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Hermaphrodite Flake 

YDS: 5.7 French: 5a Ewbanks: 15 UIAA: V+ ZA: 13 British: MVS 4b

Type:  Trad, Alpine, 4 pitches, 400'
Original:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Tom Naylor, Mary Olsen and Earl Olsen, July 1965
Season: summer
Page Views: 8,529
Submitted By: Nick Wilder on Jun 24, 2006

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (137)
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Alanna laybacking up the Hermaphrodite Flake.

Closures for Peregrine Falcon Protection MORE INFO >>>


A fun and unique route, with the rare chance for the some well-protected bolt clipping in the second pitch.

P1. Start straight up as per West Country, belaying just at the bottom of the MONSTER flake.

P2. Climb under, then through the flake. There's very little pro in there, but it's really easy and you won't go far with a fall. Exit the flake in about 80 feet, where there are two bolts (optional belay). Best to clip one of the bolts and keep going - clinging up the side to the top of the flake. Belay on top from two bolts.

P3. A nice long face climb past 9 bolts to a 3 bolt belay. Some of the bolts look a little old.

P4. A short runout face rejoins West Country on it's final pitch. Undercling an overlap until the crack runs out and the angle gets low.


Normal rack, lots of quickdraws.


See photo for Stately Pleasure Dome

Photos of Hermaphrodite Flake Slideshow Add Photo
Rock Climbing Photo: Routes facing the lake
BETA PHOTO: Routes facing the lake
Rock Climbing Photo: View down from inside the flake.  Fun moves.
View down from inside the flake. Fun moves.
Rock Climbing Photo: My good friend having fun on Hermaphrodite Flake
My good friend having fun on Hermaphrodite Flake
Rock Climbing Photo: View up into the flake
View up into the flake
Rock Climbing Photo: Steeper than it looks!
Steeper than it looks!

Comments on Hermaphrodite Flake Add Comment
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Comments displayed oldest to newestSkip Ahead to the Most Recent Dated Aug 17, 2016
By Blitzo
Sep 13, 2006

"Hermaphrodite Flake" actually ends on top of the flake. From there climb either "Eunuch" or the newer thing with all the bolts.
By Blitzo
Sep 27, 2006

The bolted thing is called "Boltway" 5.8 or 5.10a. For more information get "Rock Climbing Tuolumne Meadows" by Don Reid and Chris Falkenstein.
By Jordan Ramey
From: Calgary, Alberta
Aug 27, 2007

P2: You can climb the left side, right side, or up through the flake. Called Hermaphrodite flake because it goes both ways.

The Boltway (5.8)
P3: (5.7) several bolts very shady, one is halfway out. The climbing is fairly secure and the bolts are pretty close by Tuolumne standards. Rap rings at the belay here.

P4: (5.8) The crux is the first two bolts from the three bolt belay, then an easy crack and several variations lead to the top.
By Aerili
From: Los Alamos, NM
Dec 18, 2007

For some stellar, heady moves, definitely go right and lie it back all the way--you'll get 5.10 on exposure!

Also, The Boltway is an excellent way to finish up the climbing. Very safely bolted by Tuolumne standards.
By rex parker
From: las vegas n.v
Jun 10, 2010

so if you do just hermapadite flake as the two pitches . from the belay/ rappel station above the flake. two sixty meter ropes gets you straight down right to the terrace were you can walk down from
By David M.H.
From: los Angeles, ca
Jul 11, 2011

You can actually use one 60m to get down from the top of the flake. With a 70m you can skip that anchor midway and right of the flake and go straight down the flake to a slightly hidden set of chains about 20ft below the bottom of the flake. I think a 60m might make it if it stretches enough - but I can guarantee a 70m works. Then next rappel gets you to the ground.
By Josh Cameron
From: California in my Mind
Aug 20, 2011

If you lead the Flake and the first pitch of the Boltway, you can rap off and avoid the walk-off.
By BruceB
From: Reno, NV
Jul 3, 2013
rating: 5.4 4a 12 IV 10 VD 3c

We planned to rap off after the first pitch of "Boltway" but didn't find any rap rings at the belay, just 3 bolts (2 old). So we finished up boltway and walked off.
Boltway is certainly well bolted, but about half of the bolts are somewhat small and old, and one is a very bad 1/4" rusty bolt.
Fun slab climbing though.
By Ed Henicle
From: Santa Rosa, CA
Jul 29, 2014

P1 has a 5.8 variation start (see Reid book). It follows the right facing corner up to a 2 bolt anchor/rap station. The pitch requires small gear (000, 00, 0, C3's) - I always feel like I'm going to peel, but have not taken the slide yet! You can then link up P2 of the flake and rap off - nice 2 pitch warm up or cool down...
By Max Rausch
From: Monterey, California
Jul 10, 2015

Instead of going under or right at the flake I did a fun steep hand jam mantel to the left and around to the top of the flake. Boltway was super fun and closely bolted unlike most tuolomne climbs. At the top of Boltway, you have a 20 foot unprotected 5.8 traverse to reach the right arching crack. I found myself a little nervous at this point.
By SinRopa
From: parts unknown
Sep 6, 2015

If you're bigger than 6'3'' and 230 lbs, you might think about going right or left before you try climbing through/under the flake. I had my belayer take my pack and still got myself wedged in there and had a heck of a time moving to no fall danger though.
By Paul Simon
Oct 14, 2015

Fun climb. I tried rappelling with two 60m ropes from the top of the flake, but ended up having to downclimb the last 7 meters (and then back up because the rope got stuck). I would recommend using the intermediate rappel station.
By Howard
From: Costa Mesa, CA
Jul 12, 2016

Going to right of flake was much more psychological and thin than I expected for 5.4.
By Sid Rajaram
Aug 17, 2016

We left a cordelette and a locking beaner at the top of the Boltway. Cordelette has sentlementsl value. If you can retrieve and email Brian at bsecret at hotmail dot com he will happily pay you for postage.

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