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Sunshine Buttress

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Brown-Haired Lady T 

Sunshine Buttress Rock Climbing 

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Submitted By: Kurt Johnson on Dec 19, 2001
This Afternoon

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Sunshine Buttress with Observatory Dome in the upp...

Season raptor closures MORE INFO >>>


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.

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.

Climbing Season

For the Lumpy Ridge area.

Weather station 1.4 miles from here

1 Total Climbing Routes

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

Featured Route For Sunshine Buttress
Rock Climbing Photo: Brown Haired Lady goes up the crack system in the ...

Brown-Haired Lady 5.7 5a 15 V+ 13 MVS 4b Colorado : Lumpy Ridge : Sunshine Buttress
Brown-Haired Lady is one of the least-climbed routes on Lumpy but definitely one of the most unique; you won't find another pitch like its 3rd anywhere on the Ridge.P1. Start at the low point of the rock, more or less in the center underneath a prominent, left-facing dihedral. I've gone straight up the short but steep, chimney-ish start just left of the roof band, as well as traversing to the right to avoid this feature (easier), but either way you're aiming for the dihedral. Follow th...[more]   Browse More Classics in Colorado

Comments on Sunshine Buttress Add Comment
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By Kurt Johnson
From: Estes Park, CO
Dec 20, 2001
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.
By George Bell
From: Boulder, CO
Dec 21, 2001
Why climb a one star route three times in one year?

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