Cyclops Crag

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The Cyclops Crag is on the northern part of Mt Everest and is located about 150m north of the Thinner Pillar. To get there, park at the Bushman Complex and walk up the path past the Deep Freeze and the Thinner Pillar and then continue along this path for about 150m until you reach a large, curved, bulging face that is under-cut at the base. It is possible to drive further, park closer, and walk less to reach this crag - get one of the 'locals' to show you this shorter approach if you are determined to conserve energy for the climbs. This is a good venue for hot days as the crag is in shade for most of the day. There is a good selection of climbs both on pocketed faces and on steep, exposed walls. Once you get there, scramble up a steep corner under the roof to reach a large, bushy ledge. An old fixed rope that makes the access scramble a bit easier. At the top of the scramble and directly ahead of you, there is a corner with a large crack up the back. The route 'Damocles' goes up this corner. The rest of the climbs are distributed along the face to the left of this corner. The climbs are described starting from the corner, i.e. from right to left.


Harrismith guide 33.jpg

Route List

1. Damocles (18) 7D *** FA: Mike Behr (1995) Climb the crack in the corner.
2. Zombi (21) 8D **** FA: Mike Behr (1995) Start a couple of metres to the left of 'Damocles' and climb up just to the left of the orange streak.
3. Silent Debate (20) 8D **** FA: Ruth Behr (1995) Start to the left of 'Zombi', about 5m from the corner, and then climb straight up.
4. YAS (23) 8D * FA: lan Guest (1996) Apparently this line starts and finishes on the next route, making a somewhat arbitrary deviation to the right in the middle part of the climb. The deviation is bolted with expansion bolts and hangers.
5. How Does a Dog Know? (18) 8D *** FA: Ruth Behr (1995) Start in a small corner and climb up diagonally right to a rest. Continue up through a steep, right-facing groove to anchors.

Note: The following routes to the left are reached by an exposed, grade 19 traverse that starts just left of 'How Does a Dog Know?'. The traverse can be climbed as a first pitch to reach the routes around the corner.

6. Jews With Glues & Spanish Rubber Shoes (19) 8D **** FA: Mike Behr (1995) Move out along the traverse past the first two bolts and then move up tending first left and then right to reach the anchors.
7. Acrophobia (19; 20) 7D; 9D **** FA: Mike Behr (1995) Follow the traverse to a hanging stance just to the right of the arête. To reduce rope drag, clip in to the anchors, pull your rope through and drop it to your belayer, who can then belay the rest of the climb from straight below. The second pitch goes straight up from the hanging stance.
8. Light Years (19; 24) 7D; 9D **** FA: Glen Harrison and Mike Behr (1986) Traverse out and reorganise the rope as for 'Acrophobia'. From the first set of anchors, tend left and climb the arête with some wild moves and superb positions.
9. Another Red Light Nightmare (19; 25) 7D; 10D *** FA: Stephan Isebeck (1996?) Traverse out and reorganise the rope as for 'Acrophobia'. From the hanging stance, follow the line of bolts around the corner and then climb up just left of the arête.
10. Fly Till I Die (19; 23) 9D; 10D *** FA: Stephan Isebeck (1996?) Traverse out and reorganise the rope as for 'Acrophobia'. From the hanging stance follow the line of bolts around the corner to a second stance and then climb straight up the wall.
11. Delirium (19; 20; 22) 10D; 10D **** FA: Glen Harrison and Mike Behr Traverse out to the 'Acrophobia' hanging stance. Traverse left, around the corner and past the anchors on the previous route. Continue traversing left and slightly down to another hanging stance just left of the Big Hole in the face. Climb up tending left and through the overlap on huge jugs then continue straight up to the anchors - exciting climbing !
12. Captain Karma Project (20) 12D; 9D **** Bolted by Glen Harrison The route starts from the ledge below the main roof underneath the traverse pitch. The belayer can dip into the anchor provided on the ledge. The route follows the natural line through the roof. A hard take-off is followed by wild moves on buckets through the Big Hole to a comfortable stance. The second pitch continues through the overlap on good holds. Pumpy! Still a project.

Note: Due to the aspect there could be a problem with communication between the climber and belayer once the climber reaches the end of the first pitch. This can be avoided, if necessary, by climbing the first pitch in two sections and using the double anchor at the lip of the roof as another stance. Alternatively, the second climber could aid out to the lip (the bolts are closely spaced) and continue climbing from there. After finishing the route, lower off to the stance at the ledge and abseil to the ground from there- possible with 50m rope.