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Summary

Kneebars and lots of core strength on steep territory

Description

There's not many other crags in south east Queensland where you can climb in the shade in summer. Because of this, local climbers have been almost forced to climb here, regardless of ability. And given there's not any easy routes at the cliff, Mt Coolum is transforming the local climbing populace into steep-thugging, kneebar-wielding, sloper-crushing mutants! Projects of yesteryear are today's warm-up's and today's projects are, well, futuristic!

Unlike many other crags of this type, the local scene is friendly, welcoming and encouraging. Come and join us for a dangle!

Access issues

Access to Mt Coolum is under strict community guidelines. If we obey the rules, then climbing here will continue.

The rules are:

  • No new routes outside the cave (bolted or otherwise)
  • No routes up though the area where the falcons are
  • Minimize impact and presence (i.e. no loud noise!)
  • Continue to clean up our mess and the mess of others
  • Make an effort to clean chalk off holds
  • Do not leave quickdraws on routes below the height of the tallest stick-clip. Leaving no draws is encouraged.

Approach

One and a half hours (130 km) north of Brisbane. Up the Bruce Highway. Exit L and under after the Ettamogah Pub onto the Sunshine Coast Motorway. Nearing Mooloolaba, take the Noosa exit (not Mooloolaba), pass over the Maroochy river (first sight of the mountain on the bridge). Take the airport exit and keep going straight toward the coast. After the IGA turn L on Quarry Rd, one street before Hyatt Coolum. Follow your nose and park in the main National Park car park.

There are two track options to get to the cliff. The best (which avoids an obvious looking 'climbers trail' appearing on the general tourist track) is the separate trail from the tourists (see red line in the overview topo below). Head to the southern end of carpark and follow the fire trail South. After about 200m a narrow track breaks off R, follow this up to an old road then veer left into the quarry. Keep going uphill, the tracks lead up to the huge cave on the South East side (quite well worn, 10 minutes tops).

Where to stay

Surfair Resort offer 2 bedroom unit. You can get the view of the cave while enjoying your coffee on the balcony. www.surfairmarcoola.com.au.

Ethic

The cave has been largely developed in the last 10 years We value our relationship with the National Park and expect all users to respect this. It is essential not to disturb the wildlife and stay on the track to limit our impact.

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

Routes

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Grade Route
1
25 ** Ultraviolet Sport 15m, 7

Far left upper route. 7-8 FHs to DUBB. Access via Friends in High Places, then traverse L to DFHB on ledge.

FFA: J.J. O'Brien, 2008

2
27 ** Drums Not Guns Sport 20m, 11

Big holds to a rare crimp crux, then super horns into the sky. Joins BLD at its final bolt.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2009

3
23 Relative Affection Sport 18m, 7

Crazy slippery rock. Challenge your friction technique.

FFA: J.J. O'Brien, Ambor Collins, 2006

4
V5 Slap that Belly Boulder

Start under the overhanging arete left of Friends in high places. The obvious series of slopers lead to a tricky exit. Best to top rope from 'Friends in High Places' anchor, but beware rope cutting edges.

FA: Etienne Laliberte, 2009

5
26 *** Black Leather Dungarees Sport 20m, 11

Start at RA's anchor. Steep stuff straight above the belay. Traverse L under roof to wacky slab and a rest above. Huge jugs and horns comprise the final third. 11 U-bolts to DUBB. Second to clean. Rope length warning: It is more than 30m from anchor to ground. Suggestion: leader lowers, rope toss to pull back to belay, second to clean, lower second to ground, pull rope to start belay, rap off.

FFA: Lee Cujes, JJ O'Brien, 2007

6
28 *** Gasoline Rainbow Sport 15m, 9

Amazing climbing which is never too hard, but quite continuous! Start at the top anchor of FIHP. Step L, then three RBs to unique cave move. Thug R to jutting horn. Breach "slab" above moving L to find some harder moves. A traverse L, then finish on jugs. DUBB. Nine RBs. Lower-off into the ocean. Use 60m rope.

