01/28-29/12

Link to just pictures

Miles spent the w/end with Lori, Cody, and Tess while Jean and I headed down to the Ouray Ice Park with a group of friends for a two day blitz of ice climbing. It was awesome to be able to hang out and climb to our hearts content without having to worry about nap-time and entertaining a 3yr old. We drove to the Rodeway Inn in Gunnison on Friday night and met up with Keith, Beth, and Steve. We drank a couple beers while catching up on each others lives and turned in early for an early wake-up. It was minus 14 degrees Saturday morning and we grabbed some breakfast sammy's and coffee for the rest of the two hour drive to Ouray. We pulled into town right around 9:30am and went right to the climbing area. We geared-up in the parking lot and did the short walk to the box canyon. Dwight and Marlene were going to have some ropes setup already that we could share, while Wayne, Bob, and Sharon were helping out with their HAMS students. We found Bob right away near the Kids Wall and boogied right past the Schoolroom. We were amazed at how many people were here! Ice climbing has really gained some popularity. Every route was occupied in the New Funtier and we finally found their bandana-marked anchor/rope towards the end of South Park. We attempted to set up another rope here, but there was no belay spot at the bottom. Dwight and Marlene had already climbed a few times and were more then happy to take a break while we each did several laps. It felt awesome to be in Ouray again on the vertical ice! Despite it being a few years, Jean totally rocked it shooting up and down the two routes. They were fun routes with many variations possible. After we each did 3-4 laps we moved the ropes down a few climbs for a some variety. Another several more laps until it was close to 4pm and the park closing. We were having way too much fun to even stop for lunch and just ate some snacks instead.
Back at the Comfort Inn we showered and saw the amazing feat of 20 people stuffed into a hot tub while singing Happy Birthday to Jean! We were all starving and went to Bien Tiempo for some strong margaritas and great mexican food. Tons of laughs, fun, and stories included me getting beads from the bartender (Mardi Gras style), finding out how the dollar bills got on the 25' ceilings, and Jean writing a $140 tip on Keith's tab! From there we headed over to the Ouray Brewing Company where the 40 CMC members were dining. Saw some old friends there and more fun times, but Jean and I left early and were asleep by 9pm.
Sunday morning we were up early, packed up, and waiting for breakfast at 7am, so we could get some climbing in before the long drive home. We were setting up anchors by 7:30am in the Schoolroom and had two routes right next to each others. Our forearms and calves were good and sore, so the vertical 100' routes were a bit tough. The ice was sticky and some grunts and groans got us each up them several times. After a few more laps each, we were packing up and heading home around 11am with a stop at Mario's in Gunnison for lunch. A great weekend, awesome climbing, good friends, cool town.... what could be better?!