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Description

This shady wall is on the left as you reach the top of Flat Rock. It has a few good examples of both trad, sport and mixed climbing as well as some very serious climbs at a spread of grades. The shockingly wide corner crack is 'Epsilon Plus'. The wall left of 'Epsilon Plus' offers good thin face climbs and some cracks of less distinction. Right of 'Epsilon Plus' is the frightening arete of 'New Imperative' and several attractive corners.

Up right from these climbs is the 'Skippy' Terrace, which has a few more good routes and is a good place on a warm day.

© (nmonteith)

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

Approach

The cliff faces SSE and is in complete shade for much of the year. It gets early morning sun in summer and often catches breezes from the top of Flat Rock. This can be a pleasant spot on a warm day but it is a miserable place in winter.

For the first 9 routes, please do NOT walk directly up from the walking track to the base of 'Epsilon Plus'. The hillside here is steep and sandy and erodes easily. Instead please approach these climbs from well to the left, traversing in across slabby ledges from Flat Rock, as shown by the red lines in some of the topos below.

For the first 7 routes, descend via rap chain (18m) directly above Iron In The Soul. The 'Benn Gunn' area is served by a double ring bolt rap anchor above 'Crossfire' (22m). There's also a shitty descent down an awkward scramble past old graffiti at the left end (50m left of Mistaken Identity).

© (nmonteith)

Tags

Some content has been provided under license from: © Australian Climbing Association Queensland (Creative Commons, Attribution, Share-Alike 2.5 AU)

Routes

Add route(s) Add topo Resequence Bulk edit
Grade Route
1
21 Buried Standing Up Trad 12m

Obvious line but doesn't appeal. Pro is a bit awkward to place but good. Start 5m L of 'Mistaken Identity'. Up to and through the break in the overhang and continue.

FA: Brendan Abernathy, Andy Reynolds, 1998

2
20 R * Mistaken Identity Trad 15m

A good wall leads to a corner with a rounded finish and fiddly pro. The second hanging corner left of 'Epsilon Plus'. Wall into corner. Corner with dodgy protection (2 each of #3 & #4 RPs for final moves, twist the RPs if you can).

FA: Kieran Loughran & Bill Andrews, 1985

3
20 R The Visiting Bloke Trad 20m

Dirty, with soft rock and sparse protection. The first hanging corner left of 'Epsilon Plus', 10m right of 'Mistaken Identity'. Easily up to corner then carefully up this to finish.

FA: Peter Martin, Simon Priest & Andrew Brookes, 1989

4
21 * Iron In the Soul Mixed 15m, 4

Beautiful thin face two metres right of 'The Visiting Bloke'. 4 FHs - the addition of a recent retrobolt has tamed the once dubiously protected start. Rap chain for descent.

FA: Kieran Loughran, Meg Sleeman & Malcolm Matheson, 1991

5
22 X * Decadant Bolting Mixed 15m, 2

Death on a stick! It's a shame this route is ruined by macho bullshit runouts; if the 2 bolts were replaced, and another was added between them, it would actually be worthwhile. If you really want to prove you're a hero, don't whip out the drill in the first place!

Start: Start two metres left of 'Identity Crisis', four metres right of Iron In The Soul.

FA: Richard Smith & Kieran Loughran, 1991

6
21 R Identity Crisis Trad 15m

Who am I? What's my purpose in life? What am I doing here? Serious climbing with poor protection and dirt. The distinctive twin seams up the centre of the face, 10m left of 'Epsilon Plus'.

FA: Peter Martin & Chris Cope, 1989

7
22 * Full Face Value Mixed 15m, 3

Good thin face with reachy crux at first bolt. Climb 'Identity Crisis' to first ledge. Right past FH, up and right, two BRs, and finish up right around bulge and up onto slab. Belay off trad in horizontal.

FA: Rob Nabben & Andrew Stevens, 1991

8
15 R Epsilon Plus Trad 21m

A complete body workout. Enjoy! This is one of the first recorded redpoints in 'Victoria'. Guild had previously practised the climb on top-rope. Heaven knows why he returned to lead it.

Start: The obvious, extremely wide left-facing corner-crack that splits the centre of the crag.

FA: Ian Guild & Chris Dewhirst, 1966

9
23 X New Imperative Trad 20m

It's imperative that you don't fall (E5, 6a?)! Still, the ethic of this route is vastly superior to the partly bolted contrived boldness of Death on a Stick or 'Diazepam'.

Start: Start 5m R of 'Epsilon Plus'.

FA: Jarod McCulloch, Peter Martin & Richard Bugg, 1989

10
20 * Benn Gunn Trad 40m

The initial corner is excellent but the second half of the climb is not so good. Beware of loose blocks at the top of the main corner. Even the obvious flake-roof should be treated with respect.

