Tuesday, December 18

Regionals - Divisionals - and the Holidays

First off, great job everyone that climbed at Regionals. We faced stiff competition and climbed our best. I'm proud of every single climber that took on the challenge. In the end we had 4 climbers qualify for Divisionals; Jaden, Roc, Kaleb, and Charlie. They compete in Portland the second weekend in January.

Second, a reminder that we take a little break over the holidays. Tuesday night December 18th is our last practice until Thursday night January 3rd. The gym will be open all week like normal (except Christmas) please get in and climb a bunch!

Thursday, November 29

VIdeo Example of a Regional Onsight competition

Below is an example of a climber climbing at last years Regional Championship in Boise.

Monday, November 19

No Practice this week and sign up for Regionals

This is a reminder that there is no practice this week, but there is a freshly expanded gym with 70 new boulder problems that would love your attention!  Practice will resume on November 27.  The practices leading up to the Regional Championship are VERY IMPORTANT.  We will be going over the Regional on-sight format and what to expect.  Do not miss these practices.

The Regional Championship is December 8th in Bozeman,  Sign up HERE.  FIXED LINK.  It will be a full day event (likely 8am - 8pm).

Wednesday, November 14

Saturday Competition Bake Sale

Karen, Charlie's mother, has graciously volunteered to coordinate a bake sale during the youth competition.  Profits from the bake sale will go into the Steepteam fund to help cover coaching, gear, insurance, etc.  She's looking for other volunteers to bring baked or purchased baked goods to sell in individual serving sizes.  To help out, you can start by coordinating with her by email at kscabell@bresnan.net or phone 690-2094

Tuesday, November 13

Space Rock Jam

This Saturday is the unveiling of the Steepworld gym expansion and our youth get to climb on it before anybody else!  Comp info and registration are available here. 

Registration begins at 10:00am
Climbing from 11:00am - 2:00pm
Prizes awarded at 2:30pm
Preregistration* Fee USAC Member: $35
Preregistration* Fee Non USAC Member: $40
Day of Registration Fee USAC Member: $40
Day of Registration Fee Non USAC Member: $45

Thursday, November 8

USAC and Bozeman

Reminder, the Bozeman comp starts at 10am. Be there by 9:30. I will be there late (11:30) some of our assistant coaches will be there at the beginning of the comp to help out. Also be sure you are registered with the USAC prior to the competition.

Tuesday, October 30

Super Sand Land

Finally, a climbing guide to Billings. The book release party is this Friday Nov 2nd at 7pm at Steepworld.

Check out the book website here.

There will be an official book release "ceremony," a brief slideshow featuring climbing around Billings, a beverages provided by the gym, and some other surprises.

PLUS!! the opportunity to get your copy signed by the climbers who've helped shaped the climbing community into what we have today.

Thursday, October 25

USA Climbing Registration Reminder

This is a reminder that all team members are expected to be members of USA Climbing, the overseeing organization for competitive youth climbing in the United States.  They manage the American Bouldering Series competitions that we participate in.  The deadline for registration is the Tuesday after the climbers first competition.  This means for climbers to get credit for this weekend's Missoula competition they need to register by Oct 30, or preferably beforehand.  You can register here. LINK FIXED

Also a reminder that all team members are expected to attend two of the local Montana competitions (Missoula, Bozeman, Billings) and climb at the Regional Championship on December 8th.

Steepteam is a team activity, and everyone is expected to practice and participate with the team.

Friday, October 5

Missoula Competition

Registration and Comp info for Missoula is available here.

The competition starts at 9am, thus the team is planning on driving up Friday night.  We will be staying at the C'mon Inn.  Make your reservations ASAP before they fill up.

Wednesday, October 3

Calendar & Butte

The google calendar has been updated for the fall session.  Click on the link on the right sidebar.

Also the Butte Bouldering Bash is Saturday October 13th.  A couple of us are planning to go and make a weekend out of it (weather permitting).  If you're interested talk to Joel.  More info can be found here.

Monday, September 10

Final 2012 Fall Expectations, Schedule, and Costs

The Steepteam board board met last week and finalized the fall program.

