Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Freedom Rider (V 5.11b or 5.10d scary) Liberty Bell

 In Mid September Andy Dahlen and I went to climb the Freedom Rider (V 5.11b or 5.10d scary) on the East Face of Liberty Bell. Andy had never climbed Liberty Bell and I thought it was funny that his first route would be something else besides the Freedom Rider. Some people love the Freedom Rider, in Fact its AAC president Steve Swensons favorite route in the Cascades. Everyone agrees it burly, stacked with sustained 5.10 pitches a few of which a pretty loose. The crux is either a burly (Only really burly for about 8 feet pulling a small roof in a 7" crack. The 5.10d crux is more rarely done and is a little run out and very delicate with very small pro. Andy and I didn't have much time so we drove up from Seattle and hopped on the route. I did think the Freedom Rider was burly but fun. It took me 9 hrs on the route, twice as long as it took me to climb either Liberty Crack or Clean Break for reference.
 Andy Following the first pitch, supposed to be one of the "Easiest" pitches on the route, it is only 5.8 but 5.8 R at a minimum.
 Andy leading the 5.10 second pitch, it was pretty good
Andy Following the crux 5.11b pitch. We opted, like more people for the harder but less scary OW. It is mostly mid 5.10 Owing but pulls a small 2ft roof at 7" and that us solid 5.11b. You could aid through it on a big Cam. After the roof you climb up a bit farther before steeping right into a splitter finger to hands crack which feels like a dream after the hand stacking madness. The other 5.10d Var starts and ends in the same place, it is slightly less direct but it means you don't need big cams. It is very thin, and very techy with a little spice through in. It isn't quite as clean because it isn't done as much.
Andy of the 4th pitch, this pitch follows a straight forward crack before making an exposed move left.
Andy on the top of the 7th pitch where Freedom Rider joins Liberty Crack for 2.5 pitches before going though the Medusa Roofs.
Andy on the summit of Liberty Bell after 9hrs on the Freedom Rider
The boys in Blue on the top

You gotta love the East face of Liberty Bell

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