Climbing / Mountaineering
Climbing in the Gallatin National Forest near Bozeman, Montana offers some of the greatest adventures.
- Due to its location near the Absaroka, Gallatin and Crazy Mountain Ranges, Bozeman is an excellent spot to base your mountain climbing adventures.
- Bozeman has several specialty outdoor gear stores.
- Guides promote climbing as a safe and exciting activity that can be enjoyed by the entire family.
Mountaineering or climbing is the sport of walking, hiking, backpacking and climbing mountains. Due to its location near the Absaroka, Gallatin and Crazy Mountain Ranges, Bozeman is an excellent spot to base your mountain climbing adventures.
Where to go Climbing
Western Montana is covered with the Rocky Mountains. In the southern ramparts of the Rockies you will find Yellowstone National Park. Also just to the North East of Yellowstone you will find Montana's tallest mountain, Granite Peak at 12,799 feet(2,901m). It too has easy routes and even technical routes to the summit. There are many great routes to climb in Montana. But just like all other places that you may climb, please use good ethics, and check with the Forest Service. Enjoy and Climb on!
The following is just a few of the areas near Bozeman where you can find great bouldering and recreational climbing opportunities.
From Bozeman: Take I-90 East. Take Exit 313. Right on Bozeman Trail Rd. Left on Bear Canyon Rd. Follow to end.
After the end of the road at the BLM gate, you will need to hike about ½ mile to get to a set of cliffs across the creek.
There is no camping here and the access route is steep.
Bozeman Pass/Rocky Canyon
Take "Trail Creek" exit on I-90 and head North of interstate until first left is encountered. Drive to end of road past pink house and park at new small lot. Walk west for .8 miles along trail/roadcut to "old" parking lot and trail.
This is a fun limestone climb located right on the Interstate.
20 miles from Bozeman on US 191
The limestone face gets better the farther you go into the Canyon. You will need at least two ropes and a good selection of mixed gear.
There is lots of camping in the area, so you can easily make it a multi-day trip.
10 miles outside of Bozeman
This canyon is a popular destination for trad climbers as it has several crack, face, and chimney climbs.
This can also be a multi-day excursion, as there is lots of camping in the area.
Various access points within close driving distance from Bozeman.
A big, big mountain range. Lots of technical rock, great ice routes.
Many free places to camp.
For more details contact:
Bozeman Ranger District
3710 East Fallon St.
Bozeman MT 59718
Livingston Ranger District
5242 Highway 89 South
Livingston, MT 59047
Gardiner Ranger District
PO Box 5; Highway 89
Gardiner, MT 59030
Rentals & Fees
Specialty outdoor gear stores in Bozeman can help you get “outfitted” for a day hike, a backpack trip, a rock face climb or any other type of mountaineering you might enjoy.
Hire a Guide
Guides offer personalized professional instruction in the arts of rock climbing and mountaineering. Guides promote climbing as a safe and exciting activity that can be enjoyed by the entire family. Guides and instructors can teach you the art of climbing and help you to improve your skills and confidence.
Rock Climbing is an exciting and surprisingly safe sport if done correctly. It also will motivate you to be in top shape as body weight and endurance are important.
- Start with simple gym climbing, step it up to bouldering and finally hit the cliffs for the real deal.
- First you should find an experienced partner.
- Check the local gym to attend a training session or more. (There is a rock climbing gym in Bozeman.)
- Always go with a partner and follow the safety instructions religiously.
- After you are comfortable with the basic moves and have developed the finger strength and technique, you can move on to bouldering.
- After you've gotten more experience, you will be ready for exciting climbs in natural surroundings. You should have your carabiners, shoes, harness, chalk, rope and a belay device. Again, never go climbing without an experienced partner.
- Rock climbing is actually far safer than mountain biking or skiing if done correctly and with a partner. But it is a constant rush and is very inspiring. Just take it slow and be sure you understand each step before you take on bigger challenges.