Photographer Boone Speed

Videographer Mike Call shooting 2012 Ouray Ice Festival Champion Emily Harrington on a mixed rock-and-ice route in Colorado's Rifle Canyon. (Boone Speed)
Ice climbing

Ice climbing

Videographer Mike Call shooting 2012 Ouray Ice Festival Champion Emily Harrington on a mixed rock-and-ice route in Colorado's Rifle Canyon.

Ice pillar

Emily hangs for a moment on her arms, relaxing before she moves from the rock to the free-hanging ice pillar that leads to the top of the wall.

Ice pillar
(Boone Speed)


Icycles

This shot is all about composition—like a Pollack canvas. Yes, it's ice with nice texture, but everything comes down to how the picture is framed and exposed.

Icycles
(Boone Speed)


The Fang

Emily leading her way up the classic route "Rigid Designator." Behind the belayer is a mound of ice called "The Fang." In some winters, the ice connects to the cliff above, forming a free-standing—and climbable—pillar more than 120-feet tall.

The Fang
(Boone Speed)


Rigging

A behind-the-scenes look of how the previous frame was shot. My second camera (seen in the foreground) is clamped to a rock shard and shooting time-lapse footage of her ascent. It’s also clipped to a rope so if the rock shard fails the camera doesn't fall to the ground.

Rigging
(Boone Speed)


Emily Harrington

Emily Harrington at the end of the day

Emily Harrington
(Boone Speed)


Conrad Anker

The following sequence shows the first ascent of “Inglorious Bastards," an M12+ route in Hyalite Canyon, Montana, by Sam Elias. Conrad Anker, who belayed Elias, is seen here assessing the ice.

Conrad Anker
(Boone Speed)


Sam Elias

To climb from the ice pillar in the back of the cave to the frozen waterfall at its lip, Elias will have to climb 30-feet of exposed rock ceiling.

Sam Elias
(Boone Speed)


Figure-four

This maneuver is called a "figure-four."

Figure-four
(Boone Speed)


Ice climbing

Near the lip of the cave, Sam lunges toward the ice. He snags his pick, cuts everything behind him loose, and swings toward the hanging ice. Once he's on the ice, the relative difficulty eases up.

Ice climbing
(Boone Speed)


Ice climbing

Now it's a matter of staying calm...

Ice climbing
(Boone Speed)


Ice climbing

...and enjoying the perfect ice to the top.

Ice climbing
(Boone Speed)


Conrad Anker, Sam Elias

At the end of the day it's all about enjoying the simple things. Conrad and Sam brew up.

Conrad Anker, Sam Elias
(Boone Speed)

Filed To: Photography / Snow Sports
More Adventure

Love Features? Get the Dispatch

Thank you!

Pinterest Icon