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Backcountry Rock Climbing in Wind River

Wind River Range | Wyoming
Trip Highlights

Top three reasons to go rock climbing in Wind River

  • Trip Highlight

    Discover dramatic views from some of the highest Rocky Mountain peaks

  • Trip Highlight

    Climb hundreds of technical ascents on solid, high-quality rock

  • Trip Highlight

    Ascend two of the legendary 50 Classic Climbs of North America

Located in west-central Wyoming, the Wind River Range offers roughly 100 miles of some of the best alpine rock climbing in the country. Valley after valley of massive rock walls abound with hundreds of enjoyable routes, as well as a lifetime of new route potential. And with several peaks over 13,000 feet in elevation, Wind River is no slouch in the epic vista department. This is exactly why the range’s widely lauded routes have been drawing climbers from around the world for decades. Climbers looking for a boundary-pushing Rocky Mountain alpine experience can head to Hole in the Wall on Ambush Peak for its terrifying ledges and 200-foot dihedral. For a perfect balance of challenge and beauty, head to Northeast Face in Pingora, dubbed by some to be the best moderate climb in Wyoming. The Wind River Range never disappoints, and with its iconic routes surrounded by magnificent wilderness, how could it? Find out more about rock climbing in Wyoming from Cody Bradford, AMGA Certified Guide and 57hours Ambassador.

Season

July through August

Nearest city

Idaho Falls is 2,5 hours away 

Duration

5 days

Skill level

Intermediate to advanced

Itineraries

Choose how you spend your days

5-day Haystack Mountain Tour

5 days

Head for the Wind River Mountains and experience some of the best alpine rock and ice climbing in the United States! Enjoy a scenic hike to a tranquil campsite near the base of Haystack Mountain, which will be your base camp for the climbs to come. The mountain is an ideal location for multi-pitch climbing on clean granite in a spectacular wilderness setting. Spend your days traversing the beautiful routes and summits of peaks such as Sundance Pinnacle, East Temple Peak, and Steeple Peak. 

5-day Cirque of the Towers

5 days

Looking to up your climbing game even more, or do you just want to experience some of the finest wilderness rock climbing in Wyoming? Whatever the case, this camping tour in the Cirque of the Towers is for you. Here you will find the largest concentration of high-quality climbing routes in the Wind Rivers, with two of the legendary 50 Classics in North America: the East Ridge of Wolf’s Head and the Northeast Face of Pingora. Camp near the alluring Lonesome Lake and conquer some iconic routes with an expert local guide by your side.

Trip Highlights

Itinerary

Haystack Mountain Tour

Start with a pleasant 5.5-mile hike from the Big Sandy trailhead and reach Big Sandy Lake. From there you will head south for the Deep Lake area near Haystack Mountain, where the trails will steepen en route to a campsite near the treeline. The following days will be spent ascending peaks and climbing the routes on and near Haystack Mountain. With the vast variety of routes available, your guide will help you choose climbs appropriate for your skill level. Spend your off-time fishing and hiking Wind River’s numerous lakes and hiking trails.

Cirque of the Two Towers

After a mild 5.5-mile hike from the Big Sandy trailhead, turn north at Big Sandy Lake and travel three miles to the Cirque of the Towers, camping in the Lonesome Lake area. The following days will be spent climbing Cirque of the Towers’ first-rate routes. An expert guide will help you choose your climbs based on your goals and previous climbing experience.

Things to know

Things to know

Covid measures in Wind River, Wyoming

57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity. 

We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, their guides, and the communities they’re traveling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Wind River, Wyoming, please refer to the Wyoming Department of Health’s official COVID-19 update website.

Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

What’s included?

What you get on this adventure:

  • An experienced, local rock-climbing guide with extensive knowledge of the area
  • 5 days of rock climbing
  • All technical climbing gear

What’s not included:

  • Transportation
  • Accommodations
  • Food and snacks
  • Approach shoes and boots (can be rented)
  • Rock shoes (can be rented)

How fit do I need to be?

Rock climbing is all about using good movement technique rather than muscling up a cliff using brute strength, but this 5-day climbing camp is best suited for intermediate rock climbers. To ensure you have a fun day, your guide will choose routes that best suit your skill and fitness level.

What if I’ve never climbed before?

These trips are for rock climbers with intermediate rock climbing experience. Good physical fitness is required to be active all day, for multiple days in a row, in the mountains. You must be comfortable at heights on multi-pitch routes with long continuous exposure.

What about required equipment?

All technical climbing equipment will be provided by your guiding service. However, if you have your own gear, feel free to bring it. You’ll need:

  • Helmet
  • Harness with a locking carabiner, belay device, and chalk bag
  • Ropes
  • Rock shoes (can be rented)
  • Climbing hardware (quickdraws, cam devices, stoppers, etc.)

Here’s a list of the equipment we suggest you bring:

  • Sticky rubber approach shoes or mountain boots (can be rented)
  • Insoles — custom or aftermarket
  • Camp shoe — lightweight
  • Socks (sized for your boots and blister prevention)
  • Synthetic/wool long underwear top or synthetic/wool hoody
  • Synthetic T-shirt
  • Insulating jacket — lightweight fleece or synthetic
  • Soft shell — fleece or pile
  • Rain jacket — waterproof/breathable with hood
  • Synthetic/wool long underwear bottom
  • Hiking shorts or pants for approach
  • Synthetic climbing pants
  • Rain pants
  • Hat — lightweight to medium weight warm hat
  • Sun hat or visor
  • Headlamp and fresh batteries
  • Alpine climbing pack (45 to 50L)
  • Trekking poles
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • Water bottles (2-3 liter) or H2O hydration system
  • Water treatment – Steripen or other
  • Stuff sacks/zip lock bags
  • Lunch, snacks and drink mix
  • Toiletries (sunscreen, First Aid, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
  • Bear spray
  • Misc items: light knife, bandana, camp suds, washcloth, etc.
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera — optional

For early or late season:

  • Buff or neck gaiter 
  • Extra down vest or jacket 
  • Expedition weight long underwear 
  • Extra gloves

Group sizes and age requirements

Group sizes and prices:

  • The group size for these private climbs is usually between 1–2 people with one guide. 
  • Costs per person decrease as the group grows for private tours, so it’s the perfect opportunity to climb with friends and family. 

Climbing days in Wind River can be arranged for bigger groups. Contact us prior to booking.

Min. age requirements:

  • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
  • Minors younger than 18 may be permitted to climb on a case-by-case basis, but must be in the presence of a parent or legal guardian.

If your group has climbers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

Getting there and meeting location

The simplest way to reach Wind River Range is by getting to Jackson first. Reach Jackson by taking a flight to Salt Lake City International Airport. From there, you are a 4-5 hour drive away to Jackson, WY, depending on the weather conditions. Renting a car is recommended, but air travel options to Jackson Hole Airport are also available.

Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, whether that’s at the guide shop in Jackson or a predetermined location. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ability of the group.

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