Crested Butte Announced as Host of Ski Mountaineering Championship

Posted By: The Ski Channel on December 15, 2011 12:19 am

Crested Butte Mountain Resort (CBMR) is pleased to announce the resort will play host to the 2012 International Ski Mountaineering Federation’s (ISMF) GORE-TEX® Brand North American Ski Mountaineering Championships presented by Arc’teryx, part of the COSMIC series and also known as the Crested Butte Ski Mountaineering Race. This is a new event designation for the sport of Ski Mountaineering in North America, and CBMR is rising to the occasion with a more technical course, including a class-five boot pack ascent. The ISMF North American Championships take place at CBMR on Saturday Jan. 28 and Sunday Jan. 29, 2012.

“The Crested Butte Professional Ski Patrol is proud to be part of such a uniquely challenging event in North America,” says Bill Dowell, Ski Patrol Director for CBMR. “It is a great opportunity to highlight some of our extreme terrain on the upper parts of the mountain and showcase the skill and expertise of our technical rigging personnel. We look forward to working with the ISMF crew and CB Mountain Guides to put on a safe and exciting event this year and in the future.”

Crested Butte has been included as a race stop on the COSMIC series tour for the past five years (and part of the Rando Rally for five years prior). It is one of the longest-standing venues with exceptional race success. The North American Championships course will follow a similar path to previous years’ races, however the new route also will include a technical class-five assent up The Guides Ridge to the peak of Mt. CB – a rarely attempted route during the winter months. CBMR Ski Patrol and Crested Butte Mountain Guides will assist with installation of a fixed route line, and with safety during the race. The new course is being modeled after European Championships race courses to enable North American athletes to prepare for worldwide competition.

“The course design will showcase a missing technical element in North American ski mountaineering racing,” says Bryan Wickenhauser, event organizer and ski mountaineering racer. “The terrain the Guides Ridge offers, along with the collaboration of CBMR’s professional Ski Patrol and Crested Butte Mountain Guides, will not only bring a sense of adventure but provide a high level of safety for the competitors.”

The ISMF North American Championships Ski Mountaineering race begins and ends in the CBMR base area and competitors will face over 5,000 feet of vertical elevation gain and loss, focused on much of CBMR’s most technical terrain. The race is open to individual competitors; no teams allowed in this event.

The ISMF North American Championships takes place at Crested Butte Mountain Resort on Saturday, Jan. 28 with a Sprint race and the Individual race on Sunday Jan. 29, 2012; both races start in the CBMR base area.