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Table of contents

1. Rosa Gully 26 routes in Area

Sport and Trad

Long/Lat: 151.284073, -33.860694


Although Rosa Gully sports some pretty big cliffs and easy access it's a remarkably unpopular crag, especially when you consider that Diamond Bay (which is right next door) is very popular. This is probably because the rockat the mouth of the gully is damp some of the year (particularly during summer or when an easterly or southerly is blowing) and all of the fixed protection rotted away a millenia ago. But recent rebolting and retrobolting has made many fine routes there now. The main problem is that the narrow gully is a wind tunnel, a small breeze up top will roar through the gully. If it's an easterly or southerly (all summer basically) it'll carry huge amounts of sea spray onto the climbs at the gully mouth, the climbs deeper in may be fine. If it's a westerly (winter) it can be chilly. But conditions are great there about half the year so go for it!


Rosa Gully is located just north of Diamond Bay and parking for both the crags is the same. From the carpark follow the footpath north through the park. At the north eastern end of the park head over to the fence where it creates a small inward corner. Climb over the fence just to the right of the warning sign. From here pick up the track through the trees leading down into the gully. This track heads into the northern branch (the gully has two branches) and continues into the main gully. Scramble down the main gully and towards the water where the existing climbs are located. An obvious feature is the ladder at the mouth of the gully on the northern side. This leads up to the Walk Around Ledge which continues north for several hundred metres and where some of the climbs start from. It's worthwhile taking a wander along the ledge even if you don't plan on climbing since it's quite interesting. The routes are described from left to right (from the southern side to the northern side) facing the cliff. If you're prepared to do so, it would be easier to rap in from the south side of the gully using the copious amount of highlining ring bolts and carrots in place and collect your anchors on the way out. There are probably more ring bolts on top of the cliff than on it's face, so finding them is no issue. Access to the mouth of the gully vanishes when the waves are rough.


The area was opened in the 1970s with a couple of routes from Mike Law, Gary Eggans, and Matt Dunstan, and substantially developed by Mike Law in the 1980s. The area has seen much re-bolting.

1.1. Rosa Gully south side 9 routes in Sector

Mostly Sport

Long/Lat: 151.282614, -33.861650


South side of the gully, generally better and drier rock.


Walk down the deep V in the fence and follow the trail down the wet gully.

RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
1 * Pox

About 3m right of the arete at the mouth of the gully, opposite the ladders, on 2nd biggest boulder. Clip 1st bolt with a screwgate and step left and up past another 8 Ubolts to a loweroff. 1st pitch retrobolted 2014

There is the old trad 2nd pitch:-

  1. 10m Up and over roof (17ish)

Gary Eggins 1970s

FA: Garry Eggins, Mikl Law trad, 1979

18 Sport 25m, 9
2 ** Rosa Parks

Classic and varied. Same start as Pocks and straight up thin crack and wall above. Claudette Colvin was actually the person who wouldn't give up her seat - see drunk history .

FA: @mikl, 2015

22 Sport 20m, 10
3 ** Pocks

Start on biggest boulder. Up the ledge and step right to crack then onwards through roofs. Better to be short or tall on this

FA: mikl, 2014

22 Sport 30m
4 Matt's Climb

Reasonable trad climbing, start 4m R of the biggest boulder. Hard start to Ubolt then up cracks and breaks to ledge at 4 m (this is a new direct start, the old route traversed in easily from atop the big boulder). Up rounded corner, double ropes help as there's a god crack 1m right. Belay possible on ledge (Ubolts and a big cam).

Head up and right up wall, (Ubolt, carrot) and up a short dirty corner (Ubolt) step left to next corner under a roof. Head left (Ubolt) under the roof then continue up crack, Ubolt and traverse right to belay. Short finish scramble.

FA: mikl law, matt dunstan, 1978

20 Mixed 40m, 5
5 * The Devil's Sandpit

2m right of Matt's climb and just left of 3 roofs and a funeral. A burly move to the 2nd bolt then up easily to ledge, leave behind the jugs for slopers up rounded cracks to anchor.

FA: @chris_bc

Set by @chris_bc, 2015

20 Sport 6
6 ** 3 roofs and a funeral

Much easier and more solid than it looks (fortunately). Start 2m R of The Devil's Sandpit and 6m L of Funky Moves (but at ground level). Follow line to lower-off below awesome breaking wave of rock. Start has good holds out left. The 2nd roof is easy, you throw a leg over a big flake on the lip, it's been jumped on but the belayer should stay off to the left till you're off it. Third roof can be done with all the good holds wet.

FA: @mikl, 2015

23 Sport 20m, 9
7 Everything but the moves

Project. Work in progress. Glued 14-Feb-2016. Glue needs checking.

First 2 bolts as for Devils Sandpit, clip the 3rd bolt of TRAAF continue right and up the arete (clip next bolt and ignore bolt on right of arete, going straight up instead).

Alternatively, traverse in from the walk-in ledge on the right, clipping the bolt on right of arete and going up.

