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 (10) climb about 3m until a 7m traverse right can be made to a rock which juts out.
Pitch 2. 6m (14) Traverse right into the corner which is descended 5m onto a broad ledge running out right.
Pitch 3. 24m (14) 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 (16) 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 (15) 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 (17) 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 (12) Start 3m right of Crag, move diagonally right 6m to a ledge. behind a loose flake is a stance.
Pitch 8. 12m (15) 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 (12) Continue up the chimney for 12m then exit right to a broad ledge (this brings the hut into view).
Pitch 10. 18m (15) 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.
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.
Deliberation ** G1 A0
R. Bailie, B. Clarke, B. Fletcher 1960
A Stretchy route. Lovely steep pitches.
Start: Starts directly behind the Left block.
Pitch 1. 15m (F3) Climb a 4m face to a narrow ledge. Traverse left 3m the up about 12m until the smooth face ends on a broad ledge. The sloping ramp on Plumbline is about 10m right.
Pitch 2. 26m (F3) Move left to the end of the ledge. Further left a hardly perceptable traverse continues for some 8m. Climb to a point about 3/4 along to where the lack of holds forces one diagonally left and around a corner to a gully. Easy climbing takes you within 4m of the Halfway Ledge. From here either move via an awkward traverse to a bush below a narrow overhanging block. Using the grips below the block one can lean out and move above. OR move directly upwards on small, lay-back grips for 3m then right on very small grips to a corner and on to the Halfway Ledge (better for shorties).
Pitch 3. 11m (G1 A0) Starting just left at a point left of the middle point between Plumbline and Frasers below a narrow overhang. Use a shoulder to reach the smooth face above, then head straight up 11m to a ledge (Frasers stance is just above)
Pitch 4. 30m (E3) A pleasant traverse 18m left (crossing Frasers), followed by a recess with great rock to the top.
The Middle Block 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.
About 16 m left of Postern Cave
Postern Crest *** 19
B. Fletcher, H. Graafland, C. Hankey, R. Hollingdale, L. Thomas, R Williams 1957
"A monument to bold, hard leading, well ahead of its time." It is graded G2 in the old guide.
Start: directly behind the block.
Pitch 1. 34m (19) From the block climb a short face with a strenuous take-off, traverse left, and move diagonally up a fault to a point 27 m above, and immediately below an overhanging recess which seems to cut through the overhang. From a bollard an extremely awkward move right and up turns the overhang. 3m further is a stance.
Pitch 2. 23m (17) 6m right of the previous pitch, climb an 11m face. Climb a broken recess to the right of Plumbline crack to the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 3. 25m (19) The Beacon is 4m left of Camerons Frontal. Pull up the overhanging recess (8m) to the edge of the overhang. Hand traverse 4m right, move onto a bollard then traverse 3m left to turn the overhangs.
Pitch 4. 14m (16) Move left to climb a corner.
Pitch 5. 23m (19) Start 1m or so right of Camerons Frontal, and ascend the face on small holds.
Tarantella *** 18
K. Fletcher, H. Graafland, H. Snijders 1961
Start: 15m left of the cave, or on the right corner of the Right Block is a shallow, vertical recess capped by an overhang.
Pitch 1. 28m (18) Climb the recess, move right at the top, then continue up a short face to a ledge.
Pitch 2. 9m (17) Walk 6m right and climb a smooth, red face. Move slightly left at the top of the face to meet the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 3. 11m (17) Traverse 6m right to the foot of an amphitheater capped by an overhang. The nose that forms the right side of the amphitheater is the crux pitch of Nose. Take the recess on the left corner.
Climb this recess to the Halfway Ledge, and stance on the left
Pitch 5. 30m (12) Climb the obvious recess, moving diagonally left, and continue up an easy face to a wide ledge. Etiher climb a short "D" gully to the top, or traverse right off the buttress.
Paper Tiger *** 20
T. Dunsby, R. Mardon, M. Scott. 1976
"A friendly tiger, with some good teeth"
Start: The route starts on a brown corner, just right of the tall recess which is first pitch of Tarantella.
Pitch 1. 23m (17) Pull up the brown corner to a horizontal rail. Do a crouching swing right to a sloping foot-ramp and pull up to a position underneath some blocks. Move left, then right past the blocks to a recess. Climb this until able to hold the top of a vague pillar with a flat scoop on the right. Move onto the pillar. Step left from the top and mantelshelf up onto a long narrow ledge. (Tarentalla cones in here, and the next 2m up to the ledge are shared).
