learn to ice climb

Ouray, Colorado | Ice Climbing


We’ve been hosting women-only ice climbing clinics in Ouray, Colorado since 1999.

Chicks broke the ice as the first women-only ice climbing clinic. We’re continuing our legacy of educating women, which promotes confidence, proficiency, and self-reliance in female climbers. (Plus, we think it’s more fun!) 

“What I enjoyed most was being with supportive and encouraging women.”—Mandy S.

climber and belayer getting ready to ice climb in Ouray, Colorado

Chicks guides are certified by the American Mountain Guides Association and are the most professional, knowledgeable, experienced female guides in the country.

Our 2020 clinics will be led by ice-climbing guru Lindsay Fixmer. Lindsay has a uniquely inspired ability to translate technique pointers, enabling women to reach their peak climbing performance. Lindsay’s primary goals are sharing with and inspiring her students, and her best days are when goals and objectives are exceeded.

“I feel empowered, capable, and completely psyched. Oh, and I learned how to ice climb too so that’s cool.”—Mary W.


Ouray, Colorado is the coolest place to climb.

At almost 8,000 feet, it feels as though you could reach out and touch the spectacular peaks.

We’ll spend our days at the Ouray Ice Park, an iconic ice climbing destination with over 200 routes to choose from.

This little mountain town also has amazing natural hot springs where we can soak those sore muscles post-climb.

Climb, soak, then sit down to delicious, home-cooked dinner at the Secret Garden B&B. You’ll get the rest you need at the family-owned Ouray Chalet Inn, famous for its friendly service.

looking down into the Ouray Ice Park a climber leads out of the lead climbing area

Ready to sign up? Choose your Ouray, Colorado Ice Climbing clinic!

Chicks offers three ice climbing clinics in Ouray. Which clinic to choose depends primarily on how much time you have and when your schedule allows for a trip. Each Chicks clinic accommodates all levels of climbing experience. With five levels of progression, there’s a perfect place for you to learn with other psyched women.

Some additional things to consider when choosing which clinic is the right fit for you:

WANT TO TEST IT OUT? If you’re not sure you’re going to love ice climbing (you will!), you can test it out on the 2-Day Clinic. The 2-Day Ice Climbing Clinic is also good if you want a tune-up on your existing ice climbing skills.

NEED TO DUST OFF THE COBWEBS? If you have some ice climbing experience under your belt and you want to dust off the cobwebs, consider the 3-Day Clinic. An extra perk at this clinic is that the annual Chicks fundraiser and social is scheduled for Saturday, January 4. There will be a climbing gear auction followed by an all-women’s film festival, “No Man’s Land.” Chicks participants usually go together for a great night out supporting a good cause. (All proceeds go to the Ouray Ice Park.) 

READY TO GO ALL-IN? Take your ice climbing to the next level with the 4-Day Ice Climbing Clinic. On the first two days, learn and broaden your understanding of ice climbing movement and your technical knowledge of climbing in general. On the third day, choose to work on specific skills: go in-depth with rescue techniques, mixed climbing, or steep ice climbing. That evening, legendary female alpinist and Chicks co-owner Kitty Calhoun will answer questions on a variety of topics, from nutrition to injury prevention to mental training. On the fourth day, you’ll put it all together.

No matter which clinic you attend, we guarantee you’ll bring home lasting memories and pointers that will bring your ice climbing to the next level. 

Chicks offers an immersive ice climbing experience.

Each clinic is fun and packed full of instruction designed to help lay down a solid foundation of skills. You’ll be outside and actively challenging yourself every day of our clinics. No matter which clinic you join us for, you’ll get:

  • A maximum 4-to-1 guest-to-guide ratio for tons of high-quality ice climbing with women whose experience levels and goals match yours––and the best female guides in the business.
  • A chance to demo cutting-edge ice climbing gear, including everything you need: harness, helmet, boots, crampons, ice tools, and technical outerwear.
  • In-room breakfasts and gourmet meals at the Secret Garden B&B.
  • Optional lodging at the Ouray Chalet Inn, a short walk from the ice park.
  • A gift bag packed with goodies provided by our generous sponsors, including Patagonia, Black Diamond, and Sterling Ropes.
  • Pointers to grow and refine your technical skills, including your swing, kick, and body positioning to move efficiently over the ice, plus the knowledge to set ice screws, build anchors, and become a bomber belayer. 
  • The confidence to pursue climbs with intention and courage. You’ll feel empowered, capable, and completely psyched.

“I improved my ice climbing techniques, feel like I learned some key nuances, improved my ability to establish safe anchor systems and had a bunch of fun.”—Nancy E.



3-Day Clinic

January 2-6, 2020

3 Days of Ice Climbing
(Friday, Saturday, Sunday)


$999.00 – No Lodging
$1,149.00 – Double Occupancy (3 nights)
$1,349.00 – Single Occupancy (3 nights)

2-Day Clinic

January 10-12, 2020

2 Days of Ice Climbing
(Saturday, Sunday)


$649.00 – No Lodging
$699.00 – Double Occupancy (2 nights)
$749.00 – Single Occupancy (2 nights)

4-Day Clinic

January 16-21, 2020

4 Days of Ice Climbing (Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday)


$1,299.00 – No lodging
$1,499.00 – Double Occupancy (5 nights)
$1,699.00 – Single Occupancy (5 nights)


Travel Information

What to Bring List


  • Lunch & snacks
  • Air and ground transportation
  • Gratuities


All requests for cancellations must be submitted in writing.  Chicks requires full payment at the time of booking for all programs, refunds will be issued according to the following schedule:

  • More than 60 days, full refund minus a 10% administration fee
  • 30-60 days, 50% refund
  • Less than 30 days, no refund no transfer of payments.

*Travel insurance is required for all International Trips and is strongly recommended for US programs as well. In the event, you have an unexpected life occurrence and need to cancel it will help you recover your payment. Chicks works with an agent who is familiar with our programs and travel insurance needs. Please contact Erin Rountree at 208-788-2870.