Every year as the weather turns to winter, a dedicated group of people begin the task of creating one of the most spectacular ice parks in the country.
Long before it is cold enough to form the breathtaking walls of ice that comprise over eleven distinct climbing areas and 150 climbs, our ice farmers are working to create the best and safest possible climbing experience. Using the overflow from the city of Ouray’s spring fed supply tank, a clever design using no pumps at all, feeds water through normal shower heads in a stream that saturates the canyon walls. As the temperatures begin to drop in the canyon, this provides a stable base for over 3 miles of cumulative climbing terrain. The work doesn’t stop there for our tenacious crew though! Every day, they are out in the gorge checking and improving the infrastructure that makes our Ice Park so grand.
If you haven’t gotten your membership yet, now is the time to sign up – and bring your friends! For the month of December, the park is running a membership drive with some amazing prizes for whoever gets the most folks to join with them! Membership definitely has its benefits too. With discounts at most Ouray businesses and clinics at the Ice Festival, there are a lot of perks to helping the park remain free for everyone!
Companies such as San Juan Mountain Guides are invaluable to those looking for a variety of adrenaline fueled adventures, or, for the beginner, a pleasant learning experience with some of the most talented instructors in the country. Of course, with so many climbs and areas within the park, there is no limit to the fun regardless of your experience!
It is never too soon to start planning your ice climbing adventure! After a morning climbing, nothing quite compares to a soothing soak in our hot springs, followed by an incredible meal at one of the many great restaurants on Main Street. Share your adventures with fellow climbers at one of the three breweries here in town, the best way to determine tomorrows destination is to learn from a new friend in the climbing community!