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Car to car in the Winds?
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Aug 15, 2013
What are the best options for car-to-car climbs in the Winds? Looks like most of the approaches are pretty long and I'm wondering if people even climb car to car out there. I've done the Grand (Upper Exum) car to car without any problems but the approaches look longer and the routes look longer in the Winds. Should I suck it up and camp or are there any good options? Austin Baird
From SLC, Utah
Joined Apr 26, 2009
20 points
Aug 15, 2013
Most anything in the Cirque. The issue is the drive to get there makes it so you want to stay in there. Allen Sanderson
From Oootah
Joined Jul 6, 2007
1,115 points
Aug 15, 2013
I'd focus on objectives in the deep lake area. A straightforward and relatively quick approach via the Big Sandy trailhead will set you up well for a great day out. Hard to give advice on what kind of route you should pursue though. Enjoy! jstein
From Lander, WY
Joined Feb 10, 2011
5 points
Aug 15, 2013
If you've never been up in there why not camp for a night. Anywhere in the Winds is gorgeous and a night in the Cirque is not one you will forget. Scope it out then go car to car on your next visit. s.price
From PS,CO
Joined Dec 1, 2010
1,018 points
Aug 16, 2013
The only thing comes to mind that's maybe comparable to the Upper Exum on the Grand is the South Butt on Pingora. I think it would be the most doable C2C route for someone who's never been to the Winds. The approach is well traveled and marked, relatively short technical climbing and straightforward descent. That being said, driving 30+ miles on a dirt road and then hiking 20+ miles RT for 2 pitches of 5.6 is quite silly in my book, especially that the place is stacked with 1000-foot lines of sustained climbing on some of the best granite out there. doligo
Joined Sep 26, 2008
212 points
Aug 19, 2013
There are better routes in the Winds that take more time ....... however since you asked. The easiest one I have done car to car is The Giants Bite, I think it is Grade III 5.9+ close to Lander. Some loose rock and the route finding is not straight forward but very cool nonetheless.

Good luck, be safe, post a TR!
James Faerber
Joined Sep 15, 2010
0 points
Aug 20, 2013
Thanks for the input from everyone. We're trying to decide how ambitious we feel about car to car but camping is starting to sound better and better. Austin Baird
From SLC, Utah
Joined Apr 26, 2009
20 points
Aug 20, 2013
I've done routes on Haystack (Minor Dihedral,etc.) car to car in a day. Hiking in is easy in the dark and you will probably be getting early sun by the time you get to Deep Lakes or the Cirque. However, if you are taking the time to drive there I would recommend like others staying for a few days if you have the time. You can knock out a few great longer routes and not have to deal with all the hiking. Great fishing if you get off the route early. Mike Jones!
From Fort Collins, CO
Joined Dec 13, 2009
0 points
Aug 20, 2013
Giant's Bite III 5.9- Leg Lake

Anything on Sundance Pinnacle

Black Elk III 5.10c

Weather or Not III 5.10c

Major or Minor Dihedral

New Fork Park Climbs (shortest approach in WInds)

See Kelsey Guide.
matt j hartman
From Leavenworth WA
Joined May 19, 2007
235 points
Aug 21, 2013
5 hour drive from SLC, last 50 miles on dirt road (last 10 is washboarded).

My times when hiking in with a 50 pound pack (climbing and camping gear for a few days):
6 miles/3 hours to Big Sandy Lake from the trailhead.
3 miles/3 hours to the Cirque from Big Sandy Lake. These last 3 miles are steep and/or rugged. I'm in good shape and this is as fast as I could go without completely wearing myself out.

The hike out was significantly faster. I think it was 4 hours out.

Once you're in the cirque, it's an hour approach from the waterfall/basecamp areas to the base of South Butte. We were up and down South Butte in 4 hours.

If you're insistent on car-to-car, camp at the trailhead.

The cirque's scenery is enough to bring you to your knees (along with the rest of the Winds, really). If you can take your time, I'd highly recommend spending some more time in the area and tagging some of the longer climbs!
Charlie S
From Ogden, UT
Joined Aug 23, 2007
1,233 points
Sep 4, 2013
We were talking about car to car this weekend while we were up there but it really is too cool of a place to just blow through. We made it to the base of Warbonnet in 3 hours and did 1 hour 50 min out from the same spot, we were trucking though to see how many parties we could pass on the way out, (labor day- final tally was 13) and had 35-40 ish pound packs; Black Elk would be a great option if you are up to it, we did it in around 7 hours and the descent takes you right back to the base where you could leave your packs, extra water, whatever. CalmAdrenaline
From SL,UT
Joined Jan 22, 2008
30 points
Sep 4, 2013
Doable. Haystack, Steeple...better options than Cirque routes, which might add a few hours.

We did Steeple and ended up at the Lander Bar once...but, from a camp just above Big Sandy. Still makes me think pretty doable.
Brian in SLC
Joined Oct 6, 2003
12,055 points
Sep 8, 2013
While my buddy and I were hiking in to Titcomb and Indian Basins back toward the end of July, we passed a guy that stopped and chatted us up. He was obviously doing just a day hike, with his tiny pack. Then, we saw the ice axe. He started at Elkhart Park that morning, hiked the 16-18 miles in to the end of Titcomb Basin, climbed the 1500+ ft up Bonney Pass, descended to the glacier, then climbed the 2500+ft to the summit of Gannett Peak. He then did it all over again to get out. We passed him about 6 miles from the trailhead at about 3-4pm. I would not be surprised if he was someone I should know (like a sponsored athlete). He was obviously a beast. So, it can be done, but I'd just camp. Zolen Boogaerts
Joined Aug 29, 2013
25 points

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