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first ascent [TR] Colchuck Balanced Rock - Scarface (III, 5.10+) 8/15/2010

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Trip: Colchuck Balanced Rock - Scarface (III, 5.10+)


Date: 8/15/2010


Trip Report:

On Sunday, Nate F. and I climbed up the highly visible rock scar on CBR. We believe that we climbed a new route several hundred feet to the right of the old NW Buttress line. However, we might have connected with that terrain higher up for the last couple moderate pitches. If the NW Buttress did indeed go straight through the rock scar , we probably still climbed new terrain as what rock was there is now hanging out in the meadow 1000 ft below. The 2nd pitch was the highlight of the route for me with a sustained steep handcrack and awesome exposure. The rock scar was mostly clean with some loose blocks on the ledges still from the rock fall.



Nate on the 3rd pitch.



Slab on the 4th pitch.



Topo of the route.



Stewart's Photo with the route added.


Gear Notes:

RPs, 2x #2 TCU - #3 BD, 1x #00 TCU & #4 BD


Approach Notes:


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Sweet! I kept looking up there and Matt kept telling me how it was all going to fall down on me. I knew somebody'd get on it sooner or later. :-)

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Wow... I would hope that I'm not the Cascades version of the Petit Dru' Russians either. Though there has obviously been a HUGE amount of rock fall in recent years the features that remained seemed solid (granted we didn't venture toward the right edge of the rock scar). The looseness was almost entirely scree left on ledges and can be avoided if you climb with care. I don't expect that this route will ever be popular, especially given the rock quality on other parts of the face. However, the second pitch was one of the best crack pitch I've ever climbed and would recommend it be repeated if only for the first two pitches.

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Rad. Awesome job going for the scar, looks like great rock.


Pretty wild how many routes are going up on this face in the last couple years considering the lack of activity between the West Face and the Tempest, something like twenty years between them if I remember right.


I better go up there and get some before it's too late.

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Went up the approach gully on Sunday and found it to be loaded with loose rock- a sketchy place at best. Couln't locate the approach pitch though we were distracted by rockfall and 5th class rock in the gully. Bad idea, never again..


FYI Rangers are now monitoring the bivi- actually hiking the new trail to bust poachers. Took us 4 hrs to hike to the bivi with camping gear(just in case!)moving at a comfortable pace. Woke to rain on Monday so time to go to index where the are intermittant stairs and a granite wall to line up your junk show below Godzilla now.


Snow can now be completly avoided at CBR. Mosqitos are relentless.

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