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Auburn Ice Canyon

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Climbing Sections:

About Auburn Ice Canyon:


"The owner of the gift shop adjacent to the Auburn Ice Canyon was visited yesterday by Access Fund representatives. The owner was courteous and respectful.

However, because of the sheer numbers of people crossing her property, and a few particularly rude incidents, she is fed up and is pessimistic about whether the situation can be improved without closing access completely.

We will continue to work with her to find a solution, and we are looking for other ways to access the canyon. For now, please follow the following guidelines. The goal at this point is not merely to do what's legal, but to be respectful of the landowner's wishes so she will be more receptive to working out long-term solutions.

Please SERIOUSLY CONSIDER CLIMBING ELSEWHERE until the access issues have been resolved.

If you must go to Auburn Ice Canyon:

DON'T PARK IN THE GIFT CHALET LOT. Parking is for customers only *while* the customers are shopping. Spending a token amount in the store so you can park there while you climb will be seen as patronizing and offensive. Don't park in the lot!

DON'T DROP OFF PEOPLE OR GEAR in the gift chalet lot or driveway.

DON'T GO ON GIFT CHALET LAND. The gift chalet's land includes the far side of the canal and the far side of the stream behind the gift chalet. However, they probably do not own the land immediately adjacent to the canal--we're checking, but won't know by this weekend, so please be discreet if you choose to go. You *might* be able to avoid gift chalet land if you hug route 20 and then hug the canal, especially if you can safely stay down in the canal. Be careful crossing the stream. DON'T USE THE BRIDGE BEHIND THE GIFT CHALET.



The Gift Chalet's hours are:
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: 10am- 5pm
Wednesday: 10am - 8pm
Thursday: 10-am - 5pm
Friday: 10am - 5pm
Saturday: 10am - 5pm
Sunday: noon - 5pm
Owner and employees will have slightly longer hours so plan accordingly.

Susan Ruff - Access fund"

So please think carefully about your actions and how they may affect others now and in the future, then act accordingly. It would be a shame for access to this fine resources to be lost completely.
Nearest town or city: Auburn

Due to continued access issues, please consider using these alternate access directions suggested by Susan Ruff of the Access Fund who have been actively working on this situation.

"Here's an alternate access route to the auburn ice canyon. Blanket permission has *not* been gained from businesses/landowners, so if you choose to go this way, please treat anyone you see with respect and consider asking permission to park.
This approach is shorter than or as short as most current approaches, although it may seem longer because you don't see the canyon until you're there.
Approach time: 10-15 minutes on flat trail through woods. Land is owned by the Auburn Land Trust. Last winter the trails were packed down by snowmobiles, although I've never heard snowmobiles when I've been there. I have startled a herd of deer...


Rt 90 W to Exit 10a to Rt 20 W, as usual.

Go about 1.5mi on 20W and turn left on Westec Rd. Westec is after the gift chalet and the trailer park. Find a place to park. Consider asking permission & please be polite/respectful!

!Carefully! cross Rt 20. On weekdays, plan to return before rush hour. If necessary, there's a light almost a mile to the west.

Go to the power line cut that is easily visible to the west, and take the obvious trail under the power lines.
Follow the trail as it leaves the powerline cut to the right.
When you come to a T, turn right, but pay close attention so you'll recognize the turn on the way back.
Go straight until you pass through a gap in a fence.
You're at the head of the canyon, which extends to your right.
Go along the near side of the canyon to get to the descent.

For those with GPS:
Beginning of trail at Route 20: 42d 12.415'N 71d 48.690'W
Trail leaves powerline cut: 42d 12.434'N 71d 48.754'W
Turn right at T intersection: 42d 12.553'N 71d 48.942'W
Go through break in fence: 42d 12.737'N 71d 48.851'W
Head of canyon (top of headwall) 42d 12.782'N 71d 48.830'W
(The last 2 points are quite close together.)

Total distance from Rt20 to head of canyon: 0.4 mi, 10 min - "
Direction copied from post by AF's Susan Ruff on

Latitude, Longitude:
Access Issues: Over the last few years, especially since the bad Ice strom of winter 2008, the trail in from the powerlines has become blocked by a couple areas of unpassable deadfall. there are ways to go around these deafall blockages both above and below the main trail, but if you're not familiar with the trail in from that side, you can easily get turned around and mis directed, and wind up wandering around in the woods until you happen upon the ice canyon.
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