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This is the dark, often shadowy, buttress about 200m upstream of the Fortress. There is only one route, so far, which requires an abseil approach.

To get to the abseil station, turn downhill about 100m before the fortress descent gully and head for the clump of boulders at the gorge rim. Weave around these and down a little jump to reach a grassy treed ledge perched above the void. This is the top of “Octavo”.


Access issues inherited from Upper Gara Gorge

Gara gorge is part of Oxley Wild Rivers National Park and access is open:

Ethic inherited from Upper Gara Gorge

Basically, the climbers of Armidale are a pretty laid back, free thinking group and as long as you don’t go out of your way to put people’s noses out of joint you’ll be amazed at how helpful they can be. The quickest way to piss people off is by ripping off projects. There are a few devoted locals making an effort and putting up quality new climbs. A lot of time, hard work and even money goes into their endeavours (cracks can be projects too) and there is too much unclimbed rock around to justify destroying someone else’s motivation. Any routes marked as such or not in the guide should be left alone. The simple courtesy of asking first may save you from being stripped naked and being staked out for the crows to pick your eyes out. If putting up new routes is your thing then please feel free. The only request is that you avoid placing hangers or conspicuous bolts around the Gara Boulders as we are already viewed as an environmental menace by the NPWS - bolting in National Parks is actually illegal.

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Start: If you got it right there should be two bolts sticking out of a projecting buttress. Rap directly in off these to the lip of the huge roof where you will find two more belay bolts. Start here!

From the belay, step right and up the finger crack. Swing around the roof and up the cruisy slab to finish up the final bulging hand-crack. Belay back at bolts.

FA: Scott Clelland, Gordon Low & Ross Hinckley, 1996


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