Castle Crag

Crag faces North-east


A.K.A Right of Way. A crag in H.D. Robb Reserve, Castle Cove. You'll find it lurking directly beneath No. 45 Neerim Rd (opposite Parnoo St). The south wall can easily be seen across the water at Killarney Heights (e.g. from Crumbly). Has 2 areas of cliff with large undercut bases, one with a large grey headwall and one very imposing, with black and beige streaks. There are also a number of mainly slab areas providing a range of easier climbs, with a similar style to Narrabeen Slabs. There is also some limited potential for short routes on the upper-walls (at the top of Aria). None of the routes below are pictured in the photos.


To access this crag, you have a choice of the public right of way between No. 41 and No. 45 Neerim Rd, or bashing in from the west end of Willowie St. The right of way is 30m long and takes you to the top of the crag, but the owners of the house have done a good job hiding the right of way as part of their garden! The local council has hinted at 'improving public access' here in the future. At the end of the grassed area, follow the faint path left, skirting around the bottom of the house's backyard. Follow the short faint trail down between some boulders until you reach a small ledge, follow it a few metres right and around the banksia, then continue downhill and left to the access gulley with a length of old poly-rope around it. Otherwise, starting from Willowie St, there is a public path down to the water. Follow this down the concrete stairs almost to the water then begin a long scrub-bash west and slightly uphill to the obvious wall.

Climbs listed from right to left.

The Far Right

From the access gulley, turn left (facing downhill) to immediately reach a short wall.

Blue Ribbon 20 7m
Looks unremarkable, but has a number of interesting moves, particularly about the start. Pull onto the rock by jumping or heel hooking above the sandy break. Follow 1 BR, 1 U and 2 more BR’s to a chain with a snap gate and Ring Bolt. Bolts accessible from top.
Sam Darley 2014

Broom Slab

From the access gulley, turn right (facing downhill) and follow a faint path for about 20m.

* Junglistic Man 20 10m
4 U bolts to chain right of the Broom Slab. Climb on to the ledge at the tree. From here move up the technical slabby start to the headwall on big breaks with a tough finish. Chain and RB lower-off. Watch out for that tree! Bolts accessible from top.
Sam Darley 2014
Shidily... 19 8m
Right hand side of the Slab. 3 BR's running up the sloped slab to double U lower offs.
Sam Darley 2014
* * Mudstone Man 20 8m
Right up the middle of the grey slab, over 2 diagonal seams trending up and to the right. Fun and sequency moves over diagonal seams, with plenty of toe-camming action. Follow 1 U and 2 RB's to a double RB lower off. (Originally 19 before a hold broke, now the start is fairly difficult)
Sam Darley with Chris Diemont 2014
* Thymeless 22 10m
Links the start (and first bolt) of Mudstone Man into the top of Amiga Man (Sharing the last bolt). Technical Traverse over 1 U and 3BR's.
Sam Darley 2014
Amiga Man 21 7m
Start about 3 Right of Mudstone Man. Straight up off the leafy ledge, then up and slightly right to the chains. 3BR's to chain.
Sam Darley

North Undercut

Continue walking into the overhanging section with a sandy base.

Open Project
Start 2m left of the tree near the right of the undercut. Bouldery business from sloper up and right to jugs below roof, then over very desperate lip to hard grey slab. Many of the holds about the start need a serious clean. Five RB’s to double U’s. Bolted in July 2014. It feels somewhere around 27. Until it is graded, feel free to sandbag your friends.

The Aria Area

From the spikey roof, walk across through the ferns, going parallel to the cliff, then up to the cave at the base of the cliff. At the right of the cave, walk up the faint path to get to the base of Aria.

Red Surface 21 7m
Scrub-bash your way from near the spike into the chimney at the far right of the slab. Stem on the ledge to clip the first BR. An unusual boulder-like route up a number of shallow ironstone flakes. Starts at the base of the arête and ends at the large break above and to the left of the top bolt. Down-climb the chimney to clean (very easy). Three BR's (no lower-offs). To get your money's worth (and grade's worth): No using the back wall or nearby boulders. Only use the arete at the very start and don't top out to the right.
Sam Darley 2014
* * Aria the Natural 23 11m
Extension of Aria and probably the best route at the crag. Start as for Aria, clip third bolt with a long draw. Move right across good holds to flake, pull the big move and then finish up slopers to double RB lower off. Five bolts in total, 4 of which are BR's. Please enjoy the decommissioned chain next to the lower-offs as you thread the anchors, it makes for good comic relief and a poignant lesson on how mixing metal types can turn to a ball of rust in 2 years.
Sam Darley with Ben Hanley 2014
* Aria 22 9m
On the far right side of the main wall. Short, difficult and technical slab (crux) to start. Continue straight up on breaks and thick flake with some balancey tall moves. One RB (you can stick clip), then Two BR's to double RB lower off.
Sam Darley 2014
Jam Roulette 22 14m
An adventurous and slightly whacky line, staring just left of Aria (starts on good footholds). Up a thin slab to start (no pro), then wrestle the rooflet to gain 2 good breaks (Big cams). Traverse left above the leafy ledge, then up the corner to chains. There is a single BR up near the top of the corner if you are so inclined. The route is dubiously protected and not that good. Unless you are a masochist, do something else or go home and make a cup of tea instead. Easiest way to clean is to remove all gear as normal, then traverse left and down to the unstable leafy ledge and walk up until you are under the chains, then lower directly down. Feel free to add a bolt to the start.
Sam Darley 2014

South Wall

The enormous streaked orange wall to the south of the crag. Has many sections rich in impressive looking slopers, but many bare patches and overgrown starts. Any route that goes up here is likely to be epic, 26+ and require a bit of gardening (or a batman start) to establish. Certain patches of this wall are prone to prolonged seeping.