Minnesota’s World Cup Training Structure

This past weekend my sister Kendra and I createdFile_000(2) a UIAA regulation height speed ice climbing structure.  The structure is 32 feet high, 3 feet wide, and around 600 lbs.

We constructed the wood structure on the ground and hauled it into place using a 7:1 pulley system.  Hauling the structure into the tree was definitely the most challenging part of the project.  We are already training on the structure for the 2016 Ice Climbing World Cup and can’t wait for the first competition this December in Bozeman Montana and then in South Korea, France, Italy, Romania and Russia!

Carter screwing on the horizontal slats
Kendra testing out the structure with a speed lap

Minnesota Training

I went home to visit my family in Minnesota and while there I had two venues in which to climb; the underside of my parents’ deck, and the Minnesota Climbing Coop.

A month ago my brother was at my parents’ house and, inspired by my basement set-up, he created a small training circuit on the underside of their deck.  He hung chains and drilled 4x4s in a line under the deck.  When I was there I pulled out his small crash pad and a sleeping pad and got in some training.  It took a lot of laps back and forth under the deck but I was consistently getting 22 moves of figure 4s and figures 9s before my hands gave out.

The Minnesota Climbing Coop was started this year and they have a great bouldering facility with top outs, a horizontal roof, and awesome features and setting.. Thanks to Dave Pierce they also have drytooling!!  Dave and his wife Leah met me at the Coop one night for a drytooling session that was awesome.  You have to be delicate on some of the holds that are up so it was a good training session for staying quiet on my tools and really focusing on body tension and placement.

If you live in MN or happen to be there, check out the Minnesota Climbing Coop.  Great people, great climbing, and they have skateboards to ride down the hall to the bathroom!!


The Playground – Canmore Drytooling

All summer I’ve been sneaking out on rain days (and nice days!) to drytool at The Playground.  😀  When most people we’re still in bed or sitting at The Summit Cafe because it was raining, I was headed out climbing with my tools and fruit boots.

The Playground is a bolted drytooling area on Grotto Mtn.  It’s less than a 10 minute drive from Canmore and about a 45 minute hike up to the cave.  There’s certainly more development to be done too!

At first I was warming-up on the M5(Rat’s Nest Route) & M6s (Baptism & Prowler) and then getting on the M7+ (Mutt) and M8 (Jeff).  Then it became warming-up on the M7+ and working the M8 and M9- (Single Malt) and staring wistfully at the M10, Swiss Cheese.  Then I was warming-up by up and down climbing the M7+ (endurance increasing!) and then working Swiss Cheese.  I’m still working Swiss Cheese. I have it down to 1 hang in the upper roof, and it’s going to be sent soon!

This fall the traffic at the playground picked up, and I was stoked!  I love to see other people being introduced to drytooling and loving it.  The last day I was up there we had 16 people throughout the day.  If you want info about The Playground or a partner to climb let me know!

James climbing an M8
James climbing an M8
Guys climbing Single Malt M9-
Guys climbing Single Malt M9-










Heather on Mutt M7+
Heather on Mutt M7+
Swiss Cheese M10
Swiss Cheese M10

Basement Training Circuit!

After watching all the World Cup videos and talking to Gord McArthur and other mixed climbing friends I built a training circuit in my basement.


The idea is to train mainly feet free so that when we do have feet it’s a bonus.


I’ve placed 2x4s is the rafters, hung an 8×8 & other boards with drilled holes, quicklinks on rope, Ice Holdz, and we put up one overhanging piece of plywood.


Check out a video of our first circuit in the basement.



I get my tool stuck in a quick link hanging on rope.  If you put your tool in more than one tooth it’s hard to get out!




Do you have your tickets?

To what?

The gun show! a.k.a. the Ice Climbing World Cup
I do!
I’m very excited to be representing the United States in the 2012 Ice Climbing World Cup competitions in South Korea, Switzerland, France, Romania, and Russia!
I’ll be spending the rest of 2011 training, climbing, and prepping for the competitions in January through March of 2012.
Stay tuned for training fun, climbing adventures, gear info, and lots of pictures and video!