Currently, these are the westernmost/southernmost limestone sport routes in Sinks Canyon.
I have only climbed the limestone routes out here once, but I can say this for sure: the rock at Fairfield West is sharp and sticky, and there are a lot of moderates. I can also say this based on speculation: since it is "far" from the heart of the limestone climbing in Sinks Canyon and a steep haul from the parking area, Fairfield West offers good chances for solitude; at the very least, I would guess that it isn't often that one has to wait in line for a route here.
Fairfield West is part of Fairfield Hill
, which itself is left (west) of a major break separating it from the main section of the limestone cliffs in Sinks.
Fairfield Hill West
From downtown Lander, follow signs to Sinks Canyon State Park. It takes about 15 minutes to reach the park boundary.
Drive up the steepening road. Just past the park boundary is a parking lot with a porta-potty. Keep going a quarter-mile to a turnoff on the right. Take this rough road (passable to most passenger cars if one takes care) to another parking area where the road becomes a true 4wd track.
If you have reached Sinks Canyon the other way, from WY 28, then note you might miss the aforementioned turnoff. When you hit the park boundary, turn around and then follow the directions above.
From the parking area, the crag is plainly visible several hundred vertical feet above. Supposedly, you hike up the 4wd road about a quarter-mile and then take a cairned trail, but I never saw the marker and eventually set off on my own. It's open country, so you will not get lost; just watch out for the cowpies since this is open range as well. Heading back down, I did spot the trail, so it is there.
The hike up is steep and tiring; don't head up if the weather looks bad, or you may have exerted a lot of effort for little or nothing.
The MP Fairfield West
page currently lists over 30 routes, from 5.6 to 5.13-. I only had time to climb a handful, and so I will only comment on those.
Note: the routes I climbed do not have sport anchors; instead, they have chains and rings. Lowering and TRing off your own gear is in order.
From left to right as one faces or walks along the wall:
To the left of the huge roof...
- Teenagers from Mars (5.8)-- About 40'. Good protection, fun route. Crux is probably a small overhang that doesn't look protected from below, but there actually is a bolt right where you want it.
- Devil Lock (5.6)-- 40'. Shares start with Teenagers from Mars. Well-protected, easy, and fun crack route.
Right of the huge roof...
- Revolution is Evolution (5.7)-- 50'. I found this one trickier than expected for the grade. However, my partners, both less-experienced leaders, did not see it the same way.
- Take Some Petrol, Darling (5.8)-- 50'. If you follow the bolt line, you likely will find this tough for the grade. One of my partners toproped this, did not follow the bolts, and did not have any issues. The other led this but did not follow the bolts, and she also did not find it that tough. Bottom line: if it matters to you, you will not get the 5.8 (I would say 5.8+ or 5.9-) unless you follow the bolts; if you stay left of the first two bolts, it is easier.
- Hi Ho Silver Away (5.7)-- 100'. If you're solid leading this grade on bolts, this climb is a fun, well-protected romp. There are 11 bolts, if I remember correctly, plus the anchors. The MP page says "16 clips," which I think includes clipping both anchors. Another poach from the MP page to help you find this route since I can't explain it differently yet better myself: "A narrow grassy path above a block goes up to some trees at the base of a prominent long lower angle face with two black streaks running down it. Boulder up a pedestal to the first bolt, straight up from there."
View from the Anchors
As far as I can tell, there is none other than following any posted regulations. There are no entrance or pay stations.
When to Climb
Spring through fall is best, but this area gets a lot of sun throughout the day, and I would imagine it is often climbable in winter.
There is a campground (fee) inside the state park. South of the park not far away is a Forest Service campground (fee). There are many places in the national forest suitable for dispersed camping or just sleeping in the car. In fact, if you want to sleep in the car, there is a large parking area just south of the park boundary, or you can park at the spot described in Getting There. If you do park at either of the two aforementioned sites, just don't be surprised to encounter cows if you step out in the middle of the night to take a leak. And accordingly, put on some shoes before you do step out.