Start: The attractive corner 15m R of 'Epsilon Plus'.

FA: FA Andrew Thomson, David Mudie, 1970

FFA: Glenn Tempest, Kevin Lindorff, 1977

11

Big shiny ringbolts up short arete left of 'Crossfire'. Only has about 4m of truly indepedent climbing.

FA: Christoph & Simon Wheeler, 2003

12
18 ** Crossfire Trad 35m

A lovely orange corner leads to an exciting traverse. Slightly marred by a scrappy approach and finish.

Start: Start below orange corner R of 'Benn Gunn'.

FA: Kevin Lindorff & Glen Tempest, 1977

13
16 * Schooner Trad 30m

A nice crack line which needs a bit more traffic to stay clean. While not as technically hard as 'Crossfire' the rock and protection is not as good and it makes for a hard lead.

Start: Start up 'Crossfire' to first ledge.

FA: Keith Egerton & Dave McLean, 1977

14
17 Skip Transit Gloria Mixed 13m, 2

Steeper than it looks. Add some slings to a rack of small-medium wires and medium cams.

Start: Start a few metres L of Let X=X.

FA: Kieran Loughran, Norm Booth, 2007

15
21 * Let X=X Trad 20m

Pretty good. Sharp corner leading to roof on L side of terrace. Undercut start to corner, bridge past bracken to roof. Traverse L, peg (?loose), to large ledge. Rap.

FA: Kieran Loughran, 1989

16
20 * Speaking French Mixed 15m, 4

The right wall and arete of Let X=X is not too hard but has it moments, particularly the finish which is sensational. The start of Let X=X provides the crux and requires trad gear. So a large rack doesn't have to be carried here is the trad gear used in order of use: #0.75 (green) Camalot, #0.4 (grey) Camalot, #0.5 (purple) Camalot, #3 (blue) Camalot, #0.75 (green) Camalot (extend with sling).

Start: Start as for Let X=X

FA: Kieran Loughran, Norm Booth, 2008

17
23 * Walking and Falling Mixed 20m, 6

Lots of interest in this climb. A long bouldering traverse just off the ground leads to a cruxy move guarding great climbing up an orange streak. It is possible to place small cams on the traversing start but they're more trouble than they're worth as you're so close to the ground - just stick clip the first bolt if you're concerned.

Start: Start about 8 metres right of the Let X=X corner and just left of the boulder on the right side of the wall.

FA: Kieran Loughran, Norm Booth, 2007

18
24 * Riding and Climbing Sport 20m, 6

Good thin face. First bolt is quite high but it's a good landing and shouldn't require a stick-clip.

FA: Steve Chapman, Kevin Lindorff, Rob Booth, 2010

19
22 Hop Skip and Thump Mixed 20m, 1

Trad route with a sting in the tail. Take slings, wires and cams to #3 Friend (gold Camalot). Jugs up the right side of the wall then traverses to the central weakness. Start just right of 'Walking and Falling' being careful not to disturb the bones behind you. Climb up onto the boulder sitting at the base of the wall. Climb steep but easy rock until able to traverse left along the break to below the central seam on the wall. Climb the seam past a FH just below the top to rap anchor. Gear Beta: Crucial gear for the hard move below the final bolt is gkijv tqem (two letter shift alphabetic code- don't decode if you want the full onsight experience). When rapping be careful to keep the rope out of a thin crack where it will jam badly.

FA: Norm Booth, Kieran Loughran, 2007

20
15 Skippy Takes a Shortcut Mixed 15m, 3

Interesting climbing on steep rock that appears fragile but holds up quite well. This supersedes a weak previous route "An Imaginary Life". Take wires, slings and cams to 2.5 Friend (Red Camalot). The current descent is to scramble around to the rap anchor for "Hop Skip and Thump" but it really needs its own rap anchor. Start about 15m R of Let X=X on the R side of a boulder at the foot of the chimney-gully, being careful not to step on Skippy's bones. Bridge between boulder and face and pull onto face (FH) and up shallow crack in face to overhang. Directly through overhang and up face (2FH) and on to top. Kieran Loughran, Meg Sleeman climbed the original route in March 1992. Loughran and Norm Booth did the direct version November 2007.

FA: Keiran Loughran & Meg Sleeman, 1992

21
15 Spare Ribs Trad 30m

Takes rib/arete about 4 metres right of 'Skippy' Takes A 'Short Cut'.

FA: Keith Lockwood, Peter Canning, 2009

22
23 * Skippity Do Dah Trad 10m

Sherpa Tim leads the geriartrics to glory up this short but intense number.

FA: Tim Lockwood, Kieran Loughran, Keith Lockwood, Norm Booth, 2009