But there’s more
Tucked into a few corners of Camden Hills lays another take on celebrating all that winter has to offer, climbing ice. Finding trickles of frozen water that flows over the cliffs and crags of the park a group of climbers enjoy a very different kind of winter playground. Ice climbing developed in a similar way as rock climbing, it was a means to the summit of big mountains. Mountaineers developed tools and movement styles to climb frozen ice pillars that led them to summits and back down again. Over the decades, with more attention given to the sport and the design of technical ice gear, ice climbing has come along way. Combined with the American Mountain Guide Association’s hard work of setting up a system of education to train and mentor guides, ice climbing has almost earned the term “popular”.
Camden offers beginner friendly climbing with short flows of varying degree of steepness to steep overhanging curtains of icicles. No matter your climbing goals, there’s ice for everyones ability. You can work with a certified guide, who will provide not only the climbing gear but knowledge of the park to customize your adventure. Each year the routes of ice to be climbed form in different ways, depending on the amount of precipitation and temps, and each season provide a slightly new climb, new challenge.
Ice on the coast of Maine can be a fickle thing. The Atlantic, with her ebb and flow of moisture can make for unpredictable temperatures causing the ice flows (and ski conditions) to change with it. No matter the weather the midcoast community continues on with its’ celebrations, winter can be long if you don’t and the weathers bound to change anyhow. It’s about celebrating a sense of adventure, challenges that widen our perception, and expanding our comfort zones by getting outside. We’re grateful for a community that values making space for celebrations.
You by no means need to be a self identified climber to try your hand at a day of guided ice climbing. Have you ever been out on a hiking trail in Maine and passed by a party with neon ropes, ice picks attached to there backpacks and mile wide grins, and wonder what they might be up too? Well, pack a thermos of your favorite hot beverage, multiple pairs of gloves and the best attitude you can muster and join us for a day of winter celebration and climbing in Camden Hills.
Equinox Guiding Service is comprised of veteran climbing guides, Noah Kleiner and John Sidik. Noah started climbing in 2006 and immediately fell in love with the sport. He went on to become a licensed Maine Guide and certified Single Pitch Instructor as well as an Aspirant Mountain guide. Noah’s motto: “The best climber is the one having the most fun!”
John Sidik studied Professional Ski and Snowboard Guiding at Colorado Mountain College. He holds a Single Pitch Instructor certificate and is a certified instructor for The American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education. He has a passion for the outdoors and teaching others about the incredible world around us.
Click here to learn more about Noah and John and their incredible 4-season offerings.