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 Post subject: Fernkloof trad climbing
PostPosted: Mon Jun 28, 2010 10:12 pm 
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Anyone got any tips on finding your way into the trad climbing area in upper fernkloof fro Bergheim and also finding some of the easier graded routes. I thought I saw a post on this once but can't find it any more using the search. I hear Fernkloof pinnacle is a nice climb. Is it easy to find?


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 29, 2010 9:23 am 
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Walk past the lower sport climbing area (i.e. past Strong Arm, Faberge etc.). Where the kloof widens, break out of the kloof on the true right (i.e. on the left as you look up). Blast up the very steep slope to where it levels off a bit. There should be a steep gulley down to your right. The bottom of the gulley is full of massive boulders. This puts you in the vicinity of Dexter (the striking traverse across the blank-looking slab and very sand bagged at 15 - its more like 19). You can also get here by following the river all the way up but there's one or two steep bits which are quite desperate (there's a bit of very old rope for one of them which you trust at your peril). There's plenty of swimming too which won't be fun in this weather.

There's not many easy routes in Fern but the pinnacle is nice. Hike upstream from Dexter for quite a while (say 15 minutes or so). The pinnacle is to your right and is very obvious. The route goes up the river side of the pinnacle. Near Dexter there are some brilliant 20's and 21's.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2010 8:38 am 
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Thanks Hector. That helps a lot with getting us to the right place.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:13 pm 
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I stumbled across this thread tonight, I realise it's an old one. I just wanted to add that I'm really happy to see Hector calling Dexter a sandbag - I broke my ankle on it 18 months ago. It's a long hop to the car.

I believe it has been re-graded to an 18?


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:46 pm 
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Location: Montagu
Real Name: Justin Lawson
Sorry to hear about your ankle, how did it happen (gear pull, ground fall)?

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:59 pm 
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Not too far along the traverse there is a step down with your hands on a rail around hip-height. You need to get your toes into a horrible little pocket, and somehow I slipped out of it and took a big swing - the next piece of gear was 5m away. I hit my foot on something, a little ledge I think, which turned me upside down and I hit my butt on the underside of an overhang on the other side of the swing. I remember screaming quite a lot. I had to be lowered down and couldn't sit properly for a week my coccyx was so sore - a problem with your foot in plaster and elevated in front of you!

I got lucky, it wasn't too bad a bad break. The worst part was spending 4 days in the campsite at Spitzkoppe on crutches while my mates climbed a month later.

So I didn't hit the ground and the gear was perfect, as was the belayer. If I hadn't hit the ledge it would have been fine, although I would probably have hit my head on the overhang - it's a testament to well-placed gear and a good belayer that I didn't hit the ground. You've got to have a good attitude about these things!


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