Pitch 2. 15m (16) Take an overhanging break in the white face ahead. Steep pull ups leads to the Halfway Ledge. Traverse left to the corner. (Corner comes up to this corner, and Plumbline takes the rib). Climb the corner to the a big block, then up to a ledge.
Pitch 3. 8m (20) In front of the big sloping block, the pitches of Crest and Camerons break through the overhangs. On the right the overhangs end and a yellow, undercut recess lies just left of a wet, grassy crack. Take the small recess (crux). Move left and up to a stance shared with Camerons.
Pitch 4. 12m (17) Step left and up into a crack cutting the overhangs. A big ledge is gained below the long easy ramp of Camerons.
Pitch 5. 20m (17) Take the thin finger-rails and diagonal crack through the overhang on the left. Shuffle left to the corner before taking the steep face above, bearing left to a ledge.
Pitch 6. 20m 16) The tall crack at the back of the ledge is Frontal. On the right is an undercut crack in the corner. Pull around the overhang using a bollard, then climb the corner to a hand rail. Mantelshelf up. Scramble the broken face to a wormhole gully then on to the top.
Yes, that cave.
Hot Dogger *** 21
A.G. Chinery, D. Hartley, R. Williams 1976
"A frightening series of desperate pitches, technical and ridiculously strenuous" MCSA guide, 1978
Start: From the left hand end of a flat slab or rock just right of the drip at Postern Cave.
Pitch 1. 27m (19) Move up a vague recess for 3m. Traverse 3m right along the ledge and climb a corner to stance on the right side of a large detached flake
Pitch 2. 18m (19) Climb the square recess capped by a small overhang. Turn the overhang and continue up to a large ledge.
Pitch 3. 26m (19) Almost immediately behind and 6m right of the easy recess used by Camerons is a very steep brown face. Climb a small chimney, followed by an awkward move onto a ledge on the right, from where some pull ups followed by a rounded mantelshelf lands you on the Halfway ledge.
Walk 20m left to a beacon about 8m right of the Bollard pitch of Plumbline. this should be at the base of a slightly overhanging recess.
Pitch 4. 18m (20) Climb the overhanging recess to a good rail. Strenuous moves to beneath a brown overhang, short move right past a jammed block then up to the ledge above. This ledge is the Plumbline traverse ledge under the overhang.
Pitch 5. 11m (21) Above and slightly left is a handrail running under the overhang. This is formed by a slab about 1m thick under the overhang and clearly visible from below. On opening ascent a large wooden wedge was placed about halfway along the traverse to protect the leader. Climb up to the handrail, using two pitons for aid. Hand traverse around the corner, then up to a cubbyhole. 2m higher is a stance.
Pitch 6. 14m (10) Climb the chimney above and exit left onto an obvious ledge with a large block on it.
Pitch 7 25m (14) Climb the face above, moving diagonally left and back right again. The pitch reaches the summit 4m left of Plumbline.
Cameron's Frontal *** 17
A. Cameron, B. Cameron, A. Sluman, Miss S. Smith 1936
"A Cragman route. In its day, without protection it must have been desperate"
Start: About 10m right of the drip in the Cave. Start beneath some brown overhangs which are 5m right and up the face.
Pitch 1. 22m (12)Climb diagonally left up a face to an obvious stance below an overhanging crack with a tree on the right.
Pitch 2. 22m (17) Climb the crack and continue up the recess to a broad ledge.
Pitch 3. 20m (11) Walk 15m left to a recessed corner which is ascended to the Halfway Ledge
Pitch 4. 22m (14) Walk left 7m to the other side of the overhang. Step from the block and climb 3m up a corner to a handrail under the roof. Traverse right 3m until its possible to move up to a small ledge. Traverse right 9m and move up to an obvious stance.
Pitch 5. 18m (10) Climb down 2m to a broad ledge and traverse right.
Pitch 6. 12m (16) Climb the face to a dassie ledge. Walk left 25m to a square corner.
Pitch 7. 20m (10) Climb the crack in the corner the out left to a stepped face which is ascended to the top of the buttress.
The easiest reference point in this area is the start of Fraser's Frontal, which has a large thin white flake resting against the wall, directly below the big corner cutting right up the buttress to the Halfway Ledge. This is about 22m right of the Drip in the Cave.
Postern Nose *** 19
K. Fletcher and J. Goedknegt 1961
"A straight line. Technical and strenuous"
Start: about 8m right of Cameron's, and 3m left of Fraser's Flake.
