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Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs?
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christah


Dec 20, 2012, 9:58 AM
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Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs?  (North_America: Canada: British_Columbia: Squamish)
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We're trying to plan a trip this summer and we haven't been to either Squamish or Skaha Bluffs, so I was wondering if anybody has advice on which is better? We climb mostly sport, still collecting gear and learning trad. We also like to boulder, so which would have the most variety for sport and bouldering? Thanks!


marc801


Dec 20, 2012, 4:43 PM
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Re: [christah] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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christah wrote:
We're trying to plan a trip this summer and we haven't been to either Squamish or Skaha Bluffs, so I was wondering if anybody has advice on which is better? We climb mostly sport, still collecting gear and learning trad. We also like to boulder, so which would have the most variety for sport and bouldering? Thanks!
65% of the guidebook routes at Skaha are sport. You didn't say what grades you wanted, but there's plenty from 5.6 thru mid 13 with 10's and 11's being the real sweet spot. I can't offer much help on bouldering there.

Summer can be very hot, even in the shade (40C is not at all uncommon), but people do manage (often sitting out the middle of the day and following the shade). It depends on your tolerance. Of course there are the wineries and lakes for the really hot days.


christah


Dec 20, 2012, 5:35 PM
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Re: [marc801] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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Good to know about the sport climbing. I'm at a lower level than my husband, so it's nice to see that there's some choices in the 5.7 range. Maybe we'll aim for earlier in the summer so it's not too hot? Thanks for the help!


koolmoedee


Dec 27, 2012, 6:11 PM
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Re: [christah] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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Skaha has much more sport, especially at lower grades. I've never heard of anyone bouldering in Skaha.

Squamish has world-class bouldering, at all grades. It has enough sport climbs for a good trip, but most of the best stuff is 5.11 and up. The trad, like the bouldering, is nearly endless. There's plenty of good, easy trad to learn on.

As for weather, Squamish is often wet until July but Skaha can be too, surprisingly. Best not to plan a trip to either too early in the season.

Squamish is better in the mid-summer when Skaha is too hot. Skaha is drier in the late summer/fall.

For pure sport, Skaha wins. For bouldering, trad, and variety, Squamish wins.

Bear in mind that you can drive from one to the other in about 5.5 hours if you're unhappy with your initial choice.


koolmoedee


Dec 27, 2012, 10:24 PM
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Re: [christah] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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christah wrote:
Good to know about the sport climbing. I'm at a lower level than my husband, so it's nice to see that there's some choices in the 5.7 range. Maybe we'll aim for earlier in the summer so it's not too hot? Thanks for the help!

The best time for Squamish is usually mid-July to early/mid August. Those are the driest months. It can get too warm on occasion, but the boulders and a fair number of the sport crags are shade-protected.

Skaha is usually best late-August to mid-September. May/June are the wettest months and July is the hottest.


John5


Dec 28, 2012, 7:48 AM
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Re: [christah] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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If sport is your main goal, dont forget to consider Canmore/Lake Louise area. Cooler temps than Skaha, which will be a skillet in the summer.


markcarlson


Dec 28, 2012, 10:45 AM
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Re: [John5] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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John5 wrote:
If sport is your main goal, dont forget to consider Canmore/Lake Louise area. Cooler temps than Skaha, which will be a skillet in the summer.

I'll second this, with a disclaimer that there is almost no bouldering. I used to think the same was true for Skaha... but it sounds like that may be changing.


jp_sucks


Dec 28, 2012, 2:19 PM
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Re: [christah] Need advice in picking one: Squamish or Skaha Bluffs? [In reply to]
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Most (if not all) of the developed bouldering in the Okanagan is in Kelowna, about 45 mins north of Skaha. There's a lifetime of bouldering here and tons of routes to be discovered still.

Mid summer can be hot so aim for early or later on to be safe. If you're looking to climb mostly sport in the 5.7 range, definitely go with Skaha over Squamish.

Your choice should also be based on the rock type. Granite (Squamish) and the Gneiss (Skaha) are completely different experiences.

Feel free to PM me if you have more questions about Skaha and the Okanagan.


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