Wyoming, Ten Sleep to Devils Tower

On Friday, July 26th we arrived in Ten Sleep, WY where we met up with Chris and Jodi, our friends from Denver. Chuck and Ed would be arriving the next day and the 6 of us would spend a long weekend climbing in the Canyon at Ten Sleep.

Ten Sleep Canyon
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Ten Sleep Canyon

So Much Rock! Jamie is in heaven!!
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So Much Rock! Jamie is in heaven!!

All of us at Leah Creek crag
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The Gang at Ten Sleep, WY 

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We spent all day Saturday at Ice Plant crag and Mando Bondo crag, the canyon is steep and the rock is sharp but it was fun checking out a new area. This area in particular has so much potential for new routes to be set and it’s in a sleepy little town with an awesome coffee shop!

Chris, Jodi and Cathy at Ice Plant Crag
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Chris, Jodi and Cathy at Ice Plant Crag

Ice Plant Crag
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Ice Plant Crag

We all camped together at Leah Creek, part of the NFS, so it was cheap and right next to Ten Sleep Creek.

Our camp spot at Ten Sleep
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Our camp spot at Ten Sleep

This was our camp spot at Ten Sleep, fell asleep each night to the babbling brook!!
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This was our camp spot at Ten Sleep, fell asleep each night to the babbling brook!!

We find our own firewood around here
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We find our own firewood around here

And then we split our own firewood! Even if it takes all night!
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And then we split our own firewood! Even if it takes all night!

Sunday we chose Leah Creek crag for the shorter approach and mixed routes of moderate for me and hard for everyone else.

Everyone is busy working the routes!
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Everyone is busy working the routes!

Jamie on Psychoactive Wall
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Jamie on Psychoactive Wall

Ed working it on Psychoactive Wall
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Ed working it on Psychoactive Wall

Chuck considers his next move on Psychoactive Wall
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Chuck considers his next move on Psychoactive Wall

Jamie and I decided our bodies needed a rest day so we took Monday to relax, do laundry and drive into Cody, WY for the famous Buffalo Bill Heritage Center. Chris and Jodi had already been there and raved about it. Now we can say the same. It is a museum worth visiting and you could easily spend half the day walking through it.

Buffalo Bill Monument
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Buffalo Bill Monument

Buffalo Bill Museum, the largest polar bear ever hunted, 1940's
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Buffalo Bill Museum, the largest polar bear ever hunted, 1940′s

Chris and Jodi headed back to Denver and the next morning Chuck, Ed, Jamie and I made our way to Devils Tower, WY. Our plan was to summit the Tower 2 days later. We spent the first day at the tower doing some reconnaissance, scoping out the area and making a plan for the summit climb on Thursday.

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With Chuck and Ed at the Devils Tower Entrance
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With Chuck and Ed at the Devils Tower Entrance

We got a few routes in on Wednesday at the Assembly Line area to just mess around, feel the rock and prepare for the next day. While at Devils Tower we camped at the Devils Tower Lodge, owned and operated by Frank Sanders, a legend of the area. He’s been climbing for over 40 years and has made over 2000 summits of the Tower, now he is a Guide and offers up his awesome property to climbers and friends. Chuck met him a couple years ago at the Tower and he’s been camping there ever since when he visits.

Jamie cruising up the Tower at Assembly Line area
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Jamie cruising up the Tower at Assembly Line area

Jamie resting at Assembly Line
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Taking a rest at Assembly Line

Chillin' at Frank's
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Chillin’ at Frank’s

A rainy night camping at Frank's, as long as it rains at night and not while we climb!
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A rainy night camping at Frank’s, as long as it rains at night and not while we climb!

We made a plan to summit the Tower in the afternoon based on when the shade would hit the routes we chose. We headed up in 2 parties. Chuck and Ed on Soler and Jamie and I on El Cracko. The climb was a battle, especially since I’m not a crack climber. Even though I had my special gloves on it still kicked my ass!

Watch out El Cracko!
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Watch out El Cracko!

Waiting for the shade to kick in to begin El Cracko, Ed has already started up Soler
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Waiting for the shade to kick in to begin El Cracko, Ed has already started up Soler

Jamie (right) and Ed (left) beginning pitch 1 of our Devils Tower ascent
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Jamie (right) and Ed (left) beginning pitch 1 of our Devils Tower ascent

Chuck and I waiting our turns to head up
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Chuck and I waiting our turns to head up

Here are some shots of the 4 of us making our way up Devils Tower.

Ed working his way up Pitch 2 of Soler
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Ed working his way up Pitch 2 of Soler

HAND JAM!
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HAND JAM!

Chuck and Ed topping out on Soler
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Chuck and Ed topping out on Soler

El Cracko, top of Pitch 2
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El Cracko, top of Pitch 2

After about 4 hours we made it to the summit. Took in the view, shot some photos, refueled on food and began the process to rappel down.

Enjoying the summit finish of Devils Tower
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Enjoying the summit finish of Devils Tower

Chuck and Ed arriving at the summit
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Chuck and Ed arriving at the summit

Victory!
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Victory!

With Chuck and Ed at Rappel station 3
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With Chuck and Ed at Rappel station 3

The Tower casting a shadow out yonder
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The Tower casting a shadow out yonder

After another 2 hours we were at the base and all very proud of our day so it was time for some victory beers back at Frank’s.

After completing the summit climb, we are back down at the base
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After completing the summit climb, we are back down at the base

Devils Tower at Dusk
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Devils Tower at Dusk

We woke up on Friday to some heavy storms and were so glad we chose Thursday to climb and were not shut out by weather. After a huge breakfast we made our separate ways. Chuck and Ed off the the Needles in Mt Rushmore for more climbing and Jamie and I to Yellowstone. We had an awesome week with our friends and look forward to meeting up with them again in September for the 24HHH comp in Arkansas!

~Cathy

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3 thoughts on “Wyoming, Ten Sleep to Devils Tower

  1. I am so tired after reading all that you have been doing!!!! Need a nap! What an adventure you both are having and how wonderful to catch up with your friends. That last climb looked incredible. Stay safe and love you both!!
    Mum

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  2. You two are crazy!! All that climbing–awesome.!! Great scenery –the country is spectacular.
    I now wish I had visited the Grand Canyon and surrounding sites. Very impressive pictures .

    So glad you are still having a ball .

    PB

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