Cody Climbing Club: Afterschool Climbing Program for Park County Youth
The Cody Climbing Club is an afterschool climbing program serving youth ages 8-18 in Park County, Wyoming. The mission of the Cody Climbing Club is to help youth in Cody, Powell, and surrounding communities to develop their skills in a variety of climbing disciplines (bouldering, sport, trad, and ice climbing) and explore world class climbing areas in northwest Wyoming. Park County is home to some of the best rock and ice climbing in the country and the Cody Climbing Club provides a way for local youth to explore this amazing resource in a supervised and structured manner.
The Cody Climbing Club is unique among after school youth climbing programs in that it involves both indoor and outdoor climbing. Indoor climbing in a gym setting is very useful for skill development and gaining sport specific strength, but outdoor climbing provides kids the opportunity to explore the vertical wilderness in a fun and meaningful way. Because there is such a large concentration of climbing areas within a few minutes’ drive of Cody, it is a great place for local youth to climb outdoors on a variety of terrain.
Cody Climbing Club programs are coordinated by Wyoming Mountain Guides and its staff of professional climbing guides. Our guides provide professional instruction and mentorship to club members at a fraction of the cost of regular guided climbing programs. All outdoor climbing programs occur in locations for which Wyoming Mountain Guides is permitted to guide by the US Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and the National Park Service.
The Cody Climbing Club curriculum is holistic and structured in a progressive manner, but it is also scaffolded to allow for personalized skill development. Since Cody is home to a wide range of incredible climbing resources on a variety of terrain, club programming gives youth the opportunity to develop skills in multiple disciplines of climbing (bouldering, sport, trad, and ice climbing). The skills taught in each discipline build off each another, providing a natural progression from bouldering skills (emphasis on movement and gaining fitness) to sport and trad climbing skills (emphasis on roped safety systems and specialized crack climbing techniques) to ice climbing skills (emphasis on specialized ice climbing safety systems and movement on ice). While club members learn fundamental skills in a group setting, which helps them learn from and connect with each other, our instructors also scaffold their instruction to challenge everyone regardless of ability or experience level. All participants set individual goals for their own climbing development and they are paired with partners of comparable skill level to help in the learning process.
While many youth climbing programs focus primarily on athletic performance, the main priorities of Cody Climbing Club programming (in order of importance) are 1) safety, 2) partnership, 3) environmental stewardship, and 4) working toward individual climbing goals. In a high risk environment, developing competency in roped climbing safety systems (including belaying, rappelling, anchoring, and basic self-rescue) is our top priority. And since climbing is a partner-based sport, learning how to be a good climbing partner is important from both a safety and performance standpoint. In addition, climbing outdoors gives youth the opportunity to deepen their relationship with the natural environment and learn more about the unique geology, ecology, and history of the places they climb. Lastly, the process of setting and working toward specific, individualized climbing goals is great not only for kids becoming better climbers, but it also helps them learn how to push their limits in other areas of life.
We offer three options for membership that vary in terms of time commitment, cost, and duration of climbing season. Our first, base level option consists of two climbing sessions per week, with one session taking place indoors at the Northwest College Climbing Center in Powell and one taking place in outdoor climbing areas close to the town of Cody. In addition, there is an option for members to participate in one climbing trip each month that will take place on weekends. These weekend climbing trips give members the opportunity to explore some incredible climbing areas in the region (including the Clarks Fork, Devils Tower, and world class ice climbing areas near Cody) at a much lower cost than regular guided programs. Lastly, we give members the option to focus only on rock climbing or to participate in both rock and ice climbing programming.
Option 1: Weekdays – Rock Climbing Only
- Duration: 2 months (mid Sept – mid Nov)
- Cost: $312/month
Option 2: Weekdays + Weekend – Rock Climbing Only
- Duration: 2 months (mid Sept – mid Nov)
- Cost: $416/month
Option 3: Weekdays + Weekend – Rock and Ice Climbing
- Duration: 3 months (mid Sept – mid Dec)
- Cost: $394/month
Fall 2023 Schedule and Locations:
- Indoor Climbing – Mondays 6-8pm at Northwest College Climbing Center in Powell
- Outdoor Climbing – Wednesdays 4-7pm at various locations in Shoshone Canyon near Cody
- (Thursdays 4-7pm as backup in case of bad weather)
- Week 1: Sept 18, Sept 20
- Week 2: Sept 25, Sept 27, Oct
- Week 3: Oct 2, Oct 4, **Oct 7
- Week 4: Oct 9, Oct 11
- Week 5: Oct 16, Oct 18,
- Week 6: Oct 23, Oct 25, **Oct 30
- Week 7: Oct 30, Nov 1
- Week 8: Nov 6, Nov 8 (Rock season only option ends)
- Week 9: Nov 13, Nov 15, **Nov 18
- Week 10: Nov 27, Nov 29
- Week 11: Dec 4, Dec 6
- Week 12: Dec 11, Dec 13, **Dec 16
**Weekend program destinations:
- October 7 – 8am-4pm – Upper Clark’s Fork/Crandall (rock)
- October 28 – 8am-4pm – Devils Tower National Monument (rock)
- November 18 – 8am-4pm – Carter Mountain (ice)
- December 16 – 8am – 4pm – Pilot Creek (ice)
All technical climbing equipment is provided by Wyoming Mountain Guides at no additional cost. In addition, we offer discounted pricing on climbing shoes, harnesses, helmets and more for Cody Climbing Club members if they wish to purchase their own equipment. We do not provide standard hiking equipment or food.
As per our insurance policy we do not provide transportation to climbing areas, so we encourage members to coordinate with each other and carpool if possible. We understand this may be a significantly limiting factor, but luckily many of the climbing areas we frequent are a very short commute compared to most climbing areas in the country.
Registration and payment
We require the first month’s payment to finalize your registration. You will then receive a monthly invoice for each additional month of programming.
Have any questions about Cody Climbing Club programming? Please send us an email with your name, phone number, and any questions you might have.