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Gaper Area


The cliff just below and going around half of the campsite. Some good long lines.
There are 59 routes here, mostly bolted, ranging from 11 to 28.

This area encompasses the easily accessible crags near the Restaurant. The Gaper Area name comes from the gapers that watch the limbers from the top of the Gaper Buttress. There are 2 fences going down to the cliff edge – one directly East from the dormitories and one diagonally (N-E) from the Restaurant. Specific directions relate to these.

Photo Gallery

The School

At the end of the diagonal fence, follow a path cutting back in front of the Restaurant southwards along the cliff top. After 50m it splits – the left path goes steeply down to the Restaurant Crag. Walking far enough along the base will bring you to The School at the far end. Perhaps easier is to take the right fork along the top to the far end of the cliff (a direct path from the campsite over the fence joins here). The path towards the Triple Tier Crag goes down steeply here to the right. At the right moment (after 40-50m) duck down left to the base of a buttress.

THE GALLERY     20 *** [9D,A]
Steep start to a great face/corner. Stiff take-off. Could well be 21 for any height.
First Ascent: Lizette Guest 1993

I GUEST NOT     25 *** [10D,A]
Steep powerful arete just right of THE GALLERY. I suspect there’s a good reason Ian didn’t open this one….!(Hard?)
First Ascent: Tim Hoole 1993 BB: Ian Guest

FIRST ASSIGNMENT     16 *** [9D,A]
Classic at its grade. Vertical wall facing north.
First Ascent: Lizette Guest 1993

Flambeau 23, The Restaurant Face

Flambeau 23, The Restaurant Face

The Restaurant Crag

To get to the left end from the campsite, go down to The School and follow the base for another 50-60m northwards. Otherwise go down past the Restaurant, taking the steep left fork down (see Access to The School). All the crags face east.

PURPLE DROLL     21 ** [N]
We still need to verify the position of this route.
Climb the thin crack about 30m left of WORLDS APART and around the corner. Climb up to a tree and into a chimney.
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1991

ATTACK OF THE KILLER TREE     17 ** [?D,A]
The left most route to the left of the dead tree.
First Ascent: Chris Wynn

NOT THE NINE O’CLOCK NEWS     22 *** [?D,A]
Some interesting layback moves at the top. The route starts at the tree and moves rightwards to the chains.
First Ascent: Mike Behr

MOSTLY HARMLESS     27 *** [8D,A]
Starts just right of a very steep smooth wall next to tree roots. The huge break up the wall is a few metres to the right.
First Ascent: Mike Cartwright 1993

ERASERHEAD     28 **** [10D,A]
Clip BLOCKBUSTER’S first bolt, then continue straight up as BLOCKBUSTER trends slightly right.
First Ascent: Richard Lord 1991

BLOCKBUSTER     25 *** [9D,A]
Starts just right of ERASERHEAD. Beware – bolted on rap.
First Ascent: Mike Cartwright 1993

THE PLAYPEN     26 *** [9D,A]
Just to the right of the chimney-with-teeth. Cruxy.
First Ascent: Grant Murray 1993

JAMBO     24/25 **** [13D,A]
2m right of PLAYPEN. Climbs a small arete to a roof 5m up. Then take the left break up to shuts. It is a great route.
First Ascent: Grant Murray 1993

FLAMBEAU     23 **** [12D,A]
Start up the 1st 4 bolts of JAMBO, then somewhat right to chains. Don’t relax too much on the headwall…
First Ascent: Andy de Klerk 1994

LIMBO DIRECT     21 ** [12D,A]
Direct start past a bolt to lunge for branch.
First Ascent: Andy de Klerk 1994

LIMBO     20 ** [11D,A]
Climb the tree roots 7m right of JAMBO, walk left along the limb, then up the wall to chains. Great climbing – after the tree.
First Ascent: Andy de Klerk 1994

JIGABOO     24 **** [?D,A]
An excellent line.
First Ascent: Matt Murison & Alard Hnfner

WORLD’S APART     26 **** [?D,A]
A classic finger crack, in the middle of the Restaurant crag. Retrobolted by Peter – it is now helluva popular.
First Ascent: Peter Lazarus 1991

LOOKING FOR THE LOBSTER     21 ** [12D,A]
About 25m right of JAMBO & 8m right of the WORLD’S APART fingercrack. Start up the slab, through the tree on the left to reach good climbing up the crack and face above.
First Ascent: Clive Curson, Mike Bruncke 1993

RED HARVEST     19 *** [8D,A]
3m right of LOOKING FOR THE LOBSTER, starting on the lower Gretchen ledge. Can be climbed from the bottom as the shuts are 24m up, go right around the tree.
First Ascent: Clive Curson, Fran Botha 1993 BB: Grant Murray

