see the trip leaders out their providing guidance and advice!


Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 31-Jan-2014

This video is why I have been so vigilant about making sure people "dig in" and get their vehicles well off the travelled portion of the highway when parking in Orient Bay. This video was shot a few weeks ago by an obviously terrified truck driver driving through the Orient Bay corridor.

Dig in people you could save a life or at the very least, your mirrors and paint.

Frequent spots of violation I have noticed over the years:

Parking on the corner below Cascade Falls instead of walking the extra minute from the normal parking area on the straight portion at the entrance to the un-plowed parking lot.

Parking on the hill/corner below Amy R instead of walking 5 minutes from the Ice Palace parking area. Even in cases like this year where the Ice Palace Parking area is inaccessible, you can still dig in at the entrance and be well off the road.

Parking anywhere below Reflection Wall instead of walking the extra 7-10 minutes from either the Cascade Falls parking area or Ice Palace Parking area.

Submitted by: Robert Farrow
Date Added: 22-Jan-2014

Thanks to Frank and Terry for putting on the Intermediate Ice Clinic this past Sunday! The Sun made for a great day of climbing and learning! Nice to see some regulars and some new faces there!

Submitted by: erik howells
Date Added: 11-Jan-2014

Trail now punched into Mellow Yellow and Hully Gully. Mellow Yellow is in fine form.


Submitted by: Mark Walraad
Date Added: 05-Jan-2014

A big thank you to Frank and Terry for running a great beginners ice clinic. You provided a first time climber with positive and fun event. Looking forward to my next opportunity to climb and learn. Thank you.

Submitted by: erik howells
Date Added: 31-Dec-2013

Too cold to climb so we punched in snowshoe trail into Grand Mardi. It is in full and in good form.


Submitted by: Joe Duncan
Date Added: 28-Dec-2013

Nice to get out for my first climb this season with my new equipment. Thanks to Frank and Terry for sharing their climbing knowledge with myself and Rob, the club has provided me with the skills and confidence to become a stronger and safer ice climber.


Submitted by: tyler vandermolen
Date Added: 13-Dec-2013

Looking for a climbing partner for next week. I am in Marathon but am mobile.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 04-Dec-2013

Q - How can you tell Santa's a climbing bum? A - He's got a beard, always wears the same clothes, and works only one day of the year. 

Submitted by: duncan joseph
Date Added: 01-Dec-2013


Looking to buy ice screws.  If you have any ice screws that you r wanting to sell inbox me!



Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 21-Nov-2013

 Here is an interesting read.

Submitted by: Brad Hughson
Date Added: 01-Nov-2013

I have been fortunate enough to get in touch with totem, a Spanish climbing equipment manufacturer in order to do a gear review for there totem cams. Being from Thunder Bay, Ontario i felt that this would be a great proving ground for these cams and also a great introduction to Canadian rock. I proposed the idea to their sales team and after a few months of back and forth talks I received a beautiful set of totem cams in the mail. Upon first inspection the cams seem very well engineered. Being that I'm a mechanical engineer by profession, I can appreciate all the design and testing effort that went into producing these cams. These cams have a few differences from what most would call conventional camming units. Firstly, they have no stem from which all the load is transferred to the lobes. The totem cams have a series of cables which allow the user to activate the cam lobes and also carry the load from the clip in point to the lobes. The second difference is that these cams allow the user to place and clip into a single set of lobes. Think so those shallow flaring pin scars on your favourite aid route. These cams make what were scary marginal placements into confidence building points of aid. The manufacturer does not recommend placing a single set of lobes for free climbing as it essentially halves the fall rating. The third major difference is the camming angle at which these units meet the rock. the angle has been modified to increase the force which is directed on the rock. the new angle also allows the units to be placed in quite flaring cracks. I have gotten out to play with these cams a few times now and have been quite impressed with how easily they place and how well they hold in falls. I feel as though it will take some time to get used to grabbing these cams in a hurry to place, I remember grabbing one in a panic and not being able to find the trigger. This was simply due to not having used the cams enough yet. But when I finally placed that cam in that oddly flaring crack and took my whip on it, it held fast! I feel like these cams are well engineered and would be an asset to any trad or aid climbers rack. They are however, quite a bit bigger than similar BD or Metolius cams, so I wouldn't recommend anything more than a single set of Totems. You may not find that odd flaring or shallow pod too often, but when you do you'll be glad you've got them! 

Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 22-Oct-2013

CANCELLATION: Due to the cold and wet weather, climbing is cancelled tonight at the Bluffs. 

Submitted by: Patrick Martel
Date Added: 10-Oct-2013


Went to Claghorn Yesterday. Again I Could not access the "long wall" by the blue flagged trail because I did not have my fishing waders. I had same issues few years ago and did not return until yesterday.

In addition to climbing on the weekend of 26-27th, we should probably build a causeway.

Hunters are hunting trail and the road. There are empty shells and exploded birds remains along the road. Hunters in the bush on the prowl for moose. Some approached us asking about all that new activity around claghorn, to ensure we were not intending to encroach on their hunting turf. I suggest you WEAR VERY BRIGHT COLORS and put something similar on your dog as we did.

We Climbed at the Outward Bound wall instead. What beautiful rock! I cannot believe that I waited so long to climb there. Wow! Full pitches on fantastic rock. Has anyone made a more detailed topo or documented this area? The guidebook is vague, uses the word "appears to" several times and the grading is, in my opinion, inadequate. Is Shackleton (trad**) the Left facing dihedral or the face on the Right across from the chain link terracing. The beautiful dihedral finger crack with overhanging exit (corresponding to the picture on page 152) is not 5.7. The bolted mix technical face between the dihedral and the chimney (faith) sharing same mix exit, is fun but way more than 5.7. The only 5.7 line I saw; was a serrated oblique line, moving Right chimney from at about 7m up, then angulating toward same exit point.

Can someone clarify this please? 

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 19-Sep-2013

 Please note date change for Claghorn Long Wall trip from Sunday October 13th (on the long weekend) to Saturday, October 26th. Info: Frank

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 16-Sep-2013

 ACC Tech Time #3 date change - from October 10 to October 9.  Info: Frank,

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 15-Sep-2013

 "Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called Ego." _Friedrich Nietzsche

Submitted by: Cindy Winser
Date Added: 09-Sep-2013

You got my support too. I 've been climbing for 33 yrs and expect my partner to safety check me and my set-ups and welcome an offer of a fireman's and often request one when you have to downclimb to get on rapell even if I have a personal anchor. I have also been met with ignorant comments from time to time when politely offering safety "tips" but most people welcome an opportunity to learn something.

Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 08-Sep-2013

 During a club event if that kind of attitude were to pop up, 1 of two things would happen.

  1. That person would be asked to leave.
  2. The entire event would be cancelled ,effective immediately. If the person refused to leave. It would be quite clear as to the reason why the event was being shut down.

If this were to happen during my personal time, and if it were my gear, The day is over. Wait for them to get on the ground and drop the ropes, pull the anchor, go home with or without that person.

There is no place for that kind of attitude in the vertical world. I've been at this game coming on 15 years now and I have never resused safety advise, nor will I. I don't know it all and probably never will. One thing I do know is, I will do what is needed too come home after every climb.

Doesn't matter wheather I am multipitch ice climbing in the rockies or doing laps at the bluffs, either place can be fatal if the right precautions aren't taken and the #@#@ hits the fan.

I can go on and on about this.

Good on you Andrew for recognizing the situation and trying to change it.


Submitted by: Andrew Mendes
Date Added: 08-Sep-2013

So by now a most people in the Alpine club know me, and I am still pretty new at climbing, and not claiming to be an expert by any means. I've only been climbing for a year, all though I try to go as much as I can, which usually works out to a few times a week. However today I had something discouraging happen, and I decided maybe I would voice my opinion on climbing safety and peoples attitude.
I have seen a few things that make me shake my head, and I mean stuff that is obviously careless, dumb or just plain lazy. However sometimes when speaking up on such things I can encounter hostility.
The incident I am referring to today played out as follows:
My good friend who I have known for over 10 years and had been climbing with since I started climbing, invited one of his friends out to climb with us. This person was an LU student that I am assuming he met last year at the indoor climbing wall.
So I showed up to pick this person up and the first thing I noticed was no helmet. Now I understand that there are still some people that are very vocal about having a helmet, and I always use mine. But she stated that she forgot it back at home and she would have it mailed up. I didn’t like this, but I know a lot of people that just won't wear one (especially the indoor climbing gym stars) so I did not even get into it. I said to my friend “this is your friend, she is your responsibility, and she is not belaying me.” Having stated that I let her come along to Pass Lake.

