The publication of the Cape Peninsula Select revived an old hit list and renewed my energy to trudge up the apostles. Since I had only been up to Postern twice over the last two decades I decided to return and climb there on boxing day. We chose a moderate route from the Cape Peninsula Select, Cameron's Frontal. Grade 17, but first climbed in 1936. Described as a bold outing for its day, we looked forward to climbing a piece of history.
My climbing partner complained bitterly about vegetation on the first pitch. It was his first outing on the apostles and I suspect he is more comfortable on clean Yosemite and Southern California granite where he has done most of his climbing. I remembered climbing with Mike Scott, the constant gardener, tossing out bits of plant matter on several climbs and underestimated the cleaning he did on these great old routes.
After fighting my way through and removing large parts of a bush at the top of the first pitch, I eagerly tackled the second pitch, the crux overhanging 17 crack. I don't normally like gardening, but bottom up gardening excavating a crucial hand hold under clods and clods of dirt and plant matter while jamming under the little roof takes the cake.
All cleaned out the pitch has great moves and one has to admire those 1936 pioneers. I was even more impressed on the second last pitch, grade 16 with thin lay aways over great exposure.
I encourage climbers to go out and repeat the route and do some more cleaning, it has been recently cleaned for you!
Explore the Cape Peninsula Select and climb some great routes!
PS. does anyone know of anybody climbing Cameron's Frontal in the last decade?
File comment: On the second last pitch
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