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Table of contents

1. Elphinstone 55 routes in Crag

Summary:
JFMAMJJASOND
seasonality
Mostly Sport

Long/Lat: 150.271566, -33.710951

Unique Features And Strengths:

High grades. High quality.

Description:

This crag will prove to be the citadel of hard climbing in the Mountains. Pitches are generally around 30-35m, uncharacteristically sustained and pumpy, on bullet proof rock.

The main wall, facing broadly south-east, receives sun in the summer till mid morning, and not at all during the winter. Dumbo Love sector faces south-west and catches an hour or so of winter sun in the mid to late afternoon, and up to three hours on summer afternoons. Though in the depth of winter Elphingstone can be untenably cold for skinny sports climbers, it has generally proven to be climbable all year round, even in summer with shaded climbing to be found throughout the day.

Many of the routes have lower offs considerably longer than the route itself as the ground falls away below the starting points. A 70m rope is paramount rather than prudent.

Access Issues: inherited from Blue Mountains

The Blue Mountains are a World Heritage listed area. The Grose Valley, the cliffs around Katoomba and much of the Narrow Neck peninsula are part of the Blue Mountains National Park which is managed by the NPWS. The Western Escarpment - where most of the climbing is - is Crown Land managed by the BMCC. While the NPWS Plan of Management nominates several locations in the National Park where rock climbing is deemed appropriate, the majority of the climbing remains unacknowledged. To maintain access our best approach is to 'Respect Native Habitat, Tread Softly and Leave No Trace'.

Approach:

From Blackheath turn right at the Explorers Rd before the 'Explorers Tree'. This is a loop road with two entry points and restrictions on what lanes you can enter from and exit to. Coming from Katoomba you will turn at the Exporer Tree itself, albeit more of a large stump! Turn into Pulpit Hill rd and park at the end. Walk through the gate for about 10min. At a point where you can see into the valley to the left and across to Narrow Neck peninsula , walk up the next hill. You will find a cairn again a small pine tree on the left. Walk down this steepening track for 5min until it terminates at the cliff edge. There is an obvious rap in chain on a large boulder. You will need a 40m rope to fix and rap in with. Use the rope capture fixtures to stop your rope rubbing. Climb out using the via ferrata (not glued in) and an appropriate device (like a minitraxion). Do not solo the via ferrata!

Ethic:

There are many CLOSED PROJECTS in both sectors. As a matter of respect, stay off them unless you have permission from the person who bolted it or the project becomes listed as open.

1.1. Main wall 29 routes in Sector

Summary:
All Sport

Long/Lat: 150.271089, -33.711436

Description:

Many routes are 35m+ and will make your forearms feel like they have been bludgeoned by blood. Sun till 11am in the summer, and none in the winter. Wind proof gear is a must in the winter.

Approach:

After rapping in, walk down the track and turn right. The wall looms over you after about 50m. Mind the cliff edge, there are spots where you wouldn't want to trip!

Descent Notes:

Mind your rope length as routes often lower off beyond the cliff edge, or at the very least significantly lower than where the route starts. You will need a 70m ROPE MINIMUM!

RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
1 ** Castor's Dinner Date

Bold sports climbing at its finest. Batman start, suck your gonads up and steel thy self for a memorable journey.

FA: Chris Coppard, 2012

26Sport 25m
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
2 ** Pollux and the Pussycat

Start off the large cairn and head straight up the left side of the arete and wall above to some long moves.

FFA: Chris Coppard, 2012

28Sport 25m
3 ** A Parisian Feast

Start as per Pollux and head up the line of bolts into the tecky dihidral above.

FFA: Rowan Druce, 2012

27Sport 25m
4 *** Aristocat

Start from the cairn and head up and across the right face to rejoin the arete at half height. Boulder up leaning arete to finish above the small roof.

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2012

31Sport 25m
5 *** Tiger Cat

Wowsers! All time mega classic. Start as per Aristocat, boulder its main crux and then head into a mind boggling amount of sustained climbing, culminating with a potentially heart breaking finish. Absolute stonker!

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2013

33Sport 25m
6 *** Beta Vinyl

Starts 5m right of Tiger Cat, cross the Velvet project at two thirds height, briefly into Tiger Snatch and gently rightward to motor up the headwall. Hoik your rig left and right while trying not to feel like a flag in a stiff wind. Sitting Bull joins into the same headwall finish.

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2013

33Sport 30m
7 Lee Closed Project

Starts a few meters right of Beta Vinyl and goes up somewhere!

Sport Project
8 Kitten Mittens project

Tom O'Halloran closed project. 8m right of Beta Vinyl. Heads straight up, passing through the left end of the low horizontal break of Velvet project / Tiger Snatch.