So off we went to Pass Lake.
So upon arriving my friend got in a lengthy conversation with some other climbers so we left him at the bottom of the cliff and his friend came up the scramble with me to set up the top rope. On the way up she commented saying how nice it is to get outside to climb and that she had climbed for 5 years but only the last year had started to get outside. She made it pretty clear to me that she had lots of gym experience and not very much out door experience.

So we reached the area where we were to set up the climb, and my friend also came up and joined us and decided that we would build a top pope anchor. Upon building the anchor I asked him to rappel down and hold the lines for a fireman belay. Once he reached the bottom it was her turn to go down. She had put her harness on and I noticed she had no Personal Anchor, or anything to secure herself with. She was intent on steeping down to the anchor without this basic safety item. She did have a prussic cord however, and for a moment there I thought she was even going to use it. However she seemed opposed to taking the extra minute to to set it up for some reason. So the prussic cord went back into her pack where it is completely useless. Knowing she had no anchor I offered her my PASS and stated I could walk down, which she refused. I also told her I would be more then willing to walk down the scramble with her or I could get a piece of short webbing set up for her. She was opposed to all the practical solutions and insisted on her asinine way. She also made a comment about how she did not like repelling down with both ends of rope, and that she always repelled off of just the one end, because apparently she felt she was too light to repel as she was only 110lbs. So by this time I was understandably getting concerned and the alarm bells were going off in my head.

So my friend called up and asked if we were going to need him to fireman belay. I called down “YES!”. She immediately called back “NO! DO NOT GIVE ME A FIREMAN BELAY!”
Of course I had to speak out about this as I felt uneasy that she had no prussic, no personal anchor and was stepping over the edge with a 50ft drop at a place she had never been before to an anchor below her and refusing the only thing left that could save her life. So I said “You should probably let him fireman belay you, it is much safer and all he has to do is hold the ends if something goes wrong, and I would feel a lot better.”

This was where she lost it. She immediately snapped back and me an yelled at my saying loud enough for everyone to hear “How long have you been climbing?”. I was kinda shocked and I said “what?”. She replied with “I SAID HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN CLIMBING?”. I Stated “what does that have to do with anything?”.
She replied by saying “I have been climbing longer then you so PISS OFF!”.
So I can only assume I somehow stepped over the line somewhere here.
So I looked at her and said “You know what go for it, do what you want, I am going to go somewhere else and look for another climb because I can't watch this.”
I then went for a walk down to where another group of climbers were that I knew and had climbed with in the past. I repelled down there rope and hung out there for a bit while I cooled down. I then made my way back and climbed with another group with a ACC member I knew, and knew was competent.
My friend kept calling over and asking if I was ready to go on the route they set up which was next to where I was and I stated that I was going to focus on the route the other group was on instead (It really was the route I came to work anyway).

So what the hell did I do wrong?

Is this person's ego that fragile that giving them a basic safety tip has to result in a hostile response and immediate challenge?

I also noticed that people don't seem to feel it necessary to ever use a prussic or fireman belay on repel.
I was out at one location this year where a person with us repelled close to 90ft and refused to use a prussic or accept a fireman belay.
So what is going on? Is this an ego thing?
Do prussic knots, personal anchors, and fireman belays make repelling less cool?
I feel I am missing something here.

Now maybe I am arrogant, because I feel that when something is dangerous or makes you feel uncomfortable, as climbing partner or member of a climbing group it is always your responsibility to state such things and never keep them to yourself.
When climbing as a group one should always act as if they are a caregiver for their climbing partners, because their lives are in your hands as well as yours. So always double checking everything and do not be afraid to point out a mistake, or dangerous practise. No matter what we say to any family member or friend that worries about us climbing, and no matter how it is rationalized in our minds or how many times we get out on the rock or ice, climbing is STIL an inherently dangerous activity, and at the end of the day I want to climb with the responsible partner who is looking out for me.