JUNGLE UNCLE     20 * [N]
Climbs the shallow corner to he left of GRETCHEN GOES TO NEBRASKA.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1992

GRETCHEN GOES TO NEBRASKA     21 *** [8D,A]
Starts from a subsidiary ledge 10m up at rap/belay bolts. Rap in from bolts at the top, or climb/scramble to the ledge from the right.
First Ascent: Grant Murray 1991

AMAZON AUNT     17 ** [10D,A]
Bolted jamcrack just right of Gretchen, on the same ledge. Great climb to practice trad leading.
First Ascent: Clive Curson, Barbara Marcus 1992

TO GRETCHEN ET AL     15 * [9D,A]
Climb 7 bolts just left of BONAR and step left to Gretchen’s stance. You can go around the dihedral on the left at about 10/11 to gain the ledges. You can use this to go staight through onto the other climbs, but it is probably more fun to belay and do 2 or 3 pitches from the large ledge.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1994

OUT THROUGH THE IN DOOR     22/23 *** [13D,A]
Up TO GRETCHEN ET AL; at the top of the dihedral, climb the left hand crack on the face. Gary Lotter’s IN THROUGH THE OUT DOOR probably goes out onto the arete now occupied by BONAR.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1994

IN THROUGH THE OUT DOOR     21 ** [N,R]
Climbs the line 7m right of GRETCHEN GOES TO NEBRASKA, on the face left of the arete. Dicey gear, mostly small wires.
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1991

BONAR     20 **** [14D,A]
Fine moves up the steep left arete on positive holds. Long and pumpy.
First Ascent: Darryl Margetts, Bernie Schumacher 1993

MJS     18 ** [11D,A]
A single hard move through the groove near the ground.
First Ascent: Darryl Margetts 1993

G.P. LE CHUCK     21 ** [9D,A]
Starts as for RED HERRING, then goes left after the first bolt. Somewhat contrived finishing crux.
First Ascent: Martin Seegers, Darryl Margetts 1991

RED HERRING     20 **** [9D,A]
A great climb up the middle of the face.
First Ascent: Darryl Margetts, Martin Seegers 1991

FARADAY’S CAGE     17 * [10D,A]
Starts a few meters right of RED HERRING, up the right side of the face. Bad bolts now fixed up by Darryl.
First Ascent: Darryl Margetts, Greg Devine, 1993

Matt Muirison onsighting Atomic Aardvark 24. Photo by Sean Cremen

Matt Muirison onsighting Atomic Aardvark 24. Photo by Sean Cremen

The Gaper Buttress

Can you miss it? A steep path to the base goes down just left facing the crag. There also is a path along the base from the Easter/Gaper Face to the right.

ATOMIC AARDVARK     24 **** [12D,A]
Starts up a small corner on the left of the buttress after a short scramble from the base. The addition of 6 bolts to this route has not changed the poor position of some of the originals but has greatly reduced the plummet potential. The route is just over 25m. Tie a knot in the other end of the rope!
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1991

THE GIFT     27 *** [9D,A]
Up the centre of the buttress starting from the base. Also grew a few extra bolts, turning it into a true sport route. Use ATOMIC AARDVARK’S lower-offs 25-26m back to earth.
First Ascent: Richard Lord 1991 BB: Peter Lazarus et al

THE FIX     28+ *** [9D,A]
Starts from a stance 8m up. Rap down to the first bolt. Shuts courtesy of Doc Roger. One of the harder 28′s around and also excrutiatingly technical.
First Ascent: Richard Lord 1991

ACHTUNG BABY     24 *** [8D,A]
Starts from the top of a pillar around the corner from the main Buttress. This can be accessed either by rapping or scrambling up from the right. Thin move at the start.
First Ascent: Guy Holwill 1992

ZOO STATION     23 *** [8D,A]
2m right of ACHTUNG BABY. Reach from top of the pillar top to clip the first bolt.
First Ascent: Ian Manson, Mike Cartwright 1992

L’IL ARETE NUMBER     21 *** [6D,A]
About 8m right of the ZOO STATION Pillar. Approach from the right and scramble up to belay at the first bolt. Easy start – puzzling finish. More difficult for the vertically challenged.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1993

FIRST DIMENSION     21+ ** [6D,A]
Belay at LITTLE ARETE NUMBER’S first bolt. Climb the seam. Finish up right -following the crack to the death is harder. Use LITTLE ARETE NUMBER’S lower-offs.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1993

The Gaper Face

Follow the fence (next to the cement slab) to the edge near GAPER CAPER. Scramble/climb down through the tree on the left (right as you look out) or go around the fence, north for 60m and down via The Easter Face.

