Q: What’s the weather like in Ten Sleep Canyon?
A: The climbing in the canyon ranges from 5,000 to 9,000 feet, meaning there’s a wide range of options. Here’s the forecast for the upper-canyon areas (Mondo, Valhalla, Superratic, Cattle Ranch) that get afternoon shade in the summer.
Q: When are the conditions best for climbing?
A: It depends on the year. It’s Wyoming. This means you could encounter snow in any month of the year. Generally speaking, you’ll be able to climb in Ten Sleep Canyon if you plan your visit in July or August. It may be a bit hot, and it may storm every afternoon. You might also get good conditions in May, June, September and October. Your chances increase for days/weeks of not-good conditions in those months (especially May and October). You might also get good conditions November through April, but you’re also highly likely to get snow or rain or just generally cold, nasty conditions in those months.
Other lower and higher elevation climbing areas in the Bighorn Basin and Bighorn Mountains vary accordingly, with the bouldering/sport climbing in Cody being best in spring and fall, and the higher elevation areas in the Bighorns being best mainly in the hottest times of the summer.
Q: How should I park my car in the pullouts in Ten Sleep Canyon?
A: Please park head-in at the upper canyon pullouts and make an effort to park closely so that as many climbers as possible can park in the pullouts and not on the shoulder of the highway. If the main parking area for the Mondo is full, park just up the road in the higher, larger area (the right area to park in for the Superratic and Cattle Ranch). The electric fence hasn’t ever been electrified (yet), so you can duck under and pick up the trail just across the street from the upper parking area for these two crags.
For the lower-canyon crags, parking head-in isn’t an easy option as they’re narrower/shallower. Make an effort to park closely so that others can park there, too.
Q: Where can I buy the latest Aaron Huey Ten Sleep guidebook, with all proceeds benefiting the local climbing community and local community?
A: Ten Sleep businesses — including Canyon Collections, Dirty Sally’s, and the Ten Sleep Brewing Company. You can also purchase a guidebook directly from the Bighorn Climbers’ Coalition. Online ordering will start in the middle of June 2016.
Q: When is the next edition of an Aaron Huey Ten Sleep guidebook coming out?
A: June 15, 2016. See The $25 Punk Rock…Climbing Guide to Ten Sleep Canyon Available June 15! for details. Grab your copy before they’re gone — and thank you in advance for supporting us and local Ten Sleep businesses with your purchase!
Q: Where can I buy gear?
A: Dirty Sally’s General Store and Canyon Collections carry some gear, as does the Ten Sleep Brewing Company. Otherwise, you’ll have to order gear, or travel to Lander, Cody or another sizable town with a large enough climbing population to stock more climbing gear.
Q: Should I bring bug repellant?
A: Probably. The bugs can be bad at certain times, in certain areas and in certain years. Why not bring some, just in case?
Q: Where can I buy groceries?
A: Dirty Sally’s General Store (on U.S. 16/Ten Sleep’s main street) now carries groceries. They have a great selection of organic goodies, locally grown produce, ice cream, baked goods, and coffee. The Pony Express (Ten Sleep’s gas station) has some basics, too. If you can’t find what you need at those stores, you’ll have to head to Worland (west of Ten Sleep) or Buffalo (east of Ten Sleep).
Q: Where can I stay?
A: You can camp in the Bighorn National Forest for up to 14 days. Climbers often take advantage of the free, dispersed camping opportunities available from mid-June through mid-November available along the old dirt road that parallels the highway through Ten Sleep Canyon, among other dispersed camping options in the area. Please practice sound camping ethics to help us maintain a strong and positive relationship with the Bighorn National Forest.
You can camp at the Ten Sleep Brewing Company, located on the way out of Ten Sleep headed toward Worland on the right side of the road as you start driving up the hill. They have WiFi, showers, good views, and great brews!
You can camp at the gorgeous Circle J Retreat Camp, located in lower Ten Sleep Canyon. They have RV hookups and showers, tent camping, and cabins and lodges that groups can rent out in advance. They also host an array of workshops and events; visit the website for details.
You can camp or rent a cabin at Deer Haven Resort, located a couple miles higher than the main climbing parking areas.
You can camp or rent a cabin in Ten Sleep at Ten Broek, located across the street from the coffee shop.
Q: If I’m camping, is it okay to leave my campfire burning/not quite out?
A: Absolutely not. Please help us maintain a strong and positive relationship with the Bighorn National Forest by putting out campfires completely.
Q: If I’m camping, is it okay to leave food, coolers, stoves and food preparation items lying out around camp all day?
A: Absolutely not. Please help us maintain a strong and positive relationship with the Bighorn National Forest by maintaining a clean camp. This means taking appropriate steps to keep your camp free from bear attractants. Be bear aware. Yes, there are bears (and other wild animals) in the canyon and surrounding area. Help keep bears safe and wild by not attracting them to your campsite.
Q: If I need to poop, should I just drop me knickers and go near/on the trail/campground, behind the closest barrier or just out of the line of sight of others, and then leave my toilet paper strewn about when I’m done?
