climber at a roof crux on a heavily featured rock wall

Rock Climbing in Ferguson Canyon, Utah

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Legend has it that Ferguson Canyon was historically home to a gold mine, and that Brigham Young shut it down in order to prevent a California gold rush style influx of fortune seekers from disturbing the peaceful Zion of Salt Lake City. The whereabouts of the old mine is now unknown, but today, Ferguson Canyon sure is a gold mine for rock climbers.

Easily accessible with lots of routes to enjoy; shady, beautiful, and full of friendly people and dogs – there is so much to love about rock climbing in Ferguson Canyon, Utah.

Easily Accessible Rock Climbing
Between Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons, the mouth of Ferguson Canyon opens into a pleasant neighborhood. There is a small parking lot by the start of the well marked trail. I’ve seen firsthand that cars parked on the sides of the street do get ticketed, so it’s best to head up on the week days or to get an early start on the weekends when the area is less likely to be crowded.
After a brief walk up an eroded dirt road, you can enjoy a moderate hike up a shady trail, and encounter a bunch of climbing routes within about twenty minutes approach time.

Plentiful Quality Climbing Routes
Ferguson Canyon is full of granite cliffs with horizontal seams and rough texture – the makings for great rock climbing holds. The routes are mostly short, 50 to 100 feet tall. Some are top rope, some sport climbing, and many require placing traditional gear as well.

A Popular Rock Climbing Spot
If easy accessibility, plentiful routes, and great climbing aren’t reasons enough to make a rock climbing spot popular, Ferguson is also amazingly beautiful. A small stream runs through it, feeding large trees which provide dappled shade that keeps recreationalists cool in the heat of the summer.
Throughout the summer months, Ferguson Canyon is crowded with not only rock climbers, but also hikers – and everyone brings their dogs. This may sound chaotic, but somehow it’s more like a casual party, like a celebration of living the good life. People are relaxed and friendly, and dogs are happily curious. You’ll likely end up petting a few pooches, explaining the sport of rock climbing to hikers, and sharing beta with fellow climbers.

Be a Good Citizen
Because climbing access is always at stake, and because so many people love this place, it’s especially important to make sure we take care of it. Please be respectful of the environment, stay on the trails to avoid contributing to erosion, and do more than you part to pick up any trash you see around. This way, we can all enjoy rock climbing at Ferguson Canyon for years to come.

–          Kendall Fischer, Content Writer