Ice climbers from all around the world come to our sleepy town of Ouray every year to brave the extreme temperatures, heights, and vertical climbs of the Ouray Ice Park. Anticipation builds as ice farmers dangle by ropes to prepare every crevasse of the park to ensure safe and desirable ice climbing conditions. Ice farmers fearlessly brush off fresh snow, excavate unwanted ice, and form new ice daily from the many faucets at the top of the gorge. Since the park has so many variables effecting the ice formations, the official announcement of when the gates will open and close to the public changes each year.
The height of the season is celebrated with travelers from across the globe migrating into town for The Ouray Ice Festival. This year’s festivities are going to look a little bit different, as the Ice Festival is going virtual! Join us online Jan. 21 through Jan. 23 to see the qualifiers compete in Ouray Ice Park. And don’t forget: The annual auction begins this Friday at 10 AM MST. Visit https://ourayicepark.com/ouray-ice-festival/ to learn more and access our virtual auction in support of funding the ice park!
Looking to get out on the ice this season but don’t know where to start? Don’t worry because the park includes ice that ranges between all levels of difficulty. If you already have your gear and are ready for the action, head on over to the ice park and jump on a chunk of ice at no charge. Entry to the park is completely free. If you don’t have all the mandatory equipment, there are three local outfitters that rent gear as well as provide personal guides to teach the craft. If interested, contact San Juan Mountain Guides, Ouray Mountain Sports, or Peak Mountain Guides.
The ice park is open every day of the week from 7:30AM to 4:00PM. After the climb, relax in one of Ouray’s many natural hot springs to soothe your sore muscles all the while feasting your eyes on snow covered mountains for the perfect winter getaway. Don’t forget to purchase a membership at the Ice Park in order to recieve discounts all over town. The Box Canyon Lodge & Hot Springs offers a great discount to Ice Park Members!