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Buttermilks Main

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Bachar Boulder 
Birthday Boulders 
Bowling Pin Boulder 
Boy and Girl Rocks 
Buttermilk Stem Area 
Buttocks/Smooth Shrimp Boulder 
Cave Area 
Corner Boulders 
Drifter/Smoking Boulder 
Fit Homeless Boulder 
Green Wall Boulder 
Grovel Roof Boulder 
Hunk, The 
Iron Man Area 
Iron Man East Area 
Loaf, The 
Lower Smoking Boulder 
Mandala/Pope's Prow Boulder 
Peabody Boulders 
Peewee Boulder 
Pope's Hat 
Ranger Rock 
Roadside Area 
Saigon Boulder 
Stained Glass/Flyboy Area 
Sunshine Boulder 
Tut Boulder 
Upside Boulder 
Womb Boulder 

Buttermilks Main  

Photos:  Recent | Best | Popular
Elevation: 6,400'
Location: 37.3276, -118.5757 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 346,895
Administrators: Aron Quiter, John Robinson, Euan Cameron, AWinters, M.Morley, Adam Stackhouse, Salamanizer, Justin Johnsen, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: AWinters on Mar 31, 2008
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BH milkin a Buttermilk, photo: Bob Horan Collectio...


The famed Buttermilks Main hillside- one of the premier bouldering destinations in the world.

This is the main bouldering venue in the Buttermilks, offering the highest concentration of boulders and classic routes within a convenient roadside locale. Climbers flock from all over the world to test themselves on this hillside, pushing both their physical and mental limitations on these massive blocs. Most first time visitors will be overwhelmed not only by the breathtaking beauty of the area, but also by the shear quantity of classic boulder problems in the vicinity. If you're new to Bishop and/or the Buttermilks make this area priority #1. The landings are flat and sandy, and the setting is unbelievable.

The area's approximate boundaries lie from the Stained Glass/Flyboy Area on the west end of the hillside, across and eastwards to the giant Peabody Boulders. Featured here are hundreds of great boulder problems and classics such as 'The Mandala', 'Evilution', 'High Plains Drifter', and the ever-popular 'Iron Man Traverse'.


Due to the ever-increasing popularity of the area, foot traffic and human impact has had a huge effect on the vegetation and ecology of this fragile desert environment. Please avoid all plants and pack out all trash. Make it a point to stay within the designated footpaths.

Andrew Thomas on 'Saigon'
Andrew Thomas on 'Saigon'

Getting There 

Approximately 3.5 miles down Buttermilk Road. The boulders will be on your right, clearly visible and obvious from the road. These boulders can be accessed either by the parallel-style Peabody Parking Area or the parking loop at the Birthday Parking Area, farther up the road (take a right after the cattle guard).

Please don't walk here.
Please don't walk here.

Climbing Season

Weather station 5.4 miles from here

184 Total Routes

['4 Stars',22],['3 Stars',71],['2 Stars',67],['1 Star',23],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Buttermilks Main:
Hero Roof   V0 4     Boulder, 14'   Iron Man Area : Hero Roof Boulder
Buttermilk Stem   V1 5     Boulder, 15'   Buttermilk Stem Area : Buttermilk Stem Boulder
The Hunk   V2 5+     Boulder, 20'   The Hunk
Green Wall Essential   V2 5+     Boulder, 20'   Green Wall Boulder
Funky Tut   V3 6A     Boulder, 15'   Tut Boulder
East Side Story   V3 6A     Boulder, 30'   Stained Glass/Flyboy Area
Birthday Direct   V3 6A     Boulder, 12'   Birthday Boulders
King Tut   V3 6A     Boulder, 17'   Tut Boulder
Bowling Pin   V4 6B     Boulder   Bowling Pin Boulder
Iron Man Traverse   V4 6B     Boulder   Iron Man Area : Iron Man Boulder
Leary/Bard Arete   V5 6C     Boulder, 18'   Corner Boulders
Saigon   V5-6 6C+     Boulder, 22'   Saigon Boulder
Pope's Prow   V5-6 6C+     Boulder, 15'   Mandala/Pope's Prow Boulder
Flyboy   V6+ 7A     Boulder, 18'   Stained Glass/Flyboy Area
High Plains Drifter   V6-7 7A+     Boulder, 35'   Drifter/Smoking Boulder
Flyboy SDS   V8- 7B     Boulder   Stained Glass/Flyboy Area
Soul Slinger   V9 7C     Boulder, 14'   Cave Area
Stained Glass   V10 7C+     Boulder   Stained Glass/Flyboy Area
Evilution   V12-13 8B R     Boulder, 55'   Peabody Boulders : Grandpa Peabody Boulder
Southwest Arete   5.8+ 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, TR, 1 pitch, 50'   Peabody Boulders : Grandma Peabody Boulder
Browse More Classics in Buttermilks Main

