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A specialized workshop focusing on the medium of waterfall ice

Rigging for Rescue’s home base of Ouray, Colorado is one of the world’s premier ice climbing destinations. Ouray is home to the Ouray Ice Park which hosts over 100 ice climbs in a narrow gorge just minutes walking distance from town proper. Additionally, the surrounding San Juan Mountains are choked with frozen waterfalls throughout the winter months.

Ouray is an optimal location for increasing your personal waterfall ice climbing and terrain evaluation skills. If you or your team works or plays in areas that are home to waterfall ice, this is a workshop that you won’t want to miss.

Fees: $1,450

The Waterfall Ice Climbing and Rescue Workshop is a specialized training workshop focusing on the techniques and subtleties of ice climbing and waterfall ice rescue practices. Content often includes:

  • ice screw placements and evaluation
  • Abalakovs (aka V-Threads)
  • a critical evaluation of load limiting quickdraws (aka rip apart runners)
  • ice climbing technique refinement
  • bottom-up rescue and lead climbing strategies
  • pickoffs
  • companion rescue including rescuing the ‘leader’ and rescuing the ‘second’
  • belay escapes and various transfer-of-tension methods
  • terrain evaluation
  • multi-pitch techniques and transitions
  • patient packaging for the winter environment
  • the use of deflection lines to deviate around hazardous terrain
  • team movement on ice
  • and much more

The above list is not exhaustive, nor is it a checklist. One of the hallmark traits of a Rigging for Rescue program is the flexible curriculum. Specific techniques & topics covered are influenced by the overall participant mix and their interests. Each Rigging for Rescue seminar or workshop is a custom experience.

Rigging for Rescue Waterfall Ice Workshop – Personal Protective Equipment

Personal gear participants are expected to bring:

  • Note-taking supplies
  • Warm, rugged outdoor winter clothing including shell coat/pant
  • 1 ice screw
  • Ice tools (piolets are not sufficient) and crampons with appropriate footwear for climbing technical ice
  • Winter hat and gloves (2 pairs)
  • 4 locking carabiners
  • 5 metres of 25 mm (or wider) nylon webbing (to construct a chest harness and connector strap)
  • 10 metres of 6mm nylon kernmantle cord (or a completed set of Purcell Prusiks)
  • 10 metres of 8mm nylon kernmantle cord (to construct a personal edge restraint system)
  • Personal descent control device. Preferably, a device that includes a plaquette style auto- locking feature (e.g. Petzl Reverso, Kong GiGi, etc.).
  • Headlamp
  • Helmet
  • Leather gloves
  • Harness
  • Backpack
  • Personal first aid kit

Optional equipment:

  • Dyneema/Spectra runners
  • Specialty ropes or cord you would like to see used and/or evaluated
  • Mini Prusik-minding-pulleys
  • Devices you find useful for your personal on-rope or rescue systems
  • VT Prusik (from Bluewater Ropes)

We want to see what you use, how and why. We are looking for the best possible way to rig and conduct rescue.  Printed materials, video clips of trainings, and favorite rescue books are all welcome additions to the seminar. Active participation is the best way to foster a rich and rewarding learning environment.

The training will run for five full days (40+ hours) beginning at 0800 on Monday and ends at approximately 16:30 on Friday afternoon. Each participant is responsible for their own transportation, personal equipment, food, and accommodation.

This workshop will include low participant-to-instructor ratios and a classroom located right in the heart of the Ouray Ice Park.

Fees: $1,450 USD. A deposit of $485 USD is required upon registration with final payment due two months prior to the workshop start date. Includes a maximum 4:1 participant-to-instructor ratio while on the ice.