FFA: Lee Cujes, JJ O'Brien, 2007

7
28 Thunderbirds Sport 20m, 10

A link up. Start as for Tropic Thunder clipping its last bolt then staying low traverse in and finish up Gasoline Rainbow.

FFA: Sebastiaan Loewensteijn, 2012

8
29 *** Tropical Thunderbirds Sport 20m, 10

One of the best link ups in the cave! Takes in a lot of climbing, and a lot of cruxes.Climb Tropic Thunder to above its last bolt, sticking the hard crux side pull, but instead of moving right to clip anchor, move left and finish up GR.

FFA: Sebastiaan Loewensteijn, 2012

9
27 ** Tropic Thunder Sport 22m, 5

Climb FIHP to anchor, and then take a step right and climb straight up the overhung stemming groove to rooflet. Above this make a move to the right onto crimps with bouldery, spacey moves awaiting above. Anchor shared with NIHP on right over the top of bulge.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2011

10
20 Friends in High Places Sport 12m, 6

The only non-steep warmup here. Okay climbing on slippery rock. Stickclip. Start R of the bolt and go diagonally up left to it. Traversing L while still under the 1st bolt adds a grade. Baffling moves up past 3-4 bolts until it slabs out, then head well left to double rings.

FFA: Liam O'Dea, 1997

11
26 ** Nuts In High Places Sport 22m, 10

Climb this as one pitch from the ground. Climb FIHP, extending the last clip, and climb directly up the wall above past 5 RBs to wild conclusion which resembles mantling the end of a diving board.

FA: Lee Cujes, 2011

12
26 * Cleared For Takeoff Sport 20m, 11

Start up TDLW for three UB's, then trend slightly L past FH's up the ever steepening wall past some crazy looking horns and the odd dodgy aid bolt. The top horn (the biggest at Coolum) rings when you tap it! Ride 'em cowboy!

FA: Aaron Jones, 1998

FFA: Simon Moses, 2000

13
26 ** CLOSED - Powderkeg Sport 30m, 20

(There is an issue with the batch of steel used in the manufacturing of several of the fixed hangers on this route. Please stay off until this can be fixed.) Coolum's highest route. Climb CFT and top out on the ledge. You might like to pull and re-drop your rope to lessen drag. Step right, and blast through steep but juggy terrain into the stratosphere. Some longer draws at certain spots will ease your pain. The final bolt (anchor) is just below the top of the cave and currently sports a leaver biner. You can just get down on a 60m from here, but back-jump to clean.

FA: Lee Cujes, John J O'Brien, 2013

14
20 Dave Sport 12m, 9

A new warm-up option. Up TDLW for four UBs. Instead of traversing right as for TDLW, go straight up past another three UBs into the cave. Finish atop the diving board (double U-bolts). Lower-off.

FFA: Lee Cujes, JJ O'Brien, 2011

15
25 *** The David Lee Roth Sport 20m, 12

Climb Dave until you're at the double UB's above the diving board. Continue directly out the roof for some of the steepest climbing and THE biggest, craziest holds at Coolum. Finish at C4T's anchor.

FFA: Lee Cujes, JJ O'Brien, 2011

16
18 The David Low Way Sport 12m, 6

Like Woodridge, had a name change and a rebolt to hopefully generate more interest. Follow four U-bolts up deceiving slab before traversing/walking directly right past two FH's and mantling up into the cave. You'll need a seconder to clean this route.

17

Get safe at TDLW anchor and pull and re-drop your rope for a ground belay. From this point, climb up and out left on FHs and biiig holds to a confounding and onsight-ruining finale.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

18
26 ** Eraserhead Sport 12m, 5

Starts just to the right of LCA. Climbs the exposed arete before heading straight up into the thin corner (don't climb left onto the massive horns if you want the full tick), finishing with a wild move to breach the shelf at the top. Belay from ground as for LCA.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2010

19
Scoopydoo Sport Project 16m, 7

Follow the jagged lip feature going across right. Finish as BBJ.

Set by Antoine Moussette., 2013

20
La Scoop Volante Sport Project 14m, 5

In the middle of the giant scoop make your way on some funky blob aiming for a horn at the lip. Follow the feature and finish BBJ anchor.

