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Crazy Woman Crags

Wyoming > Eastern Big Horns
Access Issue: Open public lands (Forest Service). Respect adjacent landowners. Details

Description

Five separate reefs of Bighorn Dolomite rising above high-country meadows just south of Highway 16 in the southern Bighorns. Only 3 of the cliffs have developed climbing (the other 2 don't have nearly the quality or potential). The Crazy Woman Cliff and the TLC Wall both hold many excellent sport routes from 5.10-5.13 with lots of beautifully featured steep terrain remenisicent of Tensleep Canyon. Dirt roads off of the highway deposit one within minutes of the walls, making this a slackers delight. Good undeveloped camping can be found throughout the area, but be discreet and pick up after yourself! Please read the above comments on access concerns before visiting the area and be especially conscientious while out here.

The cliffs face SW and get lots of sun, but the area is at a high altitude and generally remains cool and pleasant in the summer. During the hottest months, mornings and evenings are still great, and shady spots along the crags can be found (the left side of Crazy Woman Cliff being prime).

These cliffs saw there first routes back in '88 by the super motivated Alex Catlin, who was living in Buffalo for a summer. He left many impressive testpieces behind. Ken Trout, along with his wife and friends, spearheaded the second round of activity in 1992 and left many classic sport lines behind them. Other Wyoming locals have passed through and left their mark. This is now Buffalo's premier venue!

Getting There

They cliffs are a couple miles south of Highway 16 (between Buffalo and Tensleep over the Bighorn Mountains) and easily visible from the Highway. When coming from Buffalo, they are about 25 miles out (well before Powder River Pass). From Highway 16, the cliffs are approached via secondary dirt roads that are generally in good condition and passable for all vehicles. Specific approach directions are given for each individual cliff. Driving time from Buffalo is around 45 minutes. Another perk of the area is that these approach roads deposit you very close to the cliffs, keeping hiking time to 5 minutes or less. Specific driving directions will be detailed for each wall in their descriptions.

Photos [Hide ALL Photos]

The Easy Wall (no routes) and TLC Wall as seen from Crazy Woman Cliff.
[Hide Photo] The Easy Wall (no routes) and TLC Wall as seen from Crazy Woman Cliff.
Emmy enjoying a nice afternoon cruising moderates
[Hide Photo] Emmy enjoying a nice afternoon cruising moderates
Bring the pads too, there's tons of fun little boulders scattered across the hills
[Hide Photo] Bring the pads too, there's tons of fun little boulders scattered across the hills
Red dots mark Bighorn Roundup, 5.12b (?)<br>
Blacks are Alex Catlin's super-thin original routes.<br>
Blue are a couple of hard 5.11....fun!<br>
Green are 5.9/5.10 lines.<br>
A van is circled in green for scale.
[Hide Photo] Red dots mark Bighorn Roundup, 5.12b (?) Blacks are Alex Catlin's super-thin original routes. Blue are a couple of hard 5.11....fun! Green are 5.9/5.10 lines. A van is circled in green for scale.
Red dots mark Bury the Hatchet.
[Hide Photo] Red dots mark Bury the Hatchet.
Marsha working one of the very difficult routes put up by Alex Catlin.  All the original routes were too hard for us.
[Hide Photo] Marsha working one of the very difficult routes put up by Alex Catlin. All the original routes were too hard for us.

Comments [Hide ALL Comments]

Trevor Bowman
Flagstaff, AZ
[Hide Comment] Rock Climbs of the Eastern Bighorns Second Edition is the source for beta for this area. It provides comprehensive beta for Crazy Woman Crags (with 4 times the routes listed on here currently) and the other major crags of Sheridan/Buffalo area. Available at retailers throughout the area like: Backcountry Bicycles, Sport Stop, Sports Lure, Ten Sleep Brewery, the Rock Ranch, and Dirty Sally's. Check out Amazon to buy from the author directly, or just PM me here if you want a copy mailed. Aug 3, 2010
[Hide Comment] Buy the latest edition of Trevor's guidebook and check this zone out, it's excellent!

climbingwyoming.com/guidebo…

The climbing and camping in the Crazy Woman area is amazing. It's the sort of place that will never be truly popular, as it's too far from any major population area. That said, with a bit of traffic, the climbing will clean up and be every bit as good as the Ten Sleep classics.

Borderlands and TLC crags are particularly good for harder climbing; both have micro approaches, and far better summer conditions than any Ten Sleep crag. Loads of quality hard routes up to 14a, and many open projects that could be harder. Jun 28, 2017
Trevor Bowman
Flagstaff, AZ
[Hide Comment] Thanks for the props Josh, and glad you had a great time up here!

If you want a copy prior to a trip up here, and are the type that likes to go straight to the source, buy a copy from me! I have them posted on Amazon, and am also happy to mail directly if you just PM me here on the Proj. Jul 24, 2017
[Hide Comment] If you want to be respectful of private lands I recommend getting the ON-X hunting/fishing app, it will give you clear delineation of all private and public lands and allows you find good secret camp spots, such as BLM, state lands etc. I use it for fishing access, hunting and finding good places to post up for biking and climbing. Also this can be a great tool for those wanting to get access to private lands for development because it gives you access to land owners names and sometimes phone numbers so you can get permission. Many Hunters/fishermen here use it for that purpose in WYO and MT. Highly recommend. May 13, 2020