Difference between revisions of "Postern Buttress"
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'''Bokenham's Corner * G1 or 19'''
'''Bokenham's Corner * G1 or 19'''
Revision as of 20:22, 22 April 2014
Oh Postern! One of the finest buttresses on the Apostles complete with a straight forward walk in and easy escape on generally fantastic rock.
Most guide books break the buttress in two, based on access, with the left side (approached from Kasteel Poort) being called Champs Elysees, and the Right, (approached from a path off the pipe track) called Postern Main Sector.
The two sectors will be broadly described below, however there is one long Halfway Ledge that runs almost the entire length of the buttress- from where Champs/Jongosi/Boulevard East join it at a large open book (slab on the right, vertical face on the left separated by a small corner angle). This ledge is useful for approaching or bailing, and from time to time a party will even leave tat around the left termination for an abseil to the ground (50 m ropes are fine). many of the routes, (especially the older ones) will traverse along it making many of the lines quite disjointed.
Champs Elysees Sector
Jongosi *** 19
R. De Decker, A. Hall, R.White A.Wood 30 Jan 2012
Start: about 20m left of Champ Elysees, right next to a large bush and a spacious sloped boulder below the middle of a brown face, immediately right of a blunt arete with a cairn.
Pitch 1. 30m (19) Make a dynamic move to a prong to get established on the face, then climb up on spaced holds to traverse left. Cross the blunt arete and traverse 6m left until it's possible to move up and right on spaced but positive holds with better pro. Climb an obvious traverse right before heading up a recess to pass the overhang to reach a stance behind a huge block.
Pitch 2. 34m (14) from the block climb to the second rail. Traverse right and swing airily around a corner above a shallow recess. Continue rightwards 4m before climbing straight up the wall to below a roof. Move right to a ledge ( below Champs Ramp Pitch).
Pitch 3. 25m (18) Climb the ramp 3m until able to move onto the left wall. Traverse left easily over the yawning void for 10m to where the wall becomes quite steep. Continue traversing with your feet on the lip of a big overhang to pass under a small overlap, then up a large layback flake to easier ground. Climb straight up to a large ledge.
Pitch 5. 25m (16) Do the stunning layback up to Champs's bottomless chimney and at the first hand rail climb left for the skyline then breezily up juglets to a large ledge.
Boulevard East *** 19
D. Brown, B. de Bruin, D. Mclachlan 1976
"A Motorway for sports models only, Some excellent, hard pitches" 1978 RD
Start:Up a clean, scalloped ri rising out of the trees 30m left of Champs Elysees
Pitch 1. 18m (16) Climb the rib on superb holds to a ledge. Move up over a wet grassy "knee-pad" into a tight leaning chimney-crack to gain another ledge.
Pitch 2. 25m (17) Climb a steep wall behind the stance for 5m (a groove on the left) then do an awkward move onto a little stance with two stout old pegs. Continue to the corner beneath overhangs and pull up as high as possible before traversing right to Boulevard Ledge, similar to that on Champs but narrower. Climb over an exposed corner before descending diagonally right to a stance.
Pitch 3. 20m (14) Lower yourself off the ledge before traversing right beneath some blocks to a recess. Climb this to the big ledge below the ramp on Champs, and move right to below a hard looking crack.
Pitch 4. 20m (19) Pull up to a slab and cross this from left to right to gain the bottom of a twisted crack. Take the crack to beneath the roof, then move right across a smooth orange slab to the second gap between blocks to reach the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 5. 10m (14) A strenuous pull up from the top of a sloping block using small grips enables one to reach large flakes int the left crack. Climb to a stance next to a yellowwood tree.This pitch belongs to Frasers Frontal.
Pitch 6. 20m (16) step off the tree onto the under cut sidewall of the left hand buttress int he chimney. Swing around left onto a steep wall, then up and around left to pull up to a ledge. Continue up a boulder and fight a bush to share a stance with Frasers. Scramble to the top.
Champs Elysees **** 17
C. Inglis, A. McCrindle, A. Schoon, R. Williams 1960
One of the buttress's classic lines.
Start: From some blocks rising above the forest beneath the wall. Scramble up to the next ledge where a cairn will be found below a green Lichen-covered face.
