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Absarokas Tour
Wyoming Backpacking Guides
Absarokas Hiking Vacation

Greybull Pass Thru-Hike

Highlights

  •   Extraordinary solitude and beauty
  •   Amazing, BIG mountain views
  •   A basecamp night at a mining Ghost Town
  •   Abundant wildlife habitat
  •   High plateaus and alpine tundra
  •   World-class backcountry fishing


Description

Get off the beaten path with this epic alpine experience. This 6-day trip includes one basecamping night just outside of our wildly remote trailhead and 4 nights of backpacking. On day one, we will drive deep into the 2.4 million acre Shoshone National Forest, the first National Forest established in the United States. Scenic roads will lead us to the historic settlement of Kirwin, a mining ghost town that few people have heard of and even less have the ability to visit. That night, we will marvel at the beauty and history here, have a cookout and car camp just outside of our trailhead to set ourselves up for a burly first day of hiking. With everything we need for the next 5 days on our backs, we will ascend Greybull Pass. Views will increase with dramatic beauty as we climb, climaxing at the craggy pass with our first glimpse of the deep alpine valley on the other side. After an initially steep descent, the grade will ease as we continue down through the open meadows. We will keep our eyes peeled for elk, bears, trout and other wildlife. These 5 days will have us following the Greybull River, watching it build speed and gain volume as it winds down the mountain valley through changing landscapes. Day 5 will be a layover day offering a chance to climb Irish Rock for an awe-inspiring view of the surrounding peaks, reminding us that we are nestled miles deep in nothing but mountains.

This trip is officially operated by Wildland Llamas, a permitted outfitter in the Shoshone National Forest.
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Backpacking Trip
Difficulty:
Solitude:
Cody, WY
6 days
32mi / 52km
$1485 Per Person

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Trip Dates & Booking

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800-715-HIKE (4453)

Trip Itinerary

Day 1
  • Shuttle to Trailhead: 2.5 hours
  • Accommodations: Camping

Your guide will pick you up at your hotel in Cody, Wyoming where you'll meet the rest of the group. We'll conduct a short orientation and ensure everyone has the necessary gear and clothing before setting off to the trailhead. Our drive takes us into a stunning corner of the Rocky Mountains, across creeks and past breathtaking scenery. We will reach our campsite for the night, near our trailhead and the picturesque ghost town of Kirwin. Nestled in the mountains here, Kirwin boomed as a mining town in the late 1800s complete with a post office, hotel, and saloon. Mining explosions, avalanches, and the loss of prosperity drove its 200 residents to abandon the settlement, but most of its structures are still standing. We will marvel at the buildings and artifacts still remaining and set up camp here at 9,200 feet. Your guide will distribute camping equipment and food as we prepare our packs for our journey. We will complete the evening with a cookout in this unique, secluded setting.

Day 2
  • Hiking Mileage: 5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2500 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 1500 feet

The next day, we will be glad to have placed ourselves just outside the trailhead for an early start because this backpacking trip kicks off with a hearty challenge. After breakfast, we will climb up through Brown Basin, ascending 2,500 feet in just 3.5 miles to reach Greybull Pass. Reaching this craggy pass will give us our first view of the epic alpine valley below, the headwaters of the Greybull River, and the highest point in the Absarokas, Franc’s Peak, in the distance. After an initially steep, rocky descent, we will reach the river and enjoy a gently sloping valley trail until we reach Yellow Creek and an impressive backcountry cabin. We will make camp somewhere near this junction and enjoy a well-earned backcountry feast.

Day 3
  • Hiking Mileage: 6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: minimal
  • Elevation Loss: 700 feet

After a filling breakfast, we will continue along the Greybull River, winding up and down the grassy hills, but ultimately making a mellow descent down the valley. Along the way, we will admire lush drainages, the unmistakable form of Pyramid Peak, and the impressive height of Franc’s Peak. With skilled eyes, it is possible to see bears along these talus slopes flipping over rocks to find some of their favorite delicacies, Army Cutworm Moths. We will camp, eat, and enjoy the stars along another beautiful creek.

