A quality route on good solid rock. A combination of steep slab/low angle face and crack climbing to a true summit. Two solid stars.
I'm posting this on behalf of Chuck Graves. The description and ratings are his, but I've cleaned up the wording a bit.
There are only 2 climbs on Bat Flake, and it's not likely there will be many more. Rather than entering Bat Flake as a new rock, I'm posting this under Lightning Rock, because, to me, Bat Flake, although hanging off of Batman Pinnacle, is more a part of Lightning Rock than it is of Batman Rock. Addendum: Eds. this entry has been moved to a new subarea for clarity, since 2 entries had been made for this route.
Approach:Follow the Batman/Checkerboard Rock trail, bear left at the sign for Checkerboard, scramble up around the left side of Checkerboard and a bit left to the base of Batman Pinnacle and Lightning Rock. Bat Flake is an obvious steep rectangular wall right of a gully on the right side of Lightning Rock and left of the Batman and Robin slab. Climb one of several easy options to a sling belay at a horn down and right from the chimney between Lightning Rock and the Bat Flake. You could also climb all or part of Power Shortage to reach the same ledge.
Climb up from the sling to the base of the flake. Reach from the base of the flake to clip the first bolt. Harder if short. You may protect the clip a slung chockstone. Bat Flake, 11a, shares this first bolt and then climbs diagonally left past several bolts and a pin.
Step onto the flake right of the first bolt. Climb directly up to the second bolt, 10a. The first bolt will be a foot or two below your feet as you clip. Move right, then upward on sloping holds, then head back left with your feet above the second bolt. Move upward and again right on sloping holds to what appear to be positive holds, but which are not. Now, just below and to the right of the third bolt, with better hands and worse feet, move left to clip the third bolt. At this point you are very happy, but don't blow the clip as your feet are a ways above the second bolt. Sustained 10b/c. The ledge fall potential is very real here.
Move 15' straight up a vertical seam on positive face holds to the base of a finger crack 5.9. Step up on the first half foot size foot hold in the last 50 feet and place a good red Alien. Up the crack, 5.9, yellow Alien. When the crack ends, place up and left a blue Alien, move up then right onto the face reaching for the base of a shallow groove. Continue up and right across the face to better holds, 10b. Easier climbing leads to the top and a horn sling anchor.
Descent:A 60m rope will not reach the belay/rappel anchors below Bat Flake. A 15-20' down climb to this anchor is required if descending the south side of Bat Flake. Otherwise rappel the north side of the flake.
3 bolts. 1 each: blue, yellow, red Alien. Double long sling to back up anchor.
Moving past the second bolt. The summit of Batman ...
Moving past the second bolt. The third bolt is up ...
|Comments on Robin's Secret
|By Chuck Graves|
Nov 7, 2004
Thank you Ivan for the post. Both Lumpy guidebook authors, Rossiter and Gillett, grade the route at 10b. The route seemed a bit more difficult than either, "Ziggy's Brother Hank" 10b or "High Plains Drifter" 10b. Hence, my 10b/c rating. I am not in support of route grade inflation and would welcome other perspectives.
|By S. Kimball|
Nov 7, 2004
The secret here is how you can call this 5.10? Very strangely if not dangerously bolted and the flared, trad protected finish is gut wrenching.
|By Tony B|
From: Around Boulder, CO
Sep 7, 2007
Eds. This entry was originally made as a route description, 8/20/6. The route was already within the database. To promote clarity, this second entry is converted to a comment with permission of the contributor. Thanks!
Batman Pinnacle is a nice crag with a nice variety of climbing on it. The main face gets mid-day sun all year and sun from at least mid-morning to late day for the warmer months, as it primarily faces South. While the crag is somewhat secluded and guarded by a less-than-discrete trail with many false branches and turns, it still gets heavy traffic for one route: Batman and Robin (5.6). This climb is pretty good, but it has somehow reached the mythical 'classic status' despite having little remarkable about it. Good rock, good pro, good moves... more "accessible" than classic.
Other routes there are infrequently traveled but good, if you like small holds on vertical walls. Robin's Secret and Bat Flake are good butt-kickers. Wear your edging shoes or suffer on these.
Up top and just to the East Side, of the Pinnacle's summit, the short and obscure route "Within Reach" can provide a last minute diversion before hiking down from the rock's summit-notch between this and Batman Rock.
To descend from the summit, rap 50' N (N to the base of "Within Reach" (10a)) and scramble down and East from there to a gully, that if continued SE and then SW will take you back to the base without much effort or danger. Still, hiking shoes are best on this gravel and terrain. From the Bat Flake, rap down once ~27 meters (50m rope doubtable) to the south, staying slightly left, to a set of slings on a horn, then 20 perhaps meters to the ground. Keep and eye on the rope, as there is frequently water at the base here, when a rock-spring runs or weeps down to fill it just left of the rap line.
Hike in on the higher trail directly from the old Twin Owls parking lot. Continue on the lower trail to the knocked-over sign with the re-directed arrow penciled in indicating Batman Rock up and to the right and Batman Pinnacle and Checkerboard Rock down and left. After crossing a buck and rail fence section, try to stay on trail (difficult) to reach the lower left side of this deceptively-tall cliff. The chunky square-ish top just below the Southern base of Batman Rock is the beacon, about 550' above the base.... Cairns mark the last bit through a talus field after crossing below the base of Checkerboard Rock. Alternatively, start and do the approach as for Batman Rock, but when below its Eastwardly base and about level in elevation (and perhaps 100 meters away) cut down and left above Checkerboard Rock and then down to the South to reach the base. Again, let the square spire atop the pinnacle be your guide and TRY to stay on trail....