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Upper Washbowl Cliff
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
(Fritz) Wiesner Route T 
Butterflies are Free T 
Flashdance T 
Hesitation T 
Northern Revival T 
Overture T 
Partition T 
Prelude T 
Till the Fat Lady Sings T 
Weekend Warrior S 

Butterflies are Free 

YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 130'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.8+ French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: P1 Mastercharge: David Lovejoy,Dwight Bradley,Ray Crawford - Butterflies var.: Peter Ulrich, Mark Rechsteiner
Page Views: 1,094
Submitted By: Greg Kuchyt on Sep 2, 2009

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Midway through the crux of "Butterflies are Free"....


General: Butterflies are Free is a variation to the first pitch of Mastercharge (5.11b). Its quality, moderate grade, and popularity make it worth noting as a separate route. This route is a great alternate route to gain the 3rd-class ramp that splits the left end of the cliff as well as a great way to approach P2 of Partition.
Route Description: Climb easy rock at the base of the broad corner aiming for the small ledge below and to the left of a small cedar with fixed webbing half-way up the cliff. From here make your way to the obvious crack that starts small but expands to solid hand-size (crux, hard 5.8ish easy 5.9ish). Once you gain the ledge at the top of the hand crack, traverse right to the obvious large ledge below a large flake on the right side of the broad corner. Work up the flake and the small corner to gain the 3rd-class ledge at the top.


Start: About 50 feet left of the Wiessner Route start. At the base of a broad corner system. Up on the left you can see a hand crack and above a finger crack.
Descent: Two ropes from the large cedar will get you to the ground, but please see the comments on the Upper Washbowl Cliff page regarding descent details for the cliff.


Gear: Stoppers, singles to C4 #2 size, doubles in C4 #1 to sew up the hand crack.
Anchors: Either belay off the large cedar on the 3rd-class ramp, belay on the cedar about 20ft climber's left of the Partition corner or belay in the Partition corner on a gear anchor.

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By Greg Kuchyt
Aug 7, 2010

The mentioned flake seems to now be residing in pieces at the base of the route and a fresh scar stands in its stead. This makes the first few moves off the ledge into the Butterflies corner a little spicy and leaves you without pro for a bit (though you have to ask how good your pro would be in a flake that is no longer there).

By Jim Lawyer
Oct 1, 2010

I climbed this for the first time recently. I was able to get a good micro cam (#00 or #0 TCU) to protect the opening moves off the ledge.

Like Cannon, this place is falling apart.

By Nick Weinberg
From: Essex, NY
Nov 11, 2011

Nice crack climbing on this pitch. Great when combined with partition.

By Benjaminadk
From: Lake George, NY
Sep 30, 2013

SideNote: i made an attempt at the other variation to Mastercharge today. Now I'm Committed (5.8+ PG) is no good. Just right of the tree with tat is a small ledge with a pile of death blocks on it. Above that it appears there has been more rockfall. Tough to protect crumbly rock that looked pretty cruxy. I bailed and climbed the original first pitch of Partition.