Sport
9 Velvet Love project

Julian Saunders closed project. Start 2m right of Tom's project behind the large rock at cliff base. Head up and left to join the last few bolts of Tiger Cat.

Sport Project 25m
10 *** Tiger Snatch

Variant finish to Julian's project. Climb for 15m to obvious rest at small break. Head right to a funky crux, then back left to join Tiger Cat at the lip, just under the chain. Originally graded 29, general consensus is that it is a little harder. Enjoy Yourself!

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2012

30Sport 25m
11 *** Love Cats

For the most part this a Tiger Snatch variant. More 'doable' than Tiger Snatch as it avoids the complicated dyno in its upper section, albeit with an extra 20 move price tag. A route for the pumpers. Head left off the halfway rest as per Velvet Love. Clip a bolt, and then head upward and back to the right to clip a bolt of Beta Vinyl. Rejoin Tiger Snatch to the chain.

FA: Julian Saunders, 2013

30Sport 25m
12 Tiger Vinyl

A varient finish to Tiger Snatch. Instead of heading left under the final roof, head right to finish up Beta Vinyl.

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2013

31Sport 30m
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
13 *** Sitting Bull

Originally bolted by Rowan Druce and generously offered to the masses, Tom O'Halloran, seeing a classic on offer, was quick to pounce. Start as per Brummel Hook, then head straight up the immaculate orange stone to finish on the high black head wall. Slightly easier than Tiger Cat, this may see an upgrade.

FFA: Tom O'Halloran, 2012

32Sport
14 *** Brummel Hook

Start 2m right of Tiger Snatch before the ledge drops away. Sustained face climbing leads to difficult roof moves on typically wet holds. Breach this and head rightward into the water runnel.

FFA: Rowan Druce, 2012

30Sport 30m
15 *** Bandula

One of the best lines at the crag!! Heads straight up the high flake above the Brummel Hook roof and keeps on going and going. Squeeze hard, keep tension and don't let go.

FFA: Rowan Druce, 2013

32Sport
16 *** Ristretto

Start as per Brummel Hook and head right at the second bolt. Sustained and technical face climbing leads to a vague 'letter box' rest, and a series of boulder problems above.

FFA: Julian Saunders, 2012

29Sport 15m
17 Double Ristretto project

Julian Saunders closed project. From the chains of Ristretto launch through the roof into what has to rate as one of the best dynos ever in the entire world. If you hold the swing, head right along the lip, up the wall, through the bulge, and into the the high corner systems. A 70m rope is a minimum if you are lowering from the chain.

Sport Project 35m
18 Palomino project

Julian Saunders closed project. Start a few meters right of Ristretto. Cross Ristretto and head straight up between it and Brummell Hook.

Sport Project
19 Getting rid of the Milkman

Roof double dyno extension of Ristretto. Do Ristretto, dyno through the roof then keep on truckin up the face into the big block and break. Continue up to join into the last few meters of Brummel Hook. Full value

FFA: Tom O'Halloran, 2013

29Sport 30m
20 Ben Cossey projects

There are several lines to the right of Ristretto that end under 'the great roof' that are in the process of being bolted.

Sport Project
21 Project 3

Lee Cossey closed project. Starts just shy of the wall splitting arete 15m right of Ristretto. Tends rightward to breach the main roof close to its right hand end, and up wall above.

Sport Project
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
22 Lord Elphinstone project

Rowan Druce closed project. Straight up the obvious arete at the right end of the main wall.

Sport
23 The Elephant man project

Start as for Lord Elphinstone but then head diagonally across the wall to the right. Please talk with Rowan if you want to attempt this line while it is still a project.

Sport Project
24 The Milkbar Project

Tom O'Halloran closed project. Start as for Lord Elphinstone and The Elephant Man then heads right and all the way up up up to and through the top roofs.

Sport Project 45m
25 We Crossed Eternity project

Tom O'Halloran closed project. Starts as per Green grass and head left at the second bolt.

Sport Project
26 *** Zigzagonal

The journey to the center of the earth could not be this epic. Start as per Green Grass diverging to the left at the seventh bolt when Green grass heads back to the right. Up Up Up, staying generally just to the left of Green Grass to finish under the high roof.

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2012

32Sport 35m
27 High Hopes

Lee Cossey generously gave this route to a visiting Frenchman who had become rather enamoured with it. Departs Green Grass after its crux and heads straight up and through a series of roofs and beyond. Finish at the chains for Zigzagonal.

FFA: Quentin Chastagnier, 2013

32Sport 35m
28 *** Green Grass

Started at grade 28, quickly went to 29 and may see another advance yet. Either climb with second bolt clipped, or use locking biners on the first (a backclip would see two people go to the valley floor!). Climb up and gently rightward to roof. Head around the lip and hit the accelerator. Traverse left above the lip, up several meters and then break right and up until your forearms resemble base ball bats and you feel like if you fall you will land in the valley way below. Use a minimum 70m rope or you may well land in the valley.

