The Chicks Story

We are built upon a rich, inspiring, and strong foundation.

In 1999, guide and climber Kim Reynolds looked out over a sea of ice climbers in the Ouray Ice Park and saw very few women. To change that disparity, Kim created Chicks with Picks.

The drive was to foster a welcoming and empowering environment for women to feel inspired and find community.  And it was a major success! Chicks Climbing and Skiing grew to add other disciplines and over twenty years has reached thousands of women.

Taught by a crew of gifted and talented women leaders in the guiding and outdoor industry, the organization added new owners to help build the community and programs they offered. Angela Hawse, Dawn Glanc, Elaina Arenz, Karen Bockel, and Kitty Calhoun built upon Kim’s original vision.  

This group of ground-breaking, trailblazing women guides and instructors, built a company that stood apart in its commitment to building confidence through competence and community. The Chicks vision and the Chicks community is a rich, inspiring, and sturdy foundation upon which IRIS continues to build.

Former Owners

Angela Hawse IFMGA

IFMGA Mountain Guide
AMGA Certified Ski Guide
AMGA Certified Alpine Guide
AMGA Certified Rock Guide

Dawn Glanc

AMGA Certified Alpine Guide
AMGA Certified Rock Guide

Elaina Arenz

AMGA Certified Rock Guide
AMGA Apprentice Alpine Guide

Karen Bockel

IFMGA Mountain Guide
AMGA Certified Ski Guide
AMGA Certified Alpine Guide
AMGA Certified Rock Guide

Kim Reynolds in Ouray, Colorado

Visionary and co-founder of Chicks Climbing

Kitty Calhoun certified legend

Certified Legend