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Crow’s Nest Clean and Climb – October 29 2016

Come scrub Crow’s Nest on Saturday, October 29! It’s the best cliff in Nova Scotia and you’ve never been there. But CNS volunteers have been busy this season equipping this hard-to-reach gem with titanium anchors that will withstand the harsh marine climate in the 21st century and beyond!Crow Nest Topo

There are 15 established routes at Crow’s Nest, with another 10 obvious lines just waiting to be cleaned, equipped, and climbed. CNS is making arrangements with local fishers for a boat departing the Government Wharf in Terence Bay on Saturday morning at 9:30am, returning to the mainland at 6:30pm. A second boat will return on Sunday afternoon at 2pm for folks who would like to stay overnight. Parking is available in a lot right next to the wharf.

The event is free for CNS members, and you can become a member or renew your membership for just $20 for two years by clicking here. RSVP to climbnovascotia@gmail.com if you plan on attending.

CNS will provide:

  • Anchor material and static lines
  • Brushes
  • Goggles
  • Dust masks
  • Work gloves
  • Grigris (on request)
  • Ascenders (on request)
  • Helmets (on request)
  • Coffee, tea, & snacks

You must bring:

  • Common sense
  • Harness
  • Climbing shoes
  • Chalk
  • Water
  • Warm jacket
  • Warm hat

If you have the following, you should bring those with you:

  • Work gloves
  • Helmet
  • Grigri
  • Ascender
  • Climbing rope

It’s going to be awesome!

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Erosion prevention in the LOC

Climb Nova Scotia volunteers recently installed erosion prevention measures to protect ecologically sensitive marshland in the popular Land of Confusion bouldering area. Two hundred feet of raised boardwalk now span the sphagnum bog on the approach to Memorial boulder.

New boardwalk to Memorial et al.

New boardwalk to Memorial et al.

This infrastructure prevents erosion and protects flora such as the beautiful pitcher plant from damage caused by foot traffic.

Sarracenia purpurea, the "Soldier's Drinking Cup", is a delicate carnivorous plant found throughout the LOC

Sarracenia purpurea, the “Soldier’s Drinking Cup”, is a delicate carnivorous plant found throughout the LOC

As an added bonus, the new boardwalk will keep your feet dry. Note that this trail is used to access not only the Memorial boulder, but also Skillz Inventory, Eggs, River Styx, Trailside, and Godzilla boulders, as well as the Bug City sport climbing crag!

If you have never tried the five star classic lines of Godzilla (V0), 111 (V3), Persephone (v4), Loose Shoes (v5), and Check Out My Blog (5.11c), there’s never been a better time to go check em out!

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REEL ROCK 10 – Tues Nov 3 @ Halifax Central Library!

Climb Nova Scotia is proud to bring the Reel Rock film festival to Halifax for its tenth anniversary!

Tuesday, November 3rd at 7:00pm (doors open at 6:30pm)

Halifax Central Library, Paul O’Regan Hall

Tickets: $10 in advance at the Trail Shop, $15 at the door


Climbing movies!

Charity in support of a great cause!


All profits from this event are going to Movember in support of men’s health issues

Beer (if you are old enough)!

The good folks at Good Robot will be on site pulling tasty local draft for you

The good folks at Good Robot will be on site pulling tasty local draft for you


There will be popcorn!

There will be popcorn!

Okay seriously if you don’t wanna come after all that I don’t know what to tell you.


*Reel Rock 10 contains some saucy language. Parental discretion is advised.
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West Kings Gets a Re-vamp

One of the oldest bouldering walls in the Nova Scotia school system, the facility at West Kings District High School was in need of some long overdue TLC. Resurrected from neglect in 2012 by combined efforts of teacher Adam Conner and our very own Diversity Liaison Phill Craik, the wall gets enough use these days that it’s starting to need more regular maintenance.


The wall was originally constructed as an in-house work protect for the Options and Opportunities Programme. This excellent education stream allows youth who have an interest in a more trade-based future learn some hands on skills in that field during high-school.

Phill has been working in timber framing and rough carpentry for the last little while, and used this opportunity to give something back to the wall that kick-started climbing again in the Annapolis Valley. After beginning with a presentation to the kids about his climbing history and timber framing experience, they then set about making some sawdust!


Phase one involved making a top-out bar to make finishing problems a little safer and more enjoyable. Under guidance from Phill, the kids made all the measurements, cut the 2×4, routered and sanded it smooth and drilled it into position. It was really inspiring to see these kids work as a team, challenge themselves and take some ownership of their own climbing facility for the betterment of the school.

The second step was finding, replacing or repairing damaged t-nuts and pinning them with small screws. As any good route-setter knows, hearing the ping of a popped t-nut is the stuff of nightmares. This was dusty, dirty and cramped work in behind the wall, but the kids seemed to relish the challenge of not only putting things right, but getting it done well.