Pitch 1. 22m (12) Climb the short face leading to a stance with a few trees ( stance shared with Fraser's). Move up 3m, then traverse 4m right to a semi-lay-back crack. Climb the crack 8m to a stance.
Pitch 2. 12m (17)From the right, climb the overhanging recess to a good stance, then traverse 18m left past a yellowwood and continue along a narrow dassie crawl to stance on the left of a number of loose-looking blocks.
Pitch 3. 20m (17) An interesting take off from the blocks enables one yo overcome the undercut, bulging recess. Continue up 1m then left on a semi-detached block. From the left end of this block ascend 8m, until forced to traverse 3m right to a small flake with an overhang above. Turn the roof by a pull up using a high grip, then mantelshelf onto a stance just below the Halfway Ledge. Move right along the ledge to a recess.
Pitch 4. 19m (19) Semi-Lay-back 5m up the recess to a handrail running towards the nose on the right. Ignoring the higher rail, traverse 1m right until the lower handrail fades out. Search for a concealed cup grip in the face a little distance down right and swing down on this grip until a minute footholds are found. Reach up to the handrail (which reappears to form a rounded grip) and pull up and stretch up to a 2 finger grip. Gain a good handrail above, then traverse to the tip of the nose ans ascend a short recess to a good stance.
Pitch 5. 12m (15) Traverse 5m right and climb a recess form 4m. Continue to a good stance.
Pitch 6. 23m (11) Climb 11m over a broken face, bearing slightly left of the previous pitch, to a small stance. Climb a chimney on the right to the top.
Frasers Frontal *** 14
K.W. Fraser, Mr & Mrs F Humphries, K. White 1931
"Pleasant with clean but dislocated climbing.
Start: As described above. A bushy first pitch, but worth doing.
Pitch 1. 10m (10) Climb diagonally left to a platform.
Pitch 2. 16m (12) Climb back right to a ledge, then up the clean corner directly above the start.
Pitch 3. 9m (12) Climb a square column of prongs and blocks at the back of the ledge.
Pitch 4. 16m (12) Climb the steep corner next to some blocks, then traverse right, across a face for quite a distance, until it is possible to move up to the Halfway Ledge.
Walk/crawl left along the ledge right across the front of the buttress, until the ledge opens up at a corner strewn with blocks. The first easy break through the overhang is here- an undercut crack/recess leading to some large yellowwoods in the big chimney alcove above.
Pitch 5. 10m (14) A strenuous pull up from the top of a sloping block, using small grips enables one to reach larger flakes into the crack on the left. Climb to the stance next to yellowwood trees.
Pitch 6. 20m (11) Climb the right wall of the alcove, then move right and up a grassy face to a small stance below and right ofa bulging crack.
Pitch 6. 10m (13) Step into the crack below the bulging section of rock. Turn the bulge on the left and climb to a large flat block platform. Scramble left and around the corner, or straight to the top.
Staletto *** 18
G. Athiros, M Scott 1967
Start: Directly in front of a triangular block, a meter or so right of Fraser's
Pitch 1. 24m (14) Climb the wall, traverse right, move up to a ledge, the continue to the right until it is possible to follow a diagonal line up and back to the left of the recess.
Pitch 2. 15m (14) CTo the right of Fraser's pull up through an overhang onto a flat platform and continue up the recess above, then climb the short white wall directly ahead to a ledge.
Pitch 3. 15m (14) Fraser's is now unavoidably crosses where it makes the long traverse from left to right over to a point next to the Postern "D" route. (Postern Face also crosses Fraser's here). Climb to a piton in the crack a meter or so from the left end of the ledge. After an awkward pull-up around a slight bulge, move up to a tiny niche, then pull through the overhanging wall on horizontal handrails to reach the Halfway Ledge next so some bushes and a large block.
Pitch 4. 18m (17) Climb the large recess at the start of the Halfway ledge (where one has to descend from the blocks), up to an off-balance jam move next to a piton. A Delicate lay-back move leads up to the handrail under the overhang. Traverse left and up.
Pitch 5. 12m (14) Traverse left to the base of the left or two recesses.
Pitch 6. m (18) Postern Nose is crossed here as it used the easier recess on the right. Climb the recess using fingertip lay-back crack, which curves over to the right and is very strenuous. Pull up to a sloping ledge using two deep finger holds. Step up to the ledge and walk off to the right.
Natal Fever *** 22
M . Roberts, R Smithers 1978
"The hardest thing around"
Start:Approximately 4m right of the Wafer Flake standing up right on the ledge.
Pitch 1. 30m (17) Climb the face to a long ledge, Move left to the blocks on the corner.
