There are over a hundred lines in the Ouray Ice Park, but—if you're actually looking to climb—any veteran's recommendation is: "Wake up at 6 a.m., claim a line, and lap it all day. Best of luck." Yet competition morning, January 12th, was different, if only for a few minutes.
"It may sound strange, but it was as though a period of my life was ending this spring. At first I was grieving for the past and very lost, but eventually I had to learn how to let go, and I entered a new life."
There are a multitude of reasons we climb—more often than not they are expressed in pithy, sound-bite phrases like Mallory's "Because it's there." Within, Mike Robertson offers a reason more satisfying.
When contemplating a climbing trip from a US mountain town, several important factors come to mind: blue—even turquoise—water, cultural experiences and a European location where the dollar isn't drowned by the Euro.