Bolzano/Corvara, 28 April 2016 – The ice climbing season in Corvara finished almost two months ago. And yet, last weekend Reinhard Graf and team travelled with the mobile ice tower on an ice climbing PR mission to Tignes in France.
On Thursday six ice blocks of 3.5 tonnes each, the base plates and the steel frame were loaded onto two articulated lorries. On Friday morning the two lorries started their 750 km journey to Tignes in France, where the mobile ice tower was erected virtually in the village centre at an altitude of 2100 m.
The international climbing association UIAA together with the French Alpine association organised a speed climbing competition between the host country and Switzerland in this French Mecca of skiing that only has 2000 inhabitants but 30,000 guest beds. The competition was eventually won by Pierrick Fine (France). Before and after the competition tourists had the opportunity to try out some ice climbing for themselves, before the Corvara team returned home on Monday.
Will there be an ice climbing city event in 2017?
The UIAA and the French Alpine association drummed up much support for the sport of ice climbing. “It was yet another amazing experience for us. The organisers were very happy with our professional approach. Alongside the event there were talks about the possibility of erecting the mobile ice tower in a large town next winter and to hold a World Cup event there. That would be absolutely amazing”, said Reinhard Graf, President of the Verein Eisturm Rabenstein and chair of the organising committee of the ice climbing World Cup in Val Passiria.
Tignes was not the first time the mobile ice tower had travelled abroad. Two years ago it became a tourist attraction in Davos in Switzerland. And maybe it will be erected in one of South Tyrol’s major skiing regions in the winter of 2016/17. For now, the Ice Tower Eisturm Rabenstein team is looking forward to a hard-earned summer break…