Scarpa North America Blog

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Ouray Ice Festival Recap Part 2: Gord McArthur

Jan. 31st 2013

Dangling from a log high above, fingers frost bitten, cheering in the background, screaming voices… distinct and foreign–encouraging the fight to keep pushing, forget the fear, forget the pain, just keep moving.

Competition is a funny thing–it can be your best friend or it can be your worst nightmare… if you let it.  In the past, for me, competition climbing has brought me to my knees… from failure and success. No matter what the result, the scene, the preparation, the sacrifice before, during, and after… the “season” of competition is infinite, in that it’s always with you, around you and inside of you. It’s a battle of a lifetime.  Some say “it’s just climbing”, but until you’re in it, “up there” dangling from that log, well… it’s more than “just” climbing… it’s you, everything about you, all that you are, in the moment that you’ve prepared for– it’s all your hearts’ effort.  

I’m on a plane right now, en route to Geneva, Switzerland, for my first World Cup competition of the season. The “season” is definitely in full swing now. Back in December I began my “journey” at the Bozeman Ice Festival. I climbed fast, fluid, and then fell off a technical hold. Unlucky. I was bummed as my expectations were through the roof for that one. Hmmm… expectations… right. I’ll get back to that in a sec. Moving forward with a determined focus I changed up a few things in preparation for the Ouray Ice Festival Competition, which just took place. I climbed better, with less fear (I’ll explain the fear in a sec too), and more confidence in my ability. That worked out well (except for my fingers getting frost bitten). I’m not sure if I can say I climbed to my fullest potential, but I certainly was a lot happier with how I climbed this round. I took 5th place out of 25–which is a good result.

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Ice Age: The 16th Annual Ouray Ice Festival

Jan. 8th 2013

Photo courtesy of Don Madden, WL Gore

The largest ice climbing park in North America is celebrating its 16th anniversary this coming January 10-13th. Located in the Uncompahgre Gorge, the Ouray Ice Park will welcome thousands of ice climbing aficionados, sponsors, pros and aspiring ice toolers to its frozen blue playground for what is considered the ice fest to end all ice fests.

The brainchild of ice climbing pioneer Jeff Lowe, who made the park a reality in 1996, the Ouray Ice Fest is like nothing else. “What I love about this festival,” says SCARPA Athlete Gord McArthur, “is the energy from everyone there. Whether it’s athletes, vacationing climbers, spectators, vendors, whomever—everyone is just super positive, and vibes like that create an atmosphere that is unmatched.” The Park has been owned and managed by the City of Ouray, the nonprofit Ouray Ice Park, Inc. (OIPI), and a mix of other private and public landowners, and the Ice Festival is held every year to celebrate the park and raise funds for its operation. McArthur, alongside other SCARPA athletes, Markus Beck, Kitty Calhoun and Sam Elias will be on hand teaching a variety of clinics during the festival.

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Why everyone should attend the Red Rock Rendezvous in 2013

Apr. 6th 2012

Rob Pizem, SCARPA athlete has nothing but great things to say about the Red Rock Rendezvous. From clinics to gear to the overall feel, Pizem had a great time and wants everyone else to share his amazing experience next year.

I, Rob Pizem, had the wonderful opportunity to teach two clinics and be auctioned off by the American Alpine Club at this year’s Red Rock Rendezvous. Along with meeting great people, enjoying the sunny and sometimes windy Nevada weather and getting to go rock climbing, I just wanted to let everyone know why the event kicks butt. Next year is the 10th annual, and I know that it will be a special and amazing time for everyone involved. Special thanks to SCARPA for sending me to represent them at this event. As usual, it was an honor.

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The Quick Fix: remolding your liners to breathe life back into those boots.

Feb. 16th 2012

SCARPA Precision Intuition LinerGetting the full life span and potential out of a SCARPA ski boot isn’t that difficult. Seasonal maintenance can go a long way to ensure your favorite boots stay around for a while. As long as you keep the shell (lower and cuff) in good condition, almost everything else on the boot can be repaired or replaced, including, but not limited to, powerstraps, buckles, tongues, hardware, straps, tour mechanisms, and, with regards to maximum comfort and performance, the liners.

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Rock rubber, a SCARPA shoe (p)review…

Jul. 5th 2011
10 Years ago, the sticky-ness of rubber was the first and foremost defining characteristic of ‘the best’ climbing shoes. Today, with so many manufacturers lauding their own style of rubber the real crux for climbers and shoe selection is now part of the bigger conversation around performance and comfort.

SCARPA takes a leading role in that conversation, working with long-time rubber partner Vibram and veteran rock shoe innovator Heinz Mariacher to develop the best rubber and  maximizing each technology for each specific shoe.

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40th anniversary ski descent of Grand Teton

Jun. 17th 2011

Ever wondered what it’s like to ski Wyoming’s Grand Teton? As that old saying goes, don’t fall!

Ski and board mountaineering pioneers like Doug Coombs, Hans Johnstone, Mark Newcomb and Stephen Koch are known for their contributions to descents on the mountain, but the original pioneer was unquestionably Bill Briggs.

Two days ago, a group of skiers that include Johnstone, Dan Nordstrom, Martin Volken and Christian Beckwith descended the Stettner Couloir (most people ski the Ford to Chevy these days) on the 40th anniversary to the day of its descent. The Stettner was Brigg’s original line of descent. According to Johnstone, Briggs’ descent is still the one that come the closest to a pure ski descent of the Grand. (That’s saying something, coming from him.)

It’s hard to overstate how impressive that is. 40 years ago, leather boots, 210s, solo …

Scroll on through to the back page for a few visuals on what it’s like ‘skiing on the moon,” as Johnstone calls it. Psyched to see a pair of Maestrales and a pair of Spirit 4s along for the ride …

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SCARPA exclusive ski boot provider for Colorado Mountain School

Mar. 24th 2011

As many great places as there are to ski in North America, we do love our home terrain – and our neighbors – here in Colorado. So it’s with a bit of local pride that SCARPA announces a new relationship with one of our neighbors located just a few blocks away: Starting this month, SCARPA will be the exclusive ski boot provider for the Colorado Mountain School (CMS), the largest mountain guide service in Colorado and the largest American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education Avalanche course provider in North America.

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Our Kind of Happy Holidays, from our friends in Revelstoke

Dec. 27th 2010

Where can you find poutine, the Columbia River, and 6,000 vertical feet of powder turns? To find and to view more dreamy photos check out Garrett Grove’s blog at…

http://blog.garrettgrove.com/2010/12/revelstoke-rogers-pass-dreamy/

Happy Holidays!!!
Paul Kimbrough

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