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Mt. Willard

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Ben Wall (crag by rt 302) 
Gulley No.1 Buttress 
Main Slab 
Upper Face 
Willey Brook Ravine 

Mt. Willard  

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Elevation: 800'
Location: 44.2123, -71.4046 View Map  Incorrect?
Page Views: 17,168
Administrators: Jay Knower, M Sprague, lee hansche, Jeffrey.LeCours, Robert Hall, Kristine Hoffman (sitewide)
Submitted By: Casey Bald on Aug 10, 2007

55° | 34°

47° | 29°

59° | 40°
Columbus Day

68° | 45°

60° | 40°

52° | 38°
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When Hattie Gordon tended her garden. Mt Willard c...


NOTE: The winter ice routes for this area are found as a sub-area in the "area "NH ICE and ALPINE CLIMBING".

A multi-faceted area. The main slab has multi pitch slab and crack climbing in a nice sub alpine setting. Recent "revisited" climbs such as "Hugo's Horror" and "Time Traveler" have had widly-spaced bolts and secure double-bolt belays added to the APPROXIMATE (but not exact) line of the original route. These, as well as some of the older lines, now make for pleasant outings and a somewhat different experience from slabs like Whitehorse.

The recently developed Willey Brook Ravine, and "rediscovered" Butress No. 1 AREAs provide interesting 1 pitch climbs of a different, steeper sort. Buttress No. 1 "sports" several newer, bolted, NON-SPORT routes in the 5.6 - 5.8 range, as well as several trad climbs in the same grade range. Of course, there's an "X" ...."R/X" or two as well!

Getting There 

For years the classic approach was to drive west on NH Rt. 302 and park across the street from Elephant's Head, then walk back south east along the tracks over two trestles to where a short gully nearly reaches the tracks. (This approach, at least in the summer and fall when the sightseeing train runs, is, technically, trespassing.) Hike up 75 ft to the base of the slabs in the woods. "Standard" and "Hugo's" start at the low point, "Time Traveler" and "Across the Universe are up and to the right 100 ft. "Star Trek", etc., are further right.

Another approach, and clearly the best for Willey Brook Ravine and Buttress No. 1 , and probably even for the Main Slab, is to park on Rt 302 at a gravel pullout on the west side of the road about a half mile above the Willey Slide pullout (coming from the south/east) or 1 1/2 miles below the AMC's Highland house (from the north/west). Coming from the south/east on Rt 302 this pull-out is on the left beyond a small stream (Willey Brook) comes in from the left, and JUST before the Saco River crosses underneath Rt 302.

A rocky logging-road starts from the rear of the parking, but quickly turns into a trail. Hike up the well-cairned trail to the actual "Hattie's Garden". (about 10-12 min)

To get to Willey Brook Ravine: From Hattie's Garden walk "down tracks" (south) to the big bridge and cut right into the woods. Follow the climbers trail for 2 min to the crag. (To be honest, this "trail" is obscure.)

To get to Buttress No. 1 and Main Slab, walk "Up-Tracks" (towards the cliff)

For Buttress No 1, walk about 1 to 2 minutes and look for the first little (8-inch) drainage channel through the tracks. About 30-40 more RR ties, and look for a cairn and steep climber's path up to the base of Buttress No.1, another 10-12 min. (More details, and photo of the "8-inch channel, in the But. No.1 AREA)

For Main Slab continue another 4-5 minutes to a boulder-gully with vegetation. (A wider, flat area with much poison ivy is on the right [south] side of the tracks here.) Up this "gully" 50-75 feet (any further and you may have the wrong 'gully'.) to the "toe" of the main slab.

Climbing Season

For the All Locations area.

Weather station 4.5 miles from here

22 Total Routes

['4 Stars',0],['3 Stars',12],['2 Stars',7],['1 Star',3],['Bomb',0]

The Classics

Mountain Project's determination of some of the classic, most popular, highest rated routes for Mt. Willard:
Part the Sea   5.6 4c 14 V 12 S 4b     Trad, Alpine, 1 pitch, 90'   Gulley No.1 Buttress
Hugo's Horror Revisited   5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b PG13     Trad, Alpine, 4 pitches, 700'   Main Slab
Hattie's Garden (the climb)   5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c     Trad, Alpine, 1 pitch, 120'   Gulley No.1 Buttress
Salespitch   5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a     Trad, Alpine, 2 pitches, 200'   Upper Face
Across the Universe   5.10a 6a 18 VI+ 18 E1 5a PG13     Trad, Alpine, 4 pitches, 700'   Main Slab
Browse More Classics in Mt. Willard

Featured Route For Mt. Willard
James Dickson on She Gave Us The Willy's

She Gave Us The Willy's 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a  NH : WM: Crawford Notch : ... : Willey Brook Ravine
The climb starts just right of the sport route Willy Brook Bandits. Start up a small corner (bolt) and follow the ramp left into the corner. Follow the obvious corner placing gear and make the crux moves at a second bolt. Continue out the top placing gear to a bolt anchor over the lip....[more]   Browse More Classics in NH

Photos of Mt. Willard Slideshow Add Photo
Mt. Willard in late September
Mt. Willard in late September
Mt Willard in Early Winter Season
BETA PHOTO: Mt Willard in Early Winter Season
Mt. Willard - If you extend the right-hand branch ...
Mt. Willard - If you extend the right-hand branch ...
A memorable view on one of the approachs
A memorable view on one of the approachs
The Cliff, quite impressive!
The Cliff, quite impressive!
Hatie's Garden
Hatie's Garden

Comments on Mt. Willard Add Comment
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By burlap submariner
Sep 14, 2009
There is a new route on willard that was put up sometime in early 2007 that climbs the face and overlap thats about 50 feet down hill from the start to across the universe, if you walk left from across the universe's bolted start there will be an immediate drop off where the toe of the cliff starts to come down toward the train tracks, at that drop off look to your left and you will see one bolt, start for that bolt and follow your nose & lots of new bolts along the way to the tree ledge that splits the lower and upper cliffs....this is an excellent and quick way to get up to the tree ledge if someone else is on the universe....
By Robert Hall
Jul 25, 2014
See the 7/25/14 COMMENT to the climb Hattie's Garden for Beta on the "path" to "Gulley#1 Buttress".
By M Sprague
From: New England
Aug 5, 2014
Per Rob Hall's suggestions, I broke Mt. Willard down into sub areas. I have only climbed here once, so am not so familiar with the area. If anybody has any suggestions, corrections or more route information, let us know. Don't forget you have that blue 'Improve This Page' button. The area descriptions and directions could use some filling out.
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