Climbing High

As a Denver native, I've sometimes taken for granted how awesome it is to live in the shadow of what is essentially a great big playground. The Colorado Mountain Club started celebrating that fact three years ago with its annual Mountain Fest, a full day of everything that makes living next to the Rocky Mountains great.

The fest, which starts today at 10 a.m. at the American Mountaineering Center, 710 10th Street in Golden, is packed with sessions on snowshoeing, skiing, climbing, survival and other outdoor skills, including special classes for kids. All are open to hard-core enthusiasts as well as those who've barely set foot beyond the foothills.

A benefit dinner at 6 p.m. features speaker Aron Ralston, the climber who cut his arm off to save himself from a Utah slot canyon in 2003. While Ralston's tale might seem like a warning, the fact that he's never lost his love for nature and still heads out into the wilderness should inspire the rest of us to get out there, too.

Tickets range from $5 to $40; visit or call 303-279-3080, ext. 2, or 303-996-2748 for details.
Sat., Dec. 1, 2007

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Michelle Baldwin