FFA: Lee Cossey, 2012

29Sport 30m
29 Chris Flowers closed project

Not sure of the start yet, but it joins Green Grass on the upper headwall.

Sport Project

1.2. Dumbo Love Sector 22 routes in Sector

Summary:
Mostly Sport

Long/Lat: 150.272484, -33.710218

Description:

Full of great routes in the mid to late 20's. With the odd exception, these routes are long and involved.

Approach:

At the base of the rap, head down and take a left through the jungle. After a couple of minutes traverse above a large boulder and cross the creek. Traverse the far side of the creek and around the right side of the large boulder slightly downhill.

Descent Notes:

Use a 70m rope.

RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
1 ** Kung Fu Muscle

A long batman start leads to primo thrutching up the blunt prow.

FFA: Scott Boladeras, 2012

26Sport 20m
2 *** Shogun

Line of bolts right of Kung Fu Muscle and left of The Last Ninja. A unique route for the mountains, bouldery and sustained hard pockets. A visionary bolting effort by Scotty B and inspired siege by Logan.

FA: Logan Barber, 2013

32Sport Project 25m
3 *** The Last Ninja

Deservedly popular route. Start right of Shogun , head up and left to the base of the right leaning arch. Punch your way up this and through the ever steepening wall to find some respite on the lesser overhanging headwall.

FFA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

27Sport 25m
4 ** One Inch Punch

Shared start with The Last Ninja. Head up to desperate boulder problem and right through intimidating roof flake.

FA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2013

28Sport 25m, 10
5 ** Fists Of Fury

Amazing line with a tough little beta crux.

FFA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

28Sport 25m
6 *** Cobra Kai Connection

Mega pumper that connects the start of Fists Of Fury (to the fifth or sixth bolt) into Chao Wa Punch Kick. Take all your draws and you may need to borrow some to make up the 18 that are required.

FFA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

26Sport 35m
7 * Chao Wa Punch Kick

Bouldery start to gain the saw tooth feature at 10m, and then straight up the never ending wall.

FFA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

28Sport 35m
8 * Heisenburg Corner

The obvious wide crack/corner 8m to the right of Chao Wa Punch Kick. Take all the big cams you can rustle up. Finishes at double rings.

FFA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

21Trad 35m
9 Romancing The Stone

Corinne Gwyther closed project. Start at the base of the wall to the right of Heisenburg Corner. Traverse to arete, head up and come back onto the face to reach the roof. Around this and continue up the face.

Sport Project
10 Project 7

Julian Saunders closed project. Start as per project 6 but continue up arete to finish under large roof.

Sport Project
11 Project 8

Julian Saunders closed project. To the right of Project 7 is an obvious overhanging corner. Up this and around the arete to the right to get established for the face/arete above.

Sport Project
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
12 ** Treadstone

There are three routes that share a common start marked by a small 'dry stone' platform with an undercling horn above it. Boulder up the side pull feature to attain a good break. Traverse left and up through some difficult moves, then continue up for more of the same.

FFA: Julian Saunders, 2012

29Sport 30m
13 Treadstone direct project

Julian Saunders closed project. A hellishly long jump to join Treadstone.

Sport Project
14 *** The knitting Cirlce

Full of funky sequences and memorable holds. Start as per Treadstone but continue up for one bolt more before moving left, over vague lip and into the shallow groove. Some awesome sections above may have you think you are all done. Wrong! Opinion is mixed as to whether it is 27 or 28.

FFA: Julian Saunders, 2012

27Sport 30m
15 *** Fallopian Jezebels

It is not uncommon to hear whimpering from high up on this super classic. Start as per Treadstone but head straight up the seam and onto the arete above. Continue up the face onto the white streaked, water washed stone, where the bolts cease and the fun factor goes redline.

FFA: Julian Saunders, 2012

26Sport 30m
16 Project 9

Emil Mandyczewsky closed project. Starts 5m right of Treadstone in the 'bowl'. Gently left and up to join Fallopian Jezabels.

Sport Project
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
17 Project 12

Emil Mandyczewsky closed project. Start in deep in the bowl of doom.

Sport Project
18 Dumbo Love Project

Closed project. Start on the right side of the bowl and climb up and into the corner above.

Sport Project
19 Project 10

Chris Coghill closed project. Start 2m right of Dumbo Love project. Straight up!

Sport Project
20 Person Of Interest (chopped)

The scene of yet another ethics debacle, where visions collide, egos are bruised and Negotiation is a primitive wallflower. Fact 1. Emil, after considering the amount of available gear placements across the whole route, and much discussion with other developers at Elphinstone, opted to bolt the line and subsequently did the first ascent. Fact 2. Rowan returned from overseas and took umbrage with Emil since he wanted to attempt it on gear. After having had numerous ascents Rowan chopped the routes bolts. One bolt was left in the route toward the top, presumedly due to lack of gear.

