Good easy sport climbing five minutes from Hobart city.


'Waterworks Quarry' is the central crag of Hobart and after a stint in the ugly corner has come out looking quite good. Why? As of 2009 the place has been given a total overhaul, with a chest high fence with a gate just for climbers provided by the HCC. It has a flat area in front of the cliff (including mountain bike pump track!) for the kids to play, which is a rare treat for family climbers. Finally, almost all routes are nice and safe after having been retrobolted - well that is as safe as you can be on quarried rock. You can now easily do a few quick climbs after uni or work and be home in time for tea.

The trade route for the place is 'Serial Driller'. I quite like 'Death Unto Racists' and 'Bastard Cancer', both fun climbing. Paul Pritchard is a resident climber and in 2010 he and Duncan Meerding (legally blind!) added 'The Blind Leading The Crippled'. It is great to see that such a fine climber is out there adding to the Hobart scene.

It's marvellous to have a city crag where mates can meet and you don’t have to haul your ass to get there. I would love to know who has done all the routes here in a day? A reasonable challange for the gym buffed boys and girls. Check it out. DB

Access issues

The quarry is in a Hobart City Council park and the Council are supportive of climbing here.


Drive up Davey St in the city, continuing straight through the intersection with the Southern Outlet as though you were going up the mountain. Turn left into Lynton Ave, then right into Waterworks Rd. The quarry is about 500m up, right beside the road on the left.


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Grade Route

Pinch and lift the owl painted rock with one hand. Pinching from the top.

Rules if you want a clean by the book send: To "send" The owl lifter must fully straighten up (back erect, legs and hips locked out); once standing straight, the lifter must maintain control of the owl for 1 second. Then lower the owl controlled way maintaining grip until the owl has returned to the ground.

Set: Kim Walls & David Tan, 6 Feb 2019

FA: William Wardlaw-Kelly, 12 Mar 2019

The classic traverse along the base of the quarry. Start far right on "The Blind Leading the Crippled" and traverse left for 50m+, with three distinct cruxes until under the dog-leg crack (Justin's Crack). If your into "adventure bouldering" keep going and top it out on the lefthand side of the quarry.

FA: Mike Hitchcock, 2009

Traverse the entire cliff from left to right.

'Justin's Crack' and 'Spiderman's Arsehole' are unclimbable following a rock fall in 2010 and are listed for historical record only.

FA: Justin Kennedy

FA: Jon Tiller, 1991

At the far L of the climbable cliff is a slab accessed via a set of rough stone steps.

L-most line of bolts on slab, starting just behind the small tree. 4 UBs to chains shared with 'Twilight Groping'.

FA: A. Lewes & T. Helleman, 2009

Start 2m R of 'Don't Buy a Cheap Ryobi'. 4 UBs to chains shared with 'DBACR'.

FA: Richard Marshall, 1989

Straight up centre of slab, 2m R of 'Twilight Groping'. 5 UBs to chains.

Start with 2 bolts of 'Weetbix' traverse L then climb diagonally towards the anchor of 'Don't Buy a Cheap Ryobi'

R-most line of bolts on slab, 2m R of 'Eye Bolt Route'. 4 UBs to DUBB.

FA: E. Jones, T. Gilbert & G. Abell, 2009

Cheeky alternative start to Weetbix from the far right corner. Crimpy slab problem instead of the easy ladder of Weetbix.

Set: Gabriel Kinzler, 4 Jun 2020

Down and R of the 'Eye Bolt Route' slab is a short section of lower cliff. Between 'Five Four' & 'Death Unto Racists' is a DUBB (double U bolt belay) 1m off the ground, perfect for teaching beginners how to clean anchors, set up top ropes and so on.

Short easy climb, great for beginners or first time leaders. 3 UBs to DUBB.

FA: Jon Tiller, 1993

Delicate climbing. Starts 2m L of 'Bastard Cancer'. 4 UBs to DBB shared with 'BC'.

FA: Jon Tiller, 1993

Arête just L of main slab. Nice rock. Bouldery start, can pre-clip first bolt from easy corner to R. 4 UBs (5 if you use last UB on 'Death Unto Racists') finishing at DBB shared with 'DUR'.

FA: Richard Marshall, 1987

Just R of the 'Bastard Cancer' arête is the main slab, prominent because of its height it has the longest & hardest climbs at 'Waterworks'.

Start with 3 bolts of 'Bastard Cancer' traverse R, bolts 2-5 of 'Phantom Stone Thrower', continue up 'Ruddiocracy' then traverse to the anchor of 'Serial Driller' (crux)

L-most end of main slab, 3m R of 'Bastard Cancer'. 5 UBs to chains.

FA: Jon Tiller, 1993

Start immediately R of PST, climbing just to the L of the UBs. Exciting climbing with some thin moves. The crux clip is now a little cruxier (Aug 2017), having lost a handy jug, adding a grade (from 19). May still shed a little rock so belayer beware!

FA: Guy Abell & Emlyn Jones, 2010

Start just L of small roof, a few metres R of 'Ruddiocracy'. 7 FHs. Finish at same chains as 'Tour de France' & 'Serial Driller'.

FA: Richard Cockerill, 2000

The crag test piece. Start 2m R of 'Les Grands Ensembles', at R end of rooflet. 7 FHs, though hanger on 1st is missing (nongs!) NOTE 1st bolt now U-bolt (2017). Chains shared with 'LGE' & 'Serial Driller'.

