Bouldering Spots in Sydney you say? Don’t you have to go to mountains to climb the good stuff? A lot of people don’t know about the quality of bouldering within Sydney. If you’ve just started climbing at your local gym or you’re a highly experienced pebble wrestler that just came to Sydney, this guide is for you.
# 1 Baulkham Hills – The Frontline
An all time favourite amongst climbers here in Sydney, it is the biggest area with hundreds of problems ranging from V0-V11. There is something for everyone with some great beginner problems to make that transition from plastic to rock a little gentler.
# 2 Lindfield Rocks
A classic beginners spot with tonnes of easy straightforward problems. There are some super classic climbs to get the adrenaline pumping, however some of these problems stray into highball bouldering territory, so please be careful and don’t push your limits. If you’re unsure about the top out then go and check it out before you find yourself high up, tired, shaky and regretting all of your life decisions.
# 3 Waverley – Queens Park
A very conveniently located crag in the Eastern Suburbs offering some great low climbs with good landing to some spicier high problems. Its location can mean a stop off before going to the beach, or a quick after work session. The view from the wall provides a fantastic vantage point for stunning Sydney sunsets, that makes your climbing session all the more special.
Notes: please be watchful and respectful of pedestrians and cyclists as the majority of the climbs go over a footpath.
# 4 Forestville – Sissy Crag
This spot is definitely not for sissies. It is one of oldest, steepest and meanest crags in Sydney. With over a hundred problems in a variety of styles, Sissy was the place to get strong before the advent of quality bouldering gyms in Sydney. Whilst this is a spectacular spot, I’d only recommend Sissy if you’ve been crushing overhangs at the gym and have some previous outdoor experience.
# 5 Killarney Heights – Crumbly
A dark, damp and dirty crag flush with brilliantly hard and steep bouldering. Whilst the rock might not be the most aesthetically pleasing, water views and natural surroundings more than make up for it.
With the easiest climbs starting at V5, it can be a little tricky to find your feet at Crumbly; nevertheless it remains a must-do for you stronger climbers. If you do climb V5/6, don’t hesitate to hop onto some of the classic V8s there as you may find you can work it.
What do you need?
- Climbing shoes
- Crash pad (the more the merrier)
What if I don’t have a crash pad? Ask one of your local gyms if they have one for hire (e.g. 9Degrees Alexandria).
A lot of the spots are accessible by public transport; although it does take a little while and you will definitely receive some strange looks with the pad you’re carrying.
All approaches and information regarding locations can be found on www.thecrag.com along with all the climbs and grading.
A lot of crags are situated near/on walking tracks so plenty of non-climbers visit these places. A lot of these spots have been around longer than you have been alive and there have been closures so please take care, here are some must-dos for your trip to the crag…
- Please respect local residents when parking, most crags require you to park outside people’s houses, so keep the volume to a minimum and spend as little time here as possible.
- Your chalk is your responsibility, brush your tick marks off and clean up any split chalk as best you can.
- Bring a plastic bag, please bring any rubbish back home with you and pick up any other items left behind by others.
- Music is both awesome and the worst. Please keep your volume to a minimum and turn it off if there are other people nearby. Sorry, but not everyone likes your music.
- Don’t climb just after the rain; Sandstone loses most of its strength when wet so let it dry out before you snap off a hold.
- Never, under any circumstances, chip out a new hold.
Whilst bouldering is an extremely accessible part of climbing, it is still has inherent risks. It is just you and the wall with no rope and sometimes a fair distance between you and the unforgiving ground beneath you. Please take proper care when bouldering and try to gain some knowledge from people at your local gym and learn how to spot safely.
Check out our guide to rock climbing slang: Word Beta // Rock Climbing Slang And How To Use It
This article is part of our Climbing Month, where we bring you climbing-focused content for the entire month of April. If you’ve got an idea for a future content focus, get in touch with our Editor, Tim.
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