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Black Bart's Wall

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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.

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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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A bit of a classic. The subtle rounded arete with the cool vertical ironstone band in the bottom half. Despite appearances this is not a sport route - a vital 0.75" green Camalot is required between bolts 1 & 2 (a retrobolt was added and then removed in recent years). This cam is not optional - it is a substantial ground fall if you skip it. Bouldery start (you can pre-clip first bolt off the ledge on the right if tall.) Two bolt plates required for carrots up high.

FA: J.Smoothy & F.Lumsden, 1985

Start as BB, then left past a few hangers and single carrot up high.

FA: G Short & P Mort

Start: The orange corner.

FFA: K.Bell & H.Luxford.M.Law, 1975

Start: Corner below roofs 10m left of Pacemaker.

  1. 22m (16) Block to crack then left into cave. Chimney to bollard.

  2. 22m (-) Chimney and corner to arete and belay ledge.

  3. 22m (-) Up to traverse line, right to easy corner.

FA: B.Price & G.Owens, 1972

Hard move off ground- brackets and bolts all the way up wall.

Start: As for 'Stuffed' but right under the roof. Up the wall and around the corner to horizontal break. Rope drag! Finishes as for Pacemaker.

FA: J.Smoothy & F.Lumsden, 1989

Start: 5m left of 'Stuffed'.Through roof to ledge and bollard.

FA: S.Moon, 1985

FA: Rob Dun & Ivan Valenta

1 15 30m
2 20m

Start: As for 'Honey Dip'.

  1. 30m (15) A sport pitch. Clip first bolt on 'Honey Dip', stem across gap. Right to middle of face, up veering right to cave. Across void onto arete. Inside of arete to ledge (rings - double rope abseil!)

  2. 20m (-) Up, veer right through overhang to ramp.

FA: G.Short & P.Mort, 1995

Stellar corner crack - one of the best easy cracks in the Mtns. Start under roof marked HD, up slab to bouldery move through roof (bolt) and then gear thereafter. Finish with airy traverse left and mantle up to ledge. There is double ringbolts above the route (awkward to belay from but fine for rap cleaning), or chain 5m to the left. Protected by #4 size cams and smaller - hexes also work fine.

FA: H.Luxford & D.Darmanin, 1973

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