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Access issues inherited from Blue Mountains

The Blue Mountains are a World Heritage listed area. The Grose Valley, the cliffs around Katoomba and much of the Narrow Neck peninsula are part of the Blue Mountains National Park which is managed by the NPWS. The Western Escarpment - where most of the climbing is - is Crown Land managed by the BMCC. While the NPWS Plan of Management nominates several locations in the National Park where rock climbing is deemed appropriate, the majority of the climbing remains unacknowledged. To maintain access our best approach is to 'Respect Native Habitat, Tread Softly and Leave No Trace'. Do not cut flora and keep any tracks and infrastructure as minimal as possible.

Practically all crags are either in National Park or in council reserve: dog owners are reminded that dogs are not allowed in National Parks at any time and fines have been issued, while for crags on council reserve the BMCC leash law requires that dogs be on-leash.

Ethic inherited from Blue Mountains

Although sport climbing is well entrenched as the most popular form of Blueys climbing, mixed-climbing on gear and bolts has generally been the rule over the long term. Please try to use available natural gear where possible, and do not bolt cracks or potential trad climbs.

Because of the softness of Blue Mountains sandstone, bolting should only be done by those with a solid knowledge of glue-in equipping. A recent fatality serves as a reminder that this is not an area to experiment with bolting.

If you do need to top rope, please do it through your own gear as the wear on the anchors is both difficult and expensive to maintain.

It would be appreciated if brushing of holds becomes part of your climbing routine - do it with a soft bristled brush and never a steel brush!

The removal of vegetation - both from the cliff bases and the climbs - is not seen as beneficial to aesthetics of the environment nor to our access to it. However, the fast growing scrub can conceal walking tracks in mere months, so bringing a pair of secaturs and pruning as you walk is a good way of helping out with the constant task of track maintenance. Some appropriately discreet pruning is a far better alternative then track braiding (which causes far more damage). It's also a good warmup for your forearms! However, do so only on Council land and not in the National Park.

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

One of the mountains' finest arete routes. The rubbly stance at the base is above a steep drop into the jungle, but doesn't really require setting an anchor. The belayer can just lean on the tree.

Start: Start under the middle of the awesome front face of the buttress - which is where the abseil lands you.

  1. 28m (24) Take 6-8 bolt brackets and 15 quickdraws. Start up poor/dubious rock for 10m past old carrots and a couple of hard moves, to the main face. The rock quality now improves. Traverse left to the arête. Now strenuously up the arête to a hanging belay, off 1 new ring bolt, and 2 old carrots 1 of which is badly positioned and cantilevers the carabiner. Consider pulling up to clip the first lead bolt on pitch 2 to beef up this belay.

  2. 30m (23) A stunning pitch (rebolted 2004). Continue up the fantastic arête to the cave (extend the bolts before and after the cave). Traverse 5m right from the cave (the FHs going straight up from just to the right of the cave is DHMR), to ledge. Now straight up the awesome steep crimpy face finish.

FA: J.Smoothy & M.Stacey, 1988

Direct finish to I was a Teenager for the CIA. 26 in the guidebook.

The bolts on this route are glued in hilti studs with hangers attached (not expansion bolts as some people have suggested).

FA: Simon Atkins, 2006

The middle route on the face. Rebolted 2004

Start: Rap down the centre of the face. Route starts at the chain belay for Teenage 'Werewolf'.

FA: G.Bradbury, 1986

Links the start of Teenage 'Werewolf' into Teenage NB.

Start: Through choss off bottom ledge. At 3m step right and head straight up.

FA: R.Heap, 1999

The lefthand arete (facing out). Needs rebolting.

Start: Rap in from rings on the left of the butress (facing out).

  1. 25m (24) As for TfCIA but head right through choss to the arete and belay.

  2. 30m (22) Up the arete to the top.

FA: G.Bradbury & J.Smoothy, 1984

Start: Rap from the top of the cliff. 5m left of the left hand arete (IwaTW). Looking out.

FA: J.Smoothy & C.Cuthbertson, 1988

Direct start to PB.

Start: Rap to the bottom. Corner on the right side of the butress (looking in). Up to belay of PB, then up.

FA: M.Law & S.Moon, 1991

Activity

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