The 2012 Fall Winter Session focuses on indoor competition climbing.  The team participates in the USA Climbing American Bouldering Series (ABS).  All competitions are bouldering competitions, meaning climbs are 10-15 feet tall and climbers do not use ropes.  Steepteam attends competitions in Billings, Bozeman, Missoula, and other locations as climbers qualify their way to the ABS Youth National Championships usually hosted in the front range of Colorado around the end of February.   

All team members are expected to be a member of USA Climbing, regularly attend practices, attend two local competitions (Missoula, Bozeman, or Billings) and compete at the Regional Championship in Bozeman.  If climbers are looking for a more casual climbing experience Steepworld hosts a less intensive Steep School program.  Call the the gym for more info.


Sep 27th - Team signups and registration at Steepworld  6pm - 7:30pm

Oct 2nd - Team Starts regularly scheduled practice Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Oct 13th - Optional Senior Team trip to the Butte Bouldering Bash outdoor bouldering competition.

Oct 27th - Missoula Competition at Freestone Climbing Gym.

Nov 10th - Bozeman Competition at Spire Climbing Center

Nov 17th - Billings Competition at Steepworld.  This event will also be the grand opening of the new expansion at Steepworld.

Dec 8th - Regional Championship in Bozeman at Spire Climbing Center !!! 

Jan 12-13th - Divisional Championship in Portland at Clubsport

Jan 28th - Last official team practice of the season
Feb 2nd - Montana Bouldering Championships in Billings at Steepworld

Mar 1-3rd - National Championships in Colorado Springs

The total cost is broken down below.

Gym fees: $135 for a 4 month gym membership.  Annual and family memberships are also available.

Competition fees: To be determined. USA Climbing is the governing organization for youth climbing.  Their membership fee is $80.  You can sign up here.  Climbing competitions have entry fees around $25-$45 per competition.  These prices are set by the host gym and cover the costs for routesetters to set and prepare for the comp as well as t-shirts, awards, gym time, etc.  

Team Fee: $150 Fees cover coaches time and travel for a minimum of25 practices plus coaching at competitions, uniforms, insurance, administration, and other necessities needed to run the Steepteam non-profit program.

Steepteam offers need based scholarships.  Inquire with Thad or Joel.

Tuesday, August 21

Ten Sleep - Labor Day Weekend

This labor day weekend, a group of Billings climbers will be heading down to the sport climbing mecca of Ten Sleep to climb and camp.  Senior team climbers and their families are welcome to join us.  This is not an official trip, so climbers will be expected to be responsible for their climbing within the group, bring their own food and camping gear.  Team gear (ropes, anchors, and draws) will be available for use if needed.

The plan is to drive down Saturday morning, meet up at the climbing around 1pm, and then head back to town Monday after sending all the hard routes.  :-)

We are camping at Ten Broek Campground in town. $19 a campsite.

Here's a map if you're unfamiliar with the area.

If you are planning to attend, or have questions, please let me know via phone. Joel phone: 860-7616

Saturday, August 11

Cody, August 11th

Even with the rain this morning, the forecast looks good for the rest of the day. We will still climb, see you in Cody.

Tuesday, August 7

Cody Trip - Saturday August 11th

We'll meet at the Parking area at 11:00am and climb till 3-4pm.  See you there!

Wednesday, July 18

Cody Trip - Saturday July 21st

We'll meet at the Parking area at 11:00am and walk in. The walk in is along the side of the road through two tunnels and is potentially the most dangerous part of our trip. The walk and climbing base area is flat and lawn chair friendly. Some of the climbing is in the shade, bring plenty of water and food. If the weather forecast looks bad we will make phone calls Friday night. We will climb till 4pm or when the kids tire out, whichever comes first. It's about a 2 hour drive from Billings.

A map showing where to meet and climb is located here.

August and Rescheduled Dates

Due to yesterday's weather cancellation (or lack of it) below are the remaining dates for the summer.

Sat 21 - Cody - 11am
Tue 24 - Gregory Hills 5pm jrs, 6:30pm srs.
Mon 30 - Phipps Park Bouldering 5pm jrs, 6:30pm srs.

Thr 2 - Gregory Hills 5pm jrs, 6:30pm srs.
Sat 11 - Cody - 11am
Thr 16 - Gregory Hills 5pm jrs, 6:30pm srs.

