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Approach as for the standard Northwest Buttress.
P1. The first pitch begins directly off the top of the talus cone (in contrast to the NW Butt which begins well to the left). Take the obvious crack/dihedral to a belay below the roof (5.10, 35 meters).
P2. Pitch two climbs up and right, following discontinuous cracks (5.9+, 30 meters).
P3. Pitch three goes right 15 feet from the belay to a crack. Follow the crack to a ledge (5.8, 30 meters).
P4. Pitch 4 traverses straight left along a horizontal crack, then turns up and climbs to the 4th class bowl below the Unicorn Spire (5.8, 30 meters).
P5. Follow the standard Northwest Buttress route to the summit.
This has excellent rock similar to the first pitch on the standard Northwest Buttress, but this adds three more pitches of technical climbing. See the comments on the standard Northwest Buttress for warnings about loose rock up high. Nothing too dire. All in all, this is a very enjoyable outing — unless you get hosed by the weather.
You basically dead-end into this route after climbing the talus cone. You can see a bolt on the first pitch that protects moves into the dihedral. The route starts approximately 200 feet right of the Northwest Buttress route and follows a very obvious system of corners and cracks.
Single set of cams to 2 inch (#2 Camalot) including small sizes (TCUs or C3s) and a good selection of nuts including brass or steel. Take a bunch of shoulder-length slings to help with drag.
Fixed gear: Some fixed knife blades. Pitch 1 has one bolt. Pitch 2 has two bolts.
Anchors consist of two bolts on Pitch 1, a bolt and nut placement on Pitch 2, a bolt and nut placement on Pitch 3, and two bolts on Pitch 4.
Total bolt count: 9. Total protection bolts: 3.
You can bail at any point with a 60 meter rope (though you'll need leave two nuts and downclimb easy rock at the bottom of Pitch 1).
BETA PHOTO: NW Buttress and Early Times Wall.
BETA PHOTO: The first pitch follows the corner system on the r...
From: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Jun 8, 2011
Looks really nice, Jeff! My partner Roland wants to do it at some point. He was solid on NW Buttress.
|By Jeff Jackson|
Aug 2, 2011
Cool! Early Times adds some nice 5th class climbing. Hope you get on it and enjoy.
|By Josh Smith|
Aug 19, 2011
(Different Josh Smith than listed on the FA). Did this a few weeks ago. The rock and the climbing are outstanding for all four new pitches. Route finding is easy and protection is good. Super fun--nice job!
|By Jeff Jackson|
Jul 18, 2012
Just did this again. Note: The first pitch is often wet near the bottom but the feet are good enough that you can climb this even when it's wet. Super fun ...