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Chockstone Forum - Crag & Route Beta

Crag & Route Beta

 Page 1 of 2. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 33
Area Location Sub Location Crag Links
All NSW (General) (General) (General)  

Author
Good beginner trad crag Sydney/Blue Mountains
slacey
30/11/2013
8:26:46 AM
Hi all,
Alright I've got a few questions to ask. I'm planning a 2 week roadtrip down to the Grampians and Arapiles with my brother in Jan/Feb next year and want to spend the second week climbing some of the easy classics at Arapiles and the first week mostly climbing harder (for me anyway!) sport climbs in the Grampians, but I also want to climb at Taipan for a day on some of the easier first pitches there.

We can lead low 20's sport routes reasonably comfortably but have never led on trad gear before. So I'm looking for a good beginners trad crag in Sydney/Blue Mountains (something up Hornsby way would be even better) to practice placing gear and if its somewhere I can rig up a toprope to practice even better.

Also I was wondering what are the best easier (low 20's) first pitches to do on Taipan for a budding trad leader? I've got Neil and Simon's new Gramps guidebook and I was looking at The Seventh Banana p1, Sirocco p1, The 7th Pillar LHV short and World Party p1 and was wondering what the pro is like on those pitches for someone who is going to be near their limit and isn't heaps experienced placing gear?

Also what would be a good basic rack to take to Araps and the Grampians? At the moment I've got a set of Black Diamond wires sizes 4-13 and some Kong wires sizes 3, 5 and 9 and I'm going to buy a basic set of cams as well. Will that get me up those first pitches on Taipan and the easier classics at Araps?

Thanks,
Scott

rodw
30/11/2013
9:17:59 AM
Since you at Hornsby there are a couple of trad lines at Mt K that you can setup top rope on and practice...

http://www.thecrag.com/climbing/australia/hornsby-and-the-north/area/12009835

probably head to Lost and found wall....
http://www.thecrag.com/climbing/australia/hornsby-and-the-north/area/13080601
Trad routes there with good gear....
Pig Shooting -13
Kodak moment - 15
Lost property - 15 (top rope using Foundlings anchors)
Bill - 14
Ben - 17
Zozo the Mandarin Fiend - 18

All can easily have a top rope setup on them




ajfclark
30/11/2013
9:54:14 AM
You may be better off heading to Arapiles for the first week to expand your trad experience before heading to the Taipan.
Dr Nick
30/11/2013
10:28:00 PM
Positive Ape Factor at Berowra would be a good one - easy to chuck a toprope on, and I reckon you could lace it up. There are also a couple of layback type things. You could even practice putting in pro on the descent ramp.

There's something that looks like about 17 waiting for a first ascent on gear at the right side of the Motherlode, but I haven't had a decent look and it could be harder. It probably also needs significant cleaning.
mikllaw
30/11/2013
10:41:47 PM
Cathedral has the most trad cracks in Sydney, though they are mostly 20ish. You can borrow a masive loaner rack from me when Brad returns it- it's always good to have doubles.

Drop 5 grades when you start on trad.

The best drill to learn to place gear is to aid a few routes on gear, protected by a toprope, you can self belay on a grigri with knots on the rope below as a backup
Wendy
1/12/2013
8:45:23 AM
If you have no trad experience at all, I would just head straight to Araps to get started. Preferably with someone who does know how to climb trad. There are far far better routes to start on there than anywhere in NSW. And they are actually really good. You can have a great time on quality rock in exposed postitions and surprisingly thought provoking moves on grades 10s. In the meanwhile, you could take a trad rack bouldering and practice placing gear whilst climbing where you can't really hurt yourself.

As to the first pitches at Taipan - I would give them all a miss and climb somewhere with good routes at the grades. Amnesty, Van Deimans, The Gallery will all give you a much better days sport climbing in the early 20s than Taian first pitches, even including Spurt Wall whose 22s are pretty blah. Taipan really only becomes worthwhile 25+. For example, Sirocco first pitch is a one move wonder and about 6m of any actual climbing at all. The one exception to that would be the 22 pitch to Seventh Pillar (which I think still needs some trad, and I would not suggest trying anything anywhere near your limit on trad with bugger all practice at it) and there's a good 24 on Spurt.

