Mandalay Cliff

  • Grade context: AU
  • Photos: 3
  • Ascents: 301
  • Aka: Mandalay




Protected from the wind in winter (climb in the afternoon), or nice for an early summer start followed by a swim.


Large crag facing North West. Warm winter spot overlooking the Colo river. Plenty of old style sport on some rusty carrots with a bunch of nice trad and newer sport thrown in. Be careful of the odd car as you belay from the roadside. Some routes are a bit dusty down low. The area could do with a careful rebolt, there are some runouts on easy ground that could do with an extra bolt.

Access issues inherited from New South Wales and ACT

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


Located on Lower Colo Rd (Southern side of Colo River). Turn off Putty Rd at Upper Colo Rd exit. Turn right under overpass and park just past the bridge. Walk about 300m along Lower Putty Road to the slabs. Or park in gulch 200m past cliff, drive up to large turning circle and come back 50m to small parking area in gulch

The first area is the Rainy Day Cave behind the toilet block by the bridge. The Nonstop Sausage Action Cave is about 150m further down the road. 200m further gets you to the Black Slabs, followed immediately by the Orange wave of choss where Hali and Space to rent go.



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Starts on the right side of cave, up head wall to first RB, then into roof heading left past 3 more RBs to DRBB at edge of cave shared with RDR.

FA: C.martin & J.leel, 4 Nov 2012

Start as for UDMJ to clip it's first bolt, then bust out left and follow the shelf all the way to join RDR at its final moves. Rad.

FA: J. Candy, 10 Apr 2013

Starts in the middle of the cave, follows obvious crack and pockets thru roof,passing 4BRs to DRBB at cave edge, Lower off here.(first bolt requires 90 degree plate as its hard to get others on). Can finish over lip, but dirty.

The line of hangers 2m left of Rainy day route. Finish by traversing in to the final moves of RDR

FA: J. Candy, 10 Apr 2013

Moving west along the road to second cliff line.

In the big cave about 150m past the toilet block. Start 5m R of roof crack (1976) below a little corner in a roof flake. New Ubolts. Go the top and backjump.

FA: Michael Law, 1986

Roof crack

FA: Michael Law, 1986

Climb wall to roof about 8m L of 1976, diag R thru roff to hard lip move. Old carrots. Backjump

FA: Michael Law, 1986

Yellow wall leading to black rock about 10m L of Crabstick. Old carrots. Probably rap off a tree

Start to the right of the old faded safety message on the rock (hard to see). Follow the line of bolts to the left of the large cave.

Following 3 routes are at the right end of the main wall sections. SD and IMMM finish at the large bloodwood that overhangs the cliff top. There is another cliff line accessible from the top of these that appears to be undeveloped.

3m right of SD. Straight up, Step left to slab and then finishing right up to larger bloodwood. Start can be rather dirty.

Straight up passing 2 BR's then move right to BR (hard to see) then up easier ground to large tree belay. Poor Bolts.

Line of bolts to the left of Shattered Dreams?

Past the larger grey slab now and onto the shorter slab that has a few caves on the lower section. Most of these routes finish at trees on a ledge to abseil off.

Follows the yellow streak to the right of cave. Straight up wall.

FA: M.Law, 1990

Start marked? Left hand end of large cave. Up over bulges past edge of cave. Move left slightly then straight up to belay off tree.

FA: H.Luxford, S.Chambers & S.Kitchen, 1994

Start marked? To the right of SCS at left end of cave. Up to bolt moving right into cave. Out over roof and up.

FA: H.Luxford, S.Chambers & S.Kitchen, 1994

The following routes are on the large grey slab area of the crag and are listed from left to right looking in. Twisted routes and bushy corner are the obvious lines and others can be located in relation to them. There is an abseil chain at half way that is less then average (50m rope will reach ground) and also a double ring bolt belay further right on the large ledge (60m rope required).

Starts to the right of Bushy Corner at the left end of the cave. Over buldge to cave BR, then cam and up slab passing DRBB of bushy corner. Up slab with 2 more BR to finish at DRBB on ledge. (has cleaned up nice after it has seen a few more ascents in 2013)

FA: P.Thompson & N.Nicholas, 1990

The obvious left facing corner on main slab. Technical start leading to easy left facing corner. 5 BRs to DRBB.

Reachy crux. The line of Ubolts 2m left of Bushy Corner. Up wall past blocks then right to faint corner and up over roof to finish at lower off just below ledge.

FA: N Nicholas, 1990

6m right of Twisted Roots Up slab then easy and more runout past 1 BR to ledge and L or R to rap points

FA: Michael Law, 1990

From the 3rd BR on pitch 2 of Abseil Wall, directly up and over roof to tree, 3 BR

About 4m right of TR. Hard crux move. Originally graded 19.

  1. Up slab and slightly left to ledge past 9 BRs, left to DBB (or right to abseil point (25m))

  2. Up and right on slab, across corner then left up wall 4BR, left to tree

FA: Michael Law, 1990

2m right of twisted roots. Straight up wall then slightly L through roof, 9 BR to finish at abseil chain.

FA: P Thompson, 1990

Corner on the left side of the slabs, probably the most obvious line on the main slab. Just do pitch 1. 1 15m Up the good corner past an inexplicable bolt runner. Best to lower off small chain in cave out right.

  1. 20m Moving left along ramp to belay below fused orange corner.