Day 4
  • Hiking Mileage: 6 miles
  • Elevation Gain: minimal
  • Elevation Loss: 600 feet

On today’s hike, the valley will expand before us, offering more diverse views and new peaks in the background. We will continue descending ever-gently along the river, noticing it swell in size and increase with fish along the way. In the Fall, this area is a prime hunting post because of its rich elk habitat. After passing another old backcountry cabin, we will make camp near Haymaker Creek where we will stay for 2 nights.

Day 5
  • Hiking Mileage: 8 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 2100 feet
  • Elevation Loss: 2100 feet

Today we get to leave our heavy loads safely stored at camp and day hike up to a high point for spectacular views. If the whole gang is up for a full day, we can reach the summit of Irish Rock. No matter how far we go, we are sure to see a breathtaking panorama of snow-capped peaks, reminding us how deeply embedded we are in this incredible mountain range. This layover day also offers one of our best fishing opportunities for any avid anglers on the trip. Due to grizzly bear safety protocol, we need to stay in groups of 3 and so will have to make a group decision on what to do on this layover day.

Day 6
  • Hiking Mileage: 7 miles
  • Elevation Gain: minimal
  • Elevation Loss: 800 feet
  • Shuttle to Cody: 1.5 hours

After one last hearty breakfast, we will continue along the Greybull River, even crossing its rushing waters a few times. As we descend even further in elevation, this landscape will transform before our eyes becoming a tight canyon and exploding with riparian foliage we have yet to see thus far. Eventually, the mountains that hug us will shrink, and with a final push, we will emerge into wetlands and rolling hills where we commonly see moose, pronghorn, and our friendly pick-up driver. Relishing the trip along our shuttle drive home, we can generally anticipate arriving back in Cody before 5pm.




Please Note: We always do everything in our power to follow the set itinerary, however it can change occasionally based on temporary access restrictions, weather, lodging/campground availability, guest ability/injury, natural events like fires and flooding, and other potential causes.

Trip Details

What's Included

  • A professional, knowledgeable, certified Wyoming backpacking guide
  • Top-of-the-line tent, sleeping pad, sleeping bag, and technical backpack
  • Use of trekking poles
  • All meals are included from breakfast the first day through lunch on the last day
  • Roundtrip transportation from your hotel in Cody, Wyoming
  • 1 night of car-camping and a cookout outside of the historic ghost town of Kirwin, Wyoming
  • Bear safety equipment including bear spray cannisters and food-hanging gear
  • Emergency equipment including a company-issued first-aid kit and satellite phone
  • You will receive a Lifetime Hiking Membership entitling you, your spouse and your kids to a lifetime discount of 10% off any Wildland Trekking hiking trip after your first one!

What's Not Included

  • Clothes, raingear, and footwear (Oboz hiking shoes and boots recommended)
  • Sunscreen, toiletries and personal items
  • Waterbottles and a headlamp or flashlight
  • Guide gratuity (industry recommendation is 10-15% of trip cost)
See the Packing List page for more information.


Meals: What To Expect

All of our hiking and backpacking tours include a diversity of tasty meals packed full of critical carbohydrates, proteins and fats. We carry foods that travel well in the backcountry – rice, pastas, lentils, beans, couscous, packaged meats, nuts, breads, oatmeal, granola, and more.

For optimal taste and energy, we supplement all our meals with spices, herbs, oils, cheeses, butter, sugar, and fruits and vegetables (fresh and dried). In addition, we provide you with with an assortment of trail mix, snacks, and dried fruits to eat at your own discretion.

We regularly accommodate vegan, vegetarian, kosher and non-gluten diets and will make adjustments for food allergies. These and other special dietary requests may require an additional fee.