FA: Hamish Jackson, 1994

Start at Tour de France, continue trending right on UBs to join Serial Driller. Extra UB has been added for 'high' traverse to chains, no need to clip second last bolt. And if confident, climbs well to clip the second UB as your 1st.

FA: Tim Meech, Dec 2017

Start 3m R of 'Tour de France', towards R end of central slab. Follow L line bolts after 3rd bolt. Trend L at top to chains shared with 'Les Grands Ensembles' & 'TDF'. 9 UBs. NOTE: top section (to chains) is more technical due to block with holds shedding (May 2017).

FA: John Domeney, 1993

Start as for 'Serial Driller' but follow R line of bolts after 3rd bolt. 8 UBs to chains.

FA: John Domeney, 1994

Start with 6 bolts of 'Totally Awesome' continue past the step for 2 bolts in 'Open Festering Wounds' traverse L in the apparent bolt face to climb the last 3 bolts of 'Serial Driller'

Start at R end of the tall section of main slab, 2m R of 'Serial Driller'. Lots of loose rock so take care. 9 UBs & FHs to DBB.

FA: Dave Humphries, Feb 2012

From here R the main slab continues but at a lower height.

Start a few metres R of 'Totally Awesome'. Up right facing corner to overlap. Move slightly leftwards from top of overlap, then finish back right up final slab. 5 UBs to anchors.

FA: Evan Peacock, 1992

The best route at the quarry? Continually interesting climbing up the groove feature and bulge. 4 UBs to anchors.

FA: A. Rosa, 1992

A route squeezed in between PNSH and the rubbish rock to the right (use the arete to the right but don't venture further right). Kick right from the pedestal near the top to finish. Might not really be 19 but with a heavy fever and respiratory difficulty it just might be.

Set: Alan Jackson & Gabriel Kinzler, 4 Jun 2020

Start shared with 'Trad Wankers Must Die'. Up easily past 3 UBs and optional FH. Then head L through steeper section past final UB to anchors. A block with the crux hold worked loose mid-2017 increasing the grade of the climb from 20 (to 21 or 22).

"A route in the classic tradition of Waterworks Quarry. A route that will warm the hearts and minds of repeat ascentionists, chill them to the bone and make them sick to their stomachs. This route epitomises its creator's hedonistic and sociopathic style and is a textbook case of man against rock, rock against gravity and gravity against the combined forces of Ramset and Ryobi. The first bolt, with its stark placement and uncompromising height off the deck, deftly describes mans inhumanity to man. It is also a vivid phallic symbol graphically outlining the first ascentionist's subconscious insecurity about the size of his bit. The moves up the wall above form an abstract modern dance that brings to mind images of East European conflict especially the side-pull which is the key to reaching the third bolt and a new round of Geneva peace talks. A man will always return to old stomping grounds and search for his roots; pulling up on the crucial razor sharp undercut one can almost feel them. The heady aroma of vast African plains drifts tantalisingly through ones nostrils and momentarily the mists of time part, you run, then walk, then crawl back down the evolutionary chain until an apelike heave sends you scurrying up and over the crux. You pause to appreciate the moment and the true symbolism of the metaphor, but a glance at the vacant expanse looming high to the left tells you the best is still to come."

FA: John Domeney, 1993

Start as for 'Oh Joyous Lobotomy'. At the 3rd UB head R past a final UB to anchors. The FH between the 3rd & 4th bolts doesn't offer additional protection and there's less rope drag if it's not clipped.

FA: J. Domeney & S. Stojanovski, 1992

Nice climbing. Start up right facing corner (shared with DITNO). Where DITNO moves right, continue straight up the line. Clips the same bolts as DITNO. No chain or lower-off, but easy to traverse 2m left or right to an adjacent route.

FA: Evan Peacock, 1992

Climb the cruxy corner to the second bolt on UR, move right to easier left trending corner line. Up to chain on JBMHD.

FA: John Domeney, 1993

A somewhat contrived line, yet opening new possibilities. Start halfway between Urban Renewal and Jesus Built My Hammer Drill. Lower section is a crimp fest, middle section a side-pulling stepladder, upper section a cruxy blank face. Stay centred on the bolt line and do not use holds to your left (Resurrection) or right (Jesus). Finish at the same anchor as Resurrection and Drilling in the Name of. In loving memory of Majo.

FA: Gabriel Kinzler & Alan Jackson, 9 Oct 2019

Link up. Start up 'Jesus Built My Hammer Drill'. At 3rd UB, head L to join 'Drilling In The Name Of' at its 4th UB. Finish at 'DITNO' anchors.

FA: OCCG (Old Codgers Climbing Group), 2005

Warning Rock: Loose block near the top

Good thin climbing up face to L of 'The Blind Leading The Crippled' arête. 4 UBs to anchors.

FA: John Domeney, 1992

A line between JBMHD and BLTC. Avoid the temptation of the large holds on climbs either side. Possibly could be described as a bit contrived.

Ascends the blunt arête at the R end of the cliff. Try climbing it blindfolded! 4 UBs to chains.

FA: Duncan Meerding & Paul Pritchard, 2010

Discontinued due to chossy death risk.

Discontinued due to chossy death risk.


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