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The Birdcage Area

  • Grade context: AU
  • Ascents: 5

Seasonality

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Description

About 400m or so along the Causeway and up through the bush above the track. The Birdcage is the big guano plastered corner.

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. 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.

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

Three great pitches, varying in style.

Start: Start 3 meters right of The 'Birdcage'.

  1. 25m (24) A little sparsly bolted but well within the capability's of anyone up for the next pitch. Trend right following 5 rings to the belay.

  2. 12m (30) Very thin on beautiful rock. Up three bolts then right past another two, ignore the direct finish unless you are after a mighty challenge. Onto the grey rock and into belay cave.

  3. 20m (23) Lovely way to finish it off. Follow rings up headwall and over the top to rap chain.

FA: Lee Cossey & Andy Richardson, 2006

  1. 15m Thin crack to a groove. Up this moving left and up to small ledge below guano stained wall.

  2. 40m Move up corner to guano wall, piton for aid to a well defined ledge. Traverse left for until a break in the steepness is reached, up for a few moves then up and left to belay on a tree high in corner crack.

  3. Climb chimney behind (probably wet). Awkward exit into easy gully. Stroll up gully and exit to the right - tree anchor.

FA: R. Lassman & K.Bell, 1972

10m left of the Birdcage. First pitch can be used to access the ledge above.

FA: Vince Day, 2000

FA: R.Bombala & V.Day, 2007

Left of the access route.

Position Plus!! Corners,face, roofs,slabs... what more do you want!!

Start: Climb Twisted Reality first pitch at 22 (35m), starts 10 metres left of 'Birdcage'. Traverse right across unprotected ledge to belay stance on ledge below overhung corner

FA: Adrian Laing, 2007

Up project to 2nd bolt then right to scoops and arete.

FA: C.Coppard, 2007

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