Bataan is a warm, really nice, wicked stone, up to 13+:

This is a selection to get you going!

Driving from Calgary take the first Canmore exit after you cross the Bow River, it will turn you east, then you'll hit the 1A Highway. Go left/east for about 3 km, and on your left you will notice a small pullout just after a small gravel pit/slope. Be careful of the large trucks heading into Canmore, they move fast, are not very agile and prefer not to brake. The trail, heads up the right slope, around the trees, then traverses up the big hill. Follow the main trail on top of the bench, left for a couple of minutes and then look uphill into the trees and you'll see a smaller trail and maybe a cairn. Follow this trail for about 10 minutes and just as you leave the trees, you'll see a large single tree, follow the trail (right) around it and up the rock/slab tiered hill (don't get stuck following the trail left at the big tree). From here it's about 10 minutes to the gravel pit, where you'll follow the left side of it on a faint trail. There are two Cairns marking the trail entrance from the tope end of the pit, from here you'll be on the trail all the way to wherever you decide to stop and climb. About 30 minutes to the end of the pit and another 30 to 40 minutes, to the 'Break Wall'. The walk down may be more physically draining than going up.


There is a new area at the First Cave, about 20 minutes from the pit, but when you coming up here for a holiday, go to the 'Break Wall' (Sweet Hereafter), at least – then you can warm up and move on up to the Nirvana area. (Always easier to hike back down than up) The routes I am suggesting are classic, good, and will give you just enough to do for a few days. There are other routes up here, but these will keep you moving.

First stop; The Break Wall (aka: Sweet-Hereafter) It'll take about 60 to 70 min. from the parking, maybe a bit more with all your gear, but the eyes area will take you about 80 – 85 min. at a 'guide' pace.




Trail detail map



Sort of fun – climbs just left of the blunt arête and crack. Pull the mini bugle and climb slab to the top of the crag. It will entertain you.

5.11 30m

Sweet Hereafter

Climb nasty rat-crack about 15m right of fresco and head up and right glue-in’s. - pulling the bulge is the crux. It then becomes a navigation nightmare, as all holds look the same. A few other routes to it’s right, but it’s the best line there.

12- 30m


The next area is just up and around the corner. Called the Choss Pile cave, noticeable for the large, low lying roof with a bunch of talus underneath it. The route Crushed Velvet is on the 'Slab' wall to the left and down a few meters from where the roof ends. This area needs some love – the steep roof area has some wicked climbing on pockets – just that the route with the hangers that climbs the main steep part, is bolted poorly – but the pocket pulling out and over the bulge is really quite good.

Crushed Velvet

The stone is really good and so is this route. Does not get a lot of sun as the trees hide it well. Glue-ins to the top. Funky move 2 bolts after you leave the 12a anchor. 12a to the halfway anchor – then 12b/c to the top.

Locate via the built landings – 2nd as you hit the wall – or the main switchback, as it hits the wall. Top of route climbs a right facing corner to a bulge – excellent stone.

12c 30m

5.11c route with glue-ins

Climb the grove – about 5m left of where the big roof touches back to the ground – shorter – the anchor is just below the mini-roof maybe halfway up this wall. Yellow rock to grey stone. Maybe 6 bolts – nice to have a stick for the first bolt!

11c 18m


The next wall uphill is the 'Cheese Crater' about 5-10 minutes. If you are heading here for your warm-ups, you'll be happy as well, for the main developers, Chris and Ian Perry (Father and Son) have done an excellent job of building quality routes.

Significant Digits

Climbs up broken crack with a tree at the start. You will head towards a left facing corner – here you go right and up the orange stone, climb for a bit and pull the grey bulge – it’s very cool and then burly to the top. Hang on!

11+ 30m

Gold Finger

Climb right of SD, good solid stone and route – no give-away. Another “Perry” route. The father and son team do a solid job and pick good lines.

11+ 30m


About 60 m up from GF is the 'Swiss Cheese' wall – hard to miss, as it's really big, pocketed and steep. You can warm-up on Pushing 40.

Just to the right/uphill is a new route 13+ boulder section to get from the pockets to the headwall.

Pushing 40

Climb left of the big roof/crack on hangers. Up a crack system to a pocketed ledge - pulling a bulge up and right – the crux. The rest is hanging on and it’s 37m long. With rope stretch a 70m will work, otherwise you lower to the half way point.

11a 37m

Forever Young

A wicked looking route with an unfortunate boulder crux pulling onto the main headwall. Derek Galloway FA. And it looked like a nasty few moves. Fully impressive line!

13+ 35m

Welcome to the Skylounge

Good route with a crappy start – if you can get over that – the rest of the route is really good on good/stellar stone.

12b/c 30m


The next wall after 'swiss cheese' is where you'll find a bad 11 with glue-in’s, probably walked right past it, then you will notice to the left of Nirvana, a crack/flake system with expansion bolts and then up and right, glue-in’s. These are 2 new routes the hangers – 11c and the glue-in’s 12- both very good. The direct route of the glue-in’s is an old route called Sharpshooter 13+ boulder problem where the hangers are!