Pitch 1. 25m (16) Climb the face 12m to a ledge beneath the overhang (the Boulevard). Traverse right to clear the overhang then up 3m to a ledge.
Pitch 2. 34m (14) Traverse right along the ledge then climb out onto a nose then up to a large stance. Climb the crack 12m, then move left and climb the face to a broad ledge.
Pitch 3. 35m (14) Climb the left side of the ramp and exit to the right at the top into a cubbyhole. Traverse right as far as possible along the ledge, then climb up to the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 4. 28m (17) Directly above the last pitch, climb the recess 4m, hand swing right the climb up to a ledge beneath an overhang, or step off a boulder onto the face and climb up to the ledge. Traverse left 10m into the base of a chimney. Layback up the crack on the left face until it's possible to chimney up to the pulpit.
Pitch 5. 15m (16) Step across the gap between the Pulpit and the left face, move up 3m to a handrail. Swing left, then continue along the traverse to the skyline and up the corner to the top.
Postern Wall *** D
D.G. Andrews, W.H Crump, L.M Kay 1932
Full RD available in the 1978 MCSA guide.
D- Day ** F1
G. Lacey, M. Roberts, M. Scott
Great for large parties.
Start:high up KP at the Pinnacle against the side of the cliffs. Postern Wall Starts on the right side of the pinnacle, just left of Pinnacle the route.
Pitch 1. 15m (E3) Step straight up onto the steep wall, then climb past a flake and up a bulge to get into a rounded off chimney. Last few moves at the top force one right over the drop.
Pitch 2. 25m (E2 or F3) From the ledge, step up into a recess, which is climbed to a ledge, then head up a monstrous angled block. Climb up and left an overhanging face above on good holds, to a long ledge 3m below the main ledge. Here one has two choices:
1. The official route uses a block on the ledge to gain height for the start. Move up to the dassie ledge stance.
2. Walk left and scramble up next to a pitch on "D" route, a traverse back to the right can be made on an open dassie ledge to reach a stance.
Pitch 3. 15m (F2) Climb the recess behind the stance to a long ledge. A blank barrier now runs below an overhang on the left, which ends to form a grassy crack. Using two horizontal cracks one can reach an ear on the right wall and get to some high edges. Lay - away to the ledge. The stance is in the corner next to a large loose flake with the beacon on it.
Pitch 4. 8m (E1) Follow the deidre behind the stance to the overhang, then traverse left and up to the ledge.
Pitch 5. 10 (D) Climb a chimney on the left for a few meters until a step left onto a weathered face is possible. Great climbing takes you to the top of the buttress.
Ripcord ** F3 or 18
Unfortunately overshadowed by Champs Elysees, this is none the less a good route.
Start: there is a starting beacon 10m up KP from the large tree near the north-Western Corner of the buttress.
Pitch 1. 10m (D) climb about 3m until a 7m traverse right can be made to a rock which juts out.
Pitch 2. 6m (F2) Traverse right into the corner which is descended 5m onto a broad ledge running out right.
Pitch 3. 24m (F2) Starting on the right end of the ledge traverse right for 6m, then diagonally right to stance at the top right corner of the face. One is now under a large overhang.
Pitch 4. 15m (F3) take the corner behind the beacon until a handrail below the overhang is reached, then traverse left 5m and up to a small platform. Move left into a vert crack to a small stance.
Pitch 5. 9m (F2) take the crack for 6m, move onto the face on the left when the crack closes in. There is a broad ledge jutting farr out at the top of the pitch.
Pitch 6. 25m (F3) Move past the boulder on the right of the ledge, then descend 3m to a lichen covered ledge which ends 3m further. Step across the gap between the ledge and the face on the right, and swing around he bulging corner onto the face. Traverse right with feet on the lip of a huge overhang the is so prominent from the KP path for 4m, then move up 3m before a 6m traverse left to the base of two vertical cracks. Climb the left crack 6m before emerging left of the dassie traverse bisecting the buttress.
Pitch 7. 8m (E2) Start 3m right of Crag, move diagonally right 6m to a ledge. behind a loose flake is a stance.
Pitch 8. 12m (F2) Move along the ledge (which direction??) then traverse left for 4m to stand on a loose block. climb up via a vert crack to a stance.
