After waiting out some weather on the first day of our staycation, Colin and I headed up from our campsite at Lone Fir to the Blue Lake Trailhead and hiked up for the Liberty Bell. While it was forecast to be a pretty warm day, the NW Face looked a bit chilly in the morning, so we decided to do a warm-up route in the sun first, selecting Rapple Grapple based on reviews, the position, and having been up the Beckey Route before.
Rapple Grapple was quite fun, with good rock and movement throughout. We started climbing just before noon and met the Beckey Route near the summit at about 1pm. After lunch on top, we rapped down to the gully and traversed over to the NW Face, gearing up there around 3pm. We were surprised to find another party starting just before us that late in the afternoon on a weekday and chatted them up throughout the climb at the belays.
The first pitch isn't terribly memorable—some low-angle slot climbing past a bit of shrubbery to a nice sandy ledge. The second pitch has fun movement off the belay for 20 feet or so through a left-leaning ramp with a roof above it before turning up and going through sandier, looser terrain to another big ledge system.
The third pitch was pretty engaging and a bit spooky for my liking with hollow flakes and marginal protection. The final traverse rightward to the left-facing corner was the trickiest part and had some great movement.
Pitch four was advertised as the winner and it delivered. After working through a series of varied moves up the corner, I found myself a bit confused near the top as the crack in the dihedral thinned out and didn't look protectable while the beta implied a ledge on the right. I eventually kept moving up and was happy to find just enough friction, holds, and protection to keep going. This corner deposited me on a ledge straight up where I brought Colin up and we then simul-climbed up for our second summit of Liberty Bell that day.