I know it’s got a name? Devious and good burl. Locate just left of Nirvana – flake/crack at the bottom – climb the hangers – the glue in to the right of the 3rd bolt is the 12c. crux is the open book crack.

11c 30m

Trigger Happy

Not done this route, but have done Sharpshooter the original line, now overtaken by T.H. and the glue-in’s, which is nice nasty and fun. I presume that T.H. is nice, fun and fun?

12b/c 30m


Sent in a blizzard ‘94 – can’t say it’s a classic, but I can say it’s maybe better than Nirvana Direct!

13b/c 30m


Been here since 1991, and so’s the aid start, but once you get on the stone, you forget, as you’ve got 25m of some of the best stone in Canada.

There’s a direct start by LeBlanc/Milton ’94 – can’t say it’s great, but it certainly adds a lot to the route maybe 13c.

13a 25m

Old pic on Nirvana

Truckasuarus pitch 2 to Nirvana

Oh yeah! What a crag set up, 12a on top of 13a. It’s a beauty and does not get many ascents. You top out 45m above the ground.

12a 20m

24 frames per second (aka: the Book of the Dead)

Richard Jagger bolted this when his legs were smaller (Alpine Alberta Ski coach/director) I finished it off and added some bolts and lowered the anchor so your rope lasted longer that 1 day! It’s got a burl start – with the crux over at the 3rd bolt. Could use a bolt in the choss at the start? The route continues to come at you all the way to the top, but if you send the start you’ll be sending.

13a 25m


Bolted 1991, but not sent as it had a “blank” section and then a few years back Ross Suchy sent the FA in a snow storm … Sweet route with all types, steep pocket burl, crimpy, full-on slab – it’s going to be a classic.

This route needs a 2nd pitch or full pitch, as you could easily climb all the way to the top @ 45m!

13c 25m


FA: Chris Weldon, March 2007 – D. Tremaine bolted in 93? And almost sent, but the tuffa crimper at the top broke off on ‘point. Sure one of “the youngsters” will send. Almost same start as Jacobs, then moves left out the steeper bulge. Feels steep and out-there for such a short route.

13b 18m

Jacobs Ladder

This thing finally got some ascents after years of waiting for a true 2nd. Another 1991 line and then 1992 send – seemed really steep back then and burly. Original grade was 13b/c, got in the guide recently as 13c, but really a solid 13 route. The climbing is bouldery, burly and fun. Soon to be a 2nd pitch …

13a 18m


Just up hill from the left eye, is a new route that goes just left of the right eye at 12a and all the ay to the top 35m. Up past the 2nd eye is a wall called the Pacific Theatre, pretty much gets sun all day and can be really hot. 

Eyes Wide Shut

Wow! The Perry’s did a good one on this – long burly and WAY out there. You feel it. The start is a bit crappy – don’t be discouraged – it’s 35m long and after bolt 4 it’s excellent stone. You may wish it had a couple extra at the start, due to the stone, but then you’d need more draws as it takes 16 and 2 at the anchor. Exposure!

12a 35m

Above the Clouds

Looks really hard – Derek Galloway finished off this Milton project and effort – another bad back route for Milton. Wicked stone!

13d 25m

Freedom in Chains

If you climb solid 13, it’s the best stone I have been on with Buoux style pockets. Tops out just shy of the top ledge. Funky burly crux.

13c 30m

Leaning in the Wind

Todd Guyn took over and finished the bolting from S. Studer. Fantastic route – this wall has superb stone!

12c 30m

Dressed in Pearls

The right most route on this wall – just left of the big chimney/corner. It is really quite darn good and yes great stone. The left route is 12d/13a and not so good.

12a 25m


There are some routes out right, on a wall called the Tipperary, but my suggestion - if you want to climb these routes, go to Barrier or Cougar Creek, as it's a long way to go for a 5.12 and a few 11s and 10s – even if they are really good routes. This has nothing to do with the builder(s) just a suggestion for the traveling climber.




Bring at least a 60m cord, 70m way better, 16 draws and water – NO WATER HERE. Best to have a 70m cord. There are a few routes at the 30m + length and may require close to 20 draws.


Animals, always a good subject:

As you know, most areas have their issues with some kind of nasty thing, maybe Poison Ivy, Snakes, or torrential rain and mud slides. All the Rockies have are those nasty ticks, which you'll mostly find at Bataan, as it faces south and home to Bighorn Sheep and ticks love sheep. Oh yeah, those Bighorn Sheep, they're big and are really-really quick on this terrain – they have yet to chase anyone, though I did try to get one to chase a particular short Frenchman – as he was running up to it to take it's picture, but still unsuccessful; damn! Acephale has Grizzly Bears, they really like Acephale, as they've been living in this region for a long time. But, they are much less of a worry than reported. They have little interest in us and would rather not deal with humans at all. I have seen two Grizzlies on the way to Acephale, no attacks by a killer crazed Grizzly up at the 'Phale. Cougars (not the ones from the bar!) are around, but do stay away for the most part. I have never seen one yet, which is a good thing, as seeing one is kind of like seeing a Ninja; mostly associated with a nasty ending. 


Grades: Always an issue, but important.




Sport and Mixed Climbing