And to anyone who is offended by being corrected, leave your pride at home and come back at the end of the day, rather then be the individual or member of the next group that was involved in the big accident that ruined climbing at ____________ location for everyone else in our community.

Climb Safe,


Here is a video of an experienced climber falling 60' in a repel accident that could have been avoided with a fireman catch or even a properly rigged autoblock.

Submitted by: Aric Fishman
Date Added: 21-Aug-2013

Hey there everyone, 

At Mt.Godfrey there is a  beautiful face with an overhanging headwall. It is the wall to the left of Echoes of Totem, and right of Lost Traditions. There was a really worn out black webbing rappel anchor built on a small pine tree at the top of this wall. Me and a friend put 2 sport anchors at the top of the wall the other day, and went today to go toprope it. There was some loose rock already cleaned off the route but was not scrubbed at all and am not sure if it has been climbed before. It is an awesome climb and I would love to bolt that face if I can get figure out who's route that is and get the OK. 

If you know any info about who rappelled and cleaned the loose rocks off this climb, please let me know!! 

Submitted by: kyle brooks
Date Added: 06-Jul-2013

hi looking to see if any one has a mimi traxion or soloist for sale

622 0407

Submitted by: Patrick Martel
Date Added: 03-Jul-2013

Planning on bolting the 2 following line in pass lake as full sport lines.

Just ensuring there are no objections.

 Self obsessd and sexy (with a direct finish on Left away from TV dinner) 10a

Angimina's (with direct roof finish) 10b/c


Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 22-Jun-2013

Silver Harbour CANCELLED for Sunday. Too wet.

Submitted by: Brad Hughson
Date Added: 16-Jun-2013

Does anyone have any old pitons that they are looking to part with? Lost arrows, knife blades, beaks and peckers.

Let me know if you have any and how much you want for them$$.



Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 16-Jun-2013

Pass Lake is a 'GO' for today.  Hopefully the sun stays out and the rain gives up.

Submitted by: Shaun Bos
Date Added: 12-Jun-2013

Did anyone happen to find 2 blue slings and 4 brown locking biners on the top anchors near Flake Til You Shake at Bluffs over the weekend? I accidently left them up there without thinking and left, went back tonight and they're gone. Hoping someone picked them up.


Submitted by: Terry Prodanyk
Date Added: 11-Jun-2013

New Waiver Link on ACC page:

Please print-out and fill-in this waiver before coming to any event if you can.

If not, we'll always have extra copies at the events. This will just help save time for the trip leaders on-site.



Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 09-Jun-2013

 Thanks to all who participated in the TR anchors clinic on a beautiful Saturday afternoon and to Terry for helping run it. Now make us proud - don't get hurt! Your ongoing homework - refer to your clinic handout and practise the basic "Roper's Repertoire for Rigging and Rescue."

Submitted by: Ashley Moore
Date Added: 06-Jun-2013


It sounds like you'd need two ropes and you'd have to tie them together to rap down. Depending on how it's set up maybe you can do it with one rope (if there is another rap station). You'd want to find all this out before you go try it though. Check mountain project and it's always good to talk to others who have done the climb. Hope that helps.


Submitted by: Shaun Bos
Date Added: 06-Jun-2013

I have a quick question if someone can help me out.

I'm going on a trip and one of the stops is in SD, which features a 200 ft sport climb that I really really want to do; however, I'm a bit stuck because I don't know how to get off the thing when I get to the top (it being ~60m tall and me having a 70m rope). It is a spire so I can't top out and hike down. I've tried to find youtube videos of the climb and the only one that I can find that is helpful shows a guy leading with two 70m ropes, but the video cuts out just as he clips the chains so I don't know how he rapps down.

If anyone can give me any info on how to tackle this thing I would be very appreciative, as I really don't want to miss out on this line when I'm there.

