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Description

Blue Gum Swamp runs along the river at the bottom of Shaws Ridge. The two trails connect and provide the local schools with their cross country trails. Multiple caves and areas exist on the wall between the two trails. Some areas are stand alone and easier to access from Blue Gum Swamp Trail. Others are in the main ridge line and are more easily accessed from Shaws Ridge Trail. As always with the lower mountains, beware the loose rock, and clean all routes thoroughly.

Access issues inherited from Lower Blue Mountains

Be sensible.

Approach

Goto Winmalee shopping center, continue to the end of White Cross road and park at Blue Gum Swamp and Shaws Ridge parking lot. Head down main trail and take left towards Blue Gum Swamp. Many sectors along right hand side of trail.

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.

History

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Shaws ridge trail is believed to have been created sometime in the 1880s. It is likely that the area has been visited by climbers and the like for some time, although there are no documented climbs. The area began to see development by the local Winmalee crews around 2010. Efforts by the Matt and Bryson Klein and the young Winmalee bouldering set in 2012/13 have seen some first ascents getting made.

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Activity

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