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The Mount Eden Quarry was the crucible of hard rock climbing in New Zealand. Its steep, technical and fingery basalt grooves, as much as its urban setting remote from any mountains, were the catalyst for climbers to begin pursuing rock climbing as an end in itself. By the mid 1980s the Quarry had the densest concentration of hard climbs in the country.

The routes at the Quarry are as good as they ever were. It is by far the most popular crag in the region and Aucklanders are fortunate to have such a high-quality crag in their midst.

Access issues

To climb at the quarry, permission must be obtained from the NZAC. Fortunately, this is simple enough, just sign up online here: http://aucklandclimber.org.nz/quarry.html

Helmets must be worn at all times, including when bouldering.


The Mt Eden Quarry is situated in the centre of Auckland, in the grounds of the Auckland Grammar School and beside the southern motorway and the Mt Eden Prison.

To reach the Long Side from the school’s main gates on Mountain Road, follow the signs to the Centennial Theatre complex and take the road that leads down to the left of the theatre to the lower playing fields — and the crag. Use the track from the end of the fence at the far right-hand end to get to the top of the cliff. Chains lead down from the top fence to abseil anchors above Graveyard Groove, Nutcracker and Silver Airman.

Access to the Short Side, which is near the corner of Clive and Normanby Roads, is from the Grammar–Windsor hockey turf on Normanby Road.


Was originally a rock quarry, formed in 1856. Labour from the neighbouring prison was used to quarry the rock.


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Long Side Cliff
Short Side Cliff

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