Pitch 9. 12m (E2) Continue up the chimney for 12m then exit right to a broad ledge (this brings the hut into view).
Pitch 10. 18m (F2) From the top of a large block climb diagonally right to a small ledge beneath an overhang. traverse 6m right and up to a ledge.
This part of the crag is best approached by a path off the pipetrack that starts just over the ridge line of the buttress itself-effectively walking back left.
Being west facing the crag sees morning shade and afternoon sun.
The sector have 4 distinctive features that are used a reference :3 boulders which sit left of Postern Cave. These features however only cover the left half the sector (with the cave being the middle), and so hopefully we can find a good reference point on the right of the crag to work off.
Again I have tried to put these routes in order of left to right, if I'm not sure of the routes location relative to others I will say as much.
Postern Crag *** E2
J.M. Klosser and M. Versveld 1935
"E'-ternal wondering, but clean, interesting pitches"
Start: Begin at the huge square block a the left extremity of the long ledge below the final cliff, some 45m away from the cave. Further on the ledge drops to a lower level and becomes very narrow.
Pitch 1. 8m (E2) Step off the block into the smooth, steep recess. An awkward move is made onto a narrow ledge. Stance on the left of the ledge.
Pitch 2. 15m (F1) The normal route does a strenuous traverse across to easier ground. Some easy ground leads to a big ledge below a round corner, which is mostly undercut except for one break on the left.
The originally this pitch started from the ledge with an intricate pitch of abseiling, and grotty climbing to bypass the blank section on the traverse to the left.
Pitch 3. 20m (E2) A Pull up onto a ramp enables a broken line to be followed up the large corner to gain the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 4. 25m (C/D) Follow the halfway Ledge left for 20m (C/D scrambling and an awkward exit) down to the ledge below. A short wall behind the ledge is climbed to stance in a narrow corner further on.
Pitch 5. 12m (D/E) Step up the face and into another dassie traverse, follow left for 2m at 2 pillars, then up into steep faces over looking the KP.
Pitch 6. 50m (E2) Sensational climbing on clean, sound rock now lies up the faces. The line can be varied and stances made at a number of places. The Final stance is next to the prominent angled slab of smooth rock, lying on the top tree covered ledge.
Postscript *** 22
R. Behne, M. Scott, 1993
Start: Behind the left block, close to the start of Posternation (not sure if its left or right of the start)
Pitch 1. 15m (14) Step off the block onto an arete and climb up to the ledge.
Pitch 2. 25m (20) Climb the crack on flaky rock, then make an awkward and powerful pull through the bulge using hidden slit far to the right to gain the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 3. 25m (22) Take the right of two lines of pockets on the undercut white slab above to a ledge. This section is steep and desperately thin on little finger pockets. Traverse awkwardly right past some horrible blocks before moving up to the ledge at the end of plumb line traverse.
Pitch 4. 25m (20) From the middle of the ledge, climb a tall, vertical knobbly face by reaches and pulls on good grips (may be some lichen at the top)
Pitch 5. 25m (19) From the cave/ledge with the yellow wood tree pull up onto grey rock on the left ledge of the overhang and swing out right to the spectacularly undercut corner. Above this it is steep, but straightforward to climb.
The Middle Black is the smallest, and lowest of the 3 blocks
Plumbline Face **** 17 A0
H. Curry. J. Davies, E. Keen, L. Schaff, O. Shipley 1947
"A Classic line"
Start: Start behind the middle block.
Pitch 1. 30m (17) Move up left and do an awkward mantelshelf to gain a narrow ledge. Traverse right 8m along the ledge to an obvious recess and limb this to another ledge about 14m above. Immediately behind is a sloping ramp which is climbed to a stance with a large flake on it.
Pitch 2. 34m (16) Traverse 2m right and climb to a small ledge. Traverse right 5m, then climb a sloping ramp to a small pinnacle. Traverse left along the ledge until it is possible to move up to the Halfway Ledge.
Walk left about 30m to a large block.
Pitch 3. 10m (17 A0) Using a sling to reach a bollard protruding from the face, pull up and continue to the ledge beneath the large overhang.
