OURAY – With its growing reputation as the ice climbing capital of the country thanks to the annual Ouray Ice Festival, Ouray is an equally perfect setting for women’s-only ice climbing events. This year Chicks with Picks celebrates its 10-year anniversary of “kicking axe” with three popular women’s clinics and, new this year, the Betty Ice Ball. For those less interested in braving the freezing temperatures of the Ouray Ice Park, several social gatherings and slideshows are open to the public.
Multi-day Chicks with Picks clinics include Totally Chick (completed last week, Jan. 12-16), The Complete Chicks (Jan. 25-29), and The Chicks Sampler (Feb. 2-5). These beginner-to-advanced ice climbing clinics offer a four-to-one guide, client ratio, allowing participants to hone their skills and move to the next level of climbing. Students gain the technical skills needed to become more self-reliant climbers and equal partners. The clinics are so popular, many women return year after year.
The new Betty Ball, a women’s festival of ice, takes place Jan. 30-Feb. 1, offering less commitment but all the fun of a multi-day intensive. Also for beginner-to-advanced climbers, the Ice Ball offers half-day clinics with a six-to-one guide, client ratio, focusing on specific skills or drills. Participants can sign up for the whole package or pick and choose select clinics. In the evenings, participants enjoy dinners, slideshows, auctions, and great music and dancing. It’s a great place to network with other women climbers.
The public (even the boys) can participate in Chicks with Picks by attending evening slideshows, auctions and dances at the Ouray Community Center at 7 p.m. Free Beer, Cheap Gear: The Complete Chicks takes place Tuesday, Jan. 27, featuring an auction and public slideshow presented by Ouray resident Dawn Glanc titled “The Big Expedtion for Cancer Research.” During the Betty Ice Ball, the public can attend an auction and slideshow on Friday, Jan. 30 with Annie Whitehouse and Saturday, Jan. 31. Saturday features live music by regional band Fall Baby. Proceeds from the public events support the Tri-County Resource Center in Montrose, a non-profit organization serving Ouray, Montrose, and Delta Counties by offering a safe house for women in transition, counseling programs for abuse and sexual violation issues, three crisis lines, a 24-hour crisis hot line, and more.
Complete information on Chicks with Picks, their clinics and their programs is available on their website, www.chickswithpicks.net. To contact them, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 970/626-4424.