Rackwise, I pretty much always carry a double set of wires and at least 1 set of cams here. On easy stuff, that might be only .5-2 in camalots, but on most stuff, almost a double set from green alien to 3 camalot. I could be persuaded to lend you some gear for a pack of ferrero rochers :)

pezz
1/12/2013
9:45:04 AM
given the time of the year you are looking at climbing, i would suggest the ravine at the gramps for sport climbinging on a hot day
MichaelOR
1/12/2013
10:18:54 AM
But a long, sandy and hot walk in, and especially out, if the gate is locked!

ajfclark
1/12/2013
12:21:38 PM
Regardless of whether the gate is unlocked or not, you should not be driving up the sandy road to get into the ravine. The walk is not that bad and damage to that road is one of the access issues with the crag.

I usually park at the campground and walk from there.

nmonteith
1/12/2013
3:43:32 PM
None of those first pitch routes on Taipan are safe for first time trad leaders. All involve fiddly spaced gear and rope management skills. World Party pitch 1 is especially dodgy.

JamesMc
1/12/2013
6:43:40 PM
Reinforcing Wendy's comment, The best beginners Trad near Sydney is Arapiles. At least its on the same continent. Don't Know why you would want to go to Tiapan but if you do, you can do the first half of the first pitch of World Party then more right and up Anaconda to its first belay at grade 16.

Duang Daunk
1/12/2013
9:17:46 PM
On 30/11/2013 slacey wrote:
>Hi all,
>Alright I've got a few questions to ask. I'm planning a 2 week roadtrip
>down to the Grampians and Arapiles with my brother in Jan/Feb next year
>and want to spend the second week climbing some of the easy classics at
>Arapiles and the first week mostly climbing harder (for me anyway!) sport
>climbs in the Grampians, but I also want to climb at Taipan for a day on
>some of the easier first pitches there.
>
>We can lead low 20's sport routes reasonably comfortably but have never
>led on trad gear before. So I'm looking for a good beginners trad crag
>in Sydney/Blue Mountains (something up Hornsby way would be even better)
>to practice placing gear and if its somewhere I can rig up a toprope to
>practice even better.
>
>Also I was wondering what are the best easier (low 20's) first pitches
>to do on Taipan for a budding trad leader? I've got Neil and Simon's new
>Gramps guidebook and I was looking at The Seventh Banana p1, Sirocco p1,
>The 7th Pillar LHV short and World Party p1 and was wondering what the
>pro is like on those pitches for someone who is going to be near their
>limit and isn't heaps experienced placing gear?
>
>Also what would be a good basic rack to take to Araps and the Grampians?
>At the moment I've got a set of Black Diamond wires sizes 4-13 and some
>Kong wires sizes 3, 5 and 9 and I'm going to buy a basic set of cams as
>well. Will that get me up those first pitches on Taipan and the easier
>classics at Araps?
>
>Thanks,
>Scott

Let me know if I have read you right Scott.
You have never led trad but because you lead low 20's sport you reckon Taipan is the go for a road trip, yet you ask about what rack you might need for it which you are still in the process of buying.
Sounds to me like a bloody disaster in the making.

Hire a guide from Nati. They come with gear and enough skilz to stop me reading your trip report in the acco section of this site (unless you are going paragliding), otherwise I might think you are trolling us.

I am surprised no one has suggested you go to Centennial Glen for practice. It is about as gear and top rope friendly a place as I can think of, as well as being extremely photogenic.
Taipan will seem an uninspiring doddle afterwards by comparison.

rodw
1/12/2013
9:34:31 PM
Despite all the wise araps fans here....go to mt k, it 10 ins for Hornsby and actually pretty good trad for lace ups for Sydney..yeah its not araps class...but then again its 15hrs closer too..dr nick suggestion is probably even closer.
SLacey
2/12/2013
5:20:08 AM
Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. My original plan was to head to the Grampians and spend a week wearing myself out clipping bolts and then head to Arapiles to climb some of the easier classics where I'll feel a bit safer placing gear but I might readjust now and consider Araps first.

Thanks rodw and Dr Nick I'm just down the road from Mt Kuringai and Berowra and I've spent a lot of time clipping bolts at Berowra but never had much of a look at the trad routes there. I've only got to Fossil Wall at Mt Kuringai but have been meaning to head to motocross and lost and found wall to check out some of the sport climbs so if I can get a bit of trad practice in there before my trip as well all the better!

