The Hallucination Area

Access issues inherited from Monteseel

No form of booking, notification or registration is required to climb at Monteseel. Although the public currently has right of access to these crags, the usual norms of civilised behaviour obviously still apply.

Ethic inherited from Monteseel

Climbing is allowed as long as no plants are damaged. No bolting is allowed. Most pegs have been cut. No damaging the rock in anyway. There are people living below so no throwing things off the cliff. There are also people living above the cliff so be respectful.


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Grade Route

On the face left of Adams Ap.

An excellent beginner’s route and probably every local climber’s first lead (or midnight solo). Takes the first big, easy angled corner visible from the path. Pull up on a blocky flake to a small ledge and follow the layback crack to the top.

FA: Des Watkins, 1953

A short variation with some technical moves on steep rock. Rarely led, but worth a top rope at least. The pegs are useless.

Climb Adam’s Apoplexy to the small ledge before the final moves (about 3/4 up). Traverse out right onto the steep face past a battered peg to a shallow recess and corner. Continue right onto good holds around the corner. Climb up diagonally right and finish up the large flakes.

Start on the small ledge on The Entertainer and climb up to the jams under the left-hand side of the roof. Continue up the face above to The Entertainer and exit straight up.

FA: Clive Curson & A. Smith, 1986

Contrived, but technical climbing. Starts from the large block at the base of Pin Up. Step off the block and traverse left immediately using a thin hand rail for about two metres. Climb the wall and move back right to a shallow recess and then onto a block below a small roof. Pull through the roof and continue up a thin layback flake to the Pin Up flake. Traverse left (reversing the Adam’s Apoplexy Variation traverse) to the shallow recess which is climbed to the top.

FA: Mike Roberts & Ian Wallace, 1979

This variation is completely independent from Pin Up. From the thin flake above the roof, move left and up the thin crack to the traverse. Move left and exit on thin holds.

FA: Adrian Jardin & Steve Bradshaw, 1984

Originally opened as an aid route, it was freed to produce one of Monteseel’s most popular routes. Starts from a large block on a wide ledge above the path.

Climb up to a rail below a small roof. Stretch through the roof on a hand jam to an inset jug on the left. Continue up the steep face above. Move left to a large flake and exit easily to the top.

FA: Sherman Ripley & Jim Thomson, 1960

FFA: Dave Cheesemond or Mike Roberts, 1975

A superb finish to a great route. From the peg or the flake move up to a block and then straight up the face via a couple of crimper edges.

FA: Adrian Jardine, 1981

A direct line between Pin Up and Hallucination. Start in the middle of the Hallucination flake. Climb up to a smooth face protected by a peg and continue to a small ledge. Move up to a pocket (good No. 3 Friend placement and rusty peg on the left) and then climb straight through to the top on teeny weeny holds (crux).

FA: Andy de Klerk, 1985

Originally an old aid route opened by Colin Shuttleworth called Wobble. Start at the flake to the right of Pin Up.

Climb the flake to the rail. Continue up the face via a hidden hold on the right to another rail with a peg. Move one metre right and then up past another peg to the top rail. Traverse right onto the good foothold (ie onto Granny’s) and then pull up until able to stand on the rail. Do one move left and finish.

FA: Mike Roberts, 1978

A tougher finish to the already pumping Hallucination. From the good rail near the top, head slightly left and up to a small overlap. Finish straight up.

FA: Steve Bradshaw & Andy de Klerk, 1983

A harder finish to Hallucination that does not touch on Granny’s. From the top rail of Hallucination, move slightly right and then straight up to the finishing holds via a sloper.

FA: Steve Bradshaw & Andy de Klerk, 1983

Boulder up the wall left of Granny’s to a pocket in the rail. Follow the thin verttical seam straight up the wall to where it joins Hallucination. Finish as for Hallucination Direct.

FA: Steve Bradshaw, 1986

One of the most climbed routes in KwaZulu- Natal, and the "hard climbing" entrance exam for any aspirant rock star. It has always had a reputation as a tough 23.

Start three metres right of Hallucination and climb directly to the top. Avoid moving on to the ledge halfway up. The crux is protected by two adjacently placed pegs.

FA: Mike Roberts & Ian Wallace, 1979

Start at the left hand edge of the Fall Out bouldering wall. Climb directly up to a small roof, do one move right and climb up to the ledge. Continue up the face just right of the No Hands crack to the rail. Traverse two metres right and move up to via a jug to the next rail. Climb diagonally left to exit.

FA: Tim Goodwin, 1986

This route is a combination of two climbs, the original Fall Out up to the big ledge, and an aid route opened by Des Watkins, called Lollipop, from the ledge to the top. The aid route was freed by Brian Gross on top rope in 1976. The result is a good introduction to steep and technical climbing.

Start in the middle of the face. Climb up to the rail and using a hand jam, stretch up to a thinner rail. Continue up a crack, past a ring peg to a narrow, sloping ledge. Move right and climb a crack to the large ledge. Climb the overhanging crack above to a rail. Move left and finish up a recess.

