Mt Rosea Mostly trad climbing193 routes in crag
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Mount Rosea is one of the premier adventure climbing crags in 'Victoria'. At its best it offers superb grey stone set just on or just below vertical for three or four pitches.
With the base of the climbs at 800 metres the cliff is good for climbing in all but the hottest weather despite facing north-east with few permanently shaded area. However it can get very cold when it goes into the shade in mid-afternoon even on otherwise fine days.
For ease of finding routes the cliff is described in five blocks. First there are the three main climbing areas: 'Left side', 'Giant's Staircase' and 'Main Cliff'. Left are the climbs below and left of the Giant's Staircase. Giant's Staircase has the climbs left of the landmark of 'Tourist Buttress' and then left and up the Giant's Staircase. Main Cliff' has all the climbs on 'Tourist Buttress' and to the right from there. Then there are the fairly worthless Northern and Summit cliffs which can be ignored by anyone not utterly desperate for new routes.
All documented climbs should be in here though not all have topos.
Useful Info: This is not a good cliff for beginners. Many of the easier climbs tend to be poorly protected and follow complex routes offering many opportunities to stray into hostile territory. The "serious" flag has been liberally applied to these climbs. To enjoy leading at Rosea you should be leading about grade 14 trad.
The cliff suffers from the scourge of the "select" guidebook. Routes that are not in the "select" guide tend to be rarely climbed and are becoming dirty.
Many years ago the starts of most of the climbs were marked with a small white square and the initials of the climb name. While it makes the start of the climbs easier to find it is not a practise that should be encouraged and the initials are not being redone as they fade. Where the initials are still visible they are referred to as either clear (visible from some metres away), faded (easy to see when close), or faint (there but easily missed). It's interesting that people have been known to do the wrong climb by relying on the initials: there are 3 climbs at Rosea with the clearly visible initials CC at the start.
Take Grampians Road (Halls Gap - Wartook road) to the Sundial turn-off. Follow this for a few kilometres to the Rosea parking area. From here follow the Mount Rosea walking track for about 5 minutes until a well-defined track goes off to the left and a walking track signpost indicates that the walking track continues straight ahead. Take the track on the left which contours across the slope and eventually a series of hairpin bends lead to the foot of the cliff. Please don't cut the corners on these bends as the hillside erodes easily.
Descent for the majority of the climbs on the main faces is via a walk along the walking track at the top and down the Giant's Staircase. For climbs on Main Cliff' and Giant' Staircase, follow the walking track towards the summit (south-east). For climbs on the Left side, follow the walking track away from the summit. The turn-off to the Giant's Staircase is sometimes marked with tape or cairns (current Nov 2013). It is not really obvious but it is just a little towards the summit side from a low point on the track. GPS reading for top of Giants Staircase: 37.190150 S, 142.502186 E. Try not to make any additional trails in this area. Hopefully a sign will be erected here at some stage showing the people on the main track which way they should be going.
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