Tie a knot in the end of your rope before climbing! There have been numerous accidents at this cliff due to lowering off the end of the rope. A 60m rope is required for most of the easy routes. The routes ending at the major horizontal at "30m" actually need a 70m rope to lower off due to the line taken (or you can clean the draws on the way down.)

Some sport routes have spaced bolts so taking some trad gear can be a good idea. Indeed many of the best routes at the cliff are mixed - bolts only where there are no trad placements availble.

Some routes have a carrot at the start, so a couple of bolt plates are required.


Access issues inherited from Waitpinga

The access to the cliff is via one of two methods.

  1. via the Heysen Trail coming in from the Victor Harbour side or Newland Head Reserve. (adds about 1.5 - 2 hours to the walk in.) or

  2. Via private land. The CCSA (Climbing Club of South Australia) has arranged access via the landowners immediately above the cliff top. Any entry onto this land must first have the permission of either Alistair Carmichael or Bernie Carmichael.

Phone numbers are available from the CCSA Online Waitpinga guide at

Descent notes

Sport routes have lower-offs. The old routes end in steep dirt, loose rock and shrubs and are not recommended unless you are in to that.


Some content has been provided under license from: © Cameron Roy (CC BY-SA 3.0 AU)


Add route(s) Add topo Reorder Bulk edit
Grade Route

take a #1 cam

FA: Peter Daish & Des Hudson, 7 Jan 2009

as in the guide book

Takes a line on the left side of the wave platform, starting with a carrot bolt then leading up past FH's to a mid section requiring trad. Take a breath and move up into the crux (bolt protected) which involves a span out right. Has been known to throw off 6'4" grade 29 climbers yet see 5'3" grade 22 climbers onsight it - so no excuses!

FA: Steve Kelly/Pete Daish, 25 Jan 2009

FA: Peter Daish & Jordy Moffat

The scene of an epic first ascent story. Originally climbed entirely on trad then later retrobolted (by the first ascentionists). A classic that gets harder as you get closer to the belay. Well worth doing.

FA: Damien Hall & Peter Daish

Climb 2/3 of Sea Lion pitch 1, then step L to Taleah Grace chains.

Sea Lion 1st pitch to 1st horizontal. If using a 60m rope lower to TG chains

Hard start traversing into the diagonal slashes then up these to a final cruxy section that traverses left to an anchor.

FA: Peter Daish & Jordy Moffat

Possibly harder than Smooth Sailing and a little bit exciting to reach the crux. Take small wires and cams to supplement. A big pitch that gets harder the higher you go, with a super delicate crux section in the final 8 metres. 2nd pitch has not been climbed since a huge flake came off it, and it is not in a climbable state at present.

FFA: Steve Kelly

FA: Tony Barker & Mike Broadbent

You can take a bit of trad gear with you to supplement the bolts. A total classic that puts value back into 21's! Try not to do this one on a big wave day however.

FA: Peter Daish

The extension to GMB to the Achilles chain hasn't had a lead ascent as yet.

Start on boulders at R end of pond. Up to carrot (difficult) then past 2 ring bolts. Continue up crack (natural protection) passing another ring bolt up high before the DBB.

FFA: Paul Francis & Mark Witham, 1990

The all too obvious crackline rising up by 'the bath' left of Smooth Sailing/Lost Socks requiring a mixture of trad and bolts. Grade 15 to the first anchor then continue up the crackline as it thins out and leads into the junction of Smooth Sailing. Finish as for that route.

FA: Peter Daish & Alister Carmichael, 2007

Not really a variant - just the start of True North. An all trad affair to the first anchor and an excellent lead for the grade.

FA: Peter Daish & Jordy Moffat

An inferior route to Smooth Sailing linking Lost Socks start (contrived) into Smooth Sailing.

Mixed protection, 4 bolts and natural gear.

FA: John Nankivell & Alister Carmichael

FA: Mark Leonard & Sandy Hancock, 1989

Clear the Decks Pitch 1 until it bisects Smooth Sailing then as for this briefly until you can climb right to the anchor.

The extension to Clear the Decks Pitch 1 (done in one big pitch to the 2nd anchor). Very exciting crux relying on classic Waits foot smears to negotiate the hard bit a little distance above the protection.

FA: Jaimie Holland & Peter Daish

Possibly the best line at Waits. Follows the white quartz diagonal seam in a rising leftward direction until the route meets the vertical crackline of True North. From here, straight up the crack to a final tricky section and a cut right and up to chain. Mega.

Smooth Sailing until you can cut right to the Clear the Decks Pitch 1 anchor. Quality.

Climb Smooth Sailing until after its crux (where it meets True North) then 1m later span out left via a series of dynamic iron cross moves and bad feet to join GMB. Climb the crack of this route for approx 1-2m then a final slab boulder problem diagonally leftwards leads to the chain of Achilles Gambit. Originally freed to GMB, later extended to the obvious finish. Very technical and engaging climbing.

FFA: Steve Kelly

FA: Peter Daish & Damien Hall

Awkward crackline following ring bolts.

Follow the crack line that runs parallel and 5m R of Smooth Sailing. Start at Clearing Your Mind leftwards passing through its Barque’s garden, then keep following the obvious crack line that leads to the Lost Socks DBB. Good natural pro all the way. 70m rope required to lower off.

FFA: Frewin Ries, 23 Nov 2014

Waits headspace slabbing at its best and probably not a good one to warm up on if you haven't experienced Waits before or are looking for a quick clip up. Good training for the harder routes.

FA: Peter Daish

Start at the crack 1m L of Albatross. Up to join the L-leading diagonal crack to Crow's Nest and finish up that climb.

FA: Paul Badenoch & Vicki Kavanagh, 18 Mar 2017

At the wedge take the R crack and rejoin RSATL up high.

FA: Paul Badenoch, Vicki Kavanagh & Chris Oerman, 2 Jan 2017

Bolted line 3m L of the chimney.

The L arete of the chimney at the R end of the wall.

A traverse of cephalopod wall in either direction staying about 10m above the rock or water.

Did you know?

Did you know that you can create an account to record, track and share your climbing ascents? Thousands of climbers are already doing this.

Photos Browse all photos

Upload a photo of area


Check out what is happening in Cephalopod Wall.