As mentioned in issue #1 of
qurank, Rocky Bay on Magnetic Island, located just off Townsville, is now home to North Queensland's hardest climb thanks to Doug Hockly's efforts
(Brudl, not Brudal as previously reported; hitting the scales at 26/27). Rocky Bay combines some of the finest climbing in Townsville with one of the most picturesque locations in Queensland. Other new routes in the area include the classic overhanging hand crack of
Natures Finest (23), and the overhanging dihedral Not Without My Mate Jase
(20), both added by Hockly. Keith Van Den Broek and Steve Baskerville teamed up to add several easy routes to the large granite boulders, including
Why Aren't They Naked (15), Big Hairy Armpit (8, and as good as it sounds) and
On Townsville's Castle Hill, Simon Thorogood, Bradley Mann and Nathan Bolton each added a new route to the pinnacle located near the base of Vision. These were, respectively,
Maccas For Breakfast (12), The Eye of Ra (21/22) and Hieroglyphics
(18). Bolton and Steve Moore got up the existing route Saint And
Sinner (21), which could well be the first clean "local" ascent.
Mount Stuart is also seeing some action with Bolton and Kris Burke subjecting the hard looking aręte above
Psycho Babble (previously top roped by Bolton and Andrew Doubleday at 25) to siege tactics and sustained verbal abuse.
The route finally succumbed to shear determination and Can't Get
That Edge (25) was born, placing this in the hardest bracket of routes
at the Mount. See photo in the Gallery.
Good news for Townsvillians is the upcoming release of an all-inclusive guide to Townsville and Magnetic Island climbing areas. The most recent existing guide is that by Mark Gommers (1994), but this only covers Mt Stuart, is long out of print, and is well out of date. Written and published by Douglas Hockly, the new guide will contain many colour photos as well as the usual route descriptions and topos. In addition to Mt Stuart, the guide will cover Townsville's many minor crags, and the recent development of Magnetic Island.
Further North on the Atherton Tablelands, several new routes were done on Turkey Hill by Jason Shaw, Steve and Tristan Baskerville. The best of these were
Crackerbarrel (17), Cheese Slice (15) and Rear View Mirror
(17). Nearby at Granite Gorge the same climbers did the first ascent of
Turks Head (14).
The major genre of development in the Tablelands region has been bouldering. Two major areas have been found, both featuring large numbers of high quality problems. Emerald Creek is the most developed of the two areas, with over 30 problems established on the granite boulders, and the potential for many more. The best of these are
Enigma V3, Down And Dirty V3, Sideswipe V1, the crag classic
The Smooth Machine V0 and the LHV of The Smooth Machine which clocks in at V2, all added by the Baskerville brothers and Shaw. The other area is the Walsh range, which features numerous overhung and pocketed boulders that are most concentrated in a dry creek bed. A few classic easier problems up to V2 have been done, but the major scope for potential is in harder problems, with numerous lines that would range from about V4 to the cutting edge of difficulty.
Doug adds "Any of the 30 odd pitches I've bolted but haven't done in SEQ/NNSW are open as I'm not intending on living there - if you can find them!"
--Steve Baskerville and Douglas Hockly
is the Key!
The South East Queensland Rockclimbing and Abseiling Site Management Forum is an informal working group comprised of key land management agencies, outdoor recreation organisations, local climbing clubs and interested climbers, developed to promote communication between all climbing interests. Every month the Forum meets to discuss a wide range of issues. The primary function of the Forum is to provide an opportunity for communication between climbers and land managers.
As an example of what they do, the Draft Glasshouse Mountains Plan of Management in 1998 was presented to the Forum providing an opportunity to give advice. This led to changes which reduced the administration cost to the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service of the Draft Plan, while addressing their risk and public liability concerns, and protecting climbing access. Cliffcare is the next initiative being taken by the SEQRAF. It's being driven by climbers through the Forum.
The Forum will host a climbing film night in October to promote the Rockclimbing Code Of Conduct and recruit for Cliffcare.
For further information, please contact Elizabeth Ashman at email@example.com
ROCKCLIMBING CODE OF CONDUCT
Be aware of and observe access requirements and agreements. Avoid disturbing wildlife, crops and livestock. Leave gates as you find them, and report any problems or potential problems to the land owners/ managers.
Respect sites of geological, cultural, or other scientific interest. Please avoid any actions that cause unnecessary erosion. Use existing access tracks and do not leave unnecessary way marks. Help protect all wildlife. Do not disturb nesting birds.
To ensure our climbing sites stay beautiful please do not leave any rubbish. Keep campsites clean. Dispose of human waste in a hygienic and environmentally responsible manner. Do not pollute fresh water supplies.
Fire is a serious threat to both safety and ecology. Avoid all risk of fire.
Consider ethical issues such as the use of chalk, bolting and pitons, as well as appropriate climbing styles. Remember that placement of fixed equipment alters the climb and is not permitted at many sites.
Alert uninformed visitors to potential dangers where necessary, and resolve any emerging disputes in a civilised manner.
