Traveler Buttress 5.9
Trip ReportTraveler Buttress TR (pics)
The campground opened the day we arrived, so we had the place to ourselves the first day. The weather was cloudy but warm.
First climb was Traveler Buttress, 5.9. I had been wanting to do this route since I first saw it 6 years ago while climbing Corrugation Corner, and it was everything I thought it would be and MORE! The climb is amazing, sustained, clean, steep, and in a beautiful mountain setting. Some beta is listed, so if you dont want beta, don't read the TR.
There was a fair amount of snow at the base, and the descent had snow for the first half. We had to kick steps into the snow to approach the climb, and be very careful at the top, kicking steps in the snow to bypass a deep gully down and left that you would not want to slip into. I estimate the snow to be a non-issue by middle of next week, around the 25th or so.
There was a nasty fourth class wet ledge to get to the first pitch, but I think you can bypass this by going up higher and then cut back left. There was too much snow for us to try going higher, so we scrambled up the ledge to the base of the first pitch.
Dave took the lead for the first pitch, and after climbing through the flared 5.8 crack at the top, I was glad he did. I feel that the flared crack at the top of the first pitch is the crux of the climb, it felt much more insecure than the offwidth, and a fall from that section would suck. Nice lead Dave.
I got the second pitch, the offwidth. I walked a number 4 up the back of the crack and it was a strenuous grovel, but its short and the hand jams turn very nice after only about 5 feet of groveling. The rest of the pitch is beautiful easy hands.
Dave takes over again on pitch 3, and turns the horrendously exposed arete. He goes straight up past some dikes on 5.8 runout terrain, then leads very nearly to the top on some easy dikes. Very nice lead, and great exposure on that pitch. The runout after the corner is about 15 feet, and there is a blue alien possibility halfway up that.
It hailed on us for about 10 minutes at the top, but we had helmets on. The descent:
There were a lot of people climbing at the Leap on Sunday. At the second belay for Bear's Reach, we counted about 8 people. Their dog was running amoc at the bottom, growling and barking at everyone who tried to pass by. Just had to rant about that for a second, sorry.
Great climbing though and fun time camping with Dave, Jack, and Andy.
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