Cody, WY – Custom Mountaineering Trips in the Northern Absaroka Mountains
We are privileged to offer Custom Mountaineering Trips in the the Northern Absaroka Mountains near Cody, Wyoming. The area is home to a number of adventurous, remote, and incredibly rewarding mountaineering and alpine climbing routes in a spectacular setting in the heart of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, the largest intact ecosystem in the Lower 48. The high peaks of the Northern Absarokas such as Sunlight Peak, Stinkingwater Peak, and Pilot Peak are great training peaks if you’re looking to prepare for higher mountains as well as worthy objectives in themselves. What these peaks lack in terms of elevation (there are no 13ers in this part of the range) they make up for in both their beauty and technical challenge. In addition, the complex volcanic geology, abundance of wildlife*, remoteness, ruggedness, and overall wild character of these mountains makes any mountaineering or climbing adventure in the Northern Absarokas one you’ll remember for years to come!
Our job is not only to help you manage risk and have fun climbing in the area; our ultimate aim is to help you become safer and more sustainable in the alpine environment by the end of your time with us. Our guides are talented, personable teachers who will help you develop new safety skills, useful climbing techniques, as well as Leave No Trace best practices for mountaineering and alpine climbing in a wilderness environment.
*Note that we do not guide on Sunlight Peak or Stinkingwater Peak past July 15 as these areas are moth aggregation zones that attract high numbers of grizzly bears.
Our favorite Northern Absaroka mountaineering and alpine climbing objectives:
- Sunlight Peak – Northeast Ridge (4th Class, Moderate Snow) – The Northeast Ridge of Sunlight Peak is one of our favorite moderate mountaineering objectives that we guide in the Northern Absarokas. Sunlight Peak is notable geologically as an ancient stratovolcano whose eruptions deposited large amounts of material that make up the unique volcanic landscape of the Absarokas. Approaching via the Sulphur Creek drainage, we establish our camp at the base of the Sulphur Glacier – one of the last remaining glaciers in the range. Rising early, we ascend a snow ramp to gain the NE Ridge and make our way past several sections of low angle rock and snow to reach the summit. This is an excellent overnight mountaineering objective for people interested in trying the activity for the first time, who are wanting to develop fundamental snow travel skills, or as a warmup route for more difficult routes on Sunlight or nearby Stinkingwater Peak.
- Stinkingwater Peak – South Ridge (M2-3, Steep Snow) – The South Ridge of Stinkingwater Peak is one step up from neighboring Sunlight Peak in terms of difficulty and is an excellent linkup with Sunlight or a very worthy mountaineering objective on its own. The approach and camping situation is the same as for Sunlight Peak. The South Ridge route follows a long and incredibly aesthetic ridge feature comprised mostly of moderate to steeper snow with the occasional mixed move on rock. The summit views on top of Stinkingwater are some of the best in the range, with excellent sight lines to dozens of high peaks and drainages throughout the Greater Yellowstone.
- Pilot Peak – Southwest Face/Regular Route (5.7) – Many have contended that Pilot Peak is the most beautiful peak in Wyoming outside of the Tetons, and some have went as far to say it’s the most beautiful peak in the state, which is a controversial position to say the least. Regardless of ranking, there’s no denying Pilot Peak is both an incredibly aesthetic and surprisingly challenging alpine climbing objective. The quality of volcanic rock nearing the summit is not the best and requires careful movement, placement of protection, and rope management to manage the risks involved. This climb is not for everyone, no doubt, but if you love adventure climbing and don’t mind moving through varied qualities of rock this is undoubtedly one of the best chossaneering objectives in the west.
Why choose to climb in the Northern Absarokas with us:
Our guides are experienced professionals, talented climbers, and well-trained teachers. They are also humble, personable, and overall great humans to be around in the mountains. Our guides are adept at providing safe, supportive, and inclusive climbing experiences for people of all backgrounds and ability levels. Additionally, our rock climbing guides live in the nearby Bighorn Basin and climb in the area throughout the year, which is a major advantage because they know the terrain they guide extremely well.
Trip Itineraries and rates:
Our rates reflect the extremely labor intensive nature of these trips for our guides, including extensive planning, physical labor, and risk management. Rates include all technical climbing equipment – no hidden fees.
- 2 Day Itinerary (includes 1 day of training and one day of climbing): $1050/1 person, $1750/2 people
- 3 Day Itinerary (includes 1 day of training and two days of climbing): $1400/1 person, $2250/2 people
Our Custom Mountaineering Trips include personalized instruction on the following topics and techniques:
- Planning and preparation for summer mountaineering
- Technical safety systems
- Mountaineering and alpine climbing techniques
- Risk mitigation
- Leave No Trace and “Beyond Leave No Trace” practices
- Lessons on the area’s geology, ecology, archaeology, and history
Our Custom Mountaineering Trips in Cody are available May-September (with the exception of the Sunlight Peak area, which is available through July 15 as per our permit).
Guide to climber ratio:
All of our custom mountaineering trips have a 1:1 or 1:2 guide to climber ratio.
Transportation: Nearby Cody has an airport serviced by United Airlines. You may also fly into neighboring Billings, MT, which often has cheaper flights.
Accommodations: We recommend staying at either hotel or bed and breakfast in Cody, or camping at a designated USFS campsite in the nearby area.
Meeting location: You will meet your guide in Cody, WY.
Daily schedule: Depends on the itinerary.
Equipment: Many climbers choose to bring all of their own gear, but we can provide all technical climbing equipment including CAMP helmets, harnesses, and crampons.
Interested in booking a Custom Mountaineering Trip in Cody? Please send us an email including your name, email address, phone number, climbing experience, in addition to a description of what, where, and when you’d like to climb.