Set by Antoine Moussette, 2013

21
27 ** The Antipump Sport 10m

Start at the 'Nick' graffiti. Four RBs then finish up BBaJ. One big boulder problem with every move a hardie. The slot in the roof can be damp after rain and is completely frictionless. Deserves much more attention!

FFA: Frey Yule, 2007

22

Up into the steep little cave, then across left to a hard move to gain the protruding jugs. Motor up the very overhanging arete on killer shark-fin jugs. Now rebolted with U-bolts.

FFA: 1998

23

Climb Hang Like a Fruitbat to anchor, but don't clip it. Instead head sharply left until you join into Beer Boob and finish. Have fun on the crazy upside down traverse.

FFA: Frey Yule

24
29 to 31 Hang High (closed project) Sport Project 30m, 12

Climbs the smooth wall straight above Fruit Bat. Closed, stay off.

Set by Frey Yule, 2010 & Matt Schimke, 2011

25
25 ** Hung Like A Fruit Bat Sport 8m, 5

Up the bulby horns out the roof to anchors. Feet more important than hands on this one. Ever so popular.

FFA: Simon Moses, 1998

26
26 ** Three Men and A Ladder Sport 10m, 5

Starts a few metres right of Hung Like a Fruit Bat. Stick clip. Jump start, up, then across the roof and finish at HLAFB chains. Similar style to Fruit Bat, at a harder grade.

FA: Matt Eaton, 2007

27
29 *** A Kneebar Too Far Sport 12m, 6

Ringbolts starting just R of TMAAL. A weird looking line which climbs really well. Make sure you bring your kneepads for this one. Popular.

FFA: Matt Eaton, 2007

28
29 *** Bring Back The Kneebar Sport 16m, 8

Unrepeated weirdness! Climb AKTF then keep going for another 3 bolts. Make sure you use long draws on AKTF otherwise the rope drag is just enough to make the end move easy.

FFA: Matt Eaton, 2009

29
26 *** Scrambled eggs & honey Sport 20m, 7

Batman start to the anchors of Sideways Rain the head left clipping the last two bolts of Bring Back the kneebar before continuing straight-up for another 5 bolts to the anchor.

FFA: Johnny Schwartz, 2014

30
24 * Sideways Rain Sport 6

Batman start at the anchors over the lip above kneebar too far. Reach up and grab those starting slopers out left and start from there. Heads straight-up and finishes standing on huge ledge.

FA: Daniel Friedman, 2013

31

The direct start of Kneebar. Extremely bouldery and powerful compression climbing which will make you beg for mercy!

Set by Sam Bowman & Daniel Gordon, 2013

FA: Sam Bowman, 2013

32
31 * Flying saucer (project open) Sport Project 15m, 9

Go from UFO all the way through to bring back the kneebar. Gonna be hard and funky.

Set by Dan g and Matt Eaton

33
32 to 33 ** Esoteric Agenda (closed project) Sport Project 15m, 9

Mat Eaton's futuristic projects. One of the last remaining king lines of Coolum; it follows the line of ring bolts to a double bolt anchor. This project remains closed and should be respected unless permission is sought directly from Mat. Sebastian Loewensteijn takes responsibility for newly added bolts and repairing several of the holds on the route after pulling them off. Kind regards, Sebastian.

Set by Matt Eaton, 2007

34

The name say it all. Bring 4 ropes and 37 Quickdraws.

Set by Adam James Palmer, 2014

35

Start up Evil for 2 bolts before heading left.

Bolting not finished.

36
29 ** Evel Knievel Sport 15m

Climb Evil for three bolts before trending sharply left for a burly traverse below SO (past the weird double bolts). Joins SO for its top two bolts.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2011

37
29 ** Space Oddity Sport 15m, 9

Start up the first 3 bolts of Evil, then veer up and left for another 3 bolts before getting a weird ledge rest. A few more moves and you're done.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2010

38
27 ** Ground Control Sport 12m

Defunct (was the batman start to SO).

FA: Adam Donoghue, 2008

39
29 * Prime Evil Sport 25m

Climb Evil, but veer left before cave and up the face above encountering some bouldery moves.

