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Chockstone Forum - Crag & Route Beta

Crag & Route Beta

 Page 1 of 2. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 23
Area Location Sub Location Crag Links
VIC Buffalo Back Wall (General) The Second Cliff [ Mt Buffalo Guide | Images ] 

Abseil on back wall (buffalo)

1:36:21 PM
Has anybody done the abseil down back wall blues on the back wall at buffalo recently?

The guidebook refers to a tree (still there?) and a final 51m abseil. Can that abseil be done on two 9 mm ropes with stretch, or what are the alternatives? Two 60m ropes? A 60m and a 50m and some frigging around on the last abseil point? A big sling on the tree??

I've done the walk around and down many years before, and I remember it was quite a chore. That was probably because we got half way up the quartz route before a storm came in and we had no choice but to bail and slog all the way back up to the top and back to the cars in tshirts & shorts in pouring rain!

1:39:58 PM

"Due to the 2002 fires widespread damage to the Back Wall area has included various trees that used to be used for abseil access to this 160m high wall. At this time there has been no maintenance done to improve access at this crag. Beware. There used to be a series of abseils off (medium/large) hexes at first, then two more using large trees over the line named Backwall Blues. There is no fixed protection that takes you all the way to the ground! There may be two bolts (Fixed hangers?) at the edge of the cliff, about 20-30m of where the tourist track hits the cliff. These were put in in order to scope out a new route (which was never done) and do not have any further rap stations below them (yet!). This cliff may well need some attention in the hardware / chains department. "

5:51:49 PM
I saw that but I couldn't work out whether that was written after the guide, but now that I've read the rest of the notes in detail it would suggest so.

I might wander out there in the next couple of weeks. Anybody involved in the 'maintenance' might want to drop me an email.

6:11:37 PM
I suggest you take 2 spare ropes and do the knot change thing and abseil down Her Majesty. This is the corner on the right side of the lookout at the end of the track as you face out. There used to be a very fat tree, there are wide cracks as well so you could use a big hex or two. There is a small stance about 50m down where you can easily change ropes without prussics.

James Mc

8:37:13 AM
Will try your idea. So its 2 x 50m ropes tied together to the bottom?

Hey shouldn't you be shivering in NZ? When are you coming up to Buffalo to play?
Maybe I can tempt you with my secret mega crag (near Shepp) that just needs a bit of industrialisation to make it available to the masses.

6:02:39 PM
Got back from NZ a couple of weeks ago. How long are you in the country for?


8:58:32 AM
Going home to PNG in January. Currently in Shepparton , hence the enthusiasm for obscure granite near Euroa and Buffalo weekends.
7:31:15 AM

just to confirm that everything on the VCC website under the Buffalo update page refers to the current guide only.

Those notes came from a combination of people (re the rap station). I'd suggest you don't expect to find anything out there basically.

I'd also be wary of expecting to find trees half way down as the widespread fires of a few years ago have completly changed many of the old rap trees (check out the South Side of the gorge for example where many trees are either damaged or just gone altogether).


6:14:29 PM
Made it to the back wall with shiltz on the weekend.. We failed to locate the top of Her Majesty and rapped down off hexes over a big roof instead (with an obvious sub-20 line through it that doesn't appear to have been done). Still, it got us to the ground. I'm thinking the bolts near the lookout probably will take you to the bottom on 2 x 50m. Most of the trees at the top are burnt and although regrowing from the base up, they aren't suitable for rapping off.

We did the quartz route, although we suspect the topo in the 5th edition guide is a little misleading. At the top of the first pitch we took a right diagional finger crack to the arete, about where the topo indicates. This was a good fun series of finger locks at about grade 17. However the route description doesn't make sense from here on so we assume we should have been further left. Maybe we had found Melanie's variant, but the topo is showing this further down. It's the most logical way to proceed, why would you head out left past all the bushes!?
We followed the easy ramp up left for a pitch and then continued diagonally up right along a hand traverse and through a roof. Nice climbing again, but we suspect the original line cut across further below, as we needed another pitch of rightwards traversing under a big bulge to get back to the Heel's offwidth start. The quartz jug fest was a treat, although I must admit I had a lot of trouble finding decent protection.