Pitch 2. 20m (19) Climb the murky recessed corner, past a loose block. Move right at the first rail, then traverse out left on some rails, (below the Halfway Ledge), until it is possible to move onto it.
Walk right to the Stelleto recess which has an old peg.
Pitch 3. 25m (20) From the block perched out over space, traverse left on some rails and into a peapod crack, which is climbed easily to the ledge.
Pitch 4. 10m (15) A short recess on the Nose route is used to gain the next big ledge.
Pitch 5. (22) Slightly right is a jam crack through a roof. Climb the "hanging like a bat." The move around the lip into the recess above is thin. After that things get harder until the ledge.
Postern Face ** 14
A. Blackquiere, H. Levy, L. van de Mark, Miss R. Wegner and D. Williams 1949
"A climb worth more attention"
Start: A beacon will be found left of center of the face between Fraser's and Postern "D"
Pitch 1. 14m (14) Climb over a bulging and slightly undercut section into a crack and up to a little overhang 6m above the ground. Head right and slightly up 3m, followed by 9m of open face climbing to a narrow ledge.
Pitch 2. 8m (12) Move up from underneath a slight overhang, over friction holds onto a bushy ledge.
Pitch 3. 8m (14) Climb right under a small rock finger and onto a protruding block, then up the ledge of another series of blocks onto another bushy ledge.
Pitch 4. 15m (11) Step up a slightly recessed face for 7m, then move left of an obvious flake and traverse right 4m over a handrail and up to the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 5. 12m (15) From the right edge of the blocks, and directly beneath a large overhang. Move up 1m or so, the traverse left onto a rib. Ascend the crack 3m, then move round the rock rib and stretch onto a short traverse to the right. A few easy movements lead onto the left of the ledge on which the "overhang" pitch of "D" Route finishes.
Pitch 6. (10) Starting on the face forming the left closing edge of the ledge, climb up to the final beacon.
Postern "D" ****
G.F. Travers-Jackson and H.W. Wright (1912 according to 1978 MCSA guide, 16 December 1900 according to Cape Peninsula Select)
"Short pitches, big ledges. "D"-lightful. Normally only the top pitches are climbed.
Start: 20 odd meters right of Natal Fever and 60m left of Postern Ravine is a black cave-like Chimney. To the left is a clean, square recess.
Pitch 1. 15m (10) Climb the square recess to a rock platform.
Pitch 2. 9m (10) Step onto the right edge of the steep rib directly above the platform. Gain a traverse level and walk right across the top of the overhangs above a bay to reach a large ledge.
Pitch 3. 15m (8) Walk around the corner on the right, move up, then back left on a ledge until you enter a gully which is climbed to the top of a block. Climb up to the Halfway Ledge.
Pitch 4. 15m (10) On the left is a large square corner capped by overhang. Step up onto the south-facing wall and climb diagonally left to bypass the overhang. Continue up, over an exposed drop on the right to a stance.
Pitch 5. 15m (10) Make a serious pull up behind the stance and move left into a chimney, which is climbed to the top of the buttress.
Postern Corner *** 14
J. Falconer, I. Keith, P. O' Neil 1946
A series of entertaining pitches with big belay ledges. No one ever does the pitches through the lower bands on Postern.
Start: Start at the right corner of the top band at the level of the path to Postern Cave. A few meters from the corner is a number of shelf platforms below a steep face broken by a twin crack with a bulging rib in the middle.
Pitch 1. 20m (14) From the shelves climb the left crack to a ledge.
Pitch 2. 15m (12) Ascend the right wall to a handrail under an overhang. Traverse right and move up on the corner to a ledge. Scramble up the slop ahead to the next pitch.
Pitch 3. 6m (12) A corner of rock with a little overhang barring entry to it. a fun pitch which can be avoided if time is short. Takes you to the Halfway Ledge
Pitch 4. 30m (16) A step wall with some black streaks a few meters right of "D"'s pitch through the overhangs. A strenuous pull up into a vague break up the face. Continue up the face, at one stage moving right to avoid a blank section. Eventually a traverse line right is reached which leads to a dassie platform below a prominent bulge of rock on the corner with a clear drop blow it. Stretching and standing up awkwardly to a hold, then pull through the bulge and mantel, over the drop, to the top.
Postern Ravine * 12
W.H. Adams, and S.C. Morton 1923
If you are really desperate to try another approach to Postern Cave:
Climb the waterfall near the bottom and follow your nose. The raving is a bit bushy and the slope- when you break out- not much better.