Bust Up

  • Grade context: SA
  • Ascents: 4

Access: Coronavirus COVID-19 Alert level 2

Physical distancing and restrictions on leisure and social activities to prevent a resurgence of the virus.

Alert level 2 will be in place from 31 May 2021. Alert level 2 was in place from 18 August to 20 September 2020. Adjustments to the regulations will be updated as soon as possible after it is published.

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Created about a year ago - Edited 7 weeks ago

Access issues inherited from Table Mountain

There is an entrance fee to Kirstenbosch.

A permit is required to access Orange Kloof.

Ethic inherited from Table Mountain

Strictly trad area, bolting is illegal.


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Grade Route
1 18 10m
2 22 15m
3 25/26 15m

Varied climbing, with a short, fierce section on the crux pitch.

  1. 10m (18) Climb the Bust Up crack to the small ledge on the left.

  2. 15m (22) Start by an old peg and climb up ~3m to a thin rail. Traverse left to the next old peg and follow the crack system up and very slightly right to reach the stance shared with Daddy Long Legs (peg under a small overlap)

  3. 15m (25/26) Follow the crack on the right side of the stance to the left end of a narrow roof. Pull up to some underclings and traverse ~3m right and then up to a thin rail (micro cams useful). A hard move up to the next rail and then a long pull to a pocket above the narrow overlap. Head diagonally left to the wide rail below the main roof at the height of the Bust Up flake. Abseil point (hex and cam) in situ.

The pegs on pitch 2 were from a potential alternate start to Bust Up attempted by Greg Mosely and Andy Killick in 1971!

FA: R. Halsey & J. Smith, Jun 2016

1 22 28m
2 27 20m

Hard line in a great position. From the Uber Huber platform, dassie crawl left to a ledge where the route starts.

  1. 28m (22) Climb Bust Up pitch 3. At the first big ledge (where Bust Up pitch 4 heads up and right) continue straight up a small left-facing corner. Continue straight up to a stance with an old peg under a projecting block.

  2. 20m (27) A key tufa-like hold on the original pitch has broken, which means you need to climb closer to the big corner on the left. This prompted a better, right-hand version that keeps you away from the big corner but may be harder for shorter folks. Move out diagonally left from the stance and then straight up for a few metres to a handrail below an overlap. For the RHV, move right to where the overlap narrows and make a long, hard move to a large pocket, and continue up to the narrow roof. (Alternatively, climb the face about 1m right of the big corner, resisting the temptation to step on the left wall, to the narrow roof and rail ~1.5 right). Head straight up and right of a large right-facing flake feature using strenuous underclings, and then tend right to finish under the large roof. Abseil from fixed gear (two large hexes). Advisable to place at least one piece on the way down, as it is steep. While 50m ropes should work, this has not been tested so recommended to use 60m ropes.

FFA: G. Lipinska & C. Martinengo, Jan 2016

FA: G. Lipinska, R. Halsey & J. Wakeling, Jan 2016

Superb climbing with an airy finish

Climb either the first pitch of Daddy Long Legs or Redback to reach the peg stance.

From the left side of the peg stance, climb straight up for about 8 meters to gain a rail under a small overlap. Climb past a rather useful pocket and pull through the next overlap (just left of Redback anchor) to another rail. Place good gear in this rail below the vertical seam on the headwall. Gain this seam boldly (but safely) from the left and follow it to the anchor for Daddy Long Legs. A 0.4 camalot is useful for the last section.

FA: J. Smith, Jun 2016

1 14 30m
2 14 20m
3 17 8m
4 19 30m
5 17 25m
6 14 25m

FA: T. Hughes & J. Levy, 1971

1 24 28m
2 28 R 25m

Fun for the whole family Start: Halfway along the dassie crawl ledge about 3 meters right of Bust Up. Belay by a large boulder.

  1. 28m (24) Climb the left-leaning crack to a powerful move about 7 meters up. From this climb straight up to a wide break. Pull through the overhang and continue straight up and then move right 2 metres to stance on a small triangular ledge with good gear (finger size cams) in an intermittent vertical crack at about head height.

