Winter Ice Climbing Series

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REGISTRATION: Friday, November 20 - 8AM sharp!

All clinics are 1-day engagements.  "Progressions" are encouraged, as appropriate, through the 3 week series.

Additional registration details are available here.

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Beginning Ice $160–Friday's and Saturday's 1/15, 1/16, 1/22, 1/23, 1/29 1/30
Limited to 4 climbers per clinic

This introductory course is taught at Rock and River’s private Ice Park thus offering plenty of room and numerous climbs, many being up to 70 feet high. Basic skills such as safe site selection and gear usage, proper belaying and rope handling and efficient ice climbing technique will all be introduced and practiced in a small, well spread-out group (4 clients and 1 guide). Upon completion of this session, climbers will have a better understanding of the unique attraction ice climbing affords and will be ready to move on to our Intermediate Ice course.

Guide: Rock and River Guide

Meeting Place and Time: Rock and River, 8:30

Gear: Provided. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Intermediate Ice $180 – Saturday's and Sunday's 1/16, 1/17, 1/23, 1/24, 1/30, 1/31
Limited to 2 climbers per clinic

This session is for climbers that have taken an introductory session or have top roped on ice previously. It presumes students already have basic knot tying, belaying and ice climbing skills and simply wish to further advance their climbing technique and knowledge. It is taught in a very small group format (2 clients per guide) so that the guide can focus on each individual’s needs and goals. Skills may include safely backed-up rappelling techniques, ice screw placement and removal, basic anchoring concepts etc. Upon completion of this session, students will be ready to attempt some of the steeper ice courses as well as the multi-pitch ice climbing sessions.

Guide: Rock and River Guide

Meeting Place and Time: Rock and River, 8:00

Gear: Please bring your own gear, otherwise it will be provided. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Advanced Ice $190–Friday's and Saturday's 1/15, 1/16, 1/22, 1/23, 1/29 1/30
Limited to 2 climbers per clinic

Advanced Ice is a full day of top roping some of the more challenging ice in the area (steep, thin etc.). It is taught by local legend Matt Horner with the site location varying. Under Matt’s patient and encouraging tutelage, students might just be surprised at what they can accomplish with their newly learned techniques. Offered with just 2 students per session, the skills taught will be tailored to the needs and desires of the participants.

Guide: Matt Horner

Meeting Place and Time: Mountaineer, 8:00

Gear: You need to bring your personal gear for this clinic. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted $180 – Sunday's ONLY 1/17, 1/24, 1/31
Limited to 4 climbers per clinic

This is a targeted course aimed at getting normal people up abnormally steep routes. It is aimed specifically at people who climb short sections of vertical ice but can’t imagine leading it. It is not for beginners. It is not for anyone who can already lead grade 5 ice. The theme is this: if someone told you not to do it, it probably works. This is not about powering your way up. It’s about slithering and groveling, engaging your knees, your elbows, and especially your brain. It’s not supposed to be pretty or to make a magazine cover. You already know about supposed “good technique,” and you are still getting pumped. Time for a new approach. Hear what others are saying about Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted:

“I feel ten years younger. When I look in the mirror, I see the person I am supposed to be.”

“My friends have noticed the change. I’m sleeping better. My appetite is back.”

“My libido… it’s like I’m seventeen again.”

Warning: Do not take this course if you take nitrates, often prescribed for chest pain, as this may cause a sudden, unsafe drop in blood pressure. Discuss your general health status with your doctor to ensure that you are healthy enough to engage in steep ice climbing. If you experience chest pain, nausea, or any other discomforts during climbing, or if you experience a sudden loss of vision or hearing, seek immediate medical help. In the rare event of an ice lead lasting more than 4 hours, call a professional guide to avoid long-term injury.

A perennial favorite at past Mountainfests, Don has once again agreed to run this offering for 2021. This year, the session will be held with a smaller group of students (4) and will include his physics, tips and tricks discussion at the climbing site as opposed to indoors.

Guide: Don Mellor

Ratio: 4 Students to 1 Guide

Meeting Place and Time: The Mountaineer Keene Valley, 8:30

Gear: You need to bring your personal gear for this clinic. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Introduction to Mountaineering $175 – Fridays ONLY 1/15, 1/22, 1/29
Limited to 2 climbers per clinic

This clinic is perfect for folks that aren't sure if vertical ice climbing is for them but are interested in expanding their hiking experience to winter ascents or that have aspirations to eventually climb bigger peaks such as Cotopaxi, Rainier, etc. The session starts with an overview of clothing and equipment selection and a discussion of packing for a day in the mountains. Field time will focus on application of tools and techniques to increase security and maintain efficiency. Not sure when to change from those micropikes into your crampons? Should you take the ice axe out? How do you use that ice axe anyway? Do we need a rope? These are all great questions and at the end of this clinic participants should feel more confident addressing these decisions with their team.

Guide: Rock and River Guide

Ratio: 2 Students to 1 Guide

Meeting Place and Time: Rock and River, 8:15

Gear: Please bring your own gear, otherwise it will be provided. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Multi- Pitch Climbing $200 –Sunday's ONLY 1/17, 1/24, 1/31
Limited to 2 climbers per clinic

These sessions are instructional as well as simply being a fun guided climbing experience. They focus on ascending a moderate multi-pitch climb somewhere in the Chapel Pond/Cascade Pass regions. Participants must have top roped previously and understand how to belay, rappel and climb moderate ice. The day will focus on a climb or two but will begin with an overview of how multi-pitch climbing proceeds. The ratio will be 2 climbers per guide.

Guide: Rock and River Guide

Meeting Place and Time: To be determined

Gear: Please bring your own gear, otherwise it will be provided. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.

 

Learn to Lead Seminar $190 –Sunday's ONLY 1/17, 1/24, 1/31
Limited to 2 climbers per clinic

The Learn to Lead Seminar will take place at a short ice wall (40 – 50 feet) and will focus more on leading skills rather than height and exposure. With 4 students per guide, participants will learn about judging ice, objective hazards, screw placements and proper anchor construction, belay transfers and proper retreat techniques. Plenty of practice lead climbs will take place with a back-up top rope in place for safety. Students must have top roped numerous times, know how to rappel and belay, and feel comfortable climbing on grade 3 ice.

Guide: Rock and River Guide

Meeting location and Time: The Mountaineer, 8:30

Gear: You need to bring your personal gear for this clinic. Demo gear will be available on a limited basis.