This is the most popular route in the Bugaboos for many good reasons: perfect rock, spectacular surroundings, and excellent climbing at a moderate difficulty level characterize the route. The first five pitches offer the some of the finest moderate alpine rock climbing of any route in this collection, and the rest are also high quality, just much easier and thus less memorable. However, this route is famous for epics and unplanned bivouacs due to far too many climbers underestimating it. It is quite long when the complex descent is factored in, and you’ll need route finding skills, experience with climbing efficiently and rapidly, glacier travel skills, and a plan for what to do when it storms. Retreat is not a good option once you are above the first part of the ridge.

If you are unsure about being able to pull this off in a day, consider climbing the Kain route first (the SE Ridge, partially visible as the left skyline in the photo.) It is considerably easier, and serves as the descent for the NE Ridge. It is also a quality climb, and classic in the historical sense as the celebrated first ascent route by Conrad Kain. However, the fifth-class climbing is limited to only a few short pitches, so it nearly as attractive as the NE Ridge for the experienced technical climber.


Bugaboo Prov. Park, British Columbia, Canada


G12, I1, I2, I6, I9, W21

Type / Rating

Alpine Rock (with substantial glacier travel on approach & descent) / IV, 5.7

Route Description:

On the CD


Trip Reports:

Clark 8/01
Larson 8/93

First Ascent:

D. Croft, J. Turner, D. Sykes, & D. Isles, August 8, 1958

On the CD-ROM:

28 high-res images of this climb

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