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Wyoming: The Ultimate Grand
National Geographic Adventure picks the 25 best new outfitted trips.
Text by Bonnie Tsui   Photograph by Beth Wald/Aurora

Photo: The Grand
Finishing an ascent of Grand Teton National Park's Teewinot

WHAT'S NEW: Scaling Wyoming's 13,770-foot (4,197-meter) Grand Teton has long been a rite of passage for beginning multipitch climbers seeking to take their skills to the next level. Combined with nearby 12,325-foot (3,757-meter) Teewinot and 12,928-foot (3,940-meter) Mount Owen, the Grand becomes what Exum senior guide Mark Newcomb calls "some of the best continuous climbing and scrambling in the lower 48." This three-summit route, called the Cathedral Traverse, takes its name from the resemblance that the mountains' sheer north faces bear to a Gothic cathedral's spires. Exum Mountain Guides has led exploratory trips on the traverse for years, but rave reviews from these excursions have prompted the company to open the route—which requires nearly 12,000 vertical feet (3,658 vertical meters) of ascent—to the general climbing public.

After shooting up Teewinot's east face on day one, you'll track across a granite ridgeline—with panoramas of the north face of Grand Teton towering above—before summiting Mount Owen and bivouacking for the night. Day two takes on the six-pitch climb to the top of the Grand itself. Don't despair if you haven't yet tackled a big mountain: This traverse is accessible to average, fit climbers with 5.8-level multipitch experience.


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Our November 2006 issue features the best new adventure travel trips; an exclusive look inside Iran; a Greenland global warming report; backcountry spas; digital cameras; travel Web sites; weekend getaways; and more.

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