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Ice Climbing World Cup Coming To America

An astounding 11 Canadians have registered to compete at the first UIAA ice climbing world cup to take place in the States.

The 18th annual Bozeman Ice Festival (BIFF) includes the inaugural UIAA Bozeman World Cup and North American Ice Climbing Championships, a two-day film festival featuring world premier ice-climbing films, numerous climbing clinics for all skills and ability levels, parties, gear demos, raffles, a family climbing day, adaptive climbing clinic, and more.

The registered Canadian competitors: Sarah Hueniken, Gord McArthur, Rafal Andronowski, Jen Olson, Crista-lee Mitchell, Rebecca Lewis, Mehrnoosh Mahallati, Neil Gowan, Nathan Kutcher, Jeff Thom and Ryan Wiebe.

For the full list of competitors

What has evolved from locals teaching a few clinics in nearby Hyalite Canyon, BIF now includes four days of on-ice clinics by the top instructors and guides in the world, including the country’s largest women’s only clinic. Now hosting the only internationally sanctioned UIAA World Cup in North America, Bozeman has become the largest ice climbing festival in America and is at the forefront of developing an emerging Winter Olympic sport.

The World Cup climbing tower is centrally located outside the Emerson Cultural Center at the festival’s Urban Base Camp, a farmer’s market type of venue for climbing clinics, festival sponsors and local outdoor groups. Black Diamond Equipment and other sponsors will provide gear for clinics targeted to all abilities. Introductory clinics are open to the public on Friday and Saturday on a drop-in basis and cost $20 per person.

On Wednesday and Thursday, the BIF Film Festival features awe-inspiring films and a selection of multimedia presentations featuring some of the world’s top athletes and personalities. On Friday and Saturday, 50 of the world’s best competitive climbers will battle it out in a thrilling, adrenaline-packed display of Olympic-caliber completion for both competitors and spectators alike. On Sunday, the World Cup tower is open to all climbers wanting to test their mettle on the World Cup routes. These events are free to all spectators.

Schedule of Events

Wednesday, December 10– The North Face Speaker Series and Bozeman debut of “Always Above Us” with Conrad Anker and Kris Erickson.

Thursday, December 11 – BIF Film Festival with featured presentations including:

  • World Premier of Rjukan; The Power of Water featuring Ines Papert
  • The Skater featuring Will Mayo
  • To Live Deliberately featuring Justin Willis
  • An American Ascent presented by Distill Productions – Q&A to follow

Friday and Saturday, December 12 and 13 – Urban Base Camp with Introductory Ice Climbing Clinics, Gear Demos and Sponsor Expo

Friday, December 12 UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup Bozeman  – Speed Climbing

Saturday, December 13 – UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup Bozeman – Lead Difficulty

Sunday, December 14– World Cup Tower Public Climbing, Eagle Mount Adaptive Ice Climbing Clinic, Local Legends Wrap Party with the Emerson Grill, and special guest Barry Blanchard reading from his new memoir, “The Calling, A life rocked by Mountains.”

About BIF and Friends of Hyalite 

The Bozeman Ice Festival began in 1996 is dedicated to promoting and protecting the world-class ice and mixed climbing in Hyalite Canyon and also promoting Olympic- caliber competition. For more info, please visit www.bozemanicefest.com. Proceeds from BIF directly support Friends of Hyalite, a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to funding winter road plowing in Hyalite Canyon, home to the longest season of accessible ice in America. For more info, please visit www.hyalite.org.