Hook in to Revelstoke’s climbing scene

Find out how Flexpeditions' Amy Flexman got 'Revel-Stuck' and discover all the best climbing spots around town.

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Get out and about rock climbing at any of the many locations around Revelstoke. Photo: Jessica Campbell

First published in the August Revelstoke Mountaineer Magazine — distributed all around Revelstoke.

She’s Rockin’ it: meet the handhold to the climbing scene in Revelstoke

By Jessica Campbell

It’s kind of ironic. Living a pretty nomadic life and travelling for six years, from Ontario to British Columbia, while leading outdoor educational programs, Amy Flexman says it was the warm soup at The Nomad Food Co. that had her fall into the melting pot of eclectics in Revelstoke … literally.

Born in Ontario, this passionate adventure-goer explains how she first warmed up to the Revy scene by using it as her pit stop on her way to Nelson, B.C. (and beyond). There she spent four years as a raft and multi-sports guide in her summer months:

“Revelstoke had this great soup and it was always a stopping point.”

Flexpeditions instructor Amy Flexman. Photo: Jessica Campbell
Flexpeditions instructor Amy Flexman. Photo: Jessica Campbell

But then one day it happened. Leading a group of students from Ontario through the mountains during a March break expedition, Amy turned up ‘Revel-Stuck.’  

“I looked around and saw the 80-year-olds laughing with the 10-year-olds,” she explains, adding how she remembers dreaming as a little kid of a future move out west. “The community was so friendly.”

“I travelled the world to come here and think, ‘Aw ya, this is home.’”  Now, having moved to Revelstoke in 2010 and registering an official business in 2012, the soon to be 38-year-old is running an outdoor adventure company offering a full spectrum of activities to the Revelstoke community (and nomads alike!).

From Multi-sport Mondays to SUP and Supper Sundays, Flexpeditions hosts two daily outdoor excursions seven days a week, all leaving right from Revelstoke’s downtown core.

And while all are appealing and allow people to connect outside, Darek Glowacki, an avid climber for the past 20-years and a certified ACMG guide (Association of Canadian Mountain Guides), says Amy’s Top Rope Tuesdays is the place to start to get roped into Revelstoke’s diverse climbing scene: “Then after that you have to hook up with a climbing partner you can trust.”

Rock climbing guide Darek Glowacki. Photo: Jessica Campbell
Rock climbing guide Darek Glowacki. Photo: Jessica Campbell

Revelstoke’s climbing gold

I met up with Darek at a climbing location in the Begbie Bluffs as he led a Flexpeditions youth group up Kid’s Cliff. 

“Without a word of a lie, we have over 20 climbing locations in Revelstoke and the bluffs is just one of them,” says Darek, belaying one of his participants, “And all of them have their own nuances.”

Here’s a short list of spots to try out around Revelstoke.

The Begbie Bluffs: Good for kids and top roping

Located 8.8 km west of the Trans-Canada along Highway 23 South, Darek says while the Begbie Bluff area has something for everyone (including routes ranked from 5.8 to 5.12 in skill level), this location might be the best spot for youngsters.

According to Revelstoke Rocks by Ruedi Beglinger, this area is formed by “21 individual cliffs varying from 20 to 50 metres in height, spread out in a beautiful forest.”

Its parking lot, located to left (east) of the highway, is connected to well-developed trails about a 10 to 15-minute walk away from multiple climbs. “There’s everything at the Bluffs,” says Darek.

Shaketown: Top roping and easy access

Shaketown consists of three south-facing cliffs (West Crag, Centre Fold and East Crag) about 15 metres in height.

“Climbing is mostly steep, fingers, and fast drying after rain,” highlights Beglinger in Revelstoke Rocks, “A great area to climb already during nice March days.”

It’s located off a logging road 13.6 km from the Trans-Canada Highway 1 West and Highway 23 South intersection (4.8 km south of the Begbie Bluffs parking lot, west of Revelstoke). For specific directions, visit: revelstokerockclimbing.com.

Blanket Creek: Lead climbing

Located 23.6 km from the Trans-Canada Highway 1 West and Highway 23 South intersection (and 14.8 km south of the Begbie Bluffs parking lot), Blanket Creek is known for its steep climbing, mainly appealing to those in a higher skill level.

In Revelstoke Rocks, Beglinger highlights this location for its close proximity to the roaring creek and its enormous energy rushing towards the Columbia River. Darek notes that, “You can basically just camp and climb.”

Victor Lake Wall: Multi pitch climbing

According to Revelstoke Rocks, this is a steep 300 vertical metre wall, located directly above Victor Lake, 13.5 km west of Revelstoke from the Trans-Canada Highway 1 and Highway 23 South intersection. For specific directions, visit: revelstokerockclimbing.com.

Silvertip Canyon: Single pitch sport climbing

This steep crag, averaging 20 to 25 metres in height, is located in Mt. Revelstoke national park. Discovered by helicopter exploration in 2002, this location is home to a freshwater stream and some of Revelstoke’s best climbing, says Beglinger in Revelstoke Rocks.

Shaketown: Top roping and easy access

Shaketown consists of three south-facing cliffs (West Crag, Centre Fold and East Crag) about 15 metres in height.

“Climbing is mostly steep, fingers, and fast drying after rain,” highlights Beglinger in Revelstoke Rocks, “A great area to climb already during nice March days.”

It’s located off a logging road 13.6 km from the Trans-Canada Highway 1 West and Highway 23 South intersection (4.8 km south of the Begbie Bluffs parking lot, west of Revelstoke). For specific directions, visit: revelstokerockclimbing.com.

Bouldering 

Similar to climbing, Revelstokians are constantly striving to take the bouldering scene to new heights. “After all it is rock climbing, just not with a rope,” says Darek, adding how (for that reason alone) the sport is arguably even cheaper to first get into than rock climbing.

Revelstokebouldering.ca is a website with all the information in order to enjoy a day out in all the top local bouldering spots. The website also includes maps to download to your phone to navigate your way around.

Find a partner and get rock climbing! Photo: Jessica Campbell
Find a partner and get rock climbing! Photo: Jessica Campbell

Anchoring in: Contact information and other resources

– Flexpeditions meets twice daily in the backyard of the Samesun Backpackers Hostel at 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. to start their daily adventures. Visit flexpeditions.com or call 1-866-929-FLEX (3539) to pre-book your trip. Climbing specific tours are on Tuesdays.

– Jump on the Facebook group Revelstoke Climbing to find yourself a well-suited climbing partner to explore this beautiful area together!

– Reference Ruedi Beglinger’s Revelstoke Rocks or visit revelstokerockclimbing.com to find maps, directions, and detailed explanations of specific climbs.

Email info@revelstokerockclimbing.com with news of any climbing-related updates.

Happy climbing, Revelstoke!

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