North Face, Concord Tower II 5.7
Washington Pass, Washington, USA
Avg time to climb route: 1-3 hours
Approach time: 1.5-3 hours
Descent time: 1.5-3 hours
Number of pitches: 3
Height of route: 300'
OverviewThe North Face on Concord Tower is a semi-popular alternative if the Becky route is too crowded. The North Face is easily combined with another route on Liberty Bell, providing two climbs and two summits for one approach. The North Face is the easiest route on the north side of Concord Tower. It is slightly easier than the Tunnel Route and slightly harder than the Becky Route. Like other routes on the north face of Concord Tower, the rock has a distinctly different feel from the granite on a lot of the surrounding peaks. Itís much darker, sharper and more featured than the rock on the south, east and west faces of the Liberty Bell group.
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Route HistoryThe First Ascent was on June 12, 1956 by Fred Becky and John Parrott. Not much is known about the ascent.
StrategyCrowds are unlikely, although one party seems to attract others. The North Face is a fun route in its own right, and a good link-up with some of the other routes in the area. The route does have some tricky route finding and some committing sections, and while it isnít run out, you canít pull through all the cruxes on gear. As a result, the North Face route is best attempted only by confident 5.7 leaders.
After the short and straight-forward Pitch 1, the crux Pitch 2 is in your face the whole time. Pitch 2 starts slightly burly with steep jamming and stemming until you are forced to traverse slightly up and left where it finishes with a super fun, not obvious, way-easier-than-it-looks face climbing section. There are hidden but huge, well- spaced huecos and holds all the way up the final face climbing section to the belay. The last pitch is easier; it wanders a little but finishes with the steep and classic Bear Hug. If the North Face is crowded, consider climbing the Patriot Cracks or the Tunnel Route provided you are up to the grade. Leave your shoes and extra gear at the base as the rappels deposit you just a stoneís throw from the start.
Retreat StormRappel with one 60m rope at any time off fixed anchors. There are fixed anchors all over the face. The route dries faster than other routes on the North Face due to its exposure position between the Liberty Bell- Concord col. At colder times of the year, it can be a little icy.
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