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Summary

Rap in climb out routes with big exposure. Also a popular tourist lookout with a problematic history of rope swings and base jumping (both now banned after several accidents and one death).

Description

One of the best venues in the area for big scares and big air. If a rarely repeated adventure is what you are after than this may be just the piece of rock for you. Many routes are bolted with carrots and require a bit of gear to keep the fear at bay. Depending on what route you choose to quest up, leaving a rap rope fixed so that you can still get out if it all becomes a bit much might be an idea. Enjoy the atmosphere.

Access issues

It's in the National Park so no dogs.

Approach

Park at end of Ridgewill Road in Blackheath (north of the highway on west side of town). Walk/ride 5.1km along mostly flat fireroad to top of cliff. It's highly recommend to use a MTB, and pack a spare tyre as the road is notoriously covered in sharp rocks. It takes about 20 mins on a bike or an hour to walk.

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. If you do the bolts may be removed.

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.

If you have benefited from climbing infrastructure in NSW, please consider making a donation towards maintenance costs. The Sydney Rockclimbing Club Rebolting Fund finances the replacement of old bolts on existing climbs and the maintenance of other hardware such as fixed ropes and anchors. The SRC purchases hardware, such as bolts and glue, and distributes them to volunteer rebolters across the state of New South Wales. For more information, including donation details, visit https://sydneyrockies.org.au/rebolting/

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, making remote and less popular crags slightly more difficult and fun to navigate to. Some appropriately discreet pruning is a far better alternative then track braiding (which causes far more damage).

However, do so only on Council land and definitely not in the National Park. Remember, 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 or risk possible closures.

Tags

Routes

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Grade Route

Same belay, left route

Same belay, centre route

Exposed and thin wall climbing, left of Oranges Poranges. From lookout as per OP to furthest anchors on ledge. Rap 55m (or twice with intermediate rappel station) to 3 bolt semi-hanging belay. If you fall from this belay, you will have 7 seconds to think about your mistake before hitting the ground. Validated with a rock-drop-test.

Wild corner above a sea of nothing.

FA: Rob LeBreton & david filan, 1990

From the lookout, head left down the hill along the cliffline (towards hanging rock) until approx 10m from the end of the ridge (the first rock platform back from the end of the ridge). Fix a rope and rap ~35m from here in the direction of Pierces Pass to a ledge (single fixed hanger rap anchor and bollard south of where you rap, can be backed up with sm-med cams underneath the platform). At the western end of the ledge (towards hanging rock) is the belay for the end of P2 of The Black Rose. Rap 25m down this to a semi-hanging belay, and again 20m down the very steep 1st Pitch (clip the rope through all the bolts on the way down) to fully hanging belay 150m off the deck.

P1 20m (27) - Up using arete and right face, with bouldery thin crux from the 2nd bolt. Easier sustained climbing above to semi-hanging belay. ~7 bolts.

P2 25m (20) - Up vertical and slabby face right of the arete to belay on big ledge. Bit runout on 3 bolts.

Would probably be better as single pitch.

Ascend fixed rope and top out. About Gr. 16.

“About as wild as it gets...”

FA: Rob LeBreton & Matt Klein

Intimidating and aesthetic face climbing. This really is the wild, wild west! Bring 15 bolt plates and 17 quick draws (6 of them should be long runners!)

Rap 50m down the top pitch of Burramoko Buttress (off various trees and bollards) to ledge with ring-bolt in the corner (back up off wires and rap-rope).

Traverse across Oranges and Lemons to Ring bolt, then follow 14 spaced carrot bolts up the wall to double ring-bolt loweroff.

An 80m rope can JUST get back to the belay on loweroff. This route wanders quite a bit, so two ropes OR minimum 6 long-runners are essential to managing drag.

When you're standing on Hanging Rock think about this route - the top two pitches fell off in 2009 and are now in the valley floor (it used to be a 75m 4 pitch route). This is the prominent orange arete about 50m west of Hanging Rock with the ugly white landslide scar at the top. Fix a rope to the top, rap in, climb the bottom two pitches then jumar out over landslide.

FA: J Kurko, 1997

These climbs are in a side valley above Crayfish Creek. From Hanging Rock follow the cliff edge around for 150m, dropping down then crossing creek bed to a small blocky outcrop on the right with bolts. Rap 50m from a big tree above the gully. There is also a sketchy scramble down 150m further on.

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