Labor Day Weekend - Unofficial team meetup in Ten Sleep.  No Guides.  Senior Team only.

Tuesday, July 17

Practice cancelled for tonight.

Due to pending storms. Tonight's practice will be rescheduled. Info on the rescheduled date and Saturdays Cody trip will be posted tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 27

July Dates

The following dates are finalized for July.

July 17th - Gregory Hills: Junior Team 5pm-7pm, Senior Team 6:30pm-8:30pm

July 21st - Cody Wyoming: Day trip to climb at the Island.  Maps and info will be posted prior.

July 26th - Phipps Park Bouldering: Junior Team 5pm-7pm, Senior Team 6:30pm-8:30pm

Saturday, June 23

Max topping out one of the hard routes in Timber Canyon.
Kaleb on his first outdoor lead climb. Prime Rib 5.9

Sunday, June 17

Saturday June 23rd Timber Canyon Outdoor Session

We will gather at the Maverick Station in Bridger at 9:20am and caravan together to Timber Canyon.  The drive into the canyon is semi high clearance off road.  A Subaru Outback or similar will have no problem getting to the climbs.  The climbs are south facing, bring lots of water and sunscreen.

This link takes you to a map showing where we will be climbing.  It takes about 30-45 minutes to get there from Bridger.

June 21st Outdoor Session

Info for Thursday night's session at Gregory Hills

Junior Team 5pm - 7pm
Senior Team 6:30pm - 9pm
Guides will leave the parking area promptly at 5pm.  If you are late, hike up to the base of the routes.  Senior Team members hike up to the base of the routes and find the coaches for direction.  One will be at the base of the Barney Rubble Area.  Senior Team members are welcome to attend the Junior Team session to assist and learn from the coaches.

Wednesday, May 30

Steepteam Weeknight Outdoor Sessions

Our first official team outdoor session is Tuesday June 5th at Gregory Hills.  A map for parking and where we will be climbing is located HERE.

Junior Team 5pm - 7pm
Senior Team 6:30pm - 9pm
Guides will leave the parking area promptly at 5pm.  If you are late, hike up to the base of the routes.  Senior Team members hike up to the base of the routes and find the coaches for direction.  One will be at the base of either the Walkup Area or the Barney Rubble Area.  Senior Team members are welcome to attend the Junior Team session to assist and learn from the coaches.

  1. All climbing groups will have a group leader (coach or guide)  Climbers are not to climb without the supervision of that group leader.
  2. All climbers must wear a helmet.  Steepteam provides helmets for use.
  3. All belays are to be done with a Petzl Grigri belay device.  Steepteam also provides these for use.
  4. Team members under the age of 10 must have a parent / responsible adult accompanying them at all times.
  5. All team parents are encouraged to attend, watch, and learn.
  6. Team members are expected to belay each other.  Coaches and guides are there for your education and supervision.
  7. Only Senior team members (youth B, A & J) may lead climb.
  8. Only Senior team members are allowed to walk along the top rim of the climbing area.
  9. Wandering away from the group, horseplay, and rule infractions results in a warning. Second offense and you will no longer be welcome to climb with the team outside.


rugged shoes, harness, climbing shoes, chalk, chalk bag, WATER, warm jacket, hat, gloves, rain jacket, bug spray, camera, WATER, and a back pack to carry it all.


A final weather go // no-go decision will be made at 4pm the day we will be climbing. If the weather looks questionable, call the gym (25-CLIMB) after 4pm. If the weather is unclimbable we will reschedule. If the weather goes bad during an outdoor session, kids will be evacuated to cars at the base of the hill and wait for parent pick-up.

Tuesday, May 29

The DirtFEST!!!!!!!!

The Dirtfest is an annual outdoor climbing competition put on by Steepworld Climbing Gym at Zimmerman Park.  The event challenges one to climb as many bouldering and roped clmbing routes as possible in 3 hours.  Everyone on the team is encouraged to attend.

Sunday June 3rd.  Registration and check-in starts at noon.  Climbing 1-4 pm.  Raffle Prizes directly after (ties broken with arm wrestle)

Pre-registration is at SteepWorld: Members $10 & non-members $20. Day of registration is $25

First 25 climbers registered will receive Event Tees! (Limited sizes)

Demos shoes will be on hand thanks to LaSportiva, Five Ten and others. You won't want to miss it!!! It's our annual outdoor bouldering event.