Lastly the wall was rough sanded, scraped and will be painted in a few weeks by some volunteers. A full re-set, complete with a huge new hold order will take place in mid-July. By the next school year the wall will look as good as the day it was built, and more than ready for another year of climbing.


Big thanks O2 teacher, Pete Morse, Frasers Home Pro Centre, Adam Conner, and all the kids who grafted hard for two days whilst Phill drank cups of tea, took very regular breaks and looked on with a proud eye to what could potentially be the next batch of home-climbing wall builders in the making!


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Mount Traber Workshop

Better late than never right?

IMG_1669Last June (2014) Heather and Chris spent an afternoon with the Mount Traber Bible Camp Summer Staff.  Staff members were excited to receive a great selection of new and colorful holds, belay bags, gri gris, locking biners and wrenches.

IMG_6378MTBC staff were given a lesson on wall maintenance including how to move and put up new holds, what to do if a bolt gets stripped, how to inspect and safely put harnesses on children and how to belay using a Gri Gri and belay bag.

IMG_6380Staff also had an opportunity to practice each of these skills.  It was a fun afternoon for all, please enjoy the pictures of some campers enjoying the new holds and safe climbing!


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CNS Annual General Meeting and Call for Nominations – May 19 2015

The Climb Nova Scotia Annual General Meeting will take place on Tuesday, May 19 2015 from 6:30pm-8:30pm in Room 201 at the new Halifax Central Public Library on Spring Garden Road in Program Room 201. Come on out and hear what we accomplished over the past year, enjoy a special guest presentation from Nova Scotia Rock guidebook author Sean P. Cassidy, and socialize with fellow climbers. Refreshments will be served.

CNS is currently accepting nominations for all executive positions for elections at the annual general meeting on Tuesday May 19 2015. If you are considering a place on the ballot, you must be nominated (or nominate yourself) by emailing climbnovascotia@gmail.com. Nominations will be accepted until April 30 2015 at 11:59pm.

A typical CNS executive meeting

A typical CNS executive meeting

Please include your name, the position you are interested in, and a short summary (300 word maximum) of your qualifications and why you want to sit on the board. Nominations will not be accepted after April 30 2015 at 11:59pm.

Positions and descriptions are as follows:

  • President – Ensure alignment of CNS activities with organizational goals and funding qualification criterion, draft meeting agendas, chair monthly meetings, delegate tasks, oversee financials, attend events, deal with government stakeholders, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Treasurer – Manage financials, prepare budget, retain records, steer spending toward targets, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Membership Coordinator – Retain up-to-date membership list, mail correspondence and membership cards, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Communications Representative – Handle external matters, book event venues, postering, advertisement campaigns, approach sponsors, primary email responder, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, other duties as assigned.
  • Access Chair – Monitor all climbing area access issues, uphold excellent relationships with landowners, organize clean and climbs, organize and execute trail maintenance, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Diversity Liaison – Social outreach, engagement of new climbers and underrepresented groups, organize and attend events, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Youth Representative – Interface with public school system, support youth climbing competitions and workshops, organize and attend events, attend monthly executive meetings, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.
  • Secretary – Attend monthly executive meetings, record and distribute meeting minutes, website posts, answer emails, other duties as assigned.

Executive members (with the exception of President) all have a vote in major Climb Nova Scotia undertakings and are expected to exercise their right to vote when called upon. All executive positions are a 1 year term, except for President, which is 2 years in duration.

Executive members are not paid and typically spend up to 5 hours a week on CNS activities when there’s nothing happening, and more when we are busy. President tends to be busier.

If you want to help with CNS but aren’t interested in sitting on the board please let us know. There’s plenty to do and we can always use volunteers for specific projects!

Please note, you must be a member in good standing of Climb Nova Scotia to run for a position on the board, and to attend the annual general meeting. You can purchase a membership by clicking here or with cash at the meeting.

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Nova Scotia Valley Youth Climbing Competition Recap

It was almost two years to the day since the first youth bouldering competition was hosted at West Kings District High School in Auburn, NS. In those two short years we have seen a new wall built (at NKEC in Canning), two extensions built to the existing wall at West Kings, new holds and volumes purchased, the creation of sustainable and successful after school climbing clubs, and immersion of climbing curriculum into the school physical education classes.

Megan contorts her way into a delecate face climb (Photo by Miles)

Megan contorts her way into a delicate face climb (Photo by Miles)

The scene at the wall on Sunday 11th January 2015 marked one of stark contrast from 2013. A veteran group of organizers, seasoned by many hours of running these competitions, now sat back in relative calm and with immense pride as the kids crushed their problems left right and center. Seeing this small community climbing club grow is proof that the youth really are the future, both literally and figuratively. Funded by Canning & Kings County Recreation, the after school climbing clubs are co-led by the young climbers who have come through the programs themselves. They are now coaching and inspiring their peers and, in one case, even getting a job at the local climbing gym.