Gear We Provide

We provide all group gear which includes the following:
  • Deuter or Osprey backpacks
  • Sierra Designs or Mountain Hardware tents
  • Sierra Designs sleeping bags
  • Thermarest or Big Agnes sleeping pads
  • Leki trekking poles
  • Mountain Safety Research cooking stoves
  • Mountain Safety Research cookware
  • Bear spray cannisters and food-hanging gear
  • Company-issued first-aid kit
  • Emergency communication device(s)


What Gear To Bring

We ask that you supply a couple of gear items on your hiking tour. These items are two 1-liter waterbottles per person, either a headlamp or flashlight per person, and a lightweight waterproof stuff sac for your clothes and belongings. Basic items like sunscreen, bug repellent (where and when applicable), lip balm, and toiletries are also important. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.


What Clothes to Bring

Please refer to the trip packet for a recommended clothing list (we email you a detailed trip packet when you inquire and when you register). All trips require a sturdy pair of hiking shoes or hiking boots, rain gear, and non-cotton clothing layers. A minimum of three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks are also required. All of these items are available online at Wildland Trekking Outfitters.

NOTE: See the Packing Lists page for more detailed information on what clothes and gear to bring on your hiking tour. The trip packet you receive when you contact us will have the most accurate clothing and gear list for the tour you're interested in.

Trip Logistics

Where Do We Meet?

You will meet your guide and group in Cody, Wyoming on the morning of Day 1 around 11:00 AM. Your guide will contact you approximately 2 weeks before your trip to coordinate the exact meeting place and pick-up time.

Check out our Travel Resources page for information on flights, shuttles, discounted lodging and more.

Safety Considerations

Your safety is our top priority. Our hiking tours are led by professional Wyoming hiking guides, all of whom are wilderness-certified first responders or EMT's, each with years of guiding and wilderness experience. We've developed comprehensive risk management protocols that our guides adhere to in case of an emergency, and most tours carry a satellite phone. If you have any further questions about safety, please contact us at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) for more information.


Guides

Your tour will be led by a trained, experienced professional with a solid guiding background, years of personal wilderness and hiking experience, medical certifications, and a passion for leading people into breathtaking landscapes. Check out our Meet Our Team page for staff bios.


Group Size

The standard ratio of guests to guides on this trip is 6 guest and 1 guide. If you have more questions about group size, please give us a call at 1-800-715-HIKE (4453) and we'll answer all your questions.


Weather in the Absaroka Mountains

Being a high mountain environment, the Absaroka Mountains are prone to sudden temperature and weather shifts. This is an exciting aspect of being in Wyoming’s high country. Rain and wind is always a possibility on your trip. Snow is also possible, though less probable in August. To be fully prepared, please follow the recommended clothing list closely (this list comes as part of your trip packet when you register). See below for average summer temperatures:
 
Average Temperatures (Fahrenheit)
 
 
Month
High
Low
 
August
56°
30°
 
September
47°
24°

Camping on Backpacking Trips

backpacking tent

Backcountry Sleeping

Tent Camping

Sleeping on backpacking trips is in premier 1-person, 2-person or 4-person backcountry tents. Solo travelers, and anyone else who requests it, are issued single tents. Top-of-the-line self-inflating sleeping pads and sleeping bags (professionally laundered after every trip) are also provided.

backpacking meals

Backcountry Cuisine

Fresh & Delicious

Meals from breakfast Day 1 through lunch the last day are fully included and prepared by your guide. We never use dehydrated backpacking meals, instead serving freshly prepared, delicious backcountry cuisine made with a variety of common and specialty ingredients that travel well in the wilderness.

backpacking campsites

Amazing Campsites

In the Action

Of course campsites vary tremendously by destination, trip and even by the individual day of a trip. However, you can expect to camp in beautiful areas that put you right in the action to make the most of your backpacking adventure. We carefully design our itineraries with campsites in mind.

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