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Dates and Prices


$335 CDN covers instruction and use of technical gear. Accommodation and meals are not included but low cost, easy options exist. Goods and Services Tax (GST) is extra. Optional 'Plus Day' $275 plus GST.

Trip Cancellation Insurance is available through the Simpson Group.

Is it for you?

If you're already seconding 'gear routes', leading indoor or sport climbing routes and are comfortable climbing 5.7 then this would be the perfect program for you.

Rock Climbing Level 3 - Trad Rock Leader

The Trad Rock Leader course consists of two days of intensive traditional rock climbing training with an optional "Plus Day" on an advanced multi-pitch climb. This is an ideal progression from Yamnuska’s Rock 2 - Learn to Lead,  or Rock 1-2 - Rock Evolution course or for guests with equivalent skills.

Climbing on 'gear routes' where you construct your own anchors and place your own protection is far more challenging than using bolts. You can't afford to make mistakes, as the consequences have the potential to be serious. If you're currently leading sport routes outdoors in the 5.7 range or are leading at a 5.9 level in the climbing gym then you're ready for 'Rock 3 - Trad Rock Leader' course.

The objective of this course is to work on natural (traditional) rock protection and belay systems and introduce traditionally protected lead climbing tactics on a variety of rock types. Considerations for multi-pitch gear climbing will be covered.

Course Agenda

Day 1: Start 8:00am at Yamnuska Office then move to local climbing area.

  • Welcome, introduction, goals and agenda
  • Review of hazard evaluation and risk management at the crag
  • Review climbing equipment fit and strengths/weaknesses
  • Introduction to natural protection (cams and nuts)
  • Placing and removing natural protection
  • Assessing the quality of placements
  • Building anchors using natural protection
  • Review of the ‘Lead Climbing’ system
  • Review of quickdraw use (clipping gear, direction, efficient clipping)
  • Placing and removing natural 'pro' on top rope
  • Simulated leads to practice the trad lead climbing system

Day 2: At Local Climbing Area

  • Hazard evaluation and risk management at the crag
  • Managing specific issues on a gear lead (using multi directional pieces, managing poor placements, protecting crux moves, managing ‘runouts’ between gear)
  • Simulated or real leads (dependent on both you and your guides comfort level)
  • Setting up and assessing anchors
  • Personalized coaching of movement skills and gear placements
  • Debrief and instruction for further progressions for rock climbing

'Plus Days'

Stay for an extra day and put your new skills into practice on a classic Canadian Rockies multi-pitch climb. We divide into compatible teams, choose a suitable 'multi-pitch' route and spend the whole day climbing it. Climbs include routes on Mt. Yamnuska, Kid Goat Buttress, Tunnel Mountain and Cascade. $275 plus GST. Available every Monday following 'Trad Rock Leader'.