Easy top rope rock climbing near Jackson Hole and Grand Teton NP
Rock climbing guidebooks and websites often don’t include good areas for easy top roping, appropriate for kids or families. Yet climbing is continuing to become more mainstream as climbing gyms proliferate. Thus I’ve personally visited a few easy top roping areas around the western US and will be documenting them here in the blog.
This area is near Grand Teton NP so if your family climbs a little you can spend a day out on the rock while visiting the park.
Top roping is when you use bolted top anchors much like in a climbing gym. Climbers always have a rope above them so any fall is protected by the rope. In case it isn’t obvious, YOU MUST have knowledge on how to set up a top rope and belay climbers. YOU MUST have the appropriate rope, harness, belay devices and top rope anchor set up. Do not go out and buy this stuff and then go out to a crag without proper training.
This area is used by the local climbing school so you may need to share if they are at the crag. Otherwise this doesn’t seem to be listed anywhere so it should be empty.
To get to the crag follow a mapping app to Curtis Canyon, a gravel road that starts out in the flat valley and then abruptly heads up hill and turns rough. Just before it heads uphill, there is a parking area on the left and you can see the crag. Hike to it.
The trail to the top is obvious. The top rope set up at the top is a little different. There are “safety bolts” at the top, handlines and then the actual top rope anchors (chains) are set down a little. Wear your rock shoes and harness, and clip into the safety bolts. Then use the handline for support as you run your rope through the chained anchor below. I think this is obvious because it would be scary as heck to lean down and try to access the bottom anchors without being clipped in to the safety bolts. And stupid.
If you don’t have the equipment or the knowledge, there are a few climbing schools in Jackson that will take you out. Exum Mountain Guides is quite famous and one of the oldest outfitters in the country.