Trip Dates: Thursday Nov. 7 - Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019
Class II - III | Camping
6 days, 5 nights
$465 - $650
Jasper, Arkansas may seem an unlikely place for an amazing adventure, but Horseshoe Canyon Ranch features what might be the world’s best moderate sport climbing, and the surrounding area offers gorgeous hiking, a dark-sky designation, and the country’s first national riverway.
The rock climbing at Horseshoe Canyon Ranch is a favorite of Midwestern climbers for good reason: There are close to 500 routes, half of which are 5.5 - 5.9, all on bomber southern sandstone, bolted closely enough to be comparable to gym climbing, and all between a 10 - 30 minute walk. HCR is perfect for climbers getting exposure to outdoor climbing and for more experienced climbers to get in a ton of mileage on the rock. There’s a reason the 24 hour climbing competition 24 Hours of Horseshoe Hell, a race to climb as many routes as humanly possible in 1 full day, is held here every year: there’s nowhere better to get in a staggering amount of rock climbing!
This trip offers two options: leave with us from the Twin Cities of Minnesota for a headache-free shuttle and relax through the 11 hour drive south, or meet us there for a reduced cost. We’ll begin our first day at HCR with a half-day of guided climbing broken up by skill level; all subsequent climbing on the trip will be informal, at your own pace, and unguided, so take advantage of the area experts while you have them!
After climbing, we’ll relax at camp or go for local hikes to stunning vistas and waterfalls in the Ozarks National Forest. And because no one can spend a full 8 hours a day climbing 4 days in a row, we’ll take an afternoon-sized rest day to leisurely canoe the stunning teal waters of the Buffalo River. Established in 1972, Buffalo National River flows freely for 151 miles and is one of the few remaining undammed rivers in the lower 48 states.
This is the most economical way to enjoy a stress-free climbing trip! A fully guided trip to HCR would otherwise cost upwards of $1250. On this trip, you get the best of both worlds: the price of a casual, DIY climbing trip with the support of an officially guided trip. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included every day. (BYOB and BYOS — bring your own snacks!)
On or off the rock, nowhere else do you have as much FUN as at HCR. Wake up to curious goats and horses grazing outside your tent. Enjoy a breakfast burrito on the way to the crag. Learn climbing skills from guides and from each other. Share laughs and stories around the campfire every night. Relax on the beautiful teal waters of the Buffalo River. Hike to stunning waterfalls through the Ozark mountains. Stargaze under the dark skies of this protected skyscape, right before the start of the Leonids meteor shower.
Activity level: Class II-III; involves full days of physical activity. At least advanced beginner climbing skills required: the ability to safely top rope belay, perform partner double-checks, and tie a figure-8 knot. Lead climbers and belayers welcome and encouraged!
Lodging: Tent camping; flush toilets and showers available!
Included meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily.
Space on this trip is limited! We keep our trips small for the best possible experience. Save your spot with a deposit now, before you lose your chance!
Day One: Thursday, November 7
Meet at 8 AM at designated shuttle departure spot in Minnesota’s Twin Cities and kick back through the long drive down to Arkansas! Estimated arrival to HCR is 8 - 9 PM; expect to set up camp in the dark. We’ll get a fire going and chat over s’mores, or go straight to bed!
Day two: Friday, November 8
Up and at ‘em at 7 am, we’ll have breakfast and coffee and then gear up for the day. We’ll meet our climbing guides at the trading post, break into groups based on ability, and spend a half-day learning skills and getting beta for the various crags at HCR. We’ll come back to camp and break for lunch, and then we’ll go out and keep climbing on our own! There will be a mix of skill levels, so don’t worry if you aren’t a lead climber or an outdoor climber; we’ll have plenty of skilled climbers to share knowledge and put up top ropes! The sun sets at 5 pm this time of year, so we’ll come back for dinner around sunset to max out our time climbing and spend the evening around the camp fire.
Day Three: Saturday, November 9
Anyone interested in a sunrise hike to Sam’s Throne, an easy 2-mile out-and-back that rivals the famous McAfee’s Knob overlook on the Appalachian Trail, will hope in the car for a pre-dawn, headlamp hike to watch the sun illuminate the valley and autumn colors below us. We’ll then come back to HCR for another full day of climbing!
Day Four: Sunday, November 10
We’ll spend the morning climbing, but we’ll take a much needed break for our hands and tendon health in the afternoon! Rest days are important, as frustrating as they can be. To salve the “why can’t my body handle climbing all the time, always” frustration, we’ll take a leisurely paddle down the beautiful Buffalo River in tandem canoes. Then we’ll go for a hike to some of the area’s most beautiful waterfalls.
Day Five: Monday, November 11 (Veteran’s Day)
We spend our last full day in Arkansas climbing, of course!
Day Six: Tuesday, November 12
We pack up and head back home, as all good things must end and we have jobs/families/pets to attend to. Our memories of this amazing women’s climbing trip, however, never fade.
THIS trip INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING:
Camping and climbing fees
Half-day climbing guide
Canoeing excursion (canoe, paddles, transfer, PFD)
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily (and s’mores, obviously)
AdventurHER Travel swag
Optional: transportation to and from the Twin Cities
Climbing gear (harness, helmet, shoes, and personal anchor system or PAS required. If you have sport climbing gear like draws and a rope, bring it!)
Camping gear (tent, sleeping bag, tarp, sleeping pad, headlamp, cutlery & dishes, water bottles)
Gratuity for climbing guides on day 1
A deposit of $150 will reserve a spot on this trip. This is refundable for 5 business days minus a processing fee of $10, after which it becomes nonrefundable. The balance of this trip will be due by 9/30/2019. Any activities cancelled due to weather will be refunded in full.