Hi Duang Daunk I think you might have misunderstood me, I wasn't planning my roadtrip around Taipan I was pretty much planning to spend a week clipping bolts in the Grampians and then a week practicing placing gear at Araps on stuff like Exodus and Revolver Crack to start with and then try some of the longer easier classics. Even though I would love to get on some of the routes at Taipan because it's such an iconic crag I was pretty hesitant about trying any of the routes there without much trad experience thats why I thought I would ask on Chocky if there's was anything on the wall at all that would suit a trad bumbly.

Thanks mikl and wendy I would be very keen to take you both up on your offers of some loaner gear and would be willing to pay whatever food/beverage or day of belay duty related bribe is required.
maxdacat
2/12/2013
9:18:53 AM
On 1/12/2013 Wendy wrote:
>If you have no trad experience at all, I would just head straight to Araps
>to get started. Preferably with someone who does know how to climb trad.
>There are far far better routes to start on there than anywhere in NSW.
>

Really?? There is plenty of good easy trad to get started on here in the Bluies and for the next month or two before the OP's trip, doing something would be better than nothing. If they can do sport routes in the low 20's then trad in the mid to high teens shouldn't be much of an issue.
My suggestion would be, go to Piddington and have a play on Hope, Faith and Charity, setting up and using a top rope to practice placing gear if need be. Then move on to some of the classics like:

- Tombstone Wall (15) - gear to start then bolts all the way
- Flake Crack (17)
- Pharoah (15)
- Carthaginian (15)
etc
Mount Boyce and Mt York are also worth a visit.....get the guide and see what appeals.
mikllaw
2/12/2013
9:33:50 AM
On 2/12/2013 maxdacat wrote:
>- Tombstone Wall (15) - gear to start then bolts all the way
only one of which was there in the 80s
maxdacat
2/12/2013
9:34:31 AM
On 1/12/2013 Duang Daunk wrote:

>
>Let me know if I have read you right Scott.

I don't think you have.....he did say "Taipan for a day"


It may be worth pointing out that Stapylton has a lot of other stuff to offer in the mid-grades on the crags to the left of Taipan ie Central Buttress, Green & Grey Walls etc. I haven't done much here and it was a long time ago so perhaps somebody else can provide some recommendations. I do remember you get some great views of Taipan Wall from there.
crackalackin!
2/12/2013
11:27:15 AM
When I started trad-ing I began in the blueis at Piddo and Mt. York doing easy routes for a few sessions, then went on a 2 week trip to Araps and did a huge number of <16 grade routes. I came away with a pretty good idea of placing gear.

Note about Araps though: some of the classic easy routes aren't really that safe, especially for beginners at gear.
Wendy
2/12/2013
12:49:41 PM
I think you guys must be on a different planet to me. In no way would I have called most of those routes at Piddington a suitable learn to lead trad route. Learning to lead trad is about learning to place gear on stupidly easy stuff where you don't have to think about anything else. The last thing you want is something at all difficult, or with trad techniques like jamming that they probably haven't encountered sport climbing or laybacking like flake crack where it's difficult and pumpy to place gear or indeed Blue mountains rock in general. I also wouldn't recommend anything in Stapylton amphitheatre to new trad leaders. Maybe after a weeks practice at araps, Threadneedle but it is wandery and has some crap rock. Or the 14, but's probably not worth going there just for that either (I don't really think it's a 3 star route).

The OP sounds like they have a much better idea with Exodus and Revolver Crack. Great routes, tonnes of gear. I don't know which routes Crackalackin was concerned about at Araps, but almost all of them would be better than anything I can think of in the Blueys (and I did live and guide there for 3 years). Given it will probably be hot, shady side of bushranger's would be a good place to start (It does get some late arvo sun,but sunny side acutally gets late shade). Then Lizard procrastination is afternoon shade, D major and Diapson in the late afternoon, Dracula (early 20s climbers will probably cope with the bouldery start, but there's always the flake on the r) and Stalagmite in the morning, Eskimo Nell in the arvo, being a bit thoughtful about the start. Serpent and Bishop on the front of Mitre until mid arvo. A late afternoon on exodus and penny dreadful. Spiral Staircase in the early morning (be off by 11!).
maxdacat
2/12/2013
12:55:25 PM
On 2/12/2013 mikllaw wrote:
>On 2/12/2013 maxdacat wrote:
>>- Tombstone Wall (15) - gear to start then bolts all the way
>only one of which was there in the 80s

I did it first in 1988 or 89 and i think it had the same number of bolts as today. When did it change?

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There are 33 messages in this topic.

 

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