I was wondering how your festival worked for people not taking clinics. I went to the Ouray ice festival last year and didn’t know if you had the same set up.
Is the canyon open to independent climbing during the festival (excluding the places where clinics are being held)? Can I demo gear?
Answer: Of course, you can go to other places in the canyon where we will not be holding clinics. There are over 225 routes in the three canyons that make up Hyalite. We hold clinics at: Lower Greensleeves, Genesis I & II, Hangover, Mummy II & Scepter, Ampitheater Climbs, and Unnamed Wall. At these venues there will NOT be room available for non-clinic climbers. Our closely managed permit limits with the Forest Service, strict insurance requirements, and a general lack of teachable space all preclude us involving anyone other than registered clinic participants at the clinic locations.
Our set up is quite different than Ouray. Hyalite Canyon, is a wilderness setting with more traditional approaches and descents. We don’t have the “drop in” style you find at Box Canyon. The non-clinic “public” is more than welcome to take advantage of the festival and check out demo gear free of charge (paperwork and Credit card is required). It is one of our goals to give the larger community access to the opportunity to “try before you buy.” You need to arrive at the Emerson Ballroom 111 South Grand in Bozeman in the evenings 6 pm to 7 pm to check out gear. You can use the gear all weekend or whatever days you need – Thursday through Sunday. There is a strict return procedure that can be explained to you when you arrive and fill out the paperwork.
Will top ropes be available for use by people who are not in the clinics but are using demo gear?
Answer: The non-clinic “public” is more than welcome to take advantage of the festival and check out demo gear free of charge (paperwork and Credit card is required). It is one of our goals to give the larger community access to the opportunity to “try before you buy.”
However, there will NOT be top ropes available for non-clinic climbers. As the major fundraiser for the Friends of Hyalite who are working to keep the road plowed and open in winter we appreciate your understanding for us “taking over” these areas for the weekend. I hope you’ll find the additional four months of access we currently enjoy via the road plowing is worth the inconvenience over four days.
How can I buy tickets for the wrap party Sunday night? Are these included with a clinic purchase?
Answer: All nights are included with the clinic purchase EXCEPT the Sunday night dinner. The Sunday Wrap Party and legendary gear raffle is catered by the amazing Emerson Grill. Admission is $15 and you can buy tickets any time during the festival or at the door Sunday night. All proceeds from the evening and raffle go toward keeping the Hyalite Road open. Now that’s a good cause.
Would you know if any of the closest hotels are nearby without having to drive too much to get to the clinic/climbing area? Also, should I get an SUV or a regular car? Will the road be icy in early December?
Answer: Everything in town is about the same distance from Hyalite Canyon which is south of town off 19th Ave and an additional 13.5 mile drive up the canyon. It is about a 45 minute drive from town to the parking lot. The host hotels listed on the web site are the ones currently offering discounts for the ice fest participants. We will be posting more discounts in the coming days. The road up Hyalite is plowed but it can get icy. If you want to rent a regular car to get around town but aren’t comfortable driving on icy, winding roads, I am certain you can easily find rides from town into the canyon each day. We will have a car pool sign up sheet posted at the evening events and at the main hotels.
Why did the clinic prices increase from $60 to $75?
Answer: In addition to expert gear advice, free demos, and world-class all-day instruction in Hyalite, included with the clinics are admissions to ALL the evening shows (a $35 value). In years past we’ve included only one night of slide shows with the clinics requiring an extra purchase for additional presentations. All on-ice participants will receive a special pass that will be required to get them into the Thursday, Friday and Saturday night events. The Sunday night Wrap Party and Legendary Gear Raffle is sold separately ($15 per ticket) with limited seating, advance ticket sales recommended.
I DON’T KNOW MY SCHEDULE YET. CAN I SIGN UP NOW AND GET A REFUND LATER IF I CAN’T MAKE IT?
Answer: Unfortunately no. Our policy is no refunds. Due to our limited on-ice numbers, the clinic spots are always in high demand. Many of our participants come from all parts of the continent and need to be able to make travel arrangements early.
HOW FAST DO THE CLINICS FILL UP?
Answer: The clinics will probably not fill up the same day or even the same week, but we recommend you sign up as soon as you can in order to ensure your first choice in clinics. There is a lot of buzz this year so they could go fast! We will keep everyone posted with blog updates.
I DROPPED THE BALL AND ALL THE CLINICS ARE FULL, IS THERE ANYWAY YOU CAN MAKE AN EXCEPTION?
Answer: We appreciate your stoke and effort but sadly we can’t make exceptions. The numbers for the clinics is closely regulated by our permit with the Forest Service and we in fairness to everyone else, we can’t add extra bodies to the clinics. That said, the evening events are unique and once-in-a-lifetime shows so if you want to come out to Hyalite and go climbing on your own and partake in the ice climbing event of the year, we can promise it won’t be a wasted trip. If nothing else, the BIF offers one of the biggest cumulative gear give-a-ways in the industry. There is also the off-chance you could get into a clinic via the wait list. We keep wait list but it only really helps if you are on-hand the night before a clinic because we usually don’t know if someone doesn’t show until they don’t show up. You could also consider contacting the local guide service to see what they might be able to do for you. Their web site is: http://www.adventuremontana.com/”
CAN I REGISTER FOR MY CLIMBING PARTNER?
Answer: Separate sign ups are preferred but you CAN register for your partner or friends. Just be sure to include their name(s) and email in the “comment” box when you sign up. This helps us manage the numbers, ensure they receive critical information and updates, and for us to get their swag bag of goodies ready for when you sign in the night before your clinic.
WHAT ARE THE DATES OF THIS YEAR’S ICE FEST?
Answer: It is the same weekend every year, the 2nd weekend of December. For 2012, it is December 5-9th. On-line sign up for clinics always go live on October 1st @ www.bozemanicefest.com
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON WHAT TO EXPECT Download and print this PDF here.