CMC Wall offers some of the most exposed and difficult climbing on Yamnuska. The old Calgary route chimney/corner defines the left side of CMC and Direttissima’s corner defines the right side of the wall. Direttissima, as the name implies, leads directly to Yamnuska’s summit. It is one of the most sought after objectives on Yamnuska. Tons of roof problems guard the upper reaches in between these two massive corners. The rock is much more solid on these middle walls of Yamnuska in comparison to the routes at either end.
The 10 published routes on CMC Wall range from eight to 10 pitches. Direttissima is the most common objective on CMC Wall, not to mention the easiest at 5.8+. A local guidebook references one of CMC’s routes, Verstiegenheit (5.12cR), as one of the hardest and most serious multi-pitch routes in the Canadian Rockies. Verstiegenheit, combined with the rest of the routes on CMC wall, makes this the most difficult section of climbing at Yam.
The Direttissima route is easily identified from a distance. There is a significant roof that marks a large corner that ascends the center of Yamnuska’s south face. There is an identifiable cone of rock that forms at the bottom of this line. Ascend to the base of Yamnuska’s face via the climbers trail and proceed west along the base until you come to this cone. CMC Wall starts here. It is best to haul all gear up the wall in terms of the fastest descent options.
CMC Wall, Left to Right as you Face the Wall
- Verstiegenheit- 8 Pitches- 5.12cR/
- General Pain- 10 Pitches- 5.11d/A3/
- Master Mind- 8 Pitches- 5.11d/
- CMC Wall- 8 Pitches- 5.11b/
- CMC Wall Direct- 8 Pitches- 5.11b/
- Super SDAG- 8 Pitches- 5.11c/
- Highlander- 9 Pitches- 5.11a/
- Lost on CMC- 9 Pitches- 5.11a/
- Shuftee- 8 Pitches- 5.9/
- Direttissima- 9 Pitches- 5.8+/ Direttissima, aptly named as it ascends the middle of Yamnuska (Yam) directly to its summit, is one of the classic and most popular routes on Yam. It is comprised of 1100’+/- spread out among 9 pitches that can be mixed and matched via several variations. The entire route is rated 5.8+ with the crux pitches being #1 and #9 with several 5.9 variation opportunities. It was originally put up in 1957 by Kahl, Grillmair and Gmoser (Hans), the latter of whom just passed away in Canmore in 2006 via biking accident. Direttissima was heralded as quite the climbing achievement during that period. Another Canmore legend, Chic Scott, claims that in the 60’s this was one of the most difficult technical rock climbs in Canada and “was rarely climbed.” Dow
- Alpine Club of Canada
- Environment Canada