FA: Frey Yule, 2012

40
30 *** Evil Wears No Pants Sport 20m, 11

The 70 degree overhung madness that rears above the walking track. One of the best steep routes in Australia.

Amazingly this was the first route to be equipped at Coolum (2 bolts); it was then extended another 2 bolts and attempted by various suitors over the next 15 years. In early 2008, Adam Donaghue refreshed the hardware & added two extensions, beginning both from a batman start on the U-bolt (Ground Control 28 going L and Major Tom 30 going straight up). Lee linked up the boulder problem start with Major Tom and Evil Wears No Pants was reborn as one of Queensland's 'King Lines'!

FA: Adam Donoghue, 2008

FFA: Lee Cujes, 2008

41
31 *** Thriller Sport 18m, 10

What a thrilling route! Start as for EWNP, traverse slightly right at the second bolt, then ascend past 3 new bolts before re-joining EWNP. This avoids the no hands rest on EWNP, resulting in a more sustained route of continuous climbing.

Set by Paul Cresswell, David Biggs and Sebastian Loewensteijn, 2013

FFA: Sebastian Loewensteijn, 2013

42
32 *** Friction addiction Sport 23m, 11

Was previously known as 'the motor finance wizard project' Start up the first two bolts of Evil before heading right and up the blankish face. Huge throws on slopey holds guard the crux. The top is exciting and ever so pumpy.

FA: Matt Schimke, 2011

FFA: Sam Bowman, 2014

43
? Paul's Project Sport Project 3

Two FHs placed in impossible-looking territory. Could link into Thriller or Motor Finance

Set by Paul Creswell, 2011

44
31 ** Bite The Hand That Feeds Sport 23m, 10

4m R of Evil Wears No Pants. Futuristic. Two hard boulder problems to classic upper wall. Unrepeated.

FFA: Lee Cujes, 2010

45
V3 ** Twister Boulder

Start matched on the red heart hold on the left of the small cave, traverse left around the bend then finish by matching on the jug that Kapow starts on.

FFA: Clint Westbrook, 2008

46
V5 * Kapow Boulder

Start at the right of small cave, On big jug. Work your way left until it is obvious to move into the cave. Finish on the red paint hold ( match for 2 seconds ).

FA: 2008

47

Start in the roof under 'Kapow'. Grab the lip and squat over to finish at hueco.

FA: Antoine M. & Frey Yule, 2009

48

All the moves had been done but no one was able to take care of this one until a climber from Scotland, Robbie Phillips visited Queensland. He sent the route on his last day in the country thereby establishing Queensland's current hardest Sport route.

Bouldery start, eventually get on Bite the Hand headwall. Finish out right sharing the anchor of "Frey's Project".

Robbie re-named "Taking Care of Business Project" to "Haggisaurus Rex" due to the Dinosaur skin-like nature of the rock and the fact that Robbie only ate Haggis the whole time he was in Australia to maintain his Scottish Highlander Powers! Rumour has it they shipped 70 whole Haggis' to Australia just for Robbie..."

FFA: Robbie Phillips, 2014

49
30 to 32 Pauls Wedding Present Sport Project 21m, 10

Starting on the slopey madness, just to the right of small cave. Climbs straight up onto "slab" and steep overhang above, to finish at the BTHTF anchor.

Set by Frey Yule, 2002

50
33 to 35 ** The Seam Project Sport Project 20m, 10

The fainted crack feature that lead directly to the upper part of Spoonman. Start as Knifey Spooney.

Set by Frey Yule, 2010 & Antoine Moussette, 2013

51
29 ** Knifey Spooney Sport 22m, 10

Bouldery start left of Screaming. Control the move to the knife hold and link into Spoonman.

Set by Gareth Llewellin, 2008. Antoine M., 2012

FFA: James Campbell, 2012

52
28 *** Spoonman Sport 20m, 11

Bust out L from SI at 5th bolt. Great rock and good sequences have quickly made this a popular tick at the grade.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

53
26 *** Screaming Insanity Sport 15m, 9

The must-do crag classic, featuring the biggest and most aesthetic horns and jugs on the wall. When this was first bolted, there was nobody strong enough to climb it. Oh how things change!

