Warm Up for Winter with the AAC

by Aidan Multhauf

The American Alpine Club Winter Warm Up is a social event for ice climbers and armchair adventurers alike. Let's get stoked for winter and start building a central ice climbing community in Durango, a discipline that's on the fringe of the climbing scene.

There will be a raffle and a competition of strength which allows for multiple opportunities to win sweet swag. While you may walk away with an AAC hat or t-shirt, that is by no means the pinnacle of possibility. Thanks to Backcountry Experience, Petzl, Chicks with Picks, San Juan Mountain Guides, Silver Star Hut, and the American Alpine Club, we will have prizes like crampons and a free stay at a luxury hut in the La Platas.

We will also have three local ice climbers present on their winter climbing experiences to help build excitement for winter opportunities:

  • We will have Kevin Lindlau, a competition climber who is building his career by competing in international competitions. Kevin just returned from a short stint drytooling in Japan and is now gearing up for the UIAA Ice Climbing World Cup. Because we don’t have an Olympic training complex like some countries, Kevin completes much of his training by dry tooling in the Hall of Justice and getting workouts in on his home climbing wall.
  • There will also be Brandon Mathis, editor of Adventure Pro. Brandon began his life outdoors as a BMX racer in the Southeast and then moved to the Midwest where he took up mountain biking and snowboarding. In the 90’s Brandon moved to Colorado and started ice climbing on “stumpy tools and really dull ice screws.” Now, at 45, Brandon feels like he is just getting dialed in the outdoor adventure scene.
  • And finally, Bee Mathis, a Texan who began climbing at Enchanted Rock. Between her love for climbing and many family trips to Ouray, Bee made the move to Colorado when she got her driver's license. More recently Bee suffered an injury while climbing which resulted in her losing her right leg. But that hasn’t stopped her. Bee continues to do all the activities that she loves, and carries joy all the while.

The event will take place at Ska Brewing Company (225 Girard St, Durango, CO 81303) on Sunday, November 19th, from 4-6pm. To raise money, there is a suggested donation of $5. Beer and raffle ticket sales will also help to raise money. All proceeds will go towards the American Alpine Club - Durango Chapter so they can continue hosting social events and crag clean ups. You don’t want to miss this event.