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South Fork Shoshone (Ice)

Select Route:
Bitches Brew 
Bozo's Revenge 
Broken Hearts 
Cabin Fever 
Classroom Bully 
Desperate for Lovin' 
Duck Soup 
Festering Ice 
High on Boulder 
Hostile Takeover 
Ice Fest 
Joy After Pain 
Main Vein, The 
Mean Green T 
Moonrise T 
Moratorium, The 
One Hitter, The 
Outdoorsman, The 
Pillar of Pain, The 
Ro Sham Bo 
Schoolhouse Route, The 
Sendero Illuminoso 
Smoked Turkey 
Smooth Emerald Milkshake 
Spittin' Bullets 
Spyin' 'n Flyin' 
Stringer 
Too Cold to Fire 
Triptych Pillars 
Wake and Bake 

South Fork Shoshone (Ice)  


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Elevation: 7,000'
Location: 44.5024, -109.127 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 96,214
Administrators: Mike Snyder, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Alan Searcy on Jan 25, 2006
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Description 

Secluded valley southwest of Cody with the Shoshone River running through it. No phones, no lights, occasionally motorcars. A definite alpine feel with a variety of grades to climb. Many times the approach is the crux of the route. Bands of harder horizontal stone provide benches for ice to form on. Much of the rock is crap, referred to by locals as "kitty litter". Rock gear is a waste to carry in most cases, although bugs and angles can be helpful if you're putting up something mixed and you need a mental piece or something that may hold bodyweight. As a rule "V" threads are the preferred method for descent, occasionally bolts or a slung tree. Typical ice climbs may be 100m to 300m (or longer) in length interrupted by steps of creek walking between pitches.

Getting There 

From Cody take Hwy 291 (South Fork Road) to the South Fork, about 45 minutes. Bison Willy's at the mouth of the Canyon is no longer an option for sleeping closer to the ice. Hotel it in town or sleep in the dirt at the Deer Creek Campground a couple of miles into the canyon.

Check out Cold Fear for details on current conditions and lodging. For route info, get your hands on the old Cozzens guide or the new Winter Dance book (Joe Josephson) with all the details.

Climbing Season



Weather station 3.0 miles from here

30 Total Routes

['4 Stars',10],['3 Stars',17],['2 Stars',3],['1 Star',0],['Bomb',0]
['<=5.6',0],['5.7',0],['5.8',0],['5.9',0],['5.10',0],['5.11',0],['5.12',0],['5.13',0],['>=5.14',0],['',0],['<=V1',0],['V2-3',0],['V4-5',0],['V6-7',0],['V8-9',0],['V10-11',0],['V12-13',0],['>=V14',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for South Fork Shoshone (Ice):
Stringer   WI3+ Mod. Snow     Ice, Snow, Alpine, 2 pitches, 160'   
Joy After Pain   WI5+     Ice, Alpine, 4 pitches, 460'   
Moonrise   WI5     Trad, Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches, 420'   
Cabin Fever   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches, 200'   
Bitches Brew   WI5+     Ice, Alpine, 5 pitches, 650'   
The Schoolhouse Route   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches, 450'   
The Outdoorsman   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 1 pitch, 150'   
Hostile Takeover   WI4+     Ice, Alpine, 2 pitches, 80'   
Too Cold to Fire   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 2 pitches, 70'   
Spyin' 'n Flyin'   WI5     Ice, Alpine, 5 pitches   
Bozo's Revenge   WI3+     Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches, 100'   
High on Boulder   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches   
The Moratorium   WI4+     Ice, Alpine, 2 pitches, 400'   
Broken Hearts   WI5-6     Ice, Alpine, 7 pitches, 700'   
Smooth Emerald Milkshake   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 800'   
The Pillar of Pain   WI5     Ice, Alpine, 1 pitch, 120'   
Sendero Illuminoso   WI4     Ice, Alpine, 425'   
Smoked Turkey   WI3     Ice, Alpine, 3 pitches, 300'   
The Main Vein   WI4 PG13     Ice, Alpine, 5 pitches, 900'   
Mean Green   WI5     Trad, Ice, Alpine, 7 pitches, 900'   
Browse More Classics in South Fork Shoshone (Ice)

Featured Route For South Fork Shoshone (Ice)
The k-man, Kenny G. on lead -photo: Aaron, <a href='http://ColdFear.com' target='_blank' rel='nofollow' >coldfear.com</a>

Stringer WI3+ Mod. Snow  WY : Cody : South Fork Shoshone (Ice)
Originally climbed as lower part of 'Slow Turning' these moderate pitches offer a variety of terrain as you climb up through a tight rock chimney. Depending upon conditions, I was told this route usually is quite wet but perhaps technique can offer up options (I remained relatively dry). Very fun ATC (all terrain climb) in both approach & climb. Considered to be one of the "easiest" approaches in the valley by comparison...heheh...[more]   Browse More Classics in WY