  2. 25m (28R) Climb straight up for about 5 meters (Shared with Bust Up). Move right onto the arête for a couple of moves then follow the break diagonally left to the rail 2 meters below the big roof. Move ~1.5m left, then up and right to the next rail using a square pocket. Pull through the roof and move back right for ~1.5m. Place a crucial wire (No. 7 BD stopper) on the lip and run it out on pumpy, technical moves to the anchor in the next rail (the fall from the last hard move is scary but safe).

Variations: A direct version that is more suited to taller folk still needs to be climbed (Platinum Orb, 29ish). This avoids the left detour by using 2 large pockets and pulling directly through the large part of the roof.

An even more indirect version moves left to the Redback anchor (Silver Orb, 26ish)

FA: J. Smith & R. Halsey, Jun 2016

1 21 15m
2 26 20m
3 26 20m

Pitch 3 runout.

FA: T. Versveld & D. Birkett, 2002

1 24 28m
2 25 15m
3 22 20m
  1. 28m (24) Start as for Incy Wincy Spider. At the first rail, move left and then up over easy ground aiming for the bottom part of the darker grey face. At this point, there is a sickle-shaped flake up and right (very loose). Traverse 1m left at the finger rail and then straight up the steep face to the next set of rails. Move 1.5m left and follow the right side of the vague arête, then up the short slab to the narrow ledge. Stance at an old peg and ring.

  2. 15m (25) Bring small and micro cams for this pitch. Place a high wire on the Bust Up pitch, and then move back down and left across the blunt arête. Follow the good holds just left of the arête until the wall blanks out. From the undercling, traverse ~2m left using two small uncut holds and then up to a large side-pull below a handrail. Head straight up past some large pockets to a rail below the roof (and garden above). Move slightly right to a hanging stance with a good foothold.

Pitch 3. 20m (22) Traverse right, under the Bust Up roof flake, and all the way to join the last few moves of Uber Huber. Abseil from fixed gear to the start of the route. If you want to top out, traverse right then join Bust Up.

FA: R. Halsey, J. Theron & G. Lipinska, Aug 2015

A harder, more direct first pitch to Black Widow.

Start as for Black Widow. After the dark grey face, instead of moving left all the way to the right side of the vague arête, head straight up (via a long throw out left to a large flat hold) and then up to gain an intermittent finger crack. This is about 1.5m right of where Black Widow goes. Climb the tricky crack and straight up to the ledge. Move left to stance. Consensus grading required.

FA: R. Halsey & S. Jansen van Rensberg, Aug 2015

A steep, sustained pitch up to the Bust Up ledge.

Start as for Black Widow but at the first rail continue straight up. Follow a slab to the right of the loose flake (slight run out) to a curved series of side pulls. Traverse ~1.5m left until able to pull up to the good rail. Step right and pull up to the next set of rails. Move left to the large undercling and blast straight up to the far right end of the Bust Up ledge. Consensus grading required

FA: R. Halsey & C. Martinengo, Sep 2015

1 29 30m
2 26 20m
3 17 40m

Climbs the beautiful white face between David And Goliath and Uber Huber left of the Africa Crag nose. From the left end of the Upper Africa Ledge, traverse under the Africa Crag nose, climb up 6m to a ledge, and walk left to where the ledge becomes a crawl under a low roof.

  1. 30m (29) Start at the left end of the ledge where one can still stand upright. Climb the shallow corner tending slightly left as it steepens. Head towards the obvious, thin crack through the widely spaced rails above. Climb this and continue up another 5m to a hanging belay at the big rail below the narrow roof at the same level as the huge roof to the right. Probably a couple of grades easier if one is tall enough but this still awaits confirmation.

  2. 20m (26) Start up a short, vertical crack to a big undercling. Move right to a good layback hold and then up past a couple of flakes and a rail to another rail at a small roof. Traverse left to the arete. Do a couple of moves up to a peg (shared with David And Goliath) and then left to a hanging stance at the base of the big roof flake of Africa Bust Up.

  3. 40m (17) Finish by doing the top of Africa Bust Up. Climb the flake through the roof and up to a big ledge (optional stance). Continue up and right through some vegetated terrain to a huge ledge from where one can scramble to the top.

FA: G. Lipinska & D. Steyn, 2015

1 23 20m
2 24 20m
3 26 15m

FA: T. Versveld & T. Dick, 2005

1 14 35m
2 16 11m
3 16 20m
4 14 21m

FA: B. Fletcher & P. White, 1960

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