Fort Rock Crag Mostly Trad climbing5 routes in cliff
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Not to be confused with Fort Rock, which is the 4m high rock outcrop / lookout at the top of the hill at the end of the Fort Rock walking track. While not a new crag it seems to have been forgotten about, which is a shame as the routes are quite good. Especially if you need a better warm up for Gateway than a tweaky 24. Crag faces west-southwest and is slightly overhung, so its shady until mid arvo. Apart from one route all the routes need some trad gear. And rebolting!
Access issues inherited from Gateway & Fort Rock
You can come in from Thirroul Ave along what looks like a bush track, but this actually involves trespassing on the school land.©
About 300m from Fort Rock, walk down at the North end of the crag. The track is faint, bring clippers and make some cairns to help prevent track braiding.
The two central routes share lower-offs, the rest you have to top out then walk down.
Ethic inherited from Blue Mountains
Although sport climbing is well entrenched as the most popular form of Blueys climbing, mixed-climbing on gear and bolts has generally been the rule over the long term. Please try to use available natural gear where possible, and do not bolt cracks or potential trad climbs.
Because of the softness of Blue Mountains sandstone, bolting should only be done by those with a solid knowledge of glue-in equipping. A recent fatality serves as a reminder that this is not an area to experiment with bolting.
If you do need to top rope, please do it through your own gear as the wear on the anchors is both difficult and expensive to maintain.
It would be appreciated if brushing of holds becomes part of your climbing routine - do it with a soft bristled brush and never a steel brush!
The removal of vegetation - both from the cliff bases and the climbs - is not seen as beneficial to aesthetics of the environment nor to our access to it. However, the fast growing scrub can conceal walking tracks in mere months, so bringing a pair of secaturs and pruning as you walk is a good way of helping out with the constant task of track maintenance. Some appropriately discreet pruning is a far better alternative then track braiding (which causes far more damage). It's also a good warmup for your forearms!
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