OURAY – Ladies, it’s time to kick some axe. Every January and February, Chicks with Picks’ infamous “girly guides” teach women of all abilities how to ice climb at the Ouray Ice Park. But Chicks with Picks is not just about learning how to ice climb. It’s about getting inspired to move beyond self-imposed limitations. To this end, the Chicks offer two empowering slideshow presentations in the coming days and weeks, to which the whole community is invited.
Stop by the Ouray Community Center this Friday, Jan. 18 for a slideshow presentation by Alison Gannett, who will be offering her “Global Cooling Ski Adventure Show.”
Gannett is an award-winning global cooling consultant, World Champion extreme free skier, and founder of multiple nonprofit organizations including the Save Our Snow Foundation.
From jaw-dropping cliff drops to shower-curtain wall descents, Gannett has embarked on a lifetime journey to “save our snow.” Through her presentation, Gannett portrays her successes and failures while trying to reduce her carbon footprint by 50 percent. Travel with her as she finds out why her electric solar car actually increased her carbon footprint, learns about growing her own food, and makes the hard decision to “walk the talk” by quitting heli-skiing and selling her snowmobile.
Another inspiring slideshow is coming up on Monday, Jan. 28, when Silverton Mountain guide Sheldon Kerr presents “Ski Like a Woman” at the Ouray Community Center.
Kerr is a ski mountaineer who found her rhythm after a number of false starts as an aspiring professional freeskier and climber. Instead of throwing in the towel after competition letdowns and summit breakdowns, she realized that she was a pretty good skier for a climber, and a pretty good climber for a skier. She set her sights on ski mountaineering and first descents in Norway and Alaska. A few impressive lines and one long, unplanned, foodless, multi-day ski traverse later, Sheldon has come to realize her place is neither in a harness nor on skis, but wearing both at once.
Both slideshows start at 7 p.m. and include a live auction component as well as the presentation. Attendees are asked to make a $5 donation at the door. Proceeds from Gannett’s show benefit the Ouray Ice Park, while funds raised at Kerr’s presentation will go to the Tri-County Women’s Resource Center.
Chicks with Picks swung into action earlier this month with “The Graduate,” a four-day ice climbing course for experienced climbers, and continues this week, from Jan. 16-19, with “The Sampler,” a clinic focusing on the technical skills any self-sufficient chick needs in her ice climbing tool kit.
The most popular Chicks with Picks offering is yet to come. That would be “The Complete,” a week-long clinic from Jan. 26-30 welcoming all levels of climbers from beginner to advanced. This clinic has all the bells and whistles – four days of guided climbing with a 4-to-1 student-to-guide ratio, daily yoga instruction and a skills day where participants sign up for instruction in rescue techniques, mixed climbing, alpine skills and more.
The season wraps up with “The Quickie,” an affordable two-day clinic in early February
that offers two days of guided ice climbing with the infamous Girly Guides, welcoming all levels of ice climbing from beginner to advanced.
Chicks with Picks is now entering its 14th year of “women climbing with women, for women.” The organization was founded by “head chick” Kim Reynolds, who is also the co-founder of the Ridgway-based dZi Foundation.
To learn more about the 2013 Chicks With Picks events, visit chickswithpicks.net.