OverviewMount Gimli (9100 ft) is situated at the south end of Valhalla Provincial Park in Southern British Columbia. The mountain is beautiful from all angles, but is particularly stunning when viewed from the south. From this viewpoint, the South Ridge forms a spectacular arête that just calls out to be climbed. And even more pleasing, the south ridge is composed of perfect gneiss and can be climbed at a moderate 5.8 grade over 7 pitches. The approach is relatively short and there are no glaciers or snow to contend with (assuming you're climbing it during the summer months).
Getting ThereThe first part of the approach is getting to Slocan, B.C. – there are a number of ways to do this: either from the north through Revelstoke (which involves a free ferry ride) or from the south via Castlegar. Slocan is situated at the south end of Slocan Lake, adjacent to Valhalla Provincial Park to the west and Kokanee Provincial Park to the east.
Just south (about 1 kilometre) of the main exit (well signed) to Slocan there is a road called the “gravel pit road” – turn west here (right if coming from Revelstoke). Follow this road across the Slocan River and south until the 15 kilometre road marker, at which time you will turn right. Follow the blue “Valhalla” signs until you reach the trailhead. Gimli is visible to the north (your right as you are driving in).
The trail starts out relatively flat but after crossing a log bridge is switchbacks up steeply all the way to a small saddle near the beginning of the South Ridge. There are camping spots here (although the route can be done car to car in a day for a relatively fast party starting early). There is a toilet here – please use it. There are also places to find water, but water can be harder to find close to the camping spot later in the season.
Red TapeThere is no permits required to camp in Valhalla Provincial Park. Practice good backcountry camping - leave no trace.
CampingThere are small areas to tent or bivy at the base of the South Ridge of Gimli; there is a toilet here and water can often be found nearby (but not always).
External LinksHere are a few links to sites with information on Gimli:
North American Classics
Gravity Adventures - Nelson, B.C.