Thanks, Shaun

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 28-May-2013

 FINALLY! A Tuesday evening that isn't too wet to run our first open climbing session at the Scenic Bluffs. Could be cool, so dress warm. New waivers are in effect, but you can help a lot by going to the national site at and using the "quick link" to access "waivers" where you can print out a copy and have it all filled in before you arrive and have your signature witnessed.

Info: Frank 577-7950,

Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 24-May-2013

Thanks to all who helped with the annual Scenic Bluffs cleanup!"

Submitted by: Dallas Markall
Date Added: 21-May-2013

Accident Report
I am writing this as a reminder to be careful as we all head out climbing this season, as things can happen quickly and have the potential to changes lives forever. Please take the time to check your gear and set-ups before leaving the ground.
 On Monday May 6/2013 I started my day like most other climbing days. I was chomping at the bit to get out on the rock as it was the 1st nice day of the season. I dropped my kids off at school, quick stop at Canadian Tire to pick up some new wire brushes, grabbed a coffee and headed out to Banana Lake climbing area for the day. The cliff is located approx. 20 minutes from the city of Dryden. The pull off is 4km down a logging road and then about a 1km walk in to the cliff.
At about 9:00am I started out by cleaning off the bottom of a new line on a slightly overhanging arête. I went to the top of the cliff and placed the anchors for the climb. Back at the bottom, I worked out the 1st few moves and clipping stances and placed the 1st two bolts for the climb. This took me until about 10:30am. The drill bits I had were on the dull side so I used this as a good excuse to do some climbing instead of cleaning for the rest of the day.
I went over to a route called Zipper, a 5.7 sport climb. I set up my rope solo gear and lead up. I have a bolt anchor placed at the bottom of this area to facilitate rope soloing. After leading Zipper I set up a top anchor on the bolts at the top and proceeded to climb 4 laps of the route. From this set up I was also able to access the next climb over, Master Spy, a 5.9. After climbing this twice I figured I would move over to the next set of anchors to climb a couple more routes before calling it a day. I set the rope to rappel over to the other anchors approx. 5 meters to my left and about 5 meters lower. I weighted the rope and began to traverse over. About half way across I found myself free falling from about 15 meters.
I can still remember the exact moment the rope went loose and the moment I hit the ground. Luckily for me I did not lose consciousness. I immediately stood up, realized I was covered in blood, and needed to get myself out of there.  I pulled off my harness, grabbed my phone, yelled for my dog, and began walking down the trail, looking for cell reception to call for help. I was able to make the call as I reached my vehicle and the ambulance and police were dispatched. I was concerned that the ambulance wouldn’t be able to make it down the logging road, which was in rough condition due to spring melt, so I tried to start driving out. This was easier said than done! Opening the door to my truck had been the last straw for my shoulder and it now hung by my side, giving me only one arm to talk to the dispatcher while trying to steer with my knees. I made it about 10ft and before getting stuck in the slushy mud of the road. Luck was on my side at this point as I hadn’t been stuck for more than a minute before an MNR fire crew, destined for training down the remote road, discovered me. They were able to drive me out to the main road to meet the ambulance.
All in all I got off very lucky. I sustained a dislocated shoulder, laceration to my head which took some staples, broken foot, severely bruised tail bone, minor internal bleeding which took care of itself within a couple days and just some other minor bumps and bruises.
When I think of what I could have lost and the pain I could have caused to those close to me, I consider myself extremely lucky to have walked away from this.
So what went wrong? A friend went out to take a look at the site and retrieve my gear for me. After taking a look at the set-up and gear in place, it seems that the locking biner I had clipped to the bottom bolt and tied off on a figure 8 had walked off and let go. There was no failure of bolts, rope, knots or biner.
The big question for me and my family was this: could I have prevented this from happening? The simple answer is that everything is preventable. I now am looking at this as a learning experience, albeit a painful one. There are things I will do differently next time that I should have been doing all along.
I’ve replayed the scene in my head over and over since that day, and though I thought that I had locked the biner, I obviously hadn’t.  From now on I will: Check the set-up on each lap, use an auto locking biner, and make sure everything is backed up. Had I used a back-up on the ground anchor, this would not have happened. Rope soloing is not the same as having a belayer at the bottom; there should always be a back-up of the bottom tie-off. And I will always wear a helmet. I do use helmets in certain situations but not always; I will never climb without one again.
     Bottom line, go out and enjoy the best sport in the world. But please, take the time to check your gear and set-ups. It could make all the difference in the world.  
As someone who has been climbing for 22 years and felt confident in my set-ups, I wanted to write this as a reminder to everyone that it can happen to you. We all get to the crag and get excited to get on the rock; please take the time to double-check everything so that you and your family don’t have to go through what I have, or worse, put the pieces together when you don’t make it back home at the end of the day.
Thanks and happy climbing!

