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Gallatin Canyon

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Ashes of Stone Buttress 
B.O. Butress 
Black Line Buttress 
Bleacher Buttress 
Campfire Crag 
Canine Cliffs 
Cascade Creek 
Cube, The 
Dregs, The 
First Buttress 
Fish Face 
Gallatin Tower 
Greek Creek and Surroundings  
Hantavirus Cave 
Hole In The Waltz, The 
Libido Formation 
Northern Exposure 
Nu Ethix 
Nunnery, The 
Pineapple Buttress 
Prow, The 
Red Cliff Campground 
SAR Rock 
Scorched Earth 
Skyline Buttress 
Sparerib Area 
Tango Tower 
Veil Wall, The 
Wafer, The 
Waltz Formation, The 
Watchtower - First Tier, The 
Rest Day:
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From MP's sister site: MTB Project

Gallatin Canyon Rock Climbing 

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 5,000'
Location: 45.40709, -111.22527 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 275,492
Administrators: grk10vq, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Nick Stayner on Apr 6, 2007  with updates from Ben R
You & This Area
Best climbs for YOU in this area
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [1 person likes this page.]


I first spied the crags of Gallatin Canyon in spring of '02. I was driving up from Jackson, WY with my dad, planning on touring Montana State. After passing through the stretch with the climbing, I didn't even need to see the school- my decision was made! Not really, but I was pretty psyched.

Gallatin Canyon has two distinct areas. Driving S. from Bozeman, you'll first spot the limestone buttresses. There's great sport here (including a south facing winter area called Scorched Earth), as well as some mixed routes.

A couple more miles to the south, you'll spot the main, high-quality gneiss area. On your right, somewhat hidden, sits the Gallatin Tower, with tons of classic routes. The left side is where the majority of the climbing is. This area, with few exceptions, is trad. While you may have to wait in line for a classic route on a weekend in peak season, 9 times out of 10, you won't. High quality lines are everywhere.

Pay campgrounds are located in the canyon a couple miles south of the climbing. For free camping, throw down a tent on a number of USFS roads that exit the canyon (Squaw Creek, Portal Creek, etc...).

Getting There 

From Bozeman, head west for a few minutes to reach US 191. Head south on 191 for 20 or so minutes and you're there. For the Gallatin Tower and the Cube, park in the prominent pullout on the right. For all other areas, continue for another minute or two and cross a bridge. Immediately afterwards, park in a large dirt area next to the river.

Climbing Season

Weather station 4.3 miles from here

314 Total Climbing Routes

['4 Stars',41],['3 Stars',119],['2 Stars',105],['1 Star',44],['Bomb',4]

Classic Climbing Routes in Gallatin Canyon

Mountain Project's determination of the classic, most popular, highest rated climbing routes for Gallatin Canyon:
Skyline Arete   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, 6 pitches, 500'   Skyline Buttress
The Waltz   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 4 pitches, 300'   The Waltz Formation
The Dagger   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 25'   Gallatin Tower
Sparerib   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, 2 pitches, 225'   Sparerib Area
Fire Escape   5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c     Trad, 1 pitch, 100'   Fish Face
Thing In Between   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Gallatin Tower
Standard Route   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 3 pitches, 300'   Gallatin Tower
The Joker   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a PG13     Trad, 3 pitches, 250'   The Watchtower - First Tier
Diesel Driver   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 130'   Black Line Buttress
Ashes of Stone   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 190'   Ashes of Stone Buttress
Pineapple Thunderpussy   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, 2 pitches, 200'   Pineapple Buttress
First Best   5.10- 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a     Trad, 1 pitch, 70'   Gallatin Tower
Tigger   5.10a/b 6a+ 19 VI+ 19 E2 5b     Trad, 2 pitches, 140'   Gallatin Tower
Black Line   5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b     Trad, 1 pitch, 115'   Black Line Buttress
Kabooki Direct   5.11b 6c 23 VIII- 23 E3 5c     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Black Line Buttress
Orange Crack   5.11 6c+ 23 VIII- 23 E4 5c     Trad, 3 pitches, 300'   Gallatin Tower
Soft in the Middle   5.11c 6c+ 24 VIII- 24 E4 6a     Trad, Sport, 1 pitch, 70'   Gallatin Tower
Bowling for Buicks   5.12a 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Sport, 80'   Gallatin Tower
The Fugitive   5.12- 7a+ 25 VIII+ 25 E5 6a     Trad, 1 pitch, 80'   Tango Tower
Straw Man   5.13a 7c+ 29 IX+ 29 E6 6c     Sport, 1 pitch, 30'   The Cube
Browse More Rock Climbing Classics in Gallatin Canyon

Featured Route For Gallatin Canyon
Rock Climbing Photo: Pat going ground-up on the upper headwall. Photo b...

Bozeman Beautiful 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13  MT : Gallatin Canyon : Ashes of Stone Buttress
This surprising (and surprisingly good!) new line snakes it's way up the north face of the buttress between the old-school classic Farewell to Arms and the bold-school testpiece Mens Rea. Start on the Mens Rea blocky groove for the first 15' or so; M.R. continues more or less up and slightly right, while B.B. continues up the left-angling central groove-crack on the face. Cut up and right out of the groove at about 1/3 height and up a short clean crack to the...[more]   Browse More Classics in MT

Photos of Gallatin Canyon Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Tick season in Gallatin Canyon- Ben Elias on Spare...
Tick season in Gallatin Canyon- Ben Elias on Spare...
Rock Climbing Photo: Ashes of Stone
Ashes of Stone
Rock Climbing Photo: The Throwback, high in the Gallatins...
The Throwback, high in the Gallatins...
Rock Climbing Photo: Gallatin river
Gallatin river
Rock Climbing Photo: The east side of Gallatin Canyon from the top of G...
BETA PHOTO: The east side of Gallatin Canyon from the top of G...
Rock Climbing Photo: Storm coming into the canyon view from the Tower
Storm coming into the canyon view from the Tower
Rock Climbing Photo: Evening light on the east side
Evening light on the east side
Rock Climbing Photo: Two sport routes, ,8 mile south of 35mph bridge.
BETA PHOTO: Two sport routes, ,8 mile south of 35mph bridge.

Comments on Gallatin Canyon Add Comment
Show which comments
By NickinCO
From: colorado
Aug 24, 2012
Any info on free camping in the area?
By Nick Stayner
From: Billings, MT
Aug 31, 2012
For good free camping, try Storm Castle Road (north of the climbing) or Portal Creek Road (south of the climbing). These options are currently inaccessible due to fires, however.
By IJMayer
Jun 14, 2013
Looking for a partner for Gallatin Canyon. This might be appropriate for the forums, but I'm hoping for quick responses. I'm psyched for anything 5.10d and easier trad. Personal message me if you're also looking for a partner!
By Dana Prosser
From: Boulder
Aug 19, 2013
There is a really nice pay campsite south of the climbing at swan creek- Off the main highway a little, so you don't have the traffic noise.
By B-Mkll
From: Bozeman, MT
Apr 20, 2014
Any beta on the gneiss crag JUST off the road (like abutting a road pull-off) a mile or two before Greek Creek heading southbound? Poked around it today and the rock looks solid, even saw a lone bolt above a small roof so clearly its been climbed...

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