Pitch 4. 26m (16) Traverse right over some loose blocks. where the ledge ends move up 3m to a small stance with a loose block on it.
Pitch 5. 37m (13) Move left onto an exposed corner, then traverse 13m left into a chimney. Climb the chimney, then continue up over a very large detached block on the right and climb the recess immediately above, exiting left onto a ledge. Move along the ledge and climb up to a broad ledge and the end of the route.
Bokenham's Corner * G1 or 19
D. Berrisford, K. Flecher and P. Sanderson-Smith 1964
"An intimidating route and a bit grotty in places"
Start:From the fireplace at Postern Cave traverse left to the start of Postern Crag, then descend about 7m to reach a stance overlooking Kasteel Poort. The first Beacon is for Posternation, the next left is for this route.
Pitch 1. 15m (F2) Climb up the slightly recessed face above the beacon 6m. reach left to a handrail, swing across, pull up and continue straight up the face to a stance.
Pitch 2. 5m (F1) Climb up the smooth white face.
Pitch 3. 6m (E2) Move up the bulging corner to the left of the stance to a beacon.
Pitch 4. 12m (F2) Climb 3m above the beacon and then continue left into a recess which is climbed for 2m. Traverse right onto the point of a small nose and continue straight up to the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 5. 8m (G1) Start climbing 2m right of a grassy corner, (about 15m right of the crux pitch of Champs). Although the rock is completely undercut, by taking a shoulder it is possible to reach the higher of 2 hand rails. Traverse right 2m, then lay-back into the bottom of a recess (Tricky). Ascend the recess for 3m, then a short traverse and ascend to a stance.
Pitch 6. 6m (E3) Climb up and out left form under the overhang. Traverse left to a wide crack int he left wall. Ascend 2-3m then traverse right to an obvious stance.
Pitch 7. 14m (F3)From the back of the stance climb a short distance up a dirty crack, then traverse left into a wide crack. Climb out of the crack, then continue up the face until its possible to squeeze back in to the crack. Climb out of the crack anc continue up, keeping slightly left until a good stance.
Walk left and climb to a large tree.
Pitch 8. Nondescript climbing takes one to the top of the buttress.
Posternation ** F3
T. Hughes and J. Levy 1970
Start:This route starts below two narrow overhangs which are about 10 up the face. There should be a cairn at its base.
Pitch 1. 40m (F3) Climb diagonally left to a thin ledge below the left hand overhang. Move left upto a grassy ledge. Continue up to a higher ledge on the right. Some delicate climbing to the overhang above enables one to step right, and up to another ledge (With old peg). Climb up, traverse left on a thin rail for 2m and climb straight up (Hard) to a ledge.
Pitch 2. 20m (E2) Climb the right wall of the open book to the Halfway Ledge. This pitch ends directly below the upper sections of Frasers Frontal.
Walk left along the ledge 30m to where the ledge narrows. Start underneath an undercut recess with some suspicious looking rock.
Pitch 3. 27m (F3) A sensational pitch: Move left and up into the recess (nuts and old pegs provide pro). Climb the recess to the ceiling, or use the face on the right. Traverse out along the narrow foot-rail below the ceiling to a tiny stance. 2 large angles are used to gain the lip of the overhang where a good pull up onto a large block breaks the overhang and gives way to a very airy stance.
Pitch 4. 30m (F1) Climb the face above, moving diagonally left on good holds to a ledge. Easier climbing above leads to the top
Super Power *** 25
A De Klerk, 1983
Start: while this route does have lower pitches, they are not worth doing (if anyone has these descriptions please add). the route starts beneath a 7m roof just left of the upper pitches of Frasers Frontal, and so taking the first two pitches of Posternation would be about the most direct line there however as it starts on the halfway ledge most any route-or indeed walking from the right- will get you to the start.
Pitch 1. 15m (25) Climb the roof crack and stance on the right.
Pitch 2. 20m (19) Head diagonally left to gain a recess, which is climbed to the top.
Postscript *** 22
Deliberation Frasers Frontal Hot Dogger
Natal Fever Paper Tiger Plumbline Postern Corner Postern Crest Postern "D" Postern Face
Postern Nose Postern Ravine
Posternation Side-Line Stiletto Tarantella