Pond Hockey, WI3 100m
Before we get into details of this obscure ice route, anything located in the ‘North’ folders on Rockies Obscure refers to basically anything that is on the north side of the Trans-Canada Highway, even something like this which can barely be called up north, this is the easiest way to reference climbs or hikes from objectives found south, east or to the west.
This early season ice is easily visible just east of the train tracks crossing Hwy 1A east of Gap Lake east of Canmore. Pond Hockey is simply the name it will have for now until someone reveals who did the FA and what it was called if it even ever had a name.
Park at Gap Lake, carefully cross the highway, obtain the treed hillside below the route and aim for the drainage that contains the ice flow. The hike is pleasant if you navigate as best as possible out of bush onto the odd open area. Eventually drop down into the drainage and up to the start of the flow. Return the same way or whatever seems the easiest pick down, which, a wooden mountain bike ramp was discovered randomly in the woods here.
Climb up the fun thin ice left of a choss band – you can rap this on descent from a good tree above the step. Hike up the ice to a steep pitch which ends on a good ledge. From here either take the right-facing rock corner with ice to the upper tree or some neat possibilities directly above on stepped rock. Rap from tree, then walk off climber’s left and scramble down some 3rd class short ledges back to the main ice flow.