Ouray Ice Park Staff
The Ouray Ice Park embraces a small, hardworking staff that strives to make your experience at the Ice Park one to remember
Dan Chehayl, Executive Director
Ice Park Executive Director Dan Chehayl is no stranger to the Ouray Ice Park. This is his seventh season working here, beginning as an ice farmer and graduating to Park Manager and Director of Operations before assuming his current position. Chehayl first came to Ouray as a college sophomore with a group of friends from Sterling College in Vermont. He came back as often as he could over the next couple of years and eventually moved to Ouray in 2007. That first winter, he worked at Mouses Chocolates and ice climbed obsessively. Then, after a year in Telluride and a brief stint back east, he came back to Ouray for good, winning a job as an ice farmer with former Ice Park Manager Kevin Koprek. These days there is not much Chehayl doesn’t do at the Park, from overseeing the ingenious plumbing system and the staff that maintain it to working with his wife Nicole securing sponsorship funds and memberships for the Park. Besides climbing the ice he farms, one of Dan’s favorite things about working for the Ouray Ice Park is watching the ice grow and take shape throughout the winter. “It’s like the cliffs in the gorge come to life; every day is magical out here in the park!” he said.
Nicole Chehayl, Festival and Events Coordinator
Nicole has worked for the Ouray Ice Park for six years. She graduated from the University of Vermont with a degree in Environmental Studies and a concentration in Sustainable Business. Over the past six years Nicole has worked for a variety of nonprofits in the outdoor industry in various capacities. Nicole enjoys working with the small but committed staff and board at the Ouray Ice Park. She loves watching the organization continue to grow and the impact it has on Ouray and the greater climbing community.
Becca Doll, Administrative Assistant
Becca, a Kansas native, has made the San Juans her home after living in southwestern Colorado for eight years. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Biology and Ecology from Western State Colorado University. After completing an intensive undergraduate career she landed a seasonal temp job as a Wildlife Conservation Technician for the Colorado Parks and Wildlife for a couple years. During the winters she would ski bum in Crested Butte. Subsequently, she decided to abandon her sprouting professional pursuit and instead pursue her outdoor passion for skiing and climbing. She moved to beautiful Ouray in 2014 where she enjoys her small mountain lifestyle and her amazing, supportive community.
Logan Tyler, Ice Park Manager
Born and raised in Ouray, Logan began climbing at a young age, experiencing all the San Juan's and it's surrounding environs has to offer while developing himself into a gifted climber. He has competed in Ouray's elite mixed climbing comp three times and at Vail's Teva mountain games as well, often as the youngest competitor in the league. Logan has transferred his climbing skills to other aspects of his life as well, most notably as a climbing coach for the Ridgway/Ouray climbing team, and as a foreman of a Midwest tower crew for the past several years. Recently he founded a local company, Red Mountain Riders, already well known for manufacturing high quality handcrafted longboards.
Xander Bianchi, Lead Ice Farmer
Born and raised in the corn fields of northwest Indiana, Xander first explored Ouray in 2010 on a road trip through Colorado. It was here in the shadow of the San Juans that the seed was planted for many more journeys westbound. After scrapping together a mechanical engineering degree in 2012, he threw a sleeping bag in his car and set out for the mountains. The next few years were painted with a mosaic of nomadic brush strokes, until shelving the prospect of an engineering career and moving to Ouray in 2015. Since then, Xander has focused his energy on a different side of life - one full of white velvet mountains, rusty desert canyons, and two worn out soles.
Lucas Carrion, Ice Farmer
Lucas moved to Ouray in August 2014 after finishing his fourth summer working for a nonprofit pack outfit in the Sierra Nevada backcountry. It was there that he developed a love for mountain life and climbing. Lucas swung his first ice tools in New Hampshire, and further developed his climbing skills on rock and ice in Ouray and the deserts of southeastern Utah. His favorite ice climbs are La Ventana in the Ouray Ice Park’s Five Fingers climbing area, and Whorehouse Hoses in Eureka.
Justin Hofmann, Ice Farmer
After years of intermittent work weaved with nomadic tendencies chasing rocks and sunsets, Justin has made base camp here in southwest Colorado. His journey began in the Front Range, where he discovered the freedom of the hills as a teenager. It didn’t take long before stories of deeper canyons and higher summits lured him further west, and places like Indian Creek and the Winds soon became seasonal homes. A chance encounter involving a sticker-plastered Subaru, a note on the windshield, and a complete stranger led Justin to a wintery Ouray for the first time 5 years ago. Since then, he's found much more than just frozen water in this tiny box canyon - he’s found his community, his family, and his new home.