Sinks Canyon

Indian Paintbrush

Well, after having a hard time trying to get people to rally into the mountains for the extended weekend, my plans for the Eolus group or Castle/Conundrum for some Memorial Day mountaineering were foiled by high prices, apathy, and no one’s interest in snow right now. So I ended up going with Darcy, Jenny, and the DU Alpine Club on a weekend trip to Sinks Canyon near Lander, Wyoming. Before, I thought the northwest corner of Wyoming was the only reason to visit this state, but that was before I went to Lander, Wyoming. Lander is like a western Colorado town, but since it is in the center of Wyoming and surrounded by some of the best climbing in the USA (and where NOLS is based out of), it is way more cool than Montrose or Gunnison. So, after the five hour drive of nothingness between Fort Collins and Lander, I was really stoked to see this cool town, get some grub, and head up to the campsite next to a raging Popo Agie river for the night. The next day, the climbing was super cool.

The Beauty of Sinks (photo: Max)
On route
Darcy happy to be outside
The Belayers (Photo: Max)

That night, after the standard Alpine Club burrito dinner and a nice nature walk, the skies opened up and it rained pretty hard on us until about 9am the next day. Wet rock is no fun for sport climbing, so we slept in before heading over to another wall. I saw some of the Indian paintbrush featured at the top of this post, and ended up hiking back to the car because I forgot my camera and wanted to take a picture of it badly. The other shots I took weren’t too bad either considering the flat light…

Sinks Canyon
More bright flowers in the flat light
Alex and Max getting up there

Jenny, Paige, and myself all got to lead some routes for the first time, and after I learned how to rappel in Castlewood Canyon, I also got to clean some routes, which is super rad and I am getting rope science down better every day, which means I will probably do some really cool mountaineering routes next spring (assuming I can find someone to go with…)

Jenny leading a 5.6
Max leading a tough slab 5.9
Curt was having too much fun belaying (photo: Max)

After the hike out, some burgers in Lander, and a 5 hour drive back to Denver, I was able to call it a night around 2:30am. Check out some more in this Public Album

For Memorial Day I drove up to Silverthorne to meet my parents and get a new wardrobe for June and July, which is slowly sneaking up on me. I might get one or two mountains in before my departure on June 7th, but if not my next post will probably be from the east coast.

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