FA: Chris Coghill, 1997

FFA: Simon Moses, 1998

54

Up to anchor of SI (600mm sling), then head left on tricky slopers before joining into the last part of Spoonman.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2009

55
26 *** Wholly Calamity Sport 20m, 12

This is the extension to Screaming Insanity. No harder, just pumpier! Three more bolts keep the lactic levels up.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

56

Starting as for SI, step R on ramp and then blast the line above. Wear a shirt. You'll see.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2007

57
27 ** Gonna Fly Now Sport 30m, 16

Climbs Crouching Tiger until you notice a series of horns on your right. Traverse diagonally up to reach the crux of Kept Man. Up and PAST the chains of Kept Man/COD for another 3 bolts to the double rings right under the roof (Camp II/ Gothic Architect ).

FFA: Antoine Moussete, 2009

58
24 Demolition Man Sport 15m, 9

Start with the boulder problem SI, and then ramble easily up R to belay on a cool ledge in a really good position.

FA: 2002

59
19 Demolition Boy Sport 12m, 7

DM with a batman start to the third bolt.

FA: 2002

60
23 * Kept Man Sport 10m

Climb DM to access. Belayer can either belay from there, or the ground. Climb starts steeply directly above. A few bolts trending up and left to chains.

FFA: Brendan Leader, 2008

61

Traverse right onto exposed arete from the anchor of DM. A couple of funky throws and you're ready to clip the chain. Best to belay from the ground.

Set by Antoine Moussette & Matt Schimke, 2009

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2009

62

From Kept Man Belay station. Keep going and traverse into the massive roof. Finish at a picnic table ledge (aka camp III) over the lip.

FA: Phil Box, 2009

63
Mad Sneaky Roofy Sport Project 6

Start right of Sceaming for some Mad roof climbing.

Set by Frey Yule, 2011

64
29 ** Four Metres of Madness Sport 4m, 5

Steepest route in Coolum. Start in back of cave R of SI. Stick clip first 2 bolts. Finish L of final bolt over the mantle.

FFA: Matt Eaton, 2008

65
27 ** Separation Anxiety Sport 8m, 5

A short bouldery route traversing the lip of the cave from right to left. This route consumed Ross' life for a time.

FFA: Ross Ferguson, 2008

66
28 to 29 Eye of the Storm (Closed project) Sport Project 15m, 7

Starts up 'Eight Minute Abs' to first bolt then traverses left on flakes, finishes up 'Separation Anxiety'

Set by Adam Aitken, 7th Dec

67
25 Five Minute Abs Sport 12m, 4

Eight Minute Abs from the batman start. Mostly jugs with a bit of spice at the end.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2010

68
28 ** Eight Minute Abs Sport 12m, 7

The left trending line that starts left of WOC. The first half dozen moves make up the crux and are extremely bouldery requiring some strong core work to a huge bucket. From there it's a 45 degree wall with mostly big moves to big holds and a tricky finish to finish near the top of Demolition Man. Make sure you mantle the ledge at the anchor to get the tick! Anchor has been placed too low.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2011

69
28 In Memoriam Sport 25m, 12

Linkup - Climbs Eight Minute Abs past the anchor into Call of Duty, via a 60cm sling on the first COD bolt

FFA: Daniel Friedman, 2012

70
28 ** Bloody Weapon Sport 15m

Start as Eight Minutes Abs. Join into Weapon of Choice and finish it.

FFA: Saša Juvan

71
29 ** Fire the Panzerschrek Sport 28m, 17

Climb Bloody Weapon until anchor, then veer left and finish up COD.

FFA: Tom O'Halloran, 2010

72
27 *** Weapon of Choice Sport 15m, 9

The line starting at ground level, 10m L of the R end of cave. Stick-clip the very high first ringbolt. Probably the most beta intensive route here. At least seven kneebars.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

73
28 *** Call of Duty Sport 25m, 16

Logical finish for WC. Cruxy finish on the upper arête . 14m overhung. A right variant finish is possible at the base of the arête.