Featured Route For Buttermilks Main
The Southeast Arete of Grandma Peabody.

SE Arete 5.10 6b 20 VII- 19 E2 5b  CA : Sierra Eastside : ... : Grandma Peabody Boulder
This line is either a 5.10 solo or toprope. An awesome, bouldery move down low pulling onto the arete (over sloping ground and a pile of cheater stones) is the physical crux, but the top is what packs the punch. I've onsight freesoloed several 5.9s and 10s, particularly in Eldorado Canyon, Colo., and I had to take a long pause and some big breaths before the sequential, steep-slab finish on this one.This route provided one of my most rewarding experiences during my four-day visit, but I won't sa...[more]   Browse More Classics in CA

Photos of Buttermilks Main Slideshow Add Photo
The Peabodies and their neighbors with a dusting of snow
The Peabodies and their neighbors with a dusting o...
Andrew Thomas on 'Saigon'
Andrew Thomas on 'Saigon'
Buttermilks Main Overview
BETA PHOTO: Buttermilks Main Overview
Buttermilks in spring
Buttermilks in spring
Top-out at Buttermilks Main
Top-out at Buttermilks Main
Rain storm slowly moving across the boulder field.
Rain storm slowly moving across the boulder field.
Frozen Pool and Pope's Hat from top of The Loaf. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
Frozen Pool and Pope's Hat from top of The Loaf. P...
A look at 'Buttermilks Main', from high on the moraine between Mt. Tom and Basin Mtn.
A look at 'Buttermilks Main', from high on the mor...
The Peabody Boulders and White Mountain Peak
The Peabody Boulders and White Mountain Peak
Basin Mountain from the Buttermilks, Sierra Eastside
Basin Mountain from the Buttermilks, Sierra Eastsi...
crew warming up in the 'milks
crew warming up in the 'milks
The Buttermilks
The Buttermilks
Bouldering at Buttermilks Main
Bouldering at Buttermilks Main
Bouldering in the Buttermilks at sunset.
Bouldering in the Buttermilks at sunset.
For most, the main attraction of the area:  The boulders that make up the eastern side of Buttermilks Main
For most, the main attraction of the area: The bo...
Please don't walk here.
Please don't walk here.
Birthday section. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
Birthday section. Photo by Blitzo.
Petroglyph Pig. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
Petroglyph Pig. Photo by Blitzo.
Original topo for the Peabody (Buttermilk) Boulders from the 1988 Eastside Guide. No complaints about the ratings!
BETA PHOTO: Original topo for the Peabody (Buttermilk) Boulder...
Running a train on the 'Iron Man Traverse'
Running a train on the 'Iron Man Traverse'
The Smoking Boulders. <br />Photo by Blitzo.
The Smoking Boulders. Photo by Blitzo.
Bouldering in the Buttermilks <br />Photo by Jay Droeger
Bouldering in the Buttermilks Photo by Jay Droeger
West side of 'Buttermilks Main'
West side of 'Buttermilks Main'

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Comments on Buttermilks Main Add Comment
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By Jason Chinchen
From: Bend, Oregon
Sep 27, 2010
Please don't camp at the boulders or near the parking areas! There is great camping just 100 yards across the road, up or down buttermilk road. Fires and broken glass suck to clean up after you have left. Camping at the parking area detracts from the view and overall experience others have as well as taking up parking spots forcing others to park on the scrub further deteriorating the area.