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Pedestal Buttress
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Unsorted Routes:

Flake Route 

YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b PG13

   
Type:  Trad, TR
Consensus:  YDS: 5.10d French: 6b+ Ewbanks: 21 UIAA: VII+ ZA: 21 British: E3 5b [details]
FA: First Lead, Steve Sangdahl, September 1979
Page Views: 4,397
Submitted By: Jay Knower on Sep 1, 2001

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (48)
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Flake Route. Last hard move. Photo: Darin Limvere.

Description 

Flake Route is the quintessential Devil's Lake climb--thin technical crimping on a vertical face.

Start up the center of "Campus Wall" directly underneath the alcove on Upper Diagonal. Climb straight up to the alcove, where you will find a fixed pin and a sneaky no-hands rest. Next, cast right and up, following small square cut crimpers up the center of the wall.

This climb is actually better protected than it looks if you place gear (.5 and .75 Camalots) on Upper-D, a few feet above the alcove.


Protection 

On lead: .5 and .75 Camalots, small stoppers including brassies, small TCUs.



Photos of Flake Route Slideshow Add Photo
Flake Route. Crux. Photo: Darin Limvere.
Flake Route. Crux. Photo: Darin Limvere.
Flake Route with the Upper-D Start
Flake Route with the Upper-D Start
Rich Bechler on 1st or 2nd lead ? of Flakes Route. Photo: Bob Horan Collection.
Rich Bechler on 1st or 2nd lead ? of Flakes Route....
Matt gets into the crux of Flake Route... with extra spice!
Matt gets into the crux of Flake Route... with ext...
Andrew Reinke sending Flake Route in good style.
Andrew Reinke sending Flake Route in good style.
Jay Knower, happy to finally get gear... Photo Peter Arndt.
Jay Knower, happy to finally get gear... Photo Pet...
Isaac Therneau redpointing the Flake Route. May '08. Photo: Darin Limvere.
Isaac Therneau redpointing the Flake Route. May '0...
Jay Knower at the end of the crux on Flake Route. Photo by Peter Arndt.
Jay Knower at the end of the crux on Flake Route. ...
High steppin' after the last gear is placed... en route to the summit!
High steppin' after the last gear is placed... en ...
Clownin' around on the lead of Flake Route. Photo by Giulia Bartolotta
Clownin' around on the lead of Flake Route. Photo ...
Ryan putting the TC Pros to work on the lead of Flake Route.
Ryan putting the TC Pros to work on the lead of Fl...
Fishing in the last small gear!
Fishing in the last small gear!
see previous comments
see previous comments
Fuzzy firing the thin section.  TRing on a cold December day.
Fuzzy firing the thin section. TRing on a cold De...
Moving through the last crux
Moving through the last crux
Kayte Knower on the lead of Flake Route
Kayte Knower on the lead of Flake Route
Comments on Flake Route Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Sep 19, 2012
By Steve Sangdahl
From: eldo sprngs,co
May 15, 2002

the first lead of the "FLAKE ROUTE" was by Steve Sangdahl 1979. I do not know who originally top-roped it. I named the route "Flakes!Flakes!" after the song by Frank Zappa (Sheik Yer Bouti /album.

By Jay Knower
Administrator
From: Campton, NH
May 16, 2002

Steve, There used to be a picture in the old Silverdale of someone on Flakes holding an oil can of Fosters while on lead (or was he aiding? I don't remember). Was that you? Do you know the pic I am talking about?

By Steve Sangdahl
From: eldo sprngs,co
May 20, 2002

Jay,I remember leading flake route with a couple of beers clipped on to my rack, but idoubt if it was fosters .it was probably some hedious cheap swill such as BLATZ, etc. I also remember that the flake that we thought we were so clever tying off was easily kicked off at a later date.

By Steve Sangdahl
From: eldo sprngs,co
May 20, 2002

the photo is of steve sangdahl on the first lead in 1979. note the 2"swami webbing(no harness)

By Anonymous Coward
May 29, 2002

Jay - the photo you asked about of flake route is of a guy I know as 'Cheeze'who moved to CO a few years back. He was aiding the route and Tom Colemann lowered him the fosters for the picture. Then as the story goes he started throwing snowballs at Cheeze.

