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Summary

The kloof name derives from the unusual rock formations in the area which are reminiscent of those found in the Cape Cederberg.

Description

The rock is good and is cleanest at the lower end of the kloof. The longest climbs (approximately 80m) are near the Tonquani junction. Those on the true right tend to be the most sustained.

Water is always available.

Routes are listed from the bottom (i.e. junction of Cedarberg- and Tonquani Kloofs) to the top of the kloof.

Access issues

For more information on routes, access and permits please see the following websites:

Mountain Club of South Africa (MCSA) http://www.mcsa.org.za/ Look at “Who we are” for the different sections of the MCSA

Mountain Club of South Africa – Johannesburg Section website https://mcsajohannesburg.org/ Click on “Access and Properties” for more information Click on “Contact” to get in touch with the MCSA for more information.

ClimbZA website http://www.climbing.co.za/wiki/South_African_Climbing_Wiki Welcome to the largest & most comprehensive online database of Southern African climbing information.

http://www.climbing.co.za/forum/ A forum site to find climbing partners or to find out more about different climbing areas and climbs.

The land is owned by the MCSA, so open to MCSA members and guests (1 guest per member) otherwise permits are required.

Contact the MCSA Johannesburg Section for permits.

Approach

The most convenient approach to Cederberg kloof is from Mountain Sanctuary Park. The walk from the MSP parking to the MCSA campsite takes about 15 to 20 minutes. You can enter Cederberg kloof from the campsite via Grey Gully and walk down the kloof. The walk to the Tonquani junction takes 30 to 45 minutes. Alternatively you can abseil into the kloof via Frog Gully which enters nearer to the Tonquani junction.

Where to stay

Accommodation is available at Mountain Sanctuary Park. Camping is also permitted at the MCSA campsite but no facilities are available. Water in the kloof is potable but you will have to carry water from the kloof to the campsite.

Ethic

Bolting is prohibited.

History

View historical timeline

The MCSA have released a guide book for the area which is the primary reference for climbing routes. The route guide uses the SA grading system and grades have been converted from the old alphanumeric system using the convention as per the article "Grade Comparison Guide" by Clive Curson, p118 of the MCSA Journal #98 of 1995.

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Routes

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Grade Route

Just downstream of the wormhole descent, on the right side of the kloof, there is a 12m high conical buttress with some detached blocks on top of it. A continuous crack leads from it, bearing slightly left, up a steep smooth face for 9m and then continues through a 3m roof.

  1. 30m 27 Use roots to climb the left side of the cone. Climb the continuation crack which overhangs to begin with before tackling the roof crack. Gain slab above roof, and hence onto ledge on the right and then up to a large ledge.

  2. 18m 15 To the right an impressive smooth corner slopes up left. Belay near its foot. Climb up to the sloping corner and follow it to the top.

Variation:

  1. 18m 13 For a direct finish, belay at the foot of the obvious corner on the left (tree belay). Climb directly up the face for 3m to corner, continue up corner to tree on ledge. From the back of the ledge take a steep chimney in the corner which ends 3m from top, where two parallel cracks continue up. Ascend right crack to top. (Mar 1974 J. Linke and T. Hoy)

Note: Originally opened as LONGDROP at 17,A2 in Mar 1974 by D.

FA: D. Peters & L. Mallen, 1974

FFA: Richard Lord, 1990

About 40m downstream of Church Window a number of boulders block the stream over which you have to scramble. The climb is just downstream of these boulders on the true right. The climb starts in a 4m high dihedral.

  1. 24m (6) From the base of the climb you can see a short (2m) chimney about 20m above you. Just above the chimney is a tree, this is the first belay. Climb up the dihedral, go up and right until you are at the same height as the chimney but 3m right of it. Traverse over sloping holds on ramp to the tree.

  2. 15m (10) Behind the tree is a large chimney/crack with some chockstones at the top. Climb this. Above the crack step left and climb the next crack, also with chockstones above. Belay on short stamvrug tree at the base of a large cave/chimney. Don't go left around the first crack; the climbing looks easy and the protection is good but you will end up just a little above the small tree for the belay and the rock is a bit too chossy at this point for a good anchor.