FA: Mike Roberts & Roy Gooden, 1977

Climb the wall just right of Fall Out to the ledge. Follow the discontinuous crack right of Fall Out to a rail. Move right and up a diagonal crack to exit.

FA: Mike Roberts, 1985

Start to the right of Fall Out and climb up past the boot-shaped rock in the face. Finish on the ledge.

FA: Tony Dick & Roger Fuggle, 1970

Start as for Hokkaido to the ledge and continue up the short, steep wall above, passing two bolts.

FA: Roger Nattrass & Grant Murray, 1989

2 15

The top section provides interesting and enjoyable climbing. Start at a small tree and a wide crack in the corner to the right of the Fall Out wall.

(1) Climb up the corner to the roof. Move left onto the face and climb the slanting crack to the ledge.

(2) Walk to the left-hand end of the ledge. Layback into the wide crack and continue until about half way up. Move around left onto the face and continue to the top.

Variation: Make a direct start just to the right of Granny’s and climb straight up to the top in a single pitch.

FA: Des Watkins, 1955

Start up the first part of No Hands. Climb the crack to the level of the roof and then traverse out to the right on a greasy rail under the roof using spaced footholds. After rounding the corner, continue up to the top on easy rock.

FA: Sherman Ripley & Jim Thomson, 1962

Start up the centre of the face just to the right of the No Thoroughfare corner/crack. Move up and left to reach a left-slanting, off balance crack. Alternatively, and more popularly, pull up on a jug to the right of the No Thoroughfare crack and move up and right to gain the left-slanting crack. Climb this until it is possible to move up left to a position under the roof which is split by a crack. Jam in the roof and reach around to good holds on the face above. Pull through and then finish up easy rock to the right.

A fine introduction to the subtleties of a roof crack. The moves up to the overhang were done together with Dave Cheesmond and Roy Gooden in 1978, and provide a sustained first section in keeping with the rest of the climb. A lot of 'pretenders' climb the No Thoroughfare corner to reach the roof - this is definitely 'not cricket'

FA: Mike Roberts & Rich Smithers, 1977

Start below the small roof at the left-hand end of the Pot Boiler face. This is the easy-angled face to the right of the path leading down to the bottom of the crag between the Eastern Buttress and the Lower Middle Buttress. Climb up to the roof and pull through using a flat hold on the edge above. Finish straight up the face above. This popular problem is easy to top rope but daunting to lead. It involves only about two grade 17 moves through the roof - the rest is barely grade 8 !

About 3 m to the right of Gerry's G is a very similar line that requires a completely different sequence of (about two) moves through the roof - also about grade 17.

FA: Gerald Walsh, 1955

Start next to a bush at the base of the wide crack in the easy angled face on the right of the path leading to the bottom of the crag. Climb the face next to the crack for about two metres and then traverse left to the corner. Climb up the blocky face to the top.

FA: Charles Axelson, Sherman Ripley & Ted Gathercole, 1941

A great meeting place for ex-climbers introducing their children to climbing. Start as for Hot Plate and climb the wide crack to the top, moving left to avoid a bulge.

FA: Charles Axelson, Sherman Ripley & Ted Gathercole, 1941

First ascent: Pitches 1-7 Mike Roberts and Roy Gooden, 1977

Pitches 8-9 Dave and Carless Freer, and Roy Gooden, 1978

Monteseel’s longest route, including nine pitches and approximately 200 metres of climbing, it traverses most of the Central Buttress. The climb was possibly opened in 1972 by Dave Cheesmond and Paul Bridgman using aid to avoid existing climbs. The current route follows sections of existing routes to eliminate any aid. Starts at the base of the Pot Boiler crack.

(1) Traverse across the Hot Plate face to the end of the No Thoroughfare traverse. Reverse this to reach the Fall Out ledge (12).

(2) Traverse past the tree and continue across the Hallucination face to the large flake on Pin Up. Reverse the Adam’s Apoplexy Variation traverse to stance on Adam’s Apoplexy (19).

(3) Move around the corner and drop down to reverse the Nog High traverse to the tree (13).

(4) Continue across the No Feet face and move around the corner onto the Think face. Traverse at the level of the fixed peg on Think to make a difficult handswing from a small layback hold to reach Adam. Move across the Cain face to stance above the start of Republican (19).

(5) Traverse as for the 1st pitch of Republican to stance on the big ledge (13).

(6) Climb as for Republic Left Break from the big ledge to the corner. Do not move up to the flake, but continue left on small holds to reach the end of the Pendulum traverse. Reverse this to reach the Pendulum stance (18).

(7) Traverse left and drop down to reach the Zig Zag ledge. Move to the end of the ledge and stance at the tree (13)

(8) Traverse across the face that forms the second pitch of Zig Zag to a stance above a roof. Reach down and left to a layback hold which enables one to reach a handrail under the roof. Continue left past Top Heavy to stance near Pilgrim’s Progress (15).

(9) Climb the open book just to the right of Pilgrim’s Progress.


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