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Most of the following has been copied directly from Kieran Loughran's excellent Amphitheatre guide - thanks!
The great slabby walls left of 'Taipan Wall' are The 'Grey and Green Walls'. The smooth grey buttress on the left is, of course, 'The Grey Wall' while the mossy slab to the right is 'The Green Wall'. A smooth 15-20 metre high wall, the 'Petite Fleur' Face, runs along the foot of the cliffs.
There is a lot of good climbing on these walls, but many of the climbs aren't consistent. For instance, 'Sluice' has only two metres of grade 18 climbing in close to 100 metres. The original climbs are described but are sometimes included in composite climbs that are much more worthwhile. The contribution of the pioneers is not discarded but incorporated and acknowledged in more enjoyable climbs.
Access issues inherited from North Grampians
This entire area is currently closed due to ongoing fire activity. Fires started on 15/1/2014 and swept the area. All access is prohibited.
Here's an update from Parks Victoria:
Grampians National Park Update – 14 February 2014 (Rock climbing and Bouldering)
The Northern Grampians Fire severely burnt the natural environment and much of the park infrastructure in and around Hollow Mountain, Summer Day Valley and Mt Stapylton – this includes many popular rock climbing and bouldering sites; as a result there are many park closures in place. The dry, rocky landscape is now extremely fragile and will take a long time to recover – the fire burnt extremely hot so in many cases regeneration will now occur (very slowly) from seed. Loss of vegetation, loose rocks, unstable soils and loss of access tracks means any foot traffic will have long term impacts on the recovery of the environment. Impacts now will also affect the sustainability of rock climbing sites well into the future.
Please respect the fragility of the environment and support the long term recovery of the Northern Grampians by remaining out of any closed areas. While Parks Victoria regrets the need to enforce closures, substantial fines will be imposed on those found in any closed, fire affected area.
Parks Victoria recognises the importance and popularity of the Northern Grampians to the rock climbing and bouldering communities and will be working closely with industry and community representatives throughout a staged reopening process. Environmental considerations will largely determine when sites are available to be reopened, and replacement of damaged infrastructure will occur as suitable funding is available.
As part of the recovery process, Parks Victoria will be identifying alternative options for climbing and bouldering, and will closely monitor impacts on these sites as their use and popularity increases. There will also be significant work done on the future experience of visitors in the Northern Grampians.
Parks Victoria is continuing to improve its understanding of the needs of climbers and boulderers and is intent on providing an experience that is well respected, regarded, promoted and understood throughout the Australian and International Climbing and bouldering communities.
Parks Victoria will be relying heavily on the climbing industry to work together to spread the messages about the fragility of the landscape and the long term sustainability of rock climbing in the Grampians. There may be opportunities for licenced tour operators, school and community based groups to become involved in the recovery process.
Due to closures in the Northern Grampians, the availability of rock climbing, camping, car touring and bushwalking experiences is limited. Sourcing information on available campgrounds and other accommodation options is recommended. Please visit www.parkweb.vic.gov.au for park maps and regular Grampians fire recovery updates.
For detailed information on available rockclimbing and bouldering sites in and near to the Grampians please refer to recognised guidebooks/websites. A general list of open and available areas includes the following:
Rockclimbing sites open in the Grampians:
- Wonderland Range
- Serra Range (Including Mt Rosea and Bundaleer)
- Mt William Range
- Victoria Point area
- Victoria Range (Including the Red Rock, Muline and the Gallery area. Please respect cultural heritage and recovering fire affected areas)
Limited Bouldering Sites available in and near the Grampians:
- Victoria Range (Including the Gallery area. Please respect cultural heritage and recovering fire affected areas)
- Serra Range (Including Mt Rosea and Bundaleer)
- Mt Arapiles
- Mt Talbot
- The Black Range
Please remember your climbing etiquette:
- Only climb and boulder in open accessible areas
- Stick to tracks
- Respect fragile environmental areas and cultural heritage
- Keep an eye out for Aboriginal Art sites – Report to Parks Victoria if you come across anything new.
- Be mindful of cleaning
- No chipping or bolting
- Avoid excessive chalk
- Take your rubbish home with you
Parks Victoria - Grampians National Park
Access this area by traversing the base of the cliffs either from the right end of 'Central Buttress' or from the left end of 'Taipan'.
The safest descent from the longer climbs is to walk south along the cliff-tops to meet the walking track to the top of Mt Stapylton and follow this track back into The Amphitheatre. Parties with novices are strongly advised to use this descent.
Alternatively, if you have two ropes, use the abseil descent down 'Navarre' which is 2 long (45-50m) abseils. This is difficult to locate from above unless you already know where it is. Novices will require supervision on this abseil. The first abseil is about 10 metres below the top, just left of a large cave. The first abseil is free hanging at times and you need to veer to abseiler's right so as to land on the terrace at the top of the first pitch of 'Navarre'.
Finally, the 'Hollow Mountain' walking trail can be gained by walking and scrambling north along the tops, which makes for quite a fun adventure though some may want to rope up for some of the chasm crossings.
'Petite Fleur' Face is described first, then the Grey Wall, then the Green Wall. The climbs in each sub-area are described from left to right.
Some content has been provided under license from: © Australian Climbing Association Queensland (Creative Commons, Attribution, Share-Alike 2.5 AU)