Submitted by: Courtney Rogalla
Date Added: 19-May-2013

Hey everyone

Found a pair of climbing shoes at the bluffs on Thursday night if they are your please let me know 7680956


Adam and Courtney

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 16-May-2013

 As we get into rock season . . . be careful out there.

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 13-May-2013


Submitted by: Shaun Bos
Date Added: 02-May-2013

Kyle and Duncan,

Thank you for taking the time to reply to my shout, it is much appreciated. I have not had much experience with trad climbing, mostly because of the amount of money required to get the gear, and sport climbing is definitely more "my calling"; however, as I stated in my original post, I completely understand and respect the need to preserve traditional climbs. Likewise, I respect that it is not in the best interest of the climbing community to bolt a rock route where an ice climb forms because of the impact it might have on the ice formation, not to mention the affect ice has on the hardware itself. The primary concern of my original post was about safety.

I know you both to be very capable climbers, and thus, you may feel like the chances of falling on a 5.10b like Everything Goes Green to be less likely than others. I personally remember the first time I climbed EGG (one of the bleak moments it was bolted) and I might have fallen 5 or 6 times before I finally got the redpoint. To quote yourselves regarding EGG in the New Routes section: "

We lead it on gear, the first placement 15 feet up was a little dubious. i would not really want to whip on the placements" which I interpret as a safety issue when climbing on gear.

If there was a new beautiful 5.13+ climb that was put up around here where the first placement is halfway up the climb and the FFAer stated that they would not want to whip on the placements, I doubt it would see a second free ascent, nor very many attempts at one due to safety issues and the high potential for injury. Another example is concerning the Nose route on El Cap. This is one of the most iconic traditional routes in the world which, since the first ascent, has had fixed gear and bolts protecting some of the pitches. This route has been free-solo'd by climbers like Alex Honnold and Dean Potter because they are very capable climbers; however, for them to suggest that all of the fixed gear and bolts be removed from the route because it can be climbed without them (though not exactly safely) would limit the number of people who would want to experience and enjoy this route. Another example, closer to home, would be my experiences at the Bluffs. There has been a few times where some buddies and I would go out with nothing but bouldering mats and boulder some of the shorter and easier routes. For us to chop the anchors and deem the route as a boulder problem would extremely limit the number of people who can enjoy the route.

As Patrick stated, it comes down to the idea that no one person, or group of people, owns the rock and that people of all disciplines and skill-levels should be respected. By all means, I am not suggesting that a climb like Go Joe, which can be safely protected with gear only, should be bolted just because it can be. I am talking about climbs that cannot be protected safely with gear only so that all climbers can enjoy a free ascent without a greater risk of injury. Furthermore, just because a route is bolted, does not mean that the bolts need to be used - as Alex Honnold demonstrates day in and day out. The route is still there and can be climbed on gear only or, if one is so inclined, as a free-solo. For people who respect and embrace the traditional side of climbing, they have the possibility to ignore the bolts and have fun.


Submitted by: Duncan Hutchison
Date Added: 01-May-2013

As the other guy who removed the bolts from "EGG", I totally agree with Kyle.

When I first started climbing, I would have loved that route to be bolted too. But as my experience with traditional climbing increased, so did my respect for the style, classic lines, and people who embrace it. The goal for me is not to be a "ballsy or bold". Its to be creative with protection to make it as safe as possible and reduce the impact to the area. I have climbed sport routes that seemed more dangerous than EGG. There are plenty of new routes at pass lake that could be developed as sport routes. Great! Put them up! i would love to help. I like a good sport route as much as the next guy/gal. The nice thing about TBay is there is lots of rock to go around.


