Above, the winning image in our Festival Photo Contest! Photo by Chuck Nields, Nields Photography. Uncropped version in gallery below.
Despite the weather for Saturday’s main event being a freak day during a freak season (warm!), approximately 300 people showed up for our inaugural Duluth Ice & Mixed Fest and had a ball climbing ice and dry tooling, riding fat bikes, and just hanging out in the quarry. In some ways 50+ degree temps contributed to an absolutely unique and enjoyable day as climbers shucked jackets and gloves in the warm (if wet) conditions. It was also a wonderful opportunity for the West Duluth neighborhood folks to come out, see what climbing is all about, and imagine the potential for their own recreation in the city’s newest parcel of public green space. Kids built snow forts, people tossed frisbees, dog walkers and their pooches got a little exercise–for the first day ever, the quarry was truly a park! On Saturday evening nearly 200 people turned out for our two awesome evening programs (Eiger & Everest) at Clyde Iron. And on Sunday several dozen gathered at Ely’s Peak to watch Adam Dailey pull off some inverted and inspired climbing at Ely’s Peak. Our sincere thanks goes out to the City of Duluth, Epicurean/Loll Designs, all our great sponsors, and our amazing volunteers—including folks from UMD, St. Scholastica, UW Eau Claire, and others—for making this such a successful event. And our thanks to everyone who turned up from far and wide to experience the quarry and support the DCC’s vision for Duluth climbing. We look forward to seeing you all back next year!