January 22, 2014
It’s been a stellar start to the season here in Ouray. When I showed up here just before the new year, the ice was already in great shape–I wished I’d been here a month earlier! The awesome conditions continue: The ice park is as good as ever, the backcountry climbs are in rare form.
We’ve just wrapped up a week of climbing with old friends…IMG’s Ouray Veterans program. On this program we take veterans of Ouray climbing, (not military vets, though some are both!) and spend 5 days remembering how to ice climb, enjoying afternoon coffees at the chocolate shop, soaks in the hot springs, and food at Ouray’s fine eating establishments. On several of the days we venture out of the ice park and climb on some of the area backcountry classics. Some of the notable climbs from this year’s Veterans week were the Skylight (in exceptionally good condition), the Charmin Tube…a super cool adventure, and the Ames Ice Hose (an awesome classic with stout climbing). We’re proud of several of our members for getting out there and working toward/doing some lead climbing as well!
The rest of the year for IMG is shaping up with some great beginners and intermediate ice climbing programs as well as a bunch of custom/private ice climbing trips. This current week we are running an expedition skills trip –spending our time both climbing ice, and working on rescue skills, fixed line skills and getting these all polished for our climbers’ next big expedition.
Weather for the coming week looks to be great–sunny and temperate during the days and still plenty cold at night to keep the ice in great shape. Perfect times to be climbing in Ouray! Come enjoy some of the fun!