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Routes in Sunshine Buttress

Brown-Haired Lady T 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b R

Description

Sunshine Buttress (not to be confused with the bigger and better Sundance Buttress) is the often overlooked and seldom visited little formation immediately west (left) of the Pear. According to the guidebook, it contains 3 routes, all put up by Carl Harrison in 1980, one of which is rated 5.7 and two which check in at 5.8. I probably never would've known this rock existed if I hadn't been scanning the guidebooks looking for a non-chimney 5.7 - besides those on the Left Book and the Pear which I'd already climbed - to take a beginner up.

A word of caution: The route I referred to above, Brown-Haired Lady, the only one of the three with a star in Rossiter's guidebook, has a potentially dangerous runout 3rd pitch and isn't suitable for beginners - beginning followers or leaders - as both would be hurt in a fall due to the fact that the line goes up a narrow fin with a slab on both sides. Fortunately we were short on time and walked off after the second pitch before unknowingly getting ourselves in over our heads.

All routes are 3 pitches and lead to the summit with a walk-off to the right (east), in the gully between Sunshine Buttress and the Pear. As I mentioned above, you can exit right from the ledge at the top of the second pitch of Brown-Haired Lady, but from what I remember it may require a bit of caution.
Season raptor closures Details

Getting There

To get there, hike to the base of the Pear and essentially go left until you find yourself at the base of the next climbable formation. This can be a bit trickier than it sounds, since it looks low-angle and uninteresting enough to make you wonder if you've actually found the right rock, at least from the base. However, even though it's not one of Lumpy's finest, it certainly climbs better than it looks, and makes for a decent day of moderate climbing, especially if you've done all the other routes at that grade at Lumpy.

Raptor issues

After confirming this with RMNP, this crag is not subject to raptor closures.

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Photos

George Bell
Boulder, CO
George Bell   Boulder, CO
Why climb a one star route three times in one year? Dec 21, 2001
Kurt Johnson
Estes Park, CO
Kurt Johnson   Estes Park, CO
PS - If you climb this route more than 3 times in one year, you're automatically entitled to membership in the elite and prestigeous "Brown-Haired Lady Club." So far it only has 2 members: Kurt Johnson and Carl Pelletier, who by the way only climbed the route together once, and who's sum total of ascents is greater than all the ascents that route has seen in the past 10 years. Dec 20, 2001

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