Kitten Mittens Project

Kitten Mittens Project

Wednesday, August 8, 2012


You seem to loose sense of time when your'e on a climbing trip. Only when you see Andersons or the Cave full of people again do you realise another week has gone by. Two weeks sounded like a good chunk of time, but throw in some crumby weather and a couple of rest days and you soon only have 3 days left. We went down with grand plans of checking out Baundik, Taipan, Araps and all the boulder fields between but soon enough reality kicked in and we just didn't have enough time to finish everything on our plate. What we did eat though would have won an Iron Chef final. Each morning we got up late, had a lazy breakfast and got out to clamber about on some of the best rock getting around.

The Cave quickly became the area of choice for us, somewhere I've always wanted to climb.  I was psyched to do a few of the classics and have my eye on a few others for next time. One day it would be cool to put together the full link. 

A very moist day in the cave

Andersons was another spot we spent a little time at and was another spot where we all got some good climbing done. Bec, Grant, Amanda and I all did the classic Mr Fox, V7, as well as some of the other gems hidden amongst the trees.
Grant on the final moves of Mr Fox V7

The evolution in pad design!! BD have created a pad that will walk itself in for you!!

Crux slap on Etch-e-Sketch v11. Was psyched to have done this one

A couple of trips up to the Kindergarden also came up. The first being on a miserable rainy day where it was forced upon us. Mist, sweat, high humidity and bad skin made the day somewhat uneventful, however, left us with a few projects to come back to. On one of our last good days Grant, Bec and I headed up to knock off what we wanted. Grant came close to sending Spanking the Monkeybars a week earlier in the spoodge, so with good conditions he was definitely in with a chance. After falling while matching the final rail, he took a break, then sent it packing. I had also tried Gripmaster a week earlier but spoodged off the final desperate holds. With crisp air all around and some good new beta from the SA lads I was psyched to press out the mantle and finish it with the awkward squat beneath the roof.

A quick go on Zeus V13. I was able to do all the moves bar one which was cool. One for next time.
I went for a walk around Taipan and the surrounding boulders one rainy day.  As I walked back to the car it started to clear and made for a beautiful afternoon

Grant busting laps on Mana V13

What more could you want on a birthday cake?
Climb through all the chalk on the left then traverse out right up the water streaks
Another day and another area, Campground boulders were another site of interest for us travellers. Amanda was psyched for Butthole Surfer, a problem she had tried on previous trips. A bung elbow and feeling a bit under the weather, didn't diminish her psyche though. Poor conditions made it hard to have good goes on it, but she has now done it in pretty much two sections. After I did Butthole Surfer I had a gander at the wall to the right of Butthole. The Butthole and Beyond project. I'm not too sure if it has been done before. I searched through the all powerfull and somewhat all knowing internet and couldn't find a mention of it having had an ascent, but really, it doesn't matter, considering how good it is. After you do BS, you scoot out right to a good jug flake. A heel above the noggin and a long reach gets you to a cool pocket and leaves half your body 3m off the deck as you are now right over the edge of the 2m platform Butthole sits up on. Reset your heel to the jug flake and make another big move up to a lockable slot. Swing your right foot over to a bad high edge and bone down to a good flake. Your'e about 4m off the deck now and right above the edge of the platform. I fell here a few times and came crashing down, smashing my hip hard into the edge of the platform before falling another 2m to the ground. Once you have the flake your feet go above your head again, you REALLY don't want to fall here, and make a few last moves to top it out. I really enjoyed working on this problem. It had a little bit of everything going on with it. I needed to try hard and with the thought of the landing in the back of your mind, it made it that much more exciting. Not being 100% sure whether it's been climbed or not I feel somewhat reluctant to name it. If it hasn't though, I've called it Fairy Hole and think it would sit somewhere around V11. I'm no good with boulder grades though. So it could swing lower or higher?? No matter in the end though, she's a tasty bit of climbing in an amazing part of the world.

After falling straight onto the edge of the ledge hitting my hip, missing the strategically placed pad, on the project. Doesn't look much but by jingo it hurt!! It still does 3 weeks later!!
My good friend Peter Crane just happened to be in the neighbourhood, so we caught up for a climb. This is him trying Fat Cow, V6. We use to climb together all the time when I first started and he taught me a lot. He pretty much shaped my climbing when I was younger. Unfortunately he gave up for a few years, to focus on his photography, but is now slowly getting back into it with his camera in tow.

On a restday we went for a walk around Araps. Couldn't resist pulling onto PUNKS! Next day we went out and Grant and I both had a go. Definitely a route I'd like to come back and do soon.

Looking over at Watchtower Crack.
After getting back from Gramps it was down to Goulburn for work for a couple week. Staying fit while away.
Now I'm back and very psyched on routes again. We've had some crazy good weather lately, compared to the start of the year, so I've been trying to get out as much as possible. I've been out to Elphinstone a few times in the last couple weeks and can't really see myself straying too far from there anytime in the future. It really is the best cliff getting about in Aust. (note I haven't climbed on Taipan yet). The routes are mega and there is much left to be done