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|TR: Bung Crag
||Thursday, 27 March 2014 At 12:37:48 PM
|A couple of months ago Rod Wills posted about a new crag out west in the bush somewhere. It sounded exciting and adventurous. I persuaded a few friends that a camping trip out to the Newnes State Forest was in order and last weekend we finally made it out there.
Friday night, after a cracking feed in the Apple Bar at Bilpin, we finally rolled into the Western car park as described on Crag. Camp was struck quickly and festivities commenced. Morning broke and we made the short but steep descent to the Pagoda Environs to begin climbing. Rod had warned me that there might be a bit of loose rock and he was spot on. Still we learned quickly to tread lightly and quickly polished off the routes one after another. The climbing was far from classic but it was a good area to get some laps in and for one of the party to expereince leading for the first time. It is a beautiful spot with a great atmosphere, a bit like Dam Cliffs but without the piles of poo ticket and hordes of people. The fires have been through here and the regrowth is kicking in with lots of flourescent green ferns. Having polished off every route in the area we were about to head off to another wall before the heavens opened. It was brief but enough to kill off climbing for the day.
Festivities got into full swing and went a long way to explain the late start. We broke camp and drove down to the lookout and Diesel Wall. You will need a proper 4wd to get all the way down and we also found a saw and 3 former rugby forwards quite handy to clear a path through the fallen trees.
At Diesel Wall we encountered some horrible rock but also some much better climbing. The fire has caused a bit of damage here but the harder graded climbs seem relatively clean and the rock is much less friable. A showere had us cursing the late start as we moved to the very end of the wall and started on some of the more inspiring lines. Just as it cleared and we ventured out of the cave to start again a large and ferocious storm forced a hasty retreat. Classic Blue Mountains weather had us pinned down with heavy rain, hail and incessant lightning. The dash back to the car was still a hairy one even if the rain had passed.
So is this crag worth the trip? It is in a great area and makes for an adventurous feeling weekend. The climbing we sampled was not stellar but there is a good mix of grades and a few different sectors to try out so I'm not prepared to write it off completely. Next time I might bring a rack and try the epic looking lines on the Far Side wall, fingers crossed the rock is a bit better.
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