Respect and Protect Our Climbing Future!
Get involved and have a say about your
sport. Contact Elizabeth Ashman at firstname.lastname@example.org
Gonzales Hits Glasshouse - Thieves Hit Beerwah
Starting at 7am on 21/8/99,
Darrin Carter and Aaron Jones managed to rack up 940m of non-repetitive climbing in one day. The pair raced up route after route on Short Cool Ones Wall and surrounds on Mt Beerwah, sharing the leading duties. It is pertinent to note that even though grades range from about 15 to 20, these slab routes are mostly quite runout and serious. The pair used a 60m lead rope to eliminate halfway belays,
and often simul-climbed placing one or two pieces per pitch. They just fell short of their 1000m in a day goal.
In the failing light, they returned to the Beerwah carpark to find both of
their cars had been broken into, in addition to another climber's car who
was also there. The thieves struck sometime between 1 and 5pm. They presumably used a coathanger
or some such device to gain entry, stole anything of value, and then locked the cars back up!
Upon talking to other climbers later, it was found that the same thing had
happened a week earlier! It's a big disappointment that the police are
obviously doing nothing to prevent such rampant, frequent and predictable
crime in the Glasshouses.
Glasshouse climbers please note that it
can happen to you, so when going climbing, leave your car completely empty!
news, there are rumours that the Glasshouse Mountains are facing issues with multiple-month Peregrine Falcon-related
climbing bans and Aboriginal
land claims. Stay tuned.
After some furious pre-trip new routing at Mt Tibrogargan for the two days beforehand (see
new routes), Neil Monteith flew out to USA on July 18 for a 9 month climbing trip. Lucky bastard – we wish him
Our foreign correspondent writes:
"We have now spent 1.5 weeks camping and climbing big alpine rock routes in the Rocky Mountain National Park. We have done four, eight pitch+ routes at over 3000m altitude. We have just come down off attempting the Diamond, a 500m wall at close to 5000m altitude. Three hour walk-ins, 3am starts and ice and snow climbing to gain the rock have made it a very cool adventure. Oh, Bobby Bensman, John Sherman and Pete Takota were on the Diamond with us today. We are off to Devils Tower tomorrow. Should be
"Well, I have spent the last week at the very cool dolomite (limestone) sport crag Wild Iris in Wyoming. With perfect low 20 degree weather and free camping this place kicks butt. In the past week I have climbed the hardest I have ever done. My hard route tally at the crag is: 1 x 12b (26?), 4 x 12a's (25?) and heaps of 10s and 11s. All the hard routes I got in only a few goes. Two of the 12s I got on my second try. On the first day I cranked 12 routes all grade 20 or harder. The rock is awesome vertical to slightly overhung, massively pocketed perfection. Perfect bolting and rap anchors makes this place a dream to climb at. We might be heading for
Squamish in Canada or straight to Smith Rocks. Till next time - and next free email in public library!"
A two week period in June/July saw Malcolm Matheson (HB) cranking
multitudes of routes at Frog in a non-stop fashion. Unfortunately, Whistling Kite
(31) still managed to elude him.
Well known Aussie crankmeister Dave Jones was featured in a full page Gallery shot in Climbing magazine
(# 187?) on the blunt aręte of Debrilla (28).
The photographer was Andrew Peacock.
As reported in issue #1, Darrin Carter has been continuing his voluntary,
New save-the-tree anchors:
Half Days and Patched Pants
Dave Manks Electric Gorilla
The Stars Look Down - rap chain
Egotistical Pineapple - two weird-looking pegs and chain
Baby Staysharp - rap rings and both the original FHs replaced
Yodel Up The Valley - replaced FH
Yodel, Boris And Natasha, Monty Pythons Flying Circus - shared rap chain
your support by donating to the maintenance fund. You can do so upstairs
in K2 Base Camp.
Following up on the accident reported last issue at Frog, the man allegedly
fell off Gladiator, ripping two cams and grounding out in front of his wife and kids.
Above: HB attempting the start of Wild One
(24) at Frog Buttress, July 1999
Glen Foley (16 years old) led The Olos Slab (25)
at Kangaroo Point on July 4. Tendon problems developed while he spent half a day working
Steaming Wally (26) in August, but he'll no doubt be back full force in September.
Glen and his climbing partner Aiden even managed to bust off a few of the already sparse holds on
Steaming Wally, and they think the route might be in for an upgrade. Time will tell.
To CLIMB Or Not To CLIMB
"You're not going to be rapt to hear this. For this year at least there will be no CLIMB Annual or magazine. We aren't going to disappear altogether, we'll still be doing guides and videos, but the mag is on hold.
1999 has been nothing short of a year of total chaos for us so far. Hopefully that is all about to change. Simon Atkins is going to join Justin and myself. He's keen and very enthusiastic (Justin
and I are still suffering burnout from the last 3 years) and with luck the mag will be back next year."
--Mike Myers, editor of CLIMB magazine