Nick finds his height perfect for this compression problem (Photo by Miles)

Nick finds his height perfect for this compression problem (Photo by Miles)

Setting for the competitions always starts early the day before, and usually runs very (very, very, very….) late into the evening. This is not because the setters are slow; it is because, unlike setting for a commercial gym environment, they focus on creating problems that are going to be climbed for whole semesters and by a wide range of ability levels. Most importantly, they need to focus on problems that can inspire, challenge and maintain interest. Competition day is now fairly routine. By now the kids know the drill, they’re excited rather than nervous, and we now have to break the socializing in order to get started! Unlike most competitive sports, the youth all help one another to do the best they can, and anyone new to the sport is automatically spotted and given beta on problems by the more experienced kids. It really is a phenomenal atmosphere that never ceases to inspire us.

Head-Setter and part time Jedi, Chris Richardson using the force to will competitors to the top (Photo by Miles)

Head-Setter and part time Jedi, Chris Richardson using the force to will competitors to the top (Photo by Miles)

From the nine youth that competed in the first competition, the valley circuits now draw up to twenty-five youngsters from Halifax to Annapolis Royal. It has become an event that is almost as highly anticipated by the parents as it is the kids. Let’s not forget that without them it would be a heck of a walk from HRM! Its fair to say that climbing has gripped an ever-growing generation of truly inspiring, grounded and humble young athletes.

And that is whats known as a “try hard face”. Young guns cranking hard! (Photo by Miles)

And that is whats known as a “try hard face”. Young guns cranking hard! (Photo by Miles)

The next event is tentatively planned for April of this year, so keep an ear to the ground! Its still important to mention that these events would not be possible without the hard work and continued commitment from volunteers, sponsors, parents, and of course the kids!

Phill & Bekah from the CNS Exec handing out prizes from sponsors (Photo by Miles)

Phill & Bekah from the CNS Exec handing out prizes from sponsors (Photo by Miles)

Thanks to Climb Nova Scotia, The Trail Shop, Canning & Kings County Recreation, Annapolis Valley Climbing Club, Jedi Richardson, Heather B, Bekah Reagan, Adam Conner, Derrick Smith and guest setters Kyle & Mike.

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Main Face Clean and Climb – June 21-22 2014

Climb Nova Scotia will be holding a Clean and Climb event at Main Face on the Summer Solstice weekend.  We have rented the cabin from 10:30am Saturday, June 21st to Sunday, June 22nd and we want YOU to come on out and lend a hand.

RSVP to climbnovascotia@gmail.com if you are planning on attending so we have an idea how many folks will be there. Come for an afternoon or bring a tent and stay the whole weekend. CNS will rig fixed lines for scrubbing and have limited brushes and personal protective gear available (so please bring your own work gloves, wire brushes, eye protection, and helmets if you have them).


With your help, some Main Face line could get cleaned and climbed! (Photo by Roger Fage, used without permission from https://sponsormeow.wordpress.com - Gavin on 3D at Columbus Wall)

With your help, one of Main Face’s forgotten gems could get cleaned and climbed! (Photo by Roger Fage, used without permission – Gavin on 3D at Columbus Wall)

Like many other rope climbing areas in Nova Scotia, Main Face ‘s classic lines see enough traffic to keep them clean, while other routes need a helping hand every few years. Come discover your new favorite route and tidy it up so other folks will climb it and keep it clean. Crusty trad climber volunteers will be on hand to help you navigate the cliff. Many hands make light work, so the more the merrier. There might even be time for climbing our freshly cleaned lines afterward!


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Growing Youth Climbing Scene

The NEW Wall at North East Kings Education Center!!!

Blank Wall - NKEC


We built 406 square feet of climbing wall in 31 hours with 5 volunteers and the help of some O2 students, climbing youth and tech teachers.



The wall is 29 feet long and 14 feet high with a slab and multiple angles, prows and arêtes designed by Adam using Google Sketch Up. This climbing wall is an amazing addition to the school allowing kids another opportunity to stay fit. It is also a great tool for teachers to teach youth problem solving and team work, while helping youth to build confidence and have fun.


The Youth Comp/Grand Opening

End with holds

Finished and Freshly Set

On March, 23, 2014 seventeen youth descended on the NKEC’s new climbing wall to experience the 45 quality problems set by the volunteers the previous day.  These youth ranged in age from 8-18 years old but were all pulling hard.  Their goal was to get as many points as possible during their 3 hours of climbing and many of the youth climbed right to the end!  Thanks to the great sponsors every youth went away with a prize (or two).

A special thanks to all the parents for coming out and supporting your kids, we couldn’t put on these events without you!

Climbing Kids

Youth Attack!

The North East Kings Education Center Climbing Wall and the Youth Competitions could not have happened if it was not for the hard work and dedication by Adam Connor and the other volunteers.  Without their help, the construction, setting and supervision of climbers could not have happened. Thank you Phil, Bekah, Heather x2 and Chris.