Chestnut Mountain Crag Rock Climbing
#warneke, Bozeman in the background
Excellent quality sport climbing high up above Bozeman on the west flank of Chestnut Mountain. Good for a long day trip or an overnight, the approach can be tricky and tiring but the payoff is worth it for the steep pocketed climbs on excellent white stone in a great position. Think Bozeman pass mixed with Wild Iris. Most routes were put up in the early-2000s by the likes of Mike Best, Kyle Vassilopoulos, and Brad Carpenter, with some help from others.
Often windy and up to 15-20 degrees colder than town due to its elevation and exposure, maybe avoid this crag during the shoulder season (or just bring a beanie) but it can be a great reprieve from a sweltering day in town or when the other concentrated sport in the area is getting... ahem... "scorched?"
Do not take the actual Chestnut Mountain trail. Instead, I-90 to trail creek exit (Bozeman pass and Frog Rock access). Follow Trail Creek road to Goose Creek road, take this to a parking lot. Hike the road for the better part of a mile to an intersection. Take the right fork, then cut onto a single track to your left which will lead you uphill. Follow the beaten path up past a burn area into an open meadow, where you can then aim uphill for the ridge. Once gaining the ridge follow an ATV track north for a ways until you can spy the rocks peeking up to your left. You are approaching from above the crag rather than below, so don't be surprised if it takes some searching!
ALTERNATIVELY take the Chestnut Mountain trail as per the Frog Rock approach, and follow signs to the Chestnut mountain summit, then follow the ridge to the south. This is a much longer approach but perhaps far less convoluted.
(These directions are based on my faint remembrance from last year's visit. I will hash out in more detail upon an upcoming visit)
If in doubt follow the excellent directions in the Dockins and Kalakay guide.
Climbing Season For the All Locations area.
Weather station 15.2 miles from here
Featured Route For Chestnut Mountain Crag