Also, the Spoke Shop will be in the area doing bike demos, be sure to check that out as well!

Wednesday, May 23

June Outdoor Dates

Sunday June 3rd - Dirtfest at Zimmerman Park 1pm-4pm

Tues June 5th Gregory Hills 5pm - 9pm

Thurs June 21st Gregory Hills 5pm - 9pm

Sat June 23rd Timber Canyon south of Bridger

Tuesday, May 15

All Team Meeting

Practice starts tonight May 15th. We will host an all team informational meeting on Thursday May 17th at 7:10pm between the junior and senior practices.

Monday, April 30

Summer Start Date Change

The summer program will start a week later than initially planned.  The new start date is Tuesday May 15th.  If you were at sign-ups last Thursday, the handout given to you is the correct date.

We also have a couple openings still remaining for the summer program.  If you are interested contact
Joel Anderson at (406)860-7616 or Thad McGrail (406)860-0118.

Thursday, April 5

Steepteam 2012 Summer Program

for the summer team schedule see the post below
Steepteam is not a guide service for beginners. Steepteam is a program for youth with climbing experience to develop further skills towards becoming a life long rock climber. Outdoor safety techniques are the primary focus of our outdoor summer session. Younger team members will learn and practice the skills of top roping while older team members learn and develop their sport climbing techniques.  Everyone is expected to attend the May indoor sessions.  Climbers showing minimal progress with the taught safety techniques will not be allowed to join the team outside.
Our outdoor trips frequent locations like the Rims above Billings, the Pryor Mountains, Cody WY, and Ten Sleep, WY. We maintain a maximum 4:1 climber to guide ratio on all outdoor trips.
To maintain a safe climbing environment we strictly adhere to a 4:1 climber to guide ratio in our outdoor sessions. Thus, we will be capping the number of climbers in the summer program to 24. Previous Steepteam members will have the first right of refusal to join the summer program. We will host a registration session at Steepworld Climbing Gym on Thursday April 26th from 5:30pm - 7pm. If you cannot attend the registration session and plan on climbing with the team this summer, please call Joel Anderson at (406)860-7616 or Thad McGrail (406)860-0118 prior to the 26th. After April 26th, if any openings remain, we will invite new members from the waiting list. 
If you are interested in Steepteam but new to rock climbing Steepworld Climbing Gym offers great options for beginner climbers.  The Steepteam fall competitive session is open to all youth climbers ages 9-18 interested in attending climbing competitions.  The fall session will begin in October, details and schedule are to be determined but expected to be similar to previous years.
The team fee for the summer session is $250 per climber. Steepteam operates as a 501c3 non-profit and all fees go directly back into the program. The summer fee helps us pay for experienced coaches and guides, group gear (ropes, anchors, and quickdraws), insurance, and other administrative costs associated with running the Steepteam program. For comparison's sake, a hired climbing guide for a full day will cost you $200-$350. We're offering 6 indoor education sessions and 9 outdoor sessions. Team members are also expected to maintain a membership at Steepworld Climbing Gym while the team uses their facilities. Steepworld is currently offering a summer membership deal: Unlimited indoor climbing for 4 months (May, June, July, August) for $90.

Sunday, March 25

Saturday, March 17


Focusing in on the task at hand, Charlie laces up his shoes before his turn to climb.

ABS Nationals was in Colorado Springs over the first weekend in March.  Our own Charlie Barron had a very strong showing placing 4th out of 40 competitors and topped out on 9 of the 10 problems he faced in competition.

Click here for video from finals day at Nationals.

Saturday, March 10

Have you met Daniel yet?

As the team prepares to head into the great outdoors I wanted to share my excitement in having Daniel Burson commit to helping coach the team this summer.  Daniel is an accredited American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA) guide who guest guides for Jackson Hole Mountain Guides, Beartooth Mountain Guides, and Montana Alpine Guides and, luckily for us, lives in Billings.