Photos of South Fork Shoshone (Ice) Slideshow Add Photo
1st rope-stretching pitch of Mean Green WI4, only 6 more to go.
1st rope-stretching pitch of Mean Green WI4, only ...
from right to left: One Hitter, Mean Streak, and Moratorium
from right to left: One Hitter, Mean Streak, and M...
Trying to finagle a mixed start to get on Joy After Pain.  Normally your friends encourage you by saying,"You got it!" or "You can do it!" After this picture was taken, I pulled off about 100 lbs of Kitty litter on my head.  Then everyone yelled something to the effect of, "Get your ass down here".  It was worth a shot.
Trying to finagle a mixed start to get on Joy Afte...
Simon Ahlgren moves out on the fatter than I've ever seen it Bozo's Revenge, Cody, WY.
Simon Ahlgren moves out on the fatter than I've ev...
Beautiful alpine setting and sharp toys, it doesn't get any better than that!
Beautiful alpine setting and sharp toys, it doesn'...
start of the approach..
start of the approach..
One of the many amazing belay platforms climbing in Cody affords.
One of the many amazing belay platforms climbing i...
Bozo's Revenge... Cody WI3... A great warm up for Cody, WY.
BETA PHOTO: Bozo's Revenge... Cody WI3... A great warm up for ...
Cody sunrise.
Cody sunrise.
The crux of most of the climbs....not drowning on the approach!
The crux of most of the climbs....not drowning on ...
wildlife on the approach...
wildlife on the approach...
Thin first pitch Main Vein
Thin first pitch Main Vein
Racing the setting sun after a long day in the South Fork, Ted sets another V-thread high on the School House route.
Racing the setting sun after a long day in the Sou...
Main Vein
Main Vein
The Boss
The Boss
Last pitch Main Vein
Last pitch Main Vein
View of the South fork of the Shoshone, looking up river.
View of the South fork of the Shoshone, looking up...

Comments on South Fork Shoshone (Ice) Add Comment
Show which comments
Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jan 31, 2014
By kirra
Dec 23, 2006
Bison Willy's (at mouth of canyon) currently not available. Same name lodging in Cody town is open and a nice place to hang your helmet. Several climbs in and lots to choose. Check out 'Core Mountain Sports' -Aaron Mulkey for the latest beta in case he's been too busy climbing to update coldfear.com...(:

FREE camping is available at Deek Creek Campgrnd in the valley about 5mi in. Saw several people tenting in the snow. But I don't think there is any Pizza delivery out there
By Alec
Jan 30, 2009
There was a fatality on the Main Vein in early January 2009 due to a massive avalanche: blog post

The South Fork isn't known for avalanches, but don't forget to check out conditions before getting out there.
By Bill Rusk
From: Duluth, MN
Aug 30, 2009
Hello,
I'm planning a trip here this winter. I was wondering when the climbs start forming up? Is late Dec. too early?
Thanks,
BR
By J. Albers
From: Colorado
Nov 7, 2009
Hi Bill,
I am sure that this is too late to be helpful, but no, Dec. is not too early.
Best.
By Buff Johnson
Nov 11, 2009
Lodging "Condition Report" (so to speak):

The Flying H Ranch has an interest in renting cabins to ice climbers.

Contact is Steve and Diane Byrum. Probably not best to put the full contact info on the web as of yet, unless someone has a better idea. No info as to rates.


From Kev:

They're at the end of the spur road on the south (north-facing) side of the Valley. This is the ranch that you hike around when approaching Mean Green, HoB, Moonrise etc. if you opt to drive across the river rather than do the Cody two-step.
By JonBates
From: cody, wy
Feb 23, 2012
Please consider using "naked threads" for rappel anchors in the South Fork. It seems most folks use double ropes and this technique is even stronger than using smaller diameter cordage (litter) to rappel on. I've used up to a 9.2mm rope w/o issues. If you don't have doubles and naked threads are not an option, please add a quick-link ($1-$2 at the hardware store) to your threads so more than just a few people can safely rappel off it. Way too many routes out here have huge rat nests of burned out cordage and webbing on top of the pitches. If there is an established thread at a rap station, use it, don't add another thread or steal the link thinking it's booty or something. How much trash we leave behind can affect the future of South Fork. thanks!
By cdec
From: SLC and Moab, ut
Jan 13, 2013
For those looking for a place to stay try the Big Bear Motel.
In Cody 1/4 from the turn off for the South Fork road.
1/13 we paid $47 a night for a 2 queen room. Clean and comfortable with table, fridge, micro and plenty of space to dry out gear.
By Jeff Hebert
From: Seattle, WA
Jan 3, 2014
A friend and I just stayed at the Double Diamond X Ranch for 4 nights in their bunkhouse. The price was on par with the Big Bear, but it's located right at the fork in the road near the Schoolhouse Creek parking lot, so it saves you the drive every day and makes it easy to head to the North or South side of the canyon. Just bring food for your whole stay. The proprietor is a really nice guy just getting things off the ground.
ddxranchwyoming.com/ice/
By Jaaron Mankins
From: Bayfield, CO
Jan 31, 2014
Update for lodging in the South Fork Valley. Bison Willy's old bunkhouse is under new ownership and they have fixed the place up a bit:

Matt Dzialak
Double Diamond X Ranch
3453 Southfork Road
(307)587-5252 (DDX Ranch Office)
(307)399-8816 (Matt's Cellphone-text is best)

Matt seemed like a great guy, so let's support him if you can! $40/night per person.