Bozeman Ice Festival

The walls

The walls

I vaguely remember the Ice Festival happening when I was in school here in Bozeman. I didn’t realize it was such a big deal until I moved back. Last year I watched them build the crazy structure on the Emerson Lawn as I would drive by, but I didn’t stop by to actually check it out. This year The Sexy Master Electrician mentioned wanting to check it out since it is a world cup of ice climbing thing. I was sold.

Bouldering tent

Bouldering tent

This was apparently the first time the UIAA (Union Internationale des Associations d’Alpinisme aka The International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation) held one of it’s ice climbing competitions in North America.  Climber from all over the world were here competing. We watched a guy from Russia complete the route. The route was created by a local Bozeman climber and a well known Russian climber. We went in the afternoon to see some of the Men’s semi-final lead climb. Lead climbing is when you are climbing with no support above, you have to clip-in to the ice/rock wall yourself to create a support from below. Not only were these guys climbing up a wall, but they also had to climb around a suspended cube to get to the finish. I cannot even imagine having the core strength to do something like that. Insane.

Heading up the wall

Heading up the wall

We didn’t see any of the finals, though I’m sure they were amazing, we had dogs to watch. Next year I want to try and catch them. It was so impressive. It almost makes me want to take up ice climbiing, but I don’t think I should be doing any climbing with and ice ax in my hand…

Structure

Structure

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