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North Face

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Description

Small area, harder higher routes than the West Face area

Access issues inherited from Mount Keira

The Mount Keira summit park is an easy 15 minute drive from the Wollongong CBD. The park is surrounded by the Illawarra Escarpment State Conversation area and is covered in thick sub-tropical rainforest and eucalypt forest, and is open to the public all year round.

Be aware the vehicle gate to the summit park is closed and locked after hours.

Due to rockfalls in recent years some parts of the area are closed, though the West Face and connecting path (Dave Walsh Track) are declared open by the National Parks and Wildlife Service. See http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/visit-a-park/parks/illawarra-escarpment-state-conservation-area/local-alerts for details.

Approach

From The Mt Keira car park walk back down the entrance road for exactly 5 minutes (350m) . On the right - just as the road starts to turn left sharply - there is a rock out-crop , scramble up the rock steps and then:

  • head immediately down the steep slippery gully to the 1st wall.

or

  • head right across the top of the climbs to get to the climbs beyond 'Wallyard arete'

Ethic inherited from Wollongong

Retro-bolting of established trad routes is frowned upon. There has been some controversy in recent years about new routes being bolted above tourist tracks. Please don't do this.

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.

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.

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.

Consider bolting single lines rather than many link ups and eliminates, where there are established lines also consider the need to add bolts to establish link ups. It can often create an eyesore.

It is a privilege to climb in the Illawarra 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.

History

History timeline chart

G Hill, R Young, A Prehn, S Bullen, J Muir, B James, J Hoy

Tags

Routes

Add route(s) Add topo Reorder Bulk edit Convert grades
Grade Route

Wall and arete right of GBOBW.

FA: Steve Bullen

The 1st crack in descent gullys right hand side wall. Natural protection. Up the crack with an interesting finish. - grovel , grovel

FA: Jon Muir, 1977

Probably the hardest route on Mt Keira. Start 3 meters left of 'Great Balls Of Boogey Woogy'. Up the wall to horizontals then crank crank crank to the top.

3 ring bolts and an optional rusty dogger bolt plate at the crux to a new double ring anchor.

FA: Steve Bullen

[Apr-2012 new lower off] Strenuous face climbing for last 2 bolts! Start 2 meters left of Pakistan. Climb past the horizontals then follow the rings to the top. Plus has original top belay bolts.

FA: Ant Prehn & Rod Young, 1983

Start on the rock platform, up jutting features to the 1st ledge. Bridge corners to get to 2nd ledge. Now it gets harder - grasp for pockets and thin footholds to reach the diagonal ridge. Slap direct to the anchors with a huge lunge off the ridge gaston, or pike right and use the arete if you are not tall enough.

FA: 2012

Warning Fixed Gear: MISSING BOLT

[May 2012 - Loweroffs and 2 ring bolts]

The Opposing face of Nordwand.

Step up on horizontals using crack for purchase. Reach to the ledge and walk left along the diagonal then pull up. Spread arms wide for flacks, watch foot placement, some of the small flakes are weak.

From the top you can also exit via Sand Pit Wall Exit route, thus making it a multi pitch route.

FA: 2012

The following 3 short routes plus the start of Bog Cog are up the small intermediate landing area above Sand Pit Wall Entrance.

On the short wall starting from the halfway ledge (3m left of Debut Deview). Up wall past rusty bolt going left at top. Pro. = 2 rusty bolts

FA: Steve Bullen & Graeme Hill, 1982

The flake just to the left of Sand Pit Wall One. Up the wall.

Sand Pit Wall Exit Lower Offs can be used from this route

FA: Steve Bullen & Graeme Hill, 1982

[May 2012 - Lower offs] Layback off crack , step up and then reach left and clip 1st bolt.

[May 2012 - new Loweroffs and bolts]

From the path - up the arete , pull up to the 1st platform then up the razor arete to the second platform. Hunt for the holds and smear up to the top.

From the top you can also exit via Sand Pit Wall Exit route, thus making it a multi pitch route

FA: 2012

Thin face climbing. Balancy and technical. Start about 7 meters around from Fascination, at easy short arete under roof at the base of the cliff, OR solo up the corner to belay at wall. Up wall and flake. 4 rings to double rings at top.

FA: Ant Prehn & Rod Young, 1983

Original grade was 24 but we think it could be a couple grades higher. Old guide description is to traverse in from the right at the upper sand pit ledge, but it is more conventional and accessible to just start at the ground as per Fizzgig. At the traverse clip the first bolt of Cheap Wine, then head diagonally upwards to finish as per Cheap Wine anchor.

FA: Steve Bullen

The traverse is spacey. Start as for Fizzgig. Up easy ground to steep wall (ringbolt). Traverse out left across wall just above the undercut roof (ringbolt). Up wall at left side of arete (ringbolt) to double bolt belay.

FA: Ant Prehn & Rod Young, 1983

Up the first 3 bolts on wallyard grave, then go right across crack into lip of roof and trend up and right to double ring anchor. (An easier variation can be done by going up the crack another meter before branching right, but beware there is a funnel web in the good pocket

FA: Tim Booth

The corner about 5 meters past Fizzgig. Up the corner to the top.

FA: Jon Muir, Ant Prehn & Graeme Hill

Up GH Groove for 8 metres. Step L on horizontal break to gain finger crack of WG. (GH Groove is now 'off'.)

The wall left of Grot Heap Groove. Up the middle of the wall finishing up the thin crack in the wall and top wall. This route has been re bolted and safe to climb

FA: Jon Muir

Maint: Tim Booth, 2021

[May 2012 - loweroffs and start ringbolt added]

An excellent direct route with great views The arete left of Wallyard Grave. Follow the arete and right wall past fixed brackets to reach top arete. Climb arete until forced back right onto wall (crux) and up wall past last bracket to lower-offs. - 5 Expansion bolts & 1 RB.

From the top of WGA rappel over edge to the right (facing out) to small ledge. Climb back up wall past rusting bolts.

From the base of WGA walk around left and scramble up to next climbs at a crack with initials 'FOY'

Start at FOY marked chimney. Up and onto ledge on right side of arete. Up the corner past ledges to the top.

FA: Bill James & J Hoy

A chimney with an exciting finish. Initialled.

FA: Bill James & James Hoy

Start in the crack left of Fountain of Youth. Up the line.

FA: James Hoy & Bill James

Up Teno Not Streno and traverse left across wall past bolt and 2 brackets to another crack. Up wide crack to top.

FFA: Brian Rattenbury

FA: Bill James & James Hoy

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