Flinders cave is a modern discovery indeed. The cave hosts a great deal of obscenely steep, hard routes. Nicknamed “27 Heaven”- the climbing is upside down ceiling thuggery- which translates to be very physical and relentless.
'The Secret Cave' or ‘Flinders Cave’ is sixty metres high, but from twenty to fifty metres overhanging with the main wall being about twenty metres height at 60°- 80°.
As Cameron Fairburn writes- “We had found the steepest terrain in QLD, or I should say rediscovered. We found a line of old 8mm hardware down the right wall of the cave that belonged to Frey Yule. We think he checked out the cave about five years previously but then moved interstate. The cave is SSW facing, so no sun all year round and only a 40min drive from 'Brisbane'. Unfortunately, there is also the 2.5km, 40min uphill walk in as well. The rock is solid volcanic trachyte with formations uncommon in Queensland; it's a mixture of fused blocks, huecos, crystallised slopers and hard crimps - the holds can be quite sharp. Some of the easier routes like 'The Nightmare of Milky Joe' (23) and 'Never Ask the Moon' (22) are super-fun cut-loose jug fests.
Early in the piece, Glen established 'Wet Jigsaw Puzzle' (25) a short pump fest that climbs out of the steepest part of the wall. To add to this he climbed 'King of the Mods' (27), adding to a huge range of 27’s to come. Then the numbers rolled, I freed my project after my food was spiked 'Like a Man on Pepperoni' (27), possibly the steepest climb in 'Queensland'. That was until Glen equipped his, an 80° blank arête project, 'A Space Odyssey' 25m 30 or 5.13c”.
'The Secret Cave' consists of two developed areas: the steep main wall and a right hand wall which, although not as steep as the main wall, offers some challenging climbing. 'Terminus of Desire' (25) climbs from under the large overhang. This route will be used to access the steeper upper wall which has the potential for a couple of super hard routes. With all this new development Ross returned to develop what he hoped would be a nice easy sub-20 warm up. He ended up establishing 'Finger Tips and Mountain Tops' (23), an intricate crimp-fest climbing above the lip of this right-hand buttress. Ross then established 'Song and Dance Man' (27) a steep juggy start into a hard crimper sequence. Glen the power monkey campused his way to glory on Backstroke of the West (27) while another buddy of ours Antoine Moussette battled scorpion-eating spiders on one of the best 5.12c’s or 26’s in Qld “The French Connection' .
There is still so much more to do. Hard unclimbed projects, the undeveloped upper wall and the central cave section as well as some creative batman starts. 'The Secret Cave' has proved to be a valuable asset to 'Queensland' climbing, not only in the unique steep terrain, but also in the addition of ever increasing harder sport climbs in 'Queensland'.
When to go: All day, any day. Providing you can handle the heat on the walk-in.
Drive: From Brisbane head out on the Centenary Highway, turn south at Ripley Rd. After about 10km this turns into Undulla Rd. After a further 7km turn right onto Mount Elliott Rd. On Mount Elliot Rd you eventually come to 2 sets of gates. Go through the gate and close them behind you. At the second set of gates, the right one is clearly someone's house, take the left gate. Drive to the end (bumpy dirt road) and park somewhere without blocking the final locked gate or the road.
Walk in: Follow the fire trail for 5 mins, to an intersection with a yellow SFT marker. Turn left (uphill). Soon you arrive at another yellow SFT marker. Go left again onto the faint trail. Follow through the trees to a clearing and Head left immediately. You should be able to follow this now well developed trail all the way to the crag without much trouble. At the small gear cave, scramble up the rock just left where the log leans against the wall.
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