Sport Project
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
8 ** Funky Moves

Interesting moves the whole way. This climbs the corners on the left edge of the big cave some 13m R of Matts Climb. Start up irritating slab or walk R and up into the cave and walk left to the line, step down to bolt belay. Up the line to a double U lower off (or topout to a 3 ring anchor 10m higher over the top). It replaces an old sandbag 15 (!) Jurds on Toast which probably climbed the start a bit further left then continued up the corner past 2 carrots (still rusting).

FA: Jeff Crass, 2014

20 Sport 30m, 12
9 ** Harold Would Go

Varied funkiness. Steep corner 2m R of Funky Moves then sandy moves up R to roof (hidden chip to clip high bolt after foot ledge fell on my head), L a move and up. For Eddie Aikau and Harold Holt (who I met 2 weeks before he drowned).

FA: @mikl, 2015

22 Sport 20m, 9

1.2. Rosa Gully North Side 17 routes in Area

Trad and Sport

Long/Lat: 151.284158, -33.860608

Unique Features And Strengths:

Really pretty, good conditions on still winter days, a dramatic ladder and ledge system leading North.


The rock in Rosa Gully stays quite wet after rain. This is due to the run off from the above nature strip/park opposite the houses. The northern side is devoid of sun as well during the day so the sand stones only chance of drying is from the gust of wind going up and down the gully.

The sand stone on the south side can stay quite wet after heavy rain and can get some run off from the above park. Luckily the south side gets a semi dose of the sun throughout the day to dry it off. The wind going up and down the gully also helps to dry it off. Summer is very moist in there due to onshore winds.

All the fixed pro resembles blobs of rusted metal which could almost be pulled out by hand. Except for routes that have been rebolted with stainless.


You can rap in from one of the many highline anchors in place on the south side near the mouth of the gully (straight above Pox). Easier to walk in from the grassy 'Vee" between the 2 branches of the gully is ok, can be tricky if wet or locals are watering the community garden.

Routes on the north wall of the gully and routes north on the seacliff are described first.

Then the south side (Pox etc).


Developed by everyone's favorite bolter, Mike Law, back in the 1970's.

RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
1 ** Chicken of the Sea

Line on the left hand side (north) at the base of the steep narrow part of the gully. By car at base of steep section, 50m from the gully exit to the sea. Up on jugs (you can clip 1st bolt on Rainbow Connection and have your second unclip it later) and cross left onto ledge. up to ramp where you can pull on crimps or step right and to a hands off freakish slab. Then up easily through ledge and funkies up second ramp to anchor.

FA: @patu01, 2015

19 Sport 25m, 11
2 ** Rainbow connection

Start a metre right of Chicken of the Sea, head up and rightwards to finish up a thin crack. Varied and slightly wonky climbing on good rock

FA: @mikl, 2015

22 Sport 25m, 11
3 ** Pornflakes - The second coming

Pumpy! Extended with 20m of new climbing. About 40m back up the gully from the sea and 20m R of Rainbow Connection, below a chossy left tending flake. Up the flake moving left past 2 ledges. At top go right to hidden flake at anchor. Careful lowering and cleaning as it's very diagonal (leave 1st draw clipped then climb up and remove it) First crack was done as easy trad, extended by Eugene.

Long draws will cut drag.

Originally 'Pornflakes' - Mikl's old rusted carrot can be seen on the first obvious ledge.

FA: @mikl, 1976

FA: @eugenem, 2015

18 Sport 30m, 14
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
4 * Vril

"A ficticious natural force". Retrobolted and much saner. Awkward moves all the way, origionally led ground up on natural gear. About 12m right of P, and about 18m left of the ladder, on the left edge of an obvious orange wall with a crack running up the centre (SS).

Follow the cracks to a small roof, then head right and up to the top.

Mikl Law 1980's

FA: mikl law, 1980

20 Sport 12m, 5
5 ** Chance and Necessity

Hard death route unless it gets rebolted. 2m right of V.

Head up the flake (manky BRs), then head left and up to a horizontal. Step right here and continue up (rotten BRs) then right again to a short crack.

Mike Law 1980s

24 Trad 15m
6 * Surrogate Sickle

Hard death route unless it gets rebolted. Below the obvious crack in the middle of the orange wall, about 6m left of the ladder. An enjoyable and technical little outing, but unfortunately the bolts are pretty far gone (for a change!).

Mike Law 1980s

21 Trad 15m
7 * Trick City

Hard death route unless it gets rebolted. 1m right of SS. Head up and slightly right past break and corroded BRs. Continue to roof and finish up cracks.

Mike Law 1980s

25 Trad 15m
8 Project Sam

Up the flake to the roof, then blast out right onto great rock aiming for a rail, then up to meet the Tourist Route.


Sport Project 15m
RouteGradeStyleSelected ascents
9 *** Tourist Route

Nice rock and gear. Start below the corner 5m right of TC and 3m left of ladder.

  1. 15m (16) Up the corner (sling runner possible), onto 2nd big ledge and continue up cracks (crux) heading left at top (avoid the super easy corner on left). Lower off at 15m

  2. 30m (15) Not worth doing this pitch, Continue up and slightly left on ledges.

