Local Area Information

Shoshone Canyon Climbing

Bridge Bands/Sphynx Boulders

The Bridge Bands are the first climbing area you see leaving Cody up the Shoshone Canyon towards Yellowstone. The East Bridge Bands can be accessed by parking at the Hayden Arch Bridge approximately 1 mile outside of Cody, take the turn off to the right and park just before or after the small bridge. Follow the trail on the East side of the bridge JUST after you cross the bridge. Take that trail up to the old road. If you turn left and hike west along the road you will reach the East Bridge Bands in about 5 minutes. The East, or Lower Bridge Bands, are predominantly sport climbing, single pitch routes that range from easy 5th class to 5.12. 

If you turn right and walk east along the road you will reach a trail on the left side after about 5 minutes that heads up the hillside to the Sphynx Boulders.

The Main Bridge Bands are accessed via a small parking lot on the north side of route 14 approximately 1.5 miles out of Cody just after crossing the bridge on the highway. You will park just below the cliff on the north side of the canyon. Follow the trail out of the parking lot up to the cliffs. To access the higher climbs there is a secondary trail that branches off the main trail after about 100 yards to the left (marked by a small cairn). Follow that trail up the scree/talus slope making sure to stick to the trail to avoid erosion. The climbing at all the bridge band areas is Limestone, be cautious of the rock breaking.

The upper areas is home to numerous harder climbs rarely visited.  The main, or central bands, are the most often visited section of the Bridge Bands as there is climbing from 5.3 to 5.13.  Many of the areas also have relatively easy access to reach the top to secure a top-rope.  Most of the climbs have had protection (i.e. bolts) replaced, but there are many that still have 1/4" bolts and homemade hangers, watch out for those.  There is a section that has a cliff at the top and multiple routes that take on a second pitch.  The majority of routes (true for all of Cody) have chains at the top for the anchors.

The Island

The island is the easiest accessed spot climbing in Cody. Continue on route 14 out of cody and after about 2 miles you will see a series of three tunnels. On the left side of the road a couple hundred yards before the first tunnel is a pulloff/parking area. Park here. Walk through the first two tunnels being EXTREMELY  CAREFUL of oncoming cars and just before the third tunnel on the right side is the Island. Climbing here range from 5.5-5.12 with the majority being sport climbs.  This area offers great climbing on solid granite. If you walk up the canyon behind the Island and Arrowhead Wall, you will find a few more climbs that are rarely visited but still great quality.  There are a few long pitches here where you will need a 60m+ rope in order to get back down (mainly the tunnel wall), pay attention to your rope as you lower your climber down.

Shoshone Canyon

To access the canyon climbs park at the same pulloff/parking area as for the island. To the left of the sign overlooking the river there is a trail that goes down to the access road below. Follow the road up the canyon and locate the different cliff areas. The climbing down in the canyon offers everything from short hard sport routes to multi-pitch traditional climbing. There are few areas that offer relatively easy access for toprope anchors so be prepared to lead most of the routes. Further down the canyon across from the tunnel on the access road there are climbs across the river but not too many. There are new climbs going up all the time so be sure to check in frequently for new exciting routes. The climbing here ranges from 30 feet to 4+ pitches and traditional lines from 5.6 to 5.12.  There are a few climbs that have bolts but also require traditional gear.  Many of the cracks are deceiving and do not take gear as well as you would think.  Where it does, it is typically very solid.

Shoshone Guide

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