The Fortress

  • Grade context: AU
  • Approach time: 20
  • Ascents: 44




The Fortress falls onto army land, enter at your own risk.

Access issues inherited from Mt Stuart

Visiting climbers are advised that a significant proportion of the cliffs lie in Dept of Defence (Army) land. Trespassing on defence land is an offense. The Townsville City Council controlled cliffs require a permit for climbing and/or abseiling. Do not park too close to the gate else your car may be moved. During the year, the car club holds races on the mountain road; during this time road access is closed.

Ethic inherited from Mt Stuart

Installation of permanent anchors (eg bolts) is not permitted on City Council land or Dept of Defence (Army) land. Take all rubbish home with you. - Be aware of loose rocks and other climbers who could be below you.



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Grade Route

Could be pretty evil. Rik says "not a classic by any stretch of the imagination". 45m directly below Happy Wanderer. To access, rap down in front of Avalon as for Jack's Beanstalk. Once down, go to LH side of the blank face to grassy crack. Follow crack until it almost intersects a LH diagonal crack. Traverse R and continue up this crack until gear fades. Traverse L, then R across exposed face to good gear, then up, hunting for gear as you go. Take lots of nuts and RP's.

FA: Rik Wittkopp (onsight) & Chris Noon, 2000

FA: Nathan Bolton, Jason Selman & Daniel Radford

Really good climbing avoiding the offwidth bits. Start up the RH crack, through the roof, and L across the O/W to the base of the stonking corner. Save a 1 1/2 Cam for here. Up to chains, taking care of the elkhorn.

FA: Peter Kingsbury & Anthony Timms, 1994

Popular face climbing directly up the slabby wall to the final corner of RS. FHs and some natural gear. There is a great looking finish out L of the top corner to be done.

FA: Dan Ellis & John Pearson, 1995

Grunty. Take RS to the roof anf follow the wide crack through the bulde above, hugging the L arete lustfully.

FA: Peter Kingsbury & Raymond Stuart, 1994

Scramble up to the wide chimney 5m R of AF.

FFA: Peter Kingsbury

Starts about 15m R of RS and before the track dips to a small off-vertical wall. It's the narrow wall which changes aesthetically from green, the slabby part, to black to orange, the steep part, and then a roof. 6 FH and natural gear; 2 FH's on top.

FA: Nathan Bolton & Andrew Doubleday, 1998

The offwidth climb R of TBB.

FA: Raymond Stuart & Peter Kingsbury, 1994

The crack R of Amazon Woman.

FA: Peter Kingsbury & Raymond Stuart, 1994

The thin diagonal line is a serious lead. Climb up R of the seam. First pro is at about 5m.

FA: Ross Anderson & Scott Bewley, 1996

Thin face climbing with 4 FH up the face. Belay off the trees at the next ledge.

FA: Scott Bewley, Matt Lovett & Dan Ellis, 1995

The conspicuous line right to ledge and continue.

FFA: Raymond Stuart, 1994

The just just right of FCAGEA - 2m R of TR.

FA: Peter Kingsbury, 1994

1.5m R of WCAGFLF.

FFA: Peter Kingsbury, 1994

Starting with a dyno 1m L of the R end of the wall then follow small ledges tending left.

FA: Peter Kingsbury, 1994

Directly below The Nursery Cliff is a terrace and lower cliff. Abseil chains 15m L of top of Pleasure Unit (double ropes) to DBB. Corner/ramp up and L. Two pitches of interesting face climbing (can be done in one). Crux at the bottom.

It's easiest to rap into this route, but can access from the ground via a tough scramble.

  1. Runout climbing up the arete and up right at the ledge to the DBB.

  2. Interesting slabby climbing on good rock. Start R of the belay and sinuously up and L.

FA: Mark Gommers & John Blake, 1993

The direct finish starts at end of "Rear Window" P1. Climb straight up.

FA: John Pearson & Dan Ellis, 1997

A body width crack at the R side of a clean face.

FFA: Peter Kingsbury

Face 1m R of SMW.

FA: Peter Kingsbury & Anthony Timms, 1994

The short layback corner 5m R of OMN, around the arete.

FA: Peter Kingsbury & Anthony Timms, 1994

The seam and flare up the narrow face - 2 FH's.

FA: Nathan Bolton & Andrew Doubleday, 1998

The next corner around R from CT.

FA: Andrew Doubleday & Nathan Bolton, 1998

A great route with only one bolt in two pitches. The bolt is reachy to clip and may be dodgy.

  1. Start up the crack just R of a steep R leaning corner. Climb the crack, passing a FH to gain a small ledge. Over the bulge and up past loose rock to gain another ledge and belay.

  2. Up corner then step L onto the face. Continue up the face - spaced pro.

FFA: Mark Gommers, 1995

FA: Mark Gommers, Dan Ellis & Ellen Kemp, 1995

From NFSATJ, walk right and continue around the corner. The route goes up the pillar at the border of The Fortress and The Neutral Zone, about 6m L of "PU". Ascend the steep pillar with four 45 degree FHs and finish on the same upper terrace as the start of RW and BR.

FA: John Pearson & Dan Ellis, 1997

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