FA: mikl law, 1978

16 Trad 15m
10 ** Tourist Route Variant

Start as for TR

  1. 15m (15) Up TR for 10m to 2nd ledge, then step right to crack (left hand one of 3 through the roof) and follow these to ledge, move left to loweroff.

FA: mikl law, 1978

19 Trad 15m
11 Lorencz Contraction

The following climbs all start either above or below the walk around ledge (which is accessed by the ladder that is located just here). Take care on the ladder...

Climbs the rightmost of the 3 cracks through the roof. Doddle up ladder, then continue slightly left and up to roof. Jam through this up the thin crack then continue up to cave (manky BB), or traverse left to loweroff on Tourist Route.

Mikl Law 1980's

FA: @mikl, 1977

22 Trad 30m
12 * Posturing

On the walk around ledge, 30m right of the ladder, below an arete. The original description describes this climb as "coronary country". I hate to think what it must be like now, after 12 more years of weathering!

  1. 20m (21) Jump to gain wall, then dangle right and up (BR) to corner. Follow arete to ledge (corroded BB).

  2. 20m (19) Head up and left and follow scrappy corners to the top.

Mikl Law 1980's

21 Trad 40m 2
13 Obscurity

The following two climbs start below the walk around ledge.

10m right and 15m below P (just left of the obvious flake of ACF).

  1. 15m (19) Drift up and left up wall and flake to the walk around ledge.

  2. 18m (18) Head up the corner and step right to the arete. Head up this to a ledge with a crappy BB to the right.

  3. 25m (18) Head right underneath the flake and layback up it. At the top head right to the corner and up to the belay.

  4. 20m Continue up the corner then step left and continue to top.

Mikl Law 1980's

19 Trad 78m 4
14 * A Certain Flair

The obvious smooth flake, 2m right of O.

  1. Climb the flake to the walk around ledge.

Mike Law 1980s

23 Trad 16m
15 *** The Last Wave

Fun sea sport cliffing with the usual mix of choss and pleasure. Loses the sun in summer by 11am. Retrobolts half of the first pitch of Karen's Climb then does a long direct finish. The walk in down Rosa Gully and up the ladder and ledges is nice, you can also rap in on a 50 m rope from the top if you want to suss out the crux moves (leave a rope fixed, hard to pull down and it’ll probably end up in the ocean).

Take about 11 draws and 2 slings for belays.

Down Rosa Gully and up the ladder, then walk along the ledge 15m above the sea for 100m to a small honeycombed ramp.

  1. 19 28m Up ramp to weird mantel then up and left to belay.

  2. 18 12 m Leftwards below choss and up to belay

  3. 20 10m Up to roof and a few stiff moves.

FA: Mikl Law, Vanessa Peterson , Warwick Payten, Jeff Crass, 2014

20 Sport 50m 3
16 Karen's Climb

Start below right tending ramp, just past the arete approximately 60m right of aCF (approx. 100m from the ladder). Scary. The first pitch has been retrobolted as Part of the Last wave

  1. 15m (18) Up ramp , step right around the arete, then follow the thin crack up to a belay ledge all Ubolts now.

  2. 30m Follow corner for approximately 5m, then easily left to belay on slab below roof (manky BB).

  3. 30m Climb up slab and V crack then left to ledge. Head straight up from here, then step right to another crack. Follow this to the top.

Mikl Law 1970's

FA: @mikl, 1979

17 Trad 75m 3
17 Breakers

Hard death route unless it gets rebolted. About 3m right of KC.

  1. 40m (21) Climb up, veering left to bulge (crux). After this, continue up and right past assorted fixed protection (all badly weathered) to belay in a corner that breaks through the rooves (manky BB).

  2. 30m Head up corner, then traverse left around the arete and on for about 8m. Wander up to top.

Mikl Law 1980's

FA: @mikl, 1978

22 Trad 70m 2

2. Index by grade

Grade Stars Name Style Area
16 *** Tourist Route Trad 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
17 Karen's Climb Trad 75m 3 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
18 * Pox Sport 25m, 9 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
** Pornflakes - The second coming Sport 30m, 14 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
19 ** Chicken of the Sea Sport 25m, 11 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
Obscurity Trad 78m 4 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
** Tourist Route Variant Trad 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
20 ** Funky Moves Sport 30m, 12 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
Matt's Climb Mixed 40m, 5 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
* The Devil's Sandpit Sport 6 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
*** The Last Wave Sport 50m 3 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
* Vril Sport 12m, 5 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
21 * Posturing Trad 40m 2 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
* Surrogate Sickle Trad 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
22 ** Harold Would Go Sport 20m, 9 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
** Pocks Sport 30m 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
** Rosa Parks Sport 20m, 10 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
Breakers Trad 70m 2 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
Lorencz Contraction Trad 30m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
** Rainbow connection Sport 25m, 11 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
23 ** 3 roofs and a funeral Sport 20m, 9 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
* A Certain Flair Trad 16m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
24 ** Chance and Necessity Trad 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
25 * Trick City Trad 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side
? Everything but the moves Sport Project 1.1. Rosa Gully south side
Project Sam Sport Project 15m 1.2. Rosa Gully North Side