Entries by Karen Bockel

Gigantic – Step from Skiing to Climbing

Hello everyone, it’s Karen here checking in about the gigantic step from skiing to climbing. This year I’m spending the spring in the Alps guiding the Haute Route. The Haute Route is a week-long, high-alpine ski tour that starts in Chamonix, France and ends in Zermatt, Switzerland. Along the way, we spend the night in mountain […]

Thank Grabber for Toe Warmers

Grabber Toe Warmers just got me (and my toes!) through a deep arctic front. I was teaching an avalanche course for the American Avalanche Institute—a Pro 1 course for ski patrollers at A-Basin and Breckenridge. A storm had recently left the region. This left room for an arctic air mass to descend onto Colorado, dropping […]

Safe Belay Technique for Top Rope Ice Climbing

Chicks’ home venue is the Ouray Ice Park—the best place to learn ice climbing from beginners to experts alike, hands down. The Uncompahgre Gorge narrows down to the tight Box Canyon, which transforms into a beautiful Mecca of icy walls begging to be climbed. In the Ice Park, one of the first things we teach […]

‘Tis the Season for Avalanche Training

Early winter is a great time for Chicks Skiing avalanche training. Brush up on your avalanche rescue skills, refresh your avalanche understanding and get busy reading your local avalanche forecast. Get Avy Savy! Following are two great resources to get you thinking about snow safety. Especially during the holiday travel season, you might find yourself […]

New Ski Touring Gear from Black Diamond

Black Diamond Introduces Helio Bindings and Helio Skis Black Diamond’s Helio Collection is gear for alpinists and mountaineers who like to go fast and carry less. And just in time to catch the fresh snow in the mountains, Black Diamond has added lightweight bindings and ski mountaineering skis to their line. Helio Bindings The Helio […]

Hello, Snow!

After last year’s dry and warm winter, I’ve been worrying about this year’s ski season. All fall, these questions looped through my mind: Will it snow before Thanksgiving? Will the Colorado ski areas open on time? Will Chicks be able to run early season avalanche courses? Is climate change ending skiing as we know it? Suddenly, […]

Begin It

Now at last let me see some deeds! Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Summer is gone. Cool nights, blue skies and yellow leaves announce another Rocktober—fall climbing season. I’ve been thinking, “How is this one going to be different?” Have you set a goal? Have you committed to step into the unknown? Will you push a new […]

The Amazon of Climbing Ropes Sterling’s Nano IX

I just got back from a climbing trip to the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains where I spent most of my days climbing at Lover’s Leap, Lake Tahoe. The rock climbing at The Leap is characterized by long cracks up vertical, smooth, granite walls, intersected with a plethora of horizontal dikes. Together the cracks and dikes make the coolest […]

The new Osprey Mutant 38

In the recent months I’ve observed a few of my friends sporting a new Osprey Mutant backpack out in the hills. I could recognize it from afar: trademark Osprey style with a tight package, slim design, a few attachment options, but no frills and no oversized hip belt. Hmm, I thought, that would be a […]