Flame Wall AKA Graham's Creek Supercrag Mostly trad climbing8 routes in crag
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An outstanding orange prow of jutting sandstone that requires a long and taxing approach. Unfortunately the centre of this formation is either too steep or too blank for mere mortals. Perhaps the next generation will take advantage of some of the incredible potential of this area. In the meantime you can enjoy some very nice face and roof routes on either side of the main prow.
Climbers have been sniffing around up here for decades. In early 2003 Neil Monteith and James Pfrunder hiked up in the pouring rain and brought back photos of the main wall dubbing it the Graham's Creek Supercrag. They were however put off by the long approach walk, and the apparent blankness of much of the face. The sheer size and angle was enough to impress others who soon made their move. In 2005, the 'Yerba' crew cut a path up the creek from the nearby 'Good Friday' Wall and set about bolting the unlikely roof climb Out Of Control (24). Robin Holmes dragged several assistants in to help in his two day marathon bolting effort. Eventually he returned for the redpoint and brought in Neil Monteith and Will Monks. Neil got excited and worked furiously to bolt the steepest thing that looked possible, with 'Flaming Lips' (26) being the end result. Steve Chapman optimistically bolted a very thin face route that was steeper than he thought upon redpoint attempts! This route might have to wait for a super hard man. In the meantime Will Monks got given a nice partially bolted project on a platter by the 'Yerba' crew. This route had to wait for more than six months before it was finally climbed as 'Slow Burn' (23). Earlier in the year Steve Chapman also tradded his way up a thin crack variant to Out Of Control to produce 'Edge Burner' (23). In late 2005 Malcolm Matheson did his usual and onsighted all established routes in a single day, including a drawn out battle with the pumpy 'Flaming Lips'. Fast forward three years and Nati local Ingvar Lidman finally puts Steve Chapman's project out of it's misery to create 'The Thin Red Line' (29) and another hard new route - 'Tantalus Released' (29). The main prow of Flame Wall still beckons… Malcolm rapped it – the verdict: "too hard and too far away".© (nmonteith)
Access issues inherited from Victoria Range
The Victoria Range was badly burnt in the fires of February 2013 but all areas are now open to climbing (Feb 2014). However there are access changes to the cliffs in the Eureka area.
All up the approach takes about an hour from the road. If you are as enthusiastic as Neil you might get this down to 40 minutes. Walk into 'Good Friday' Wall. From the far left (uphill) end of this crag keep following rock cairns and tape markers up over the hill (just south of the gorge) to arrive on rocky plateau with clear view east towards the proud Flame Wall. Walk right (south) along these rock shelves following large cairns and tape to eventually drop down into the small creek (runs for 8 months of the year). Cross this, and hike steeply up the other side to arrive at the base of the wall. For all the routes you scramble onto a friendly ledge, from the left side, that offers good sun-napping locations for belayers.
The wall faces into the sun for most of the day with shade only in the early hours of the morning. 'Flaming Lips' is in shade until midday. Rain protection is minimal if you get caught this far out without an escape plan!© (nmonteith)
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