Ice Climbing Season is Fast Approaching

by Tom Markiewicz on October 29, 2008

When I lived in the Washington DC area, one of the (few) benefits was being able to get cheap flights on Southwest to New Hampshire. This allowed us to take trips for ice climbing in the White Mountains.

I attended the Mt. Washington Valley Ice Festival numerous times and had a blast. The ice climbing there was fantastic, with opportunities for superb multi-pitch routes, mixed climbs, and even top-roping.

When I moved to southwest Virginia to be closer to the New River Gorge, the one thing I missed was the availability of ice climbing in Pennsylvania, New York, and New Hampshire. It has now been years since I’ve climbed ice.

Now that I’m in Colorado I’m anxiously awaiting the upcoming ice season, though I think I’ll need to upgrade most of my gear (I hope my wife is not reading this!)

As a preview to the upcoming season, Splitter Choss has a post up on the status of some of the Colorado ice climbing areas including Crested Butte, Ouray, and Rocky Mountain National Park.

If you’re looking forward to ice climbing this year, there are several resources to update you on the winter climbing conditions. Mountain Project has conditions reports that can be tailored to areas you choose. provides conditions via a user forum for most of the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Eastern Canada. For both US and international climbing area conditions, the American Alpine Institute blog provides a weekly post on updated conditions. For Colorado specific conditions, you can check‘s current condition reports. Finally, Chauvin Guides provides a detailed look at conditions in New Hampshire with pictures and descriptions.

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