  2. 15m Up fused loose corner to old BR then move left past roofs on hideous rock. Also you'll disturb the falcons at the top of the corner.

The line of bolts to to the left of the obvious flake of Twisted Roots. High first bolt to start (can be protected with a cam). Straight up to short chain in small cave.

FA: H Luxford & S Chambers, 1994

Nice slab climb with some thought provoking moves, Starts 2m left of Twisted Roots. Straight up wall into small corner, over ledge (Twisted Roots traverses here) and up to lower off. Rebolted on rings. Watch rope length.

The left line of bolts at the left side of the Grey slabs. About 6m L of Twisted Roots (the corner). P1. Follow the line of bolts past a desperate move to the ramp of Twisted Roots then follow bolts straight up (easy if you traverse R here to rap chain) with a hard move on smooth slabs under roof to abseil chain (40m) or P2. Heads diagonally right to top of cliff.

FA: H Luxford & B Darmanin, 1994

Start as for Little Red Rooster, up corner and right onto hard slab move. Up to tree and up right side of cave, past right side of abseil cave, hard pull at top and rap off tree.

FA: Colo Wasters, 1990

A popular route; Start at right hand end of overhanging section in short corner then left a move and up orange slab and steepness into cave. Step R and clip bolt on lip, into cave and abseil point. Rebolted

FA: Nat Nicholas & T Thompson, 1991

A very popular route. You can go R after the first roof into the cave and rap off to make a good 18. Start below Orange slab, 3m L of corner (Little Red Rooster) there is a faint chipped H 30cm below first BR. Desperate start, or haul through on 2nd bolt. Up slab to steep corner and onto slab. Up to scary choss cave out L then left to roof. Hand traverse right along lip to (high) lower off, 11 rings (rebolted).

FA: Michael Law, 1988

Fun! Winds it way easily across the orange ramp/slab. Start about 10m left of orange rock at right end of steep crag (Hali),just right of thin tree (Yellow Bloodwood). Move up and right to BR at 6m on the arete of a little corner. Up onto ledge then up to next ledge and traverse to the cave and abseil point. Take gear to abseil (17m) on and know how to use it. A few runouts on easy ground. Rebolted on Ubolts.

FA: Michael Law, 1986

The rock does not look inviting. Start behind thin Yellow Bloodwood. Up Space to Rent to 3 BR, then up through layered roofs

FA: moss, 1990

Extension to Great Lashings of Pleasure. Over roof. 2 carrots

FA: Michael Law, 1990

Punchy roof moves. Start on orange coloured (firm looking) section of rock; about 20m R of Ethereal McCoy, just left of pair of thin Yellow Bloodwoods. Up short corner on left, swing left for a move then diagonally right past 7 Ubolts to lower off under roof. Rebolted this century. Take a brush as there's still some drill dust etc up top.

FA: Michael Law, 1990

Up steep choss at left end of crag. SCramble up on right. After the overhang section pull onto wall with effort.

FA: Michael Law, 1990

Corner crack at far left end of Crag, a few meters L of Ethereal McCoy. Scramble up, starts 12m above road

FA: 1992

Scramble up to ledge 10m above road. 10m left of The Corner, 2m right of short bolted arete. A long route that picks it way to the top of the buttress.

  1. 25m (12) Steep start from road onto slab. BR (neighbouring route) step right up thin crack. Tread right over loose blocks up to tree belay. Walk right 10m, scramble up to corner.

  2. 10m (15) Up loose corner, at ledge go right up finger crack to tree belay. Walk up slope for 20m. Takes line between two caves.

  3. 35m (15) Up slab trending right. Head left for 4m, sling thread, up overhanging strip between chossy caves. Tree. Climb up and left 3m, up off last ledge. 2m to top. Trees. Descent : Downclimb ledges to left (facing out), 2 abseils.

FA: J.Anderson, J.Gilson & C.Radford, 1998

Wandery with big ledges, but fun. Some chossy rock, bring your fattest gym bunnies to clean it up. Can be done on a single 50m rope. Bring rap gear, helmets, 10 draws, and belay gear. Take your bags and other kit up the first pitch and leave them on the ledge as its off the road and a bit less likely to be stolen!

Starts straight off the road at the left end of the overhung wave of choss cliff, about 80m L of Hali and Little Red Rooster. About 400m from the bridge. Find short curving crack left of No Standing sign. Don't get run over belaying or rapping! Don't drop stuff on cars or the road, move it off the road if you do. Run away if you drop it on a car.

1- 14 10m Little curving crack to anchors on ledge.

2- 15 22m Up wall and rib to belay on edge (and potential lower off).

(Not really a pitch but you need to belay the first moves)-Belay 'leader' to get onto main ledge then walk up past rap anchor on tree and left 12m to ring on wall. Bring up second.

3- 16 15m Up crack and wall, right to rings on ledge. (this is the 2nd rap anchor on the way down)

4- 16 20m Right and up slabs,bulges, then just to get some air, traverse left over the leap on interesting rock. Belay on rap slings in tree.


Rap 1 from maillon on sling 20m to previous belay.

Rap 2 from rings rap 15m, then walk or belay down to tree and sling.

Rap 3 25m from sling anchor to 1st belay. (Could do last 2 raps as one on a 70m rope, but rope may hang up on first ledge).

Rap 4 10m from rings to road


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