Here are numerous little and big ice flows (not roadside cuts) that form in the Georgetown area. There are at least 7 drainages (WI 1-4) that contain ice during cold, wet periods of winter on the north side of I-70. Some of these are even crossed by mountain goats. Many of these may get sunrotted in the sunny stretches of a Colorado winter. Use good judgement. There is at least 1 long flow on the south side above the east end of the lake. Figure out the descents in advance. Definitely off the beaten track of ice climbers. Definitely not for hard men/women. More for the exploring types.

Getting There

Take I-70 to Georgetown, west of Denver. Many lines are visible from the highway. Some require parking off the highway, some in Georgetown. Parking regulations are not always clear.

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Location: Georgetown Ice Change
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Classic Climbing Routes at Georgetown Ice

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes in this area.
I-70 Sickle
Trad, Ice 2 pitches
Route Name Location Star Rating Difficulty Date
I-70 Sickle
WI3-4 Trad, Ice 2 pitches
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Hamish Gowans
Golden, CO
Hamish Gowans   Golden, CO
#1: The flows at Silverplume and Idaho Springs, both on the south side of the highway on the roadcut. Also, on the north side (possible multi-pitch) as you go around the curve above Georgetown. What's up? Private property? Impossible to get to? Should I volunteer to guinea pig? #2: Jack Hunt's guide book. Something of a disappointment, it seems like a Wolf Creek supplement to the other Jack's guide, with "bonus beta". The Sangres and the New Mexico areas both have more climbs than Hunt lists and the ones recorded are easily found out through local climbing stores. Are people from Boulder going to drive to Crestone and hike in 4 hours for a single pitch of grade 4 WI? I say save yourself the money unless you climb locally in SW Colorado, in which case you probably know about most of these climbs anyway. Jan 5, 2002
Leo Paik
Westminster, Colorado
Leo Paik   Westminster, Colorado  
For the exploring types: There is a flow above Georgetown on the S side, just above the E end of the lake (ice on lake can be thin). It's a mine drainage. 40min approach, 600 ft gain. It's in. Starts with WI1 and goes to WI2. Perhaps 500 vertical feet. Use a rope!. Consequences without are huge. Lost a camera case and 17 cm screw 3/10/02 here. Use a rope! Anyone know the name of this ice ribbon? Mar 12, 2002
From I-70 the only flow that we could find was the long one at the NE corner of the lake and it looked to be pretty rotten and thin the morning of 3/24. Mar 24, 2002
The long creek above Georgetown Res definitely is not for the difficult-ice fanatic, but it's a perfect place to acquire, practice or hone your French technique. Consider taking one traditional tool, your flexible-ankle boots, crampons, brain bucket and nerve. Going up flat-footed is a fun challenge, but the crux is down-climbing it! I've never used a rope on this due to lack of both difficulty and anchors. Only once in 20 years have I seen another party on it. Have fun! Dec 3, 2002
Leo Paik
Westminster, Colorado
Leo Paik   Westminster, Colorado  
Oh yeah, nice discovery today. For those looking for a tasty bit to eat after a short day on ice along the Front Range I-70 corridor, there's a new cafe, opened this summer, called Mountainbuzz in Georgetown, just W of the exit. It has tasty warm panini (?) bread sandwiches, big muffins & lemon squares, coffee, chai, and more. They seem to be cool with ice climbers. Open everyday til 4p-ish. Jan 6, 2004