Saturday, February 1, 2020
The Duluth Ice & Mixed Fest is a celebration of winter outdoor recreation in Quarry Park, which encompasses Casket Quarry—the premier ice and mixed climbing venue located in Duluth, Minnesota. A wet fall and an early dump of snow have resulted in near perfect conditions this year: ice and super interesting mixed daggers and pillars abound! The Duluth Climbers Coalition is excited to welcome climbers from near and far to our 5th annual festival featuring a day of climbing in the quarry and a nighttime social that will explore Casket Quarry’s climbing past, present, and future… plus food, drink, the opportunity to walk away with killer prizes, and to mix with a lot of like-minded ice and mixed-ers.
Here are the details! (check back often as we will post updates in the days and weeks to come)
Pre-fest Mixer (Friday night):
Join us Friday night at Bent Paddle Brewery (1832 W Michigan St.) where we’ll have a room set aside exclusively for climbers and DCC friends starting at 8 pm. Of course, Bent Paddle’s gorgeously appointed taproom is also a great place to hang out, play games, savor excellent BP brews, and order food delivery from a number of fine Craft District restaurants. So come early and stay late (last call is 10:30 pm on Friday)!
Daytime Activities (Saturday):
Climbing at Casket Quarry! 9 am till 4 pm. This year we’re focused on providing everyone with maximum opportunities to climb, even on routes reserved in the past for clinics (we will still offer a clinic, see below). To this end, we’re encouraging community folks and others to set top-ropes so anyone can step up and have a whack—or a delicate bit of scratching—on the quarry’s classic lines. Of course, climbers who prefer leading will also have that option.
Intro to Ice and Mixed Clinic. To facilitate open climbing on popular routes, we’ll be offering one clinic only. It will be first come, first served.
Demo Gear! We will have a fleet of sharp and pointy equipment on hand, including tools and crampons from event sponsors like Camp and Black Diamond, for anyone to test drive, free of charge.
Bacon! Bacon! Bacon! The campfire scene (hosted by the North Shore VertiGals) will once again feature Loll seating, warm drinks, and an opportunity to roast our festival’s signature snack: bacon-on-a-stick!
Sauna! Onko sauna jo lämmin? Toss in a swim suit and towel: hiki hut, an enterprising new Duluth start-up, will have a portable sauna in the parking lot so you can Finnish the day in steamy bliss! (Climb, sweat, roll in snow, repeat!) Reserve a seat here.
Evening Festivities (Saturday):
Party, party, party! We’re keeping it in the neighborhood this year: our venue for evening festivities will be West Duluth American Legion Post 71. It’s the building with a life-size fighter jet buzzing the parking lot, just down the hill from the quarry at 59th Ave West and Grand Avenue (5814 Grand, to be precise). A modest $15 entry fee—to support Duluth climbing, including maintaining those fixed anchors you clipped throughout the day—gets you in the door, plus a raffle ticket, plus Lee’s pizza, plus Bent Paddle beer, and more! Doors open at 5 pm, food and beer starting at 6.
Note: because we are including a raffle ticket with entry, entry fee must be paid with cash, check, or debit card. Same for buying more raffle tickets inside. No credit cards; sorry, but it’s the law!
Gear Swap. 5-7:30 pm. Willing to pass along that piece of gear at a bargain price? Bring it in, sell it, become rich, leave everything to the DCC in your will.
Panel discussion. “Casket Quarry: Stories From the Vault” 7:30 pm. Evening entertainment will feature a panel discussion with accomplished local climbers past, present, and, we predict, future. The focus will be the history of Casket Quarry climbing along with inspirational tales from people who have honed their skills at regional venues like this and taken it to the Big Leagues (think Rockies, the Alps, the Ice Climbing World Cup, and more!). Local heroes, great stories, and audience Q and A! Details here.
Prizes! The swag just keeps rolling in! We’ll be raffling awesome stuff from generous sponsors, including a sweet tent, pack, gaiters, gloves and other gear from REI; ice tools from Black Diamond and Camp; Mammut ropes and helmets, and tons more! For aficionados of climbing history, we’ll also be auctioning off an antique wooden ice axe, plus a mint copy—or two—of the original north shore and Orient Bay climbing guidebooks! All proceeds go to support Duluth climbing!
Questions? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Message us on FB!
- Vikre Distillery
- Misty Mountain Threadworks
- Superior Fleece
- Great Lakes Gear Exchange
- Super One Foods
- North Shore VertiGals
- Superior Exploration, Adventure and Climbing Co.