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In Alberta’s Canadian Rockies, the elevations may be moderate, but the mountaineering is of the highest quality. Easily approachable, full of thrilling technical challenges, and offering phenomenal skiing straight from the peaks, the area hosts 11 of the 54 highest peaks in the Canadian Rockies. Standing at 12,300 ft (3,747 m), there are plenty of challenging climbs for intermediate and advanced mountaineers, as well as some phenomenal vistas that will keep you coming back for more. The numerous objectives at reasonable altitudes provide the ideal training grounds for those looking to take on even bigger mountaineering challenges in the future. Climb and ski Mount Columbia’s backcountry with Canada’s signature crystal lakes, dense forests, and snow-capped peaks as the backdrop—what’s not to love!

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  • Ski your heart out in the magnificent backcountry of Mt. Columbia

  • Enjoy the breathtaking views of Canada’s untouched nature

  • Test your mountaineering skills on Alberta’s challenging and captivating peaks


Conquer the mighty Mt. Columbia buried in the ancient ice of the Columbia Icefields, on this picturesque 4-day adventure! Test your mountaineering skills on Alberta’s highest peak with an expert guide accompanying you and keeping you safe on your trip. If you’ve never seen the sunset from 10,000+ feet (3,000+ meters) while relaxing in your comfy sleeping bag, this adventure is a must!

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Meet your guide

Alpine Air Adventures
Alpine Air Adventures
You’re never on your own in the Banff wilderness because the experienced professionals from Alpine Air Adventures are here to guide you. While they know how to have a great time, they’re always mindful of advanced safety practices. They’re committed to showing each of their guests the best of the Rockies while protecting them every step of the way.
5.00 (3 reviews)
Jeremy C. (source: Guide’s Website)

Was out with Jeff/AAA for a few days – totally awesome! Always felt safe skiing/climbing, and we were able to pick up objectives to match my skills/goals and to push my confidence on bigger things. Already looking forward to our next trip out.

Jeff W. (source: Guide’s Website)

I have been on multiple trips with Alpine Air Adventures and I am always impressed with the level of skill and decision-making when it comes to safety in the mountains. I choose to go with Alpine Air Adventures because Jeff is very flexible and easy to book with. I am able to get a small custom trip and an experience I wouldn’t get with a big operator. Whether it’s skiing or climbing big mountains, or rock and ice climbing, AAA will give you a great experience in the hills.

Pam P. (source: Guide’s Website)

Jeff has the ability to make you feel at ease in the mountains. His quick humor and his technical knowledge allow you to learn and explore in an environment that is comfortable, safe and super fun!

Things to know

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • An experienced, local ski mountaineering guide with extensive knowledge of the area
      • 4 days of backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering
      • Tent accommodations during the tour
      • Food and snacks
      • Use of stoves and other group equipment

    What’s not included:

      • Skiing and avalanche safety equipment
      • Transportation
      • Pre and post-trip accommodations
  • In order to get the most of this adventure, you need to have a decent level of fitness. You will be on your feet for 4 full days. You will need to manage controlled descents in variable conditions. All participants should feel comfortable on challenging blue or black level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

  • This expedition is suitable for intermediate to advanced mountaineers, backcountry skiers, and boarders. Your guide will discuss your objectives and customize the day to your goals. Let your guide plan the day so you can focus on developing your skills while climbing the classic routes or best-hidden gems the area has to offer.

  • For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

      • Alpine touring skis, telemark skis, or splitboard with skins (can be rented)
      • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
      • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
        • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
        • Lightweight snow shovel
        • Avalanche probe

    For personal items, we recommend bringing:

      • Helmet
      • Sunglasses or ski goggles
      • Gloves and hat
      • Wind and waterproof shell jacket with hood (Gore-Tex recommended)
      • Ski pants (Gore-Tex recommended)
      • Down jacket or vest
      • Synthetic or wool base layers, underwear, and socks
      • One triple-action locking carabiner or two conventional locking carabiners
      • Repair kit and Leatherman for your equipment (can be shared between several people)
      • Water bottle and 1L of water
      • Thermos with a warm beverage — optional
      • Food you can eat on-the-go
      • First aid kit
      • Sunscreen
      • Daypack large enough to carry all items listed (around a 30-40L backpack)
      • Camera — optional

    Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

  • All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent:

      • Avalanche safety pack, including backpack, beacon, shovel, and probe can be rented in Banff
      • Alpine touring or telemark skis, touring boots, and poles can be rented in Banff

    Ski rental locations are in Banff, Alberta, and should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent gear, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

  • Group sizes and prices:

      • The group size for these tours is usually between 1–4 people with one guide.
      • Costs per person decrease as the group grows, so it’s the perfect opportunity to mountaineer with friends and family.

    Ski mountaineering in Mt. Columbia can be arranged for bigger groups. Contact us prior to booking.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to mountaineer on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has ski mountaineers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Mt. Columbia, most people fly into Calgary International Airport 1.5 hours from Banff, Alberta. From there, you can rent a car or take a bus to Banff. It’s an additional 2-hour drive from Banff to Columbia Icefields.

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, whether that’s at the guide’s Bunkhouse in Banff, in the Columbia Icefields, or in another predetermined location. From there, you’ll head to your tour. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ski ability of the group.

  • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

    We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Mt. Columbia, Alberta, please refer to Canada’s COVID-19 travel guidelines and the Alberta Health Service’s COVID-19 travel restrictions.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

  • Secure your spot for 2025 with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you can rest assured you’ve booked your dream adventure in time.
    • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure anytime in case the dates don’t suit you. This can be done by the end of the year.
    • Another 20% needs to be paid by the end of this year.
    • The remaining balance is due X months (X days) prior to departure.

    Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancellation policy stated below applies:

    • Cancellations made more than 3 weeks from the start date: The deposit will be refunded in full.
    • Cancellations made less than 3 weeks ahead: The full trip amount will be forfeited.

    It is highly recommended to purchase medical insurance (if applicable) and traveler’s trip interruption insurance to cover travel costs and trip costs in the event you have to cancel your trip due to personal illness or injury, family emergency or other personal conflicts. If climbing within Canadian National Parks, the purchase of a park pass is required and this also acts as mountain rescue insurance if needed.

Have more questions? Read our FAQ, or Talk with us
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