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Frosted Flake 

YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a

Type:  Trad, 1 pitch, 80'
Original:  YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a [details]
FA: Brad Shaver, Grover Cable - 1976
Page Views: 13,742
Submitted By: saxfiend on Dec 18, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (154)
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The start of the crux on Frosted Flake.


This beautiful flake formation will test your willpower, your stamina and your ability to jam your feet into cracks and still get them back out. For the grade, Frosted Flake is a strenuous lead.

Starting up a corner on easy ground, move up to a roof and traverse left until you get to the end of the roof where it turns into a left-facing corner/flake. Power up the corner (crux) on laybacks and the occasional jam, and on to the top.


Starts about 40' right of Fruit Loops. Rap off the anchors.


Doubles in the medium to large cams (3-3.5"), otherwise small to medium gear. Bolted anchors.

Photos of Frosted Flake Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: The upper flake of Frosted Flake.
The upper flake of Frosted Flake.
Rock Climbing Photo: Jeff M. considers a final placement before launchi...
Jeff M. considers a final placement before launchi...
Rock Climbing Photo: Straight on shot of Frosted Flake.
BETA PHOTO: Straight on shot of Frosted Flake.
Rock Climbing Photo: Some perspective on the size of this awesome flake
Some perspective on the size of this awesome flake
Rock Climbing Photo: Jammin' on Frosted Flakes
Jammin' on Frosted Flakes
Rock Climbing Photo: Leading Frosted Flake at Rumbling Bald, North Caro...
Leading Frosted Flake at Rumbling Bald, North Caro...
Rock Climbing Photo: Aesthetic flake crack that trends left, best climb...
BETA PHOTO: Aesthetic flake crack that trends left, best climb...
Rock Climbing Photo: Rhett placing he last piece of gear before he emba...
Rhett placing he last piece of gear before he emba...

Comments on Frosted Flake Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Jan 25, 2017
By Stefanie Van Wychen
From: Denver, CO
Apr 15, 2007

I thought this felt more like a 5.9-, but I have done a lot of crack climbing. I have medium size hands for a girl and was getting big cups and awesome feet. The upper wide section can be laid back as there are feet on the wall to make it easier...
By nbrown
From: western NC
Jan 4, 2008

Agreed. Cracks are generally a rare occurrence here in NC, so most of them inevitably get rated harder than they actually are. Most people lieback that thing... That probably is a 9+, or harder.
By Nick Stayner
From: Wymont Kingdom
Apr 29, 2008
rating: 5.9- 5c 17 VI 16 HVS 4c

First time I led it, in fall '05, I liebacked the whole thing and nearly wet myself running it out--it's hard to stop and place gear that way! After going to Yosemite last summer (and the T Wall a bunch), I came back and jammed the hell out of it! Really awesome locker hands and cups with great body smears and some stems. This way is probably 5.9-. Liebacking the whole thing is hard.
By EliShank
Oct 2, 2008

I took some big falls one day trying to get a #3 close to the top of the lie back. It's not worth it, just keep haulin. Great route
By Austin Cooner
Jul 20, 2009
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

awesome route... definitely pump through the crux section after pulling the roof and just GO till you get to better holds to make your next gear placement! It's really not that hard!
By Ryan Williams
From: London (sort of)
Dec 12, 2010
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

Great fun... only complaint is that the perfect hands don't go on forever!

And they are really PERFECT HANDS! I can't believe anyone would lieback that thing... crazyness.
By JohnWesely
From: Red River Gorge
Oct 31, 2011

After doing it a few times, I really think Frosted Flake is the best route on the wall, even better than Shredded Wheat. As for Jamming Vs. Lie Backing. Having done it both ways, I felt like it was more strenuous to jam. You can place gear till your heart is content and would probably never fall out of the locker jams, but doing the runout lie back is much less strenuous.
By Robert Hutchins
Dec 21, 2011
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

I also like this route as well or better than Shredded Wheat. Neither have the length of quality climbing to be mega-classic, but this has a little more at the grade. As far as Jamming, I agree with Stefanie and Nick that this isn't particularly stout compared to western cracks of the same grade. I tend to jam from a lieback possition on this, but if you feel really secure in the jams you can actually straight-in jam it and catch a good hip scum that takes much of the pump away, as you aren't being physical with it, and are taking weight off.
By Kevin DB
Jan 22, 2013
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

What a rad and incredibly aesthetic line. Even without the beautiful splitter it has rad climbing on it. I'm not so sure on difficulty, I've climbed a lot in Indian Creek and I think 5.9+ is a fair grade on this. Probably harder if you did the insanity of lying it back.
By nickehman
From: Fresno, CA
Mar 20, 2013
rating: 5.9 5c 17 VI 17 HVS 5a

What a fun route! Jammed it straight in with small cups and the hip scum and had no problems. 5.9 felt right. Although it was only 20 ft. of business, the business was worth it
By Spencer.herr
From: Asheville NC
Oct 15, 2013

my climbing partner took a 20 footer! he was hurt so we packed up and limped out. I left a bd #3 just below the crux if anyone is headed out there over the next few days and can grab it I would appreciate it! I can't get back out there for a while. if you end up with it just message me. thanks
By Jonathan Dull
From: Boone, NC
May 9, 2014
rating: 5.9+ 5c 17 VI 17 E1 5a

One word...Classic! I would recommend bringing two #4 Camalots (in addition to two #3s) for the upper section after climbing through the vertical flake/crack.
By Pulldownfrenzy
From: Visalia, CA
Nov 24, 2014

I climbed this November 22, 2014. I have big hands and got solid hand jams and good friction smears augmented by a few foot jams at the beginning.

I understand the controversy w.r.t. grade - it is very difficult to rate a crack climb in an area without many cracks! Were I to have no experience with cracks I would have said it was tough for the grade.

That said, being from California I have a lot of experience with crack climbing and found it appropriate for the grade, although strenuous through the crux. I placed a piece RIGHT at the corner and didn't protect the entire crux all the way through - exhilarating for both the leader and the beleyer.

DO NOT lead this unless you are either very strong at the grade or an experienced crack climber. TONS of fun though - favorite climb in the area.
By Sam Golden
From: melbourne, FL
Mar 31, 2015

5.9 or 5.9+ felt right for this, I jammed the crux section but the angle of it I believe gets the +... Anyway great climb I had a lot of fun on this!
By Adam Kunis
From: Athens/Plymouth
Nov 16, 2015

Had a blast climbing this route this past weekend. Fun solid crux that I found easier to jam than lie back. I also did it with a single rack up to a 4 and got two bomber hex placements on it. If you're comfortable on the grade and in the area definitely do it.
By Gabriel Skiera
Jan 4, 2016

Wow! What a great route!! Couldn't get the grin off my face once I started the crack. One of my favorite single pitches in the state.
By Nathan Stegenga
From: Central, SC
Jan 25, 2017

+1 Jamming the crux corner.

I tried lying it back last year, and it whooped me (ashamedly on TR). Came back this year after doing some crack climbing out west, and I can't imagine wanting to lieback that thing ever again. The jams are, well, PERFECT. Jamming it also puts you in a great position to place gear to climb this route safely - you're placing gear blind if you lieback it. Sounds like a lot of people run it out to the rest stance above the crux section - that's a BIG fall if you blow it. If that's your style, go for it. Just a heads up to those who are thinking about leading this for the first time. Enjoy one of NC's classics!

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