Lander (Sinks Canyon & Wild Iris)

Sinks Canyon is a year-round playground, with climbing possible during the winter on south-facing routes. Wild Iris is the quintessential summer destination. While there is indeed great, traditional climbing here that I personally enjoy on the sandstone and granite crags in Sinks, but the real draw of the climbing here is at the limestone sport crags of Wild Iris and Sinks. Similar to Ten Sleep, the rock here is Dolomite Limestone and “sports” pockets, crimps and steep, overhanging jug hauls.

Sinks Canyon, outside Lander, Wyoming, is a great spot for sport cragging with easy access, to boot. Photo by Show Us Your Togwotee licensed under CC BY 2.0

Best areas to access in Lander

Lander is a must-have stop on any climbing trip that passes through Wyoming. In Sinks, my favorite area is the Killer Cave. With its steep and juggy nature, Killer Cave meets all of my requirements for a great day of sport cragging. If you head up in elevation to Wild Iris to avoid the hot peak of the summer months, Blooming Rose has a great variety of climbing to 5.10+ for everyone. If you’re looking to pull a bit harder, then I recommend Rodeo Drive as a great destination!

For more detailed information on routes, the Mountain Project features a map for climbing in Lander.

What to expect in climber-friendly Lander

The access to the Sinks Canyon area is super simple. This area is extremely attractive for the traveling climber in Wyoming thanks to the routes being under ten minutes from town and with five to fifteen-minute approaches. There is no shortage of outdoor stores in Lander, and my personal favorite is Wild Iris Mountain Sports. Sinks Canyon is predominantly a climber-centric town. Support the climber owned Lander Bar on your rest day!

Camping spots are abundant. There’s the Sawmill Campground and the Popo Agie Campground in the Sinks Canyon State Park, and then plenty of dispersed camping below OK Corral and along the FS Access Rd.

About the author

Cody Bradford

Cody Bradford

AMGA Certified Rock Guide and 57hours Ambassador

Cody began his guiding career with the North Carolina Outward Bound School in 2012 where he received his AMGA Single Pitch Instructor certification in November 2012. Cody gained his AMGA Rock Guide Certification in April 2018. Follow him on Instagram @thecodybradford to see #TechTipTuesday where each week he demonstrates a skill or technique to make your climbing more efficient and fun.

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