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Regional Coordinator Eddie Espinosa on Recent Bozeman Ice Festival

Posted on: December 19th, 2011 by Luke Bauer

AAC Board Member, accomplished climber, and Friend of the Club Pete Takeda spent some time talking to our Northwest Regional Coordinator, Eddie Espinosa about the recent Bozeman Ice Festival. [Watch the Trailer]

Jeff Lowe. Photo Courtesy Caroline Treadway

The 15th annual Bozeman Ice Climbing Festival, ran from Dec. 7 to Dec. 11, 2011 in the town of Bozeman and in nearby Hyalite Canyon, a premier American ice climbing destination.

Eddie Espinosa, the AAC Northwest Regional Coordinator reports, “The event went very well. We sponsored The Jeff Lowe Metanoia film fundraiser on Sunday, and helped staff their event.” Lowe, described by peers as one of the greatest American alpinists holds an Honorary AAC Membership —the Club’s highest honor.

Espinosa says, “The most poignant moment of the event belonged to Jeff. After watching the Metanoia trailer, Jeff came out and talked about the spirit of climbing and how it brings people together.” Metanoia was Lowe’s cutting edge solo of the Eiger’s North Face. Lowe suffers from a progressing neurodegenerative disorder. He left, “Not many dry eyes in the theater when he related his view on climbing in bad weather to life by saying, ‘It would be nice to have a better day, but today is all we have,’” says Espinosa.

Espinosa also reports that the 2011 event was the largest to date, “Not quite the scale of Ouray, but definitely getting bigger than ‘grassroots’, and leaning towards a big-time event.” Besides climbing, expert clinics and top sponsors like Arc’teryx, Outdoor Research and PrimaLoft, there were plenty of film, beer and community.

AAC volunteers played a significant role. Says Espinosa, “I think our assistance with this project is in line with our mission of being the caretakers of North American climbing history, especially since Jeff is such a seminal part of that history. Our public presence in this capacity was definitely noticed by all of our corporate partners at the event and, additionally, I think it provides us with another example to potential members how we help the climbing community.”

The Bozeman Ice Climbing Festival began in 1996 and is dedicated to promoting and protecting the world-class ice climbing in Hyalite Canyon. The event draws professional athletes and participants from across the globe for a myriad of clinics, demos of the latest and greatest gear, inspiring slide shows and evening entertainment, and camaraderie.

Proceeds from the Bozeman Ice Festival are put directly toward the Friends of Hyalite, a 501(c)3 organization, to support winter access into Hyalite Canyon for ice climbing.

 Read our interview with Jeff Lowe. View photos of the 2011 Bozeman Ice Festival by Caroline Treadway in our Photo Gallery.

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