  3. 25m (7) Walk into cave/chimney around the corner where it makes a left turn. Walk out onto outcrop and take in the exposure (you can belay here if the rope drag is too much). Then go back and continue up chimney and then left to a large ledge with a tree belay.

On right of ledge is a boulder, climb over this and scramble down gully to a large tree and abseil down. (46m to bottom)

Alternative to pitch 1 (12): Climb the chimney instead of going around it. Optional pitch 4 (9m, 7): To top out: On the right of the ledge on top of pitch 3 is a boulder. From this boulder up about 1m then traverse left until you can easily scramble to the top. From here walk right to a point above the big abseil tree mentioned above in this description and make a short abseil to it and then a long abseil to the bottom..

FA: K. Ruhle, E. Ruhle & R. Glass, 1943

The route follows an impressive slanting chimney crack which can be seen from Frog Gully. Start 18m downstream of the swimming pool below a tree-filled corner immediately left of the Cederberg Traverse buttress.

  1. 25m 15. Ascend the corner to trees in a recess and continue op to large ledge. This belay is shared with P3 of Cederberg Traverse.

  2. 18m 16. Traverse right (Cederberg Traverse in reverse) around corner to white slab. Continue to top right hand corner of white slab and around the corner. Continue up crack to a ledge. (Bolted Belay)

  3. 18m 19. From extreme right of belay ledge, go up and gain the crack with difficulty and continue to the top with two good rests.

There is a bolted anchor at the top from which you do a 50m abseil to the kloof floor.

FA: I. McLaghlan & M. Makowski, 1968

Starts opposite a large dead-looking tree with a hollow trunk in the centre of the kloof. Opposite Sorrento.

  1. Ascend slight recess (6m) to the left end of a large sloping grassy ledge. Continue op on ridge on left of the massive recess above the grassy ledge. Continue to a large (6x1m) ledge and climb a 2m crack on the right side of the ledge to a smaller ledge.

  2. From the left side of the ledge climb the face to the top. Keep left as far as possible in an exposed position. At some point traverse left on 30 cm wide ledge and continue to the top. Climb the chunky overhanging rock above the arch visible from the ground.

FA: M. Burton, M. Gaze & B. Harris, 1939

The climb begins at the same spot as Cederberg Corner; about 30m upstream from the junction with Tonquani and about 5m upstream of Cedarberg Recess.

  1. 42m (10) From the flat ledge 1,5m above stream level (mentioned in Cederberg Corner), ascend easy rock (slightly vegetated) tending slightly right passing a large nettle tree to reach a large ledge. From the ledge climb the face on the left to gain a second ledge and small tree belay.

  2. 35m (15) Ascend open book (above right hand cairn) using a series of narrow ledges. From top of open book move right and mantleshelf onto a narrow ledge to gain the base of the groove. Pull up into groove and continue past a large flake, scaling a short open book to reach a ledge and tree belay.

Variation to pitch 2: 30m (13) As for the first part of the original pitch, but instead of climbing the flake/groove, move right 5m to below a good crack. Climb the crack. (1990 M. Seegers and D. Margetts)

FA: A.M. Maddison & A. Mercer, 1985

30m upstream of Cederberg/Tonquani junction is a platform 1.5m above the stream level. 15m above the platform is cave.

  1. 15m (7) Start on platform and climb easily up tending rightwards then traverse left into cave.

  2. 31m (12) Climb to the left of the cave and then follow shallow recess, past 2 small trees, to a large (1x1x1m) block on the edge above. This point is at the same height as the start of the crux pitches of Golden Balls.

  3. 35m (9) Above the belay is a sloping ramp with a hand crack on the right. Climb up this. At the top of the ramp continue straight up to a ledge with a tree shared with Golden Balls.

From the ledge you can scramble out easily to the left and up a gully.

Original variation: The original route traverses right out of cave then up a crack to a wide sloping grassy ledge. Then up to the point where pitch 3 starts.

FA: J. Langmore & H. Barker, 1939

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