By Peter Arndt
Jun 24, 2006

Have not led and never will. None the less this is a stellar route even
if TR'd.

By Kayte Knower
Jul 30, 2009

Let the DL purists flay me alive, I led the start of Upper Diagonal into Flake Route instead of doing the real start over the dead tree (AKA the huge spike). Since Upper-D trends left and the Flake crux traverses right, I used double ropes. This perfectly eliminated the rope drag and, as a bonus, made me feel extra cool on the airy upper crux.

It was a quintessentially Devil's Lake experience. I had a half-moon at my back for most of the climb, with the lake and talus below glowing in the sunset. A sizable group of hikers at the top were singing about getting home before dark. A guy climbing beside me on Birch Tree acknowledged a "bit of help" from the top-rope, but explained that it was not a true "girlfriend take". He then asked me if Flakes was my first ever lead. It was perfect.

By Burt Lindquist
Administrator
From: Madison, WI
Jul 30, 2009

I thought that was the proper way to lead "Flake Route"....(not the double ropes part).
So did the group singing up above you suck or did they sound good? This would make all the difference to me....

By Kayte Knower
Jul 30, 2009

Interesting. I wonder which start is more standard -- the "right" start by DL standards. I know routes are often strictly defined here. I definitely enjoyed starting on Upper-D though.

The singing as a whole was pretty chaotic, but one of them at least had a real set of pipes.

By James M Schroeder
From: Sauk County, WI
Jul 30, 2009
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

Nice work Kayte.

By Burt Lindquist
Administrator
From: Madison, WI
Jul 30, 2009

Whoops- re-read your post Kayte.... I guess the proper route according to DL "holders of the way" is to lead (or climb) straight up from the tree..... but who cares.. doesn't diminish the ascent one bit.... nor the "girl friend take" comment either... was the guys girl friend belaying... hee hee I woulda dropped him a few feet.

By Tradoholic
Aug 26, 2009
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13

Devils Lake crimpin'! A #000 C3 helped kill the runout after the flake. The other cams buried well in the seams.
I don't think the alternative start on Upper D would make a difference to the grade, just make it easier to protect the bottom. But, I do really like straight lines.
I should have used runners on the upper pieces, that would have eliminated rope drag but it wasn't too bad.

By Andy Hansen
From: Longmont, Colorado
Jun 13, 2011
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Direct start is the way to go. Though slightly less protected than the start on Upper D, the moves are pretty cool and get you psyched to launch into the upper crux which is fantastic. Also, this line will reduce rope drag if you use long runners. The gear is BOMBER.

By Tradoholic
Jun 13, 2011
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13

To clarify Andy, the gear on the direct start is bomber or the whole route? If you say the whole route, you're a sand-bagger ;)

By Andy Hansen
From: Longmont, Colorado
Jun 13, 2011
rating: 5.10+ 6b+ 21 VII+ 20 E3 5b

Well, there's a touch of spice on this route to say the least. Ideally the crux piece would be a red BD Junior (4 lobes) for optimal surface contact... the purple C3 didn't quite cut it for me but I climbed above it anyways. There are a few spots where you really wouldn't want to fall I guess.

By Tradoholic
Jun 13, 2011
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13

Sandbagger.

By Josh Knapp
From: East Troy, Wisconsin
Jun 19, 2011
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b PG13

Killer Route! Great moves, fantastic position, a little heady, perfection!

By Ryan Strong
From: Golden, CO
Jul 11, 2012
rating: 5.10d 6b+ 21 VII+ 21 E3 5b

I would agree with Hansen the Direct start is the way to go. I got my first piece in at about the 10' mark followed by another 10' of climbing placing a piece just below the piton in the alcove. The real run out on the route comes moving through the alcove and gaining the first good hold just above the horizontal pods. From that good hold I placed what I thought were two bomber pieces. I opted not to place gear in upper d past the alcove.

By Matt Kuehl
From: the desert
Sep 19, 2012

Route of the year! Any year!