IMSAR Dec 2001 Expedition to Cody, Wyoming

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This was a trip with my long-time climbing partner, Scott to Cody, Wyoming, where neither of us had ever been. We left Christmas Eve, and stayed through New Years. Unfortunately, it was a very poor snow year in the Cody area, and there wasn't much ice. What ice was in, was in pretty poor shape. We managed to squeeze in some climbing almost everyday though. The climbing is in the South Fork Valley, about 40 miles from Cody. One thing about Cody, be prepared for 1-2 hour long approaches.

On the drive back, we stopped in Thermopolis, to spend alittle time at the hot springs. After so many trips to Ouray, CO and it's easily accessible hot springs, we needed to soak at least once this trip.

Parked at the trailhead to hike into "Sheep Shank". This is looking west through the South Fork Valley. This gives you an idea how dry the are is.

This is looking east down the Shoshone River. Most of the climbing is on both sides of the valley in this view.

Scott taking a break on the hike into "Bozo's Revenge". This was the last flat spot before starting the approach up the frozen creek bank.

Ah, camping in sub-zero weather. We kept these eggs in down booties, or our sleeping bag, but the eggs froze anyway... Luckily they seemed to work in the potato pancakes anyway. Whew!

Scott hiking into "Sheep Shank". Another picture that shows how dry this part of the country is.

This is a view across the South Fork Vally. You can see "Mean Green" (I think) in the distance on the north facing side of the Valley.

We mostly stayed in Deer Creek Campground, because it was free, and pretty close to most of the climbing. I had a free 4 nights stay at Bison Willy's Bunkhouse, so we also tried that for two night.
The approaches up over 100 feet of partly frozen creek beds were almost worse than any of the climbing. This is about 2/3 of the way up the approach for Triptych. The climbing when we got to it was thin and nasty. We'd guess the parts we did went at about WI4,M7.

With long, slow approaches, most of our decents were in the dark, or close to it. Here's Scott rappeling a steep stretch of Triptych, after we were forced to downclimb and rappel it due to lack of ice.

After scrambling up way too much barely frozen creek bed, we got to this nasty pitch.

Most of the ice was rotten, the the rock was loose. As you can tell, much of the ice barely survived me climbing it.

The first decent stance. The only pro for this entire pitch was tied off ice screws and one expanding flake. Not good...

This is "High On Boulder", near the west end of the South Fork Vally.