Dustin Fric is an ice climber based out of the small mountain town of Stanley, Idaho. Dustin dedicates his whole winter to ice climbing, usually bagging well over 100 waterfalls per season in ranges and canyons all over the west. He spends much of his winters exploring backcountry venues, sleeping in cold tents for weeks at a time, in search of rare ice lines.
Dustin believes that ice climbing isn’t about being the strongest climber of the bunch; but, rather the one that sticks around long enough to climb all of the fickle routes when they are “in.” However, “In” is used relatively because Dustin loves climbing chossy mixed lines and thin ice routes. In the winter of 2012-2013 after spending 30 days in a wall tent in Hyalite he had put up two new chossy mixed lines; Antimossity and Vitamin M. After this Dustin found himself in Cooke City, Montana with a broken down car. After just two month there, he and his good friend, Travis Mcalpine, had climbed a majority of the established routes and started ticking off unclimbed chunks of ice daily.
This past winter he spent 50 days in Alaska to warm up for the season and climbed 75 waterfalls in the Chugach Range, Alaska Range, The Wrangell St. Ellias, and all over the Seward Highway, Portage and Whittier, before December 1st. Later in the season, back home in Idaho, Dustin climbed his biggest F.A of the 2014 season; The Salmon River Quiver [450’+, WI 4 Mixed] and claimed it to be one the best waterfall routes in Idaho to date.
Despite the fact that he concentrates on ice lines, Dustin is no stranger to alpine climbing. In his home range he completed the Cirque Lake Tower Traverse, linking up five towers in a single push, finishing with the Sawtooth classic, Warbonett Peak. He has also established two great cave Ice lines in Idaho one 250’ fall in Stricklers Hole and another in the Crystal Ice Cave.
Always the innovator, Dustin was making his own packs at home when he picked up an internship with Cilo Gear in 2010. Since then he has worked with Snow Peak, Figure Four Backpacks and NWAlpine on everything from product design and development to gear testing and manufacturing. Dustin has lent a hand with most of NWAlpine’s line and has been a friend of the company since before its official debut. In fact NWAlpine’s first product, the Black Spider Hoody, was named after a route Dustin established with Bill Amos on the Black Spider headwall on Mt. Hood in 2010.