POCKET ROCKET     25 *** [8D,A]
10m left of The Gaper Face proper. 8m right of FIRST DIMENSION.
First Ascent: Ian Guest 1993

LOUNGE LIZARD     21 ** [7D,A]
The leftmost route on the face near the corner. Reachy.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1994

BRAIN DEAD     23 *** [6D,A]
Starts up a diagonal seam from a ledge about 4m from the corner on the left of the face.
First Ascent: Clive Curson 1993

GAPER CAPER     21 *** [7D,A]
Step off the right edge of the ledge – climb the face to shuts.
First Ascent: Grant Murray 1992

GROCKEL MANIA     22 ** [7D,A]
Start 2m right of the ledge.
First Ascent: Grant Murray 1992

GAPER TRAIL     20 ** [N,2B]
Climb up as for TO GAPE OR NOT TO BE, then break up left past two bolts and a #3.5 friend placement.
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1992

TO GAPE OR NOT TO BE     20 ** [N,2B,R]
Climb the seam on the right (wires), then up the wall above past two bolts.
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1992

DECK CHAIR     25 ** [7D,A]
Very thin moves up the blank slab 10m right of GROCKEL MANIA. Gets easy after a few moves.
First Ascent: Ian Guest 1993

GAPER GO-GO     11 [N]
Start below the triangular corner. Trend slighlty left towards the top.
First Ascent: Gary Lotter 1992

The Easter Face

From the fence at the top of the Gaper Face, walk northwards for 60m and down the steep hill to the right. The Easter Face is 8-10m high next to a large boulder. It is 10m right of Deck Chair.
PASSION PLAY     23 ** [5D,A]
Start on the left almost under the tree. Tricky move left near the top.
First Ascent: Ian Guest 1993

CROWN OF THORNS     24 *** [6D,A]
Start as for PASSION PLAY. Continue up the diagonal line across the face to the top.
First Ascent: Ian Guest 1993

LAST STATION     22 ** [5D,A]
Straight up the right hand side of the face.
First Ascent: Ian Guest 1993.

The Monsoon Wall

This is the outcrop visible on the left extremity of the “main land” when looking back from The Island. At 250m from the dormitory fence you should find a very large (25-30m long) detached block/island on the edge of the escarpment. Step onto it and walk across. Peer over the edge to locate 2 sets of chains (TROPICAL FRONT, PSYCHEDELIC SANDWITCH) and rap. A very bushy approach is possible by going down a grass ramp 150m from the fence at a large bush on your right. It is also possible to downscramble the south edge of the block, starting in the trench after 240m.

ANDY’S ROUTE     19 ** [8D,A]
Go 15m left from the rap-down, past a large roof low down. This route goes up a dark blunt arete to chains
First Ascent: Andy Anderson 1994/5

RACHEL’S PROJECT     [B]
Chains about 10m left of TROPICAL FRONT. Presumably it will break through between the stepped roofs.
First Ascent: BB: Rachel Kelsey

PSYCHEDELIC SANDWICH     23 ** [7D,A]
Starts 2m left of TROPICAL FRONT. You have to move a bit right after reaching through the overlap to experience the crux – escaping left is about 20.
First Ascent: Charl du Toit 1994

TROPICAL FRONT     20 ** [7D,A]
Up the face left of obvious corner. Contrived 23 version : Move off small crimper 1m left of big flat holds and layback crack used for the 20.
First Ascent: Gunther Migeotte, Rachel Kelsey, Raylene Davidson 1994

HAMMER TIME     19 ** [6D,A]
Starts up the corner just right of TROPICAL FRONT. Pull through roof on the left, then up the face right of the corner on small holds.
First Ascent: Gunther Migeotte 1994

GUNG HO     24 ** [7D,A]
Starts 1m left of the corner crack/ramp 8m to the right. Uses thin crack and arete to reach the crux overlap.
First Ascent: Glenn Harrison 1994

THE EGO HAS LANDED     17 ** [7D,A]
Starts up a corner crack next to a ramp 8m right of the main corner.
First Ascent: Glenn Harrison 1994

GLASS AND A HALF     16 ** [7D,A]
Breaks right onto the slab from the corner crack on THE EGO HAS LANDED just before the crux layback.
First Ascent: Glenn Harrison 1994

WILD HEARTED SUN     24 *** [6D,A]
Just around the arete, about 15m right from the corner next to TROPICAL FRONT.
First Ascent: Charl du Toit 1994

ANGEL DUST     22 **** [6D,A]
Up the hard-looking right-slanting crack 8m right of WILD HEARTED SUN.
First Ascent: Charl du Toit 1994

RAINBOW CHILDREN     24 **** [6D,A]
The line up overlaps on the corner 3m right of ANGEL DUST.
First Ascent: Glenn Harrison 1994


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