A: Please don’t. Human waste is a growing concern for the Bighorn National Forest. You can help lessen the impact of increased canyon traffic by:
a) using one of two Bighorn Climbers’ Coalition sponsored public port-a-potties positioned along the old highway (the dirt road paralleling U.S. 16 from mid-June through October 1);
b) driving to another nearby outhouse to do your business (there is an outhouse at the Lake Point picnic area by Meadowlark Lake, an outhouse at the BLM trailhead in the bottom of the canyon, and public outhouses at pay-to-stay Forest Service campgrounds both at the top and bottom of the canyon, among others in the vicinity);
c) courteously giving your business to a local area store or restaurant and using the facilities while you’re there;
d) using a WAG BAG or other similar product;
e) if you must go in the woods, follow Leave No Trace guidelines — meaning you pack out all toilet paper/feminine hygiene products as well as going a minimum of 200 feet from water, camp and trails. Dig a hole 6 to 8 inches deep, and bury your poop when you’re done, disguising the evidence. Please don’t go in the exact same spot or close to it every day for two weeks. In addition, in certain areas of the forest, including the West Ten Sleep Lake corridor, all solid human waste must now be packed out.
Q: If I’m not paying to stay at one of the pay campgrounds, can I go ahead and use the facilities and dump my trash there?
A: You can use the toilets — they are open to the public, whether you’re paying to camp or not. However, the trash is paid for by the private concessionaire, so please do NOT dump your trash at pay-to-stay campgrounds. Please help us maintain a strong and positive relationship with the Bighorn National Forest by respecting the fact that others are paying for these services and that this is regarded as stealing by officials.
Q: Where can I legally dump my trash?
A: BCC is once again sponsoring a dumpster for summer 2015 where visiting climbers can dump their trash from Memorial Day weekend through late September, located at the Ten Sleep Brewing Company. You can also dispose of trash at the Ten Sleep Landfill, located south of town off of Cottonwood Street. It’s open 10 to 4 Tuesday and Thursday and 8 to 4 on Saturday.
Q: What is there to do in Ten Sleep?
A: The Town of Ten Sleep’s list of area businesses is a good place to start. The Ten Sleep Brewing Company offers great brews and a place to hangout, and also has movie and pizza nights; stop in for details. Circle J Retreat Camp, located in lower Ten Sleep Canyon, hosts an array of workshops and events; visit the website for details. Worland and Buffalo have more offerings, including the Washakie Museum & Cultural Center (Worland). An hours’ drive to the west, Thermopolis has Hot Springs State Park, the Wyoming Dinosaur Museum and an indoor bouldering gym ($5 drop-in fee) at the Gottsche Rehabilitation and Wellness Center.
Q: Is it okay to take or remove hanging draws, carabiners on anchors, or fixed hardware?
A: Absolutely not. Please help us maintain a trusting, positive, friendly and respectful climbing area by leaving these in place. The only exception is if there’s a verifiable safety issue. While the BCC is not responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of climbing routes, we don’t support gear theft or vandalism.
Q: Is it okay to camp by “NO CAMPING” signs in the hopes that I won’t get caught/noticed?
A: Absolutely not. Please help us maintain a strong and positive relationship with the Bighorn National Forest by respecting their signage always. There’s so much free and low-cost camping available; please use that instead.
Q: Where can I take a shower?
A: The Ten Sleep Brewing Company has showers available for a low fee. You can also pay for a shower at the Ten Broek Campground in town. You can shower at Circle J Retreat Camp, located in lower Ten Sleep Canyon, if you’re camping there, or at Deer Haven Lodge up higher in the canyon. You can also drive to Worland and have a swim and a shower at the Worland Aquatic Center. Hot Springs State Park also has showers, and you can soak in the hot springs (after a shower) free of charge. Please don’t steal showers or use the town splash pad or bathrooms for bathing or for washing climbing gear/ropes/clothes/dishes/your dog.
Q: Where can I find WiFi?
Q: Where can I go out to eat?
A: Crazy Woman Cafe, Ten Sleep Saloon, Meadowlark and Deer Haven all offer sit-down meals. Ten Sleep Brewing Company has a barbecue and food for sale to grill. Snow Shavers, Crazy Woman Cafe, and Dirty Sally’s offer cool, sweet treats seasonally. Dirty Sally’s also offers coffee starting at 6 a.m. (8 a.m. on Sundays). Places tend to close early, so if you’re climbing until dark in the summer, you probably won’t make it back to town before everything’s closed, save for the brewery.
Q: When is the rodeo?
A: Ten Sleep’s big annual rodeo takes place on the Fourth of July every year. It’s actually two days. Ten Sleep also hosts several other rodeos throughout the year. Visit the Ten Sleep Rodeo Association site for more information.
Q: When is the 2016 Ten Sleep Climbing Festival?
A: The 2016 climbing festival takes place at the Ten Sleep Brewing Company on July 2, starting at 6:30 p.m. There will be a raffle (with gear from many companies in the climbing industry), vendor booths with games, live music courtesy of Jalan Crossland (as well as Charlie Kardaleff and friends), excellent costumes, the opportunity to join the Bighorn Climbers’ Coalition, and just a great party and chance to socialize with other climbers, visitors and locals.
Q: When is the Nowoodstock Music Festival?
A: The second weekend in August.