FA: Emil Mandyczewsky, 2012

25Sport 40m
21 Side Swipe

Start as per Person of interest sans bolts. After entering the corner head right past a bolt and up the arete to rejoin Person of interest at its last remaining bolt.

FA: Julian Saunders, 2013

26Sport 40m
22 Project 13

Simon Atkins closed project.

Sport Project

1.3. Gay Paris Wall 4 routes in Sector

Summary:
All Sport

Long/Lat: 150.271554, -33.710526

Description:

From the bottom of the rap station head down the path and turn (stage) left. After about 50m look up and see the big orangey, black, polka dot white roofy sustained goodness this wall has to offer. March up through the Kokoda to the base of the wall. Routes start a few meters off the ground after climbing up rungs through seeping rock. Don't let the bottom of these routes deter you from trying them. They are set to be mega classics!! Take care when walking around the base of this cliff. Try your best to be as low impact as possible on the vegetation and watch your footing. There are some potholes in the veg that could bring you unstuck quickly!

RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
1 *** Amanda Proj

Amanda closed project. Starts up CMBL and after a couple bolts head out left through the 2 high orange streaks

Sport Project 20m
2 *** Shame at the Anvil

Batman or make yourself a Bachar ladder to reach the start. Then up a couple of the ladder rungs to get into the proper rock. Blast straight up and up and up to get yourself under the high bulge. Some tricky moves manoeuvring around the bulge then out left through the roof to turn the lip and climb the last few meters up the slab to high anchor. May be easier?

FFA: Tom O'Halloran, 2013

32Sport 35m
3 *** House fire in the origami district

Matt 'Slow Banga' Norgrove closed project. Light your match and charge on up the middle of the wall and out the lip before you run out of paper to burn

Sport Project 35m
4 *** Mr Stagger Lee

Tom O'Halloran closed project. Starts the same as House fire for the first 5m then sweeps to the right through a shallow groove, up on some bubbly flakes and tends slighty right again up on the high pocketed prow to finish on the right of the roof

Sport Project 30m

2. Index by grade

Grade Stars Name Style Area
21 * Heisenburg Corner Trad 35m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
25 Person Of Interest (chopped) Sport 40m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
26 ** Castor's Dinner Date Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
*** Cobra Kai Connection Sport 35m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
*** Fallopian Jezebels Sport 30m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
** Kung Fu Muscle Sport 20m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Side Swipe Sport 40m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
27 ** A Parisian Feast Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
*** The Last Ninja Sport 25m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
*** The knitting Cirlce Sport 30m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
28 ** Pollux and the Pussycat Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
* Chao Wa Punch Kick Sport 35m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
** Fists Of Fury Sport 25m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
** One Inch Punch Sport 25m, 10 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
29 Getting rid of the Milkman Sport 30m 1.1. Main wall
*** Green Grass Sport 30m 1.1. Main wall
*** Ristretto Sport 15m 1.1. Main wall
** Treadstone Sport 30m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
30 *** Brummel Hook Sport 30m 1.1. Main wall
*** Love Cats Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
*** Tiger Snatch Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
31 *** Aristocat Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
Tiger Vinyl Sport 30m 1.1. Main wall
32 *** Bandula Sport 1.1. Main wall
High Hopes Sport 35m 1.1. Main wall
*** Sitting Bull Sport 1.1. Main wall
*** Zigzagonal Sport 35m 1.1. Main wall
*** Shogun Sport Project 25m 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
*** Shame at the Anvil Sport 35m 1.3. Gay Paris Wall
33 *** Beta Vinyl Sport 30m 1.1. Main wall
*** Tiger Cat Sport 25m 1.1. Main wall
? Ben Cossey projects Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
Chris Flowers closed project Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
Double Ristretto project Sport Project 35m 1.1. Main wall
Kitten Mittens project Sport 1.1. Main wall
Lee Closed Project Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
Lord Elphinstone project Sport 1.1. Main wall
Palomino project Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
Project 3 Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
The Elephant man project Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
The Milkbar Project Sport Project 45m 1.1. Main wall
Velvet Love project Sport Project 25m 1.1. Main wall
We Crossed Eternity project Sport Project 1.1. Main wall
Dumbo Love Project Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 10 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 12 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 13 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 7 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 8 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Project 9 Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Romancing The Stone Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
Treadstone direct project Sport Project 1.2. Dumbo Love Sector
*** Amanda Proj Sport Project 20m 1.3. Gay Paris Wall
*** House fire in the origami district Sport Project 35m 1.3. Gay Paris Wall
*** Mr Stagger Lee Sport Project 30m 1.3. Gay Paris Wall