REI Community
Brinton's Buttress
Routes Sorted
L to R R to L Alpha
Berkeley T,TR 
Brinton's Corner T,TR 
Brinton's Crack T 
Brinton's Direct T,TR 
Cheap Thrills T,TR 
Chiaroscuro TR 
Chiaroscuro Direct (aka The H) TR 
Chicago T,TR 
Evanston Township T,TR 
Evanston Township Direct T,TR 
Golf Road TR 
Puff N' Grunt Chimney T 
Rococo Variations T,TR 
Rubberman TR 
Sheep Thrills T,TR 
South Side T 
Stool Pigeon T 


YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a

Type:  TR, 60'
Original:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: ??
Page Views: 2,004
Submitted By: James Schroeder on Sep 27, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (39)
Your todo list:
Your stars:
Your rating: -none- [change]
Your ticklist: [add new tick]
Your opinion of this PAGE:    [0 people like this page.]
Rhoads on lead. Perfect fall day!


An element in art, chiaroscuro (Italian for lightdark) is defined as a bold contrast between light and dark.(wikipedia) Chiaroscuro a delicate thin face climb lies in sharp contrast to the thuggish crack-climbing of Brinton's, its neighbor to the left.


This climb starts to the right of Brinton's crack. It ascends through crimpers and the obvious undercling up to Hilton ledge. It is questionable where the route goes from here. One should stay right of Brinton's crack and avoid it.

A great option if you have a variety of climbers of varying abilities is to hang a toprope as for Brinton's Direct, which allows you to climb Brinton's, Brinton's Direct, or link The lower half of Chiaroscuro to Hilton ledge, reverse the crux traverse on Brinton's and finish on Brinton's Direct. (See picture) (not in the notch, but just west of it)


Lead would be exceptionally bold, that said I'm sure it's been led or soloed. On what gear I don't know.

Photos of Chiaroscuro Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Moving towards the lower Crux
Moving towards the lower Crux
Rock Climbing Photo: Pitch 20 of 24.
Pitch 20 of 24.
Rock Climbing Photo: Best 5.9 in DLSTP if you ask me.  It was catching ...
Best 5.9 in DLSTP if you ask me. It was catching ...
Rock Climbing Photo: Second half with some good pieces in finally, next...
Second half with some good pieces in finally, next...
Rock Climbing Photo: Fading colors, fading light.
Fading colors, fading light.
Rock Climbing Photo: Using every bit of daylight.
Using every bit of daylight.
Rock Climbing Photo: Bow your head to the chalk gods.
Bow your head to the chalk gods.
Rock Climbing Photo: The route in blue
BETA PHOTO: The route in blue

Comments on Chiaroscuro Add Comment
Show which comments
By Doug Hemken
From: Madison, WI
Oct 29, 2007

I've seen the lower section done a couple of different ways. Staying right and tagging the outside corner at regular intervals is easiest for me. Heading for the undercling James mentions is crimpier (if that's a word).
By John W. Knoernschild
From: Wisconsin
Feb 2, 2009
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

What a great climb. And the ledge for resting in the middle was a great to warm up the hands Sunday. So cold, 32F.
By Paul Campbell
From: Waukesha, WI
Feb 2, 2009
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

Awesome climb. Definantly 5.9+ with great balancy movement!
By Tradiban
Sep 30, 2009
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a X

No pro to the rest ledge besides a directional at the top of the slab, then a few decent pieces and a slight run-out. Great climb that is often overlooked!
By Ian Strug
From: Chicago, IL
Jul 26, 2016

Tradaholic- agree! nice little run out. Quite a fun lead...onsighted by accident my first time at the lake after meandering right of the crack and said...screw it let's put it up! Fun climb, still a fun repeat and warm up.
By Burt Lindquist
From: Madison, WI
Jul 27, 2016

The crux section of Chiaroscuro isn't actually run-out at all. It's just plain unprotected. There is nothing to stop the climber from crashing into the ledge below. Gear at the ledge would only keep you from falling all the way to the ground. Very impressive on-sight lead climb indeed although I find it kind of funny that you did it after wandering off route from Brinton's. They are 2 completely different outings.. hee hee.

Mountain Project

The Definitive Climbing Resource

MTB Project

Next Generation MTB Trail Maps

Powder Project

Backcountry Ski Maps & Secret Stashes
FREE Stickers · Gyms · RSS · School of Rock · Contact · About