Set by Antoine Moussette, 2009

FFA: J.J. O'Brien, 2009

74
28 * Armed to the Teeth Sport 33m, 16

Climb Weapon of Choice and make your way to Kissing the Lip.

Set by Graham Page & Antoine M., 2012

FFA: jjobrien, 30th Sep

75

Climb CWAHW but keep on moving left onto COD. Finish up this. The longest route at Coolum.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2009

76
25 Caught By The Fuzz Sport 10m, 3

Starts 3m left of CH. Small roof leads to easy top.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

77
25 Still on a Buzz (open project) Sport Project 15m, 7

Do Caught by the Fuzz and keep going over the roof above the anchor. Finish at the niche just under Kissing the Lip.

FA: Antoine Moussette, 2012

78

Start on Caught by the Fuzz. Keep going all the way throught Kissing the Lip.

FA: 2012

79
** Kissing the Lip (open project) Sport Project 14m, 7

Start at the CF extention anchor. straight up following the right hand seam. Finish on the perch above the lip of the cave.

Set by Graham Page & Antoine M., 2012

80

Climb HF but continue left into WOC and finish at anchor.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2010

81
24 Horny Fuzz (linkup) Sport 11m

Start as per Crazy Horny till fourth bolt (long sling), then move sharply left to the second bolt of CBTF, finish up this.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2009

82
25 ** Crazy Horny Sport 10m, 4

Popular. Bouldery start then steep thuggery. The horn sadly broke changing the sequence. Many people's first 25.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2000

83
25 ** Frey's Link Sport 10m, 5

Climb Crazy Horny skipping the 4th bolt, to anchor on Full Metal Traverse via a two bolt link-up. A bouldery finale actually involves downclimbing. A better finish.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2006

84
26 * Horny Anatomy (linkup) Sport 17m, 12

Climb Crazy Horny into Frey's Link (to the anchors of FMT - 600mm sling), but keep going over the block and finish up Grazed Anatomy.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2008

85
V0 Pins and Needles Boulder

A 5m traverse.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2008

86

The line left of TN on RB's, at the graffiti.

FA: Ross Ferguson, 2010

87

Start at the True North boulder problem, climb this for its first 2 bolts and then head left via some cool pinches to the 2nd bolt of shit on you project. Go through some crazy techy bouldering that keeps getting harder. Eventually re-enter full metal traverse at its last bolt and finish at its anchor. someone should take this route straight up into grazed anatomy. The direct start to this route 'shit on u' project is still closed.

Set by Frey Yule and Ross fergusson, 2011

FFA: Sam Bowman, 2014

88

Start 3m L of Grazed Anatomy at ringbolts. Throw, pinch and scream for three bolts. After that, finish up Grazed Anatomy.

FFA: Frey Yule, 2009

89

Direct start to Full Metal Traverse (start at the true north boulder problem and head left to finish at full metal's anchor. So bouldery and sustained.

Set by Frey Yule

FFA: Oliver Miller, 2012

90
27 ** Full Metal Traverse Sport 12m, 7

Start as for Chevy, but traverse the lip directly left on bouldery moves. Mind the third clip. Amazing bouldery climbing without many tricks. Great for getting you strong!

FFA: Frey Yule, 2007

91
27 ** Grazed Anatomy Sport 15m, 9

Climb FMT past four bolts, then up past another five. At last bolt, mantle lip of cave and stand on top triumphant.

FFA: Lee Cujes, 2008

92

Climb to Chevy's last bolt, go left and finish up GA.

FFA: Lee Cujes, 2008

93

Start just to the left of Yoink. By far the most popular route at the crag. Now rebolted.

FFA: Gareth Llewellin, 2007

94
24 * Yoink Sport 10m, 6

On the very R end of the cave. Climb crack on UBs to wacky "rest" on arete. Continue through the steep stuff to shared anchor.

FA: Lee Cujes, 1998

FFA: Vickie Sullivan, 2000

95
14 * Rocket Man Trad 9m

A short easy trad route underneath Yoink. Start at small tree and climb through the orange rock.

FFA: Matt Schimke, 2008

Open trips

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