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Seasonality

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Summary

Multi-pitch mixed climbing with a southerly aspect.

Description

This area is composed of mostly vertical to overhanging sandstone, with plentiful cracks and horizontals slots. The lower-half is quite tall and clean with lovely clean orange rock, whilst the upper half of the cliff is separated by vegetated ledges and shorter grainer walls.

Access issues

Climbing in the Illawarra Escarpment State Conservation Area (IESCA) is not permitted except for the Sth and West faces of Mt Keira. This is written in a legal document, the IESCA mgmt. plan. This was formalised in 2018 and can’t be changed for a long time (approx. 10 year cycle). As of 2021, all Illawarra crags fall within the IESCA.

From the IESCA mgmt plan:

The west- and south-facing cliffs of Mount Keira are used for rock climbing and abseiling, and this has resulted in numerous bolted climbs and the creation of informal access tracks ... Abseiling and rock climbing are not permitted elsewhere in the park owing to risks to the safety of participants and other visitors from geological instability, damage to vegetation and rock faces, damage to cultural features and soil erosion.

• Rangers are not targeting climbers but if they encounter climbers incidentally, they are obliged to ask questions. Please be understanding and respectful.

• Historical bolted climbs do exist in this area, however the addition of more safety bolts could create issues with NPWS.

• Using online forums such as thecrag.com to register routes or ascents is public proof that climbers are actively disregarding the mgmt. plan (a legal document). It is not advised to register ascents at crags within the IESCA.

• Please don’t stash gear, NPWS staff are obliged to confiscate stashed equipment.

• Do not bring dogs into the area, if discovered this would reflect poorly on the climbing community in the eyes of NPWS. Be aware of other rules that apply to the IESCA.

• Hazard Reduction burns occur in this area at certain times of year. ACANSW will try to keep local climbing pages updated with information, otherwise look out for signs at entrances to access tracks etc. If climbers are in the area and a burn is planned it is a very costly exercise to reschedule for NPWS (helicopters etc).

• The land about 100m below the cliffs is private land, so please don't drop large rocks down the slope or walk down to into their backyards!

• Peregrine Falcons inhabit the cliff and nest in early Spring usually. Expect to be dive bombed then.

Approach

Park on the Princes Highway. Check each area approach info for details

Ethic

Don't bolt cracks. Please. If bolting new routes please avoid squeeze jobs, linkups or variant starts/finishes. There is enough rock for heaps of independent lines. Go for a walk! For walls that are easily accessed from above, please set up routes as top rope problems in order to minimize the density of bolts unless there is a particular advantage to equipping them for leading. If your proposed bolted line comes within 3m of an established route, please ask the person whose route it is so as not to devalue their original vision.

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Activity

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