Sunday was spent on the Hump... we had it all to ourselves in glorious weather.. Did the last pitch of Dr Worm, then Chickens in Choppers and Cows With Guns. We thought DWp2 and CIC about the same grade, not sure which one is undergraded or which one is overgraded or whether it realy matters! Still the standout climb for the whole weekend for me was Cows with Guns, had a great time on it. (shiltz can verify by the amount of swearing that came down as I wobbled through the crux)

Great climbing, clean mountain air, awesome views, beaut weather, good friends.. what more could you ever want?


6:45:34 PM
On 20/11/2006 superstu wrote:
>Great climbing, clean mountain air, awesome views, beaut weather, good
>friends.. what more could you ever want?


9:34:12 PM
Hand-holds are always nice. I was so surprised to find one on Cows with Guns that I lost concentration and fell off.
Back Wall is well worth a trip. Second trip will be better now I know where to go. We had it all to ourselves, no surprises there. I was a bit surprised that we also had the the Hump area to ourselves as well. The weather was absolutely perfect!
I'd recommend that you check the topo in the Boreham guide before climbing on Back Wall. The new photo topo has a few critical areas in shadow. That said, neither beats going in there and getting it wrong at least once. There is heaps of unclimbed rock in between the bushes and the views are great.
8:38:37 PM
Hey Shiltz,

I'm happy to revise the topo and post it on the VCC website with all the other updates.

There are a bunch of other photos of the Backwall that are good and may be better (a little photo shop can do wonders with dark areas so I can have a go at finding a better photo to start with).

Would you be up for helping me revise the topo so that we can get it a bit more accurate?



8:56:06 AM
I can help with the bit of back wall that we did see. The Quartz Route is in shadow in the photo. I think if you have a few other photos then combined with the topo from the old guide we should be able to mark out the bits that we worked out on the weekend.

6:43:17 PM
hey shiltz... we weren't on chickens in choppers the other weekend... apparently there is a new route squeezed in between scrag and chickens, which also starts from the surfboard ledge. Chickens traverses out left for some while across the buttress before heading up.

... Hmm.. I think the hump is reaching grid bolt saturation point!

9:42:22 AM
Not in the new guide then?
Cam McKenzie
12:25:23 PM
The route is "Roam free with the buffalo", which was put up by Joe Goding late last year or early this year. Goes at 19. It's quite good.
12:39:02 AM
bout to head to buffalo tomorrow and thinking of checking out quartz route, bonaparte/crun and don't look back....
wondering if anyone has been there recently and has any suggestions for the above routes? (especially regarding if the 5th edition buff guide is way off, and whether there are adequate belays where the tree belays were burnt.... )

also checking it seems a new rap route has been installed? is this a simple enough rap with dbls - can't seem to find any info on it minus the topo on

7:29:01 AM
I think Fish Boy was on Quartz Route about 12 months ago...

7:59:25 AM
yep there is a rap route, look for the bolts about where route 21 is in the topo. 3 x 50m raps will get you down. Wanders all over like a drunk though so keep your eyes open on the way down. You will pass some bolts on the way down which looks a nice route but the rock is pox and its not worth getting on, I assume these were put there by whoever put the rap route in then abandoned the project?

No trees left on bonaparte/crun, so its a little runout in sections as you go hunting for a belay at the end of the first pitch. A good climb though that would be better with new belay bolts and maybe a better finish somewhere. There aren't many good multi pitch 16's at Buffalo so it would be a trade route if it got fixed up.

Last year the walk in was a bit tiring with a lot of regrowth blocking the track. As the eucalypts mature it should get better.

Fish Boy
4:44:50 PM
Quartz route is easy to find, it's the rest that i found hard....have fun bro.

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