The West ridge is on the left side of Beehive Basin when approaching from parking lot. It is a long and somewhat exposed route requiring a decent amount of commitment especially in winter when descending one of the snow slopes to left or right carries high avalanche danger.
Driving directions: From Bozeman, drive south on Hwy 191 to the turnoff for Big Sky. Drive the Big Sky Spur Rd approximately 9-10 miles until it turns to gravel. Continue until the end taking a right immediately before the Moonlight Basin gate. Follow this road approx. 2 miles, winding through private developments. The trailhead is at the bottom of a steep hill, just below an extremely large and extremely ugly concrete and glass house. The trailhead is pretty small, so get there early to ensure that you can park!
Coming soon, there will be pictures by Sunday March 25th 2007.
In light ice and snow conditions it could maybe be climbed with leather boots and not much more, as conditions worsen straight shaft axes and crampons are important. In the worst conditions it may be necessary to have two moderately technical ice tools depending on your comfort level.
Ropes are not necessary for rock travel since it is just scrambling but some parties may want to set up a rope team on certain parts of the ridge once again depending on individual comfort level.
In mid to late winter it will be nescessary to get on the ridge earlier down the basin as the basin side of the West Ridge is extremely wind loaded and you will be SWIMMING
through head deep snow on dangerous slide paths unless you climb one of the rock spines which is not recommended because that just requires more gear.