For years Gold Level Sponsor Black Diamond has sent amazing athletes to our event ensuring that we get the highest quality instructors, and are entertained in the evening with inspiring stories of climbing around the world. This year BD has graciously agreed to send Kyle Dempster!
Kyle Dempster who hails from the climbing mecca of Salt Lake City, owns a coffee shop, Higher Ground, and wins golden ice axes (known as the Piolet d’Or) for his ascents around the world, and to top it off, is a Black Diamond sponsored athlete. Kyle, excited to be at this year’s Ice Fest, eat a pasty for possibly his first time in his life, and experience the Big Lake in winter. Kyle began climbing with his cousin, Drew in 1994 at the age of 12 and partook on his first international expedition to Canada’s Baffin Island in 2005 at the age of 21 again with Drew. This trip, a turning point in his life in which he nearly gave up climbing, with Drew’s passing brought Kyle back to Baffin Island again to make peace with his memory. Since then, he has been traveling the world from Pakistan to China climbing high altitude walls with many ascents around home in the Western US climbing ice and rock.
One of Kyle’s latest trips was a bike tour across Kyrgyzstan, inspired by his father who is a long time cyclist from Salt lake City. He spent two months solo biking across the country, climbing many peaks along the way. He learned a lot about the bike, himself and how much food he could carry at once with the goal of biking into a mountain range, climbing a peak and having a large enough food reserve for bad weather and biking back out to resupply. It was a grand adventure and his hope is that the trip can be inspirational to other climbers seeking alternative modes of climbing transportation.
So stoked to have Kyle joining the ranks of athletes who have presented/instructed at the Michigan Ice Fest! Thanks again to our Gold Sponsor Black Diamond for making it possible for Kyle to be at this years Michigan Ice Fest!