Education:  B.A. in Biology from Hendrix College in Conway Arkansas, NOLS Wilderness Leadership Course, Certified Leave No Trace Trainer, Wilderness First Responder Certification, Healthcare Provider CPR Certification

Years Climbing: 11

AMGA Coursework:  Completion and passing marks in the AMGA Rock Instructor and Ice Instructor Courses and attending the Alpine Guide Course in June 2012

Significant Alpine Climbs:  West Ridge (AI3) and Ham and Eggs (AI4, 5.9), Mooses Tooth, Alaska; Asteroid Alley (5.9), Mt. Andromeda, Canada; Direct Exum Ridge (5.8), Grand Teton, Wyoming; Crow Lake Buttress (5.11+), Beartooths; Ignorance Gully (AI3, 5.9), Granite Peak, Montana; and many failed attempts that taught me so much...

Favorite Rims Climb: Brown Sugar

Favorite Billings Boulder Problem: Sun Crack

Favorite Ice Climb: There are so many. Can it be a tie between Sand Dune Falls and California Ice?

Other Info:  He plans to complete his full AMGA certification in the Rock and Alpine Guide disciplines, a process that will probably take another four years.

Thursday, March 1

2012 Summer Outdoor Session Dates

Below are dates for the 2012 summer outdoor session.  Costs, Expectations, and Sign-ups will follow in the next month.

The session will start in May with a 3 week mandatory indoor session focusing on safety techniques followed by outdoor trip dates spread out over the summer.

Mandatory May Safety Technique Session.
Junior Team - Top Ropes: born 2003-1999  -  6pm - 7:30pm
Senior Team - Lead Climbing: born 1998 - 1993  -  7:30pm - 9pm

Tuesday - 8th 15th

Thursday - 10th 17th
Tuesday - 15th 22nd
Thursday - 17th 24th
Tuesday - 22nd 29th
Thursday - 24th 31st

Summer Outdoor Trips
actual meetup times to be determined

June 2012
Sunday - 3rd - Dirtfest, Zimmerman Park, Billings
Saturday - 23rd - Timber Canyon, Bridger MT -
2 weekday sessions at Gregory Hills will be scheduled during June

July 2012
Saturday - 21st - The Island, Cody WY
2 weekday sessions at Gregory Hills will be scheduled during July

August 2012
Saturday 11th - The Island, Cody WY
2 weekday sessions at Gregory Hills will be scheduled during August

September 2012
Saturday 1st - 3rd - Labor Day Weekend - Ten Sleep Canyon, Ten Sleep WY
Unguided Team Meetup for climbers comfortable with sport lead climbing.

Friday, February 10

Fall Team Feedback Survey

Please click the link below and share how we are doing, and more important what you would like to see from SteepTeam in the future.  This is your chance to help guide SteepTeam's direction as we strive to be the best climbing program in Montana.

All results are confidential, i.e. we do not know from whom the feedback is being given. 

Thank you all for your support and energy towards SteepTeam 2011 we look forward to this SUMMER and getting together again outside...

Tuesday, January 10

January February Schedule

The Schedule for the rest of the season is as follows:

Tues 10th - practice
Thurs 12th - no practice, rest day for those attending divisionals
Saturday 14th - ABS Divisionals in Seattle, WA
Tues 17th - practice
Thurs 19th - practice
Tues 24th - practice
Thurs 26th - practice
Tues 31st - practice
Thurs February 2nd - no practice
Saturday February 4th - Montana Bouldering Championships

As always the schedule can be found through the Steepteam Calendar link on the right sidebar.

Saturday, January 7

Cody Ice Festival

I've had a few kids ask about trying out ice climbing this past year. One of the best ways to be introduced to the sport is to attend the annual Cody Ice Festival over Presidents Day weekend in February. A two day, two night event, Friday night starts out with getting all your gear sorted out, Saturday is ice climbing with a guide, and a great Saturday night slideshow. The gear and guides are included in the cost, meals are extra, but usually worth it.

I will be guiding again this year, but all the the guides are more awesome and way gnarlier than me, so no matter who your guide is you'll have a great time and learn a lot. More information and sign-up can be found HERE.

Tuesday, January 3

Montana Bouldering Championships

Saturday February 4th 2012 hosted by Steepworld.  See the official competition website for more information.

Shirts for Sale

We have a small selection of Steepteam shirts in "heather navy" available for $20.  All money goes back into the Steepteam fund.  See Joel or the front desk if you'd like to purchase one.