Submitted by: kyle brooks
Date Added: 01-May-2013

Hi everyone, wow this is a hot conversation.  I was one the guys who had removed the bolts from that climb.  People talk about Pass Lake being a sport climbing crag . It is also a tradition climbing area with over 24 + trad routes, some include the scary 5 Mile Roof FFA in 1988  which is crazy run out near the top and Go Joe 1982 .  We are not trying to upset people or start a bolt war, we are just trying to preserve some of the FFA trad routes whether the gear is plentiful or obscure.  I think of routes like Mercy Me in Squamish with a run-out pitch and there are line ups of people to head up it.   No one changed that route, and that is the way it was FFA in 1975. We contributed to 3 bolted routes at Pass Lake  and refitted 1 route with new hardware. I love to climb sport routes, but I also think its great to preserve the traditional style of climbing of the routes that were done that way, especially when access is 2 min walk to the top for the best top roping in Thunder Bay.    Sorry if I have caused any problems in this great climbing community.
Kyle Brooks

Submitted by: Patrick Martel
Date Added: 30-Apr-2013

There has been some controversy about bolting "Everything Goes Green". I’m a trad climber at heart and understand the respect of classic trad lines. The very broad majority of local climbers agreed that bolting the line was in best interest of local climbing community. “EGG” is even a sport line in short sport climb area in the most recent local guide book. There was an informal poll done for 2 years before bolting it. Everyone approached, but exeption wanted it bolted or were indifferent to it. The bolting positions had been selected with multiple people marking best bolts spots so it was safe and not advantaging tall or short.

It’s about the principle that one person does not own a crag. One foolhardy or ballsy individual who is willing to do a dangerous climb on dismal protection should not suddenly own the right to the cliff. If the local climbing community feels it should be a sport route; individual ego or entitlement should not be permitted to ruin it for everybody else.

Bolting a route is expensive and doing it well takes time. Nobody will rebolt it again, unless a clear message is sent that this bolt chopping is not appreciated or tolerated by the majority of the local climbers. So it's not chopped again. The rock is now scarred and holes will have to be fixed.

The culprit of the “EGG” bolts chopping should give hangers back and probably also provide new replacement bolts.


Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 30-Apr-2013

 Here are a few things to think about:

 . . . and a challenge. - Set up a safe test rap system (with worst case failure considerations) using a EDK (bend) and try to get it to flip under any typical rap scenario you can think of. Call me when you are ready to demo success.

Submitted by: Shaun Bos
Date Added: 29-Apr-2013

Can anyone explain to me the obsession of chopping bolts?

Let me preface this by saying, I understand that bolting a climb that can be safely climbed using gear should be avoided; however, climbs that cannot be safely climbed using gear, if people want to invest the money and time into bolting it, that should be respected.

I was out at Pass Lake and noticed that someone had chopped the bolts on Everything Goes Green, again. This is a climb that, in my opinion and many others, cannot be safely climbed on gear alone. In fact, I would challenge the person who chopped the bolts to lead it on gear and take a fall on each placement -- though I hope they don't because it will result in a guaranteed deck.

Sick and the Afflicted at the Bluffs is another climb that, though it may be able to be lead ongear alone, you would be one ballsy individual to attempt it, let alone project it. I have heard that the Bluffs is supposed to be a "beginner friendly crag" which is all fine and good; however, how many beginners are trying 5.12? I'd love to lead Flying Dutchman (12a), although, if I botched the crux movements (below the bolt), it'd result in a ground fall from about 4 meters, so I'm stuck with having to toprope it.

