Hidden away at the heart of the San Juan Mountains, the old mining town of Ouray has recently struck a new vein—ice climbing. The mile-long Ouray Ice Park was equipped with a human-made and gravity-fed sprinkler system, maintaining around 140 world-class ice climbing routes ranging from newbie-friendly ascents to bone-chilling vertical challenges. And because the spectacular natural gorge housing the routes is basically in Ouray’s backyard, accessibility is not an issue. Add in San Juan’s majestic mountainous vistas to the mix and you get one of the most amazing ice climbing destinations in the States! Whether you’re looking to put on a harness for the first time or you’re someone who feels naked without their crampons, Ouray is the place to be.

  • Get lost in San Juan’s rugged and picturesque backcountry

  • Push your ice climbing skills further on Ice Park’s thrilling routes

  • Master the fundamentals of ice climbing in Ouray, the “Switzerland of America”

Choose itinerary

A Full Day of Ice Climbing With a Guide
Dec 15 onwards
Intro to Ice Climbing
Dec 15 onwards
Mixed Climbing Course
Dec 15 onwards
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Meet your guide

Splitter Alpine Adventures
Splitter Alpine Adventures
Splitter Alpine Adventures is a custom mountain guiding service specialized in technical climbing instruction and private guided ascents of classic routes around the world. Operated by expert climbing guides, you are guaranteed to receive the highest quality of customer service, logistical support, and professional instruction!
5.00 (2 reviews)
Laura H. about Splitter Alpine Adventures on Nicelocal

I was in Ouray and decided to book a last-minute ice climbing lesson. Having no climbing experience I was a little nervous and had unending questions. Micah was very patient and guided me through everything so I was able to build tons of confidence. His passion for climbing is contagious and I’d love to join on one of his adventures! I would definitely recommend him!

Caleb H. about Splitter Alpine Adventures on Nicelocal

Micah taught me how to ice climb last year. I have used his guide service twice sense then. He has always picked great climbs for me that push my limit but I’m able to climb. Micah is incredibly patient and spends time teaching as much as you want to learn. I highly recommend using Micah for your next climbing adventure.

Things to know

  • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

    We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Ouray, Colorado, please refer to Colorado’s COVID-19 travel guidelines.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

  • What you get on this adventure:

      • An experienced, local ice climbing guide with extensive knowledge of the area
      • One to three full days of ice climbing or ice climbing courses depending on your chosen itinerary
      • Group equipment (climbing rope, rock/snow/ice protection, anchor material)

    What’s not included:

      • Personal climbing gear
      • Transportation
      • Accommodations
      • Food and snacks
  • If you can climb a ladder, you’re good to go. Being in good shape is always a plus but far from necessary. Ice climbing is all about using good movement technique rather than muscling up an ice wall using brute strength. To ensure you have a fun day, your guide will choose routes that best suit your skill and fitness level.

  • Ouray has plenty of options for beginner ice climbers. Whether you’ve never climbed before or are transitioning from rock to ice, your guide will customize the day to suit your skill level and objectives. With a guide by your side, you’ll learn something new, stay safe on the ice, and most importantly, have fun!

    For intermediate to advanced ice climbers, Ouray has loads of routes to spend the day on. Your guide will discuss your objectives and customize the day to your goals. Let your guide plan the day so you can focus on developing your skills while climbing the classic routes or best-hidden gems the area has to offer.

  • All group equipment will be provided by your guiding service and the rest can be rented. If you have your own gear, feel free to bring it. You’ll need:

      • Climbing helmet (UIAA certified) — provided by the guide
      • Vertical frontpoint crampons and crampon pouch — provided by the guide
      • Technical ice tools — provided by the guide
      • Harness — provided by the guide
      • Tubular belay device with round bar stock locking carabiner — provided by the guide
      • Sewn nylon sling (48 in/120 cm)
      • Two or three locking carabiners and one or two non-locking carabiners — provided by the guide
      • Two ice clippers

    Here’s a list of the equipment we suggest you bring:

      • Sun hat and warm hat thin enough to fit under the helmet
      • Insulated parka
      • Neck gaiter
      • Synthetic underwear
      • Heavyweight socks
      • Mixed and softshell climbing gloves
      • Midweight top base layer
      • Heavyweight bottom base layer
      • Midweight fleece jacket
      • Midweight vest — optional
      • Active insulation jacket
      • Softshell jacket and pants
      • Crampon-compatible mountaineering boots
      • Snowshoes or approach skis — optional
      • Sunglasses
      • Sunscreen and lip balm
      • Small first aid kit
      • Water bottle and 2L of water
      • High-energy food and snacks you can eat on-the-go
      • Knife — optional
      • Hand warmers — optional
      • Headlamp with fully charged batteries
      • Climbing backpack (35 liters with ice tool attachments) — can be rented

    Your guides will provide a more detailed equipment list before your trip. If rental gear is needed, please inform your guide of your specific needs in advance of the trip.
    Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.

  • Group sizes and prices:

      • The max guest-to-guide ratio is 4:1.
      • All pricing is per person.
      • Costs per person decrease as the group grows, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family.

    Ice climbing days in Ouray can be arranged for bigger groups. Contact us prior to booking.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to climb on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

    If your group has ice climbers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Ouray, CO, most people fly into Denver International Airport 6 hours away. From there, you can rent a car and drive to Ouray. Alternatively, you can take a local flight to Montrose, CO and rent a car or take a shuttle to Ouray.

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, whether that’s at the guide shop or a predetermined location. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ability of the group.

Have more questions? Read our FAQ,
From $450
/ 1-3 days
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