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Silo Ice Climbing: An Exploration of a New Outdoor Leisure Activity

Don Briggs, Robert Stebbins


Silo ice climbing got its start in 2001 in Iowa in the United States. In this activity, participants who reach the top have climbed 70 feet up the side of a grain silo, which has been specially iced for such use. Certain standard ice climbing techniques and equipment are employed. After examining the novelty of this new form of outdoor recreation, a history, and description of the activity are presented. It and related activities are then analyzed according to the tenets of the serious leisure perspective. It is hoped with this article to establish a model by which researchers may present, explain, and instruct on the many new outdoor activities now coming into existence.


serious leisure, casual leisure, project-based leisure, new leisure, ice climbing, wall climbing, indoor mountain biking

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