If someone can give me an explaination for what is going on here, I'd really love to hear it, because as of right now, I am baffled by it. Hope to hear from someone soon, either through personal message, or on the shoutbox


Submitted by: Will Gregorash
Date Added: 28-Apr-2013

 anyone missing a pair of scarpa climbing shoes, found them at galaxian the other night. email is

Submitted by: Will Gregorash
Date Added: 28-Apr-2013

 anyone missing a pair of scarpa climbing shoes, found them at galaxian the other night. email is

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 14-Apr-2013

 If you're planning to bag some peaks this summer, or just prepping for Jeopardy, here's a good site that shows you what's where:

Submitted by: Dave Rone
Date Added: 01-Apr-2013

 I'm looking for a partner for mixed & ice climbing this weekend.  Give me a shout if interested.   Rone

Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 05-Mar-2013

It's not too late in the ice climbing season to get hit by a big chunk of falling ice. Here are some guidelines to keep in mind:
Submitted by: Aric Fishman
Date Added: 28-Feb-2013

I got word today from a buddy who was climbing out at Pass Lake that the glorious jug under the roof of Wild Child has finally met its has broken off :( r.i.p. Sir jugs-a-lot
Submitted by: Suzanne Morrissette
Date Added: 26-Feb-2013

Thank you to the trip leaders for organizing a great day of climbing on what turned out to be a beautiful sunny Saturday!
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 24-Feb-2013

A BIG shout out to everyone that helped make Festiv'Ice a huge success yesterday, especially our "lungs'n-legs" rope gun crew of Wes, Nick, Brian, and Kevin. During many of our clinics, usually when we 're battling hard ice and low temps, we ramble on about ideal conditions for ice climbing. Well, Saturday's Festiv'Ice was about as good as it gets! A couple dozen of us TBayACC'ers met with with the Manitoba Section group who were here for a weekend of climbing and we shared LOTS of ropes on a varied menu of ice grades that included some perfect ice in the sun. Later we filled the back of the Nip Cafe to refuel . . . with gusto. A few of us were feeling like we lived at the climbing site because we spent all the previous day at the same place doing a photo shoot with Ontario Tourism - over 3000 shots according to the photographer - and at least that many calories spent climbing and rigging! Awesome day! Awesome TWO days!
Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 11-Feb-2013

I can only aspire to be this strong. Next life for sure.
Submitted by: Wes Bender
Date Added: 04-Feb-2013

I find myself often explaining the preferred and more efficient way to climb ice only to see those people revert back to the old school way of slowly draining what little energy they have, with the X technique. If you don't believe me, then maybe you'll believe Will Gadd, former world champion ice climber...
Have a look at this article posted on his site.

I don't climb the stuff I do because I am strong, far from it, I just learned how to climb efficiently. I wouldn't make it up half the routes if I still climbed using the old method.

Oh, and one more thing...KEEP YOUR GEAR SHARP!

Wes OUT!
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 28-Jan-2013

If anyone is missing a Grivel crampon strap (I think it's for a strap-on set), we found one on the main trail leading to Ice Stud, White Lightning.
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 27-Jan-2013

This just in . . . check it out . . . why not Thunder Bay? _FP Hi, I would like to share with your club members a new video for the Ouray Ice Park (USA) entitled,"Ice." I hope you enjoy it and share "Ice" with your fellow climbers (and more importantly, non-climbers!!). Thank you, Barry Stevenson (469) 338-3233
Submitted by: Frank Pianka
Date Added: 26-Jan-2013

THUNDER BAY – A magnitude 2.3 [quake] located about 67 km west from Terrace Bay was felt as far away as Nipigon on Friday . The earthquake happened at 01:44:01 EST on Friday [January 25]. Natural Resources Canada is asking, if you felt the quake to fill in an online questionnaire at There was no damages reported as caused by the earth tremor.
Submitted by: Kurt Schmidt
Date Added: 11-Jan-2013

Has anyone been out to powerline falls to see what the conditions are like?  Looking for some areas to top-rope so I can practice leading on ice...
Submitted by: Joe Duncan
Date Added: 06-Jan-2013

What a gorgeous day at the climb that coincided with great a day of climbing with the club. Glad to be out there climbing with the trip leaders guiding us and providing positive encouragement and meeting new club members! Can't wait for the next event. Joe :)
Submitted by: Brian Bottan
Date Added: 06-Jan-2013

Thanks to everyone who came out to our first beginners clinic of 2013! A special thanks to those who helped hump in all the gear and back out at the end of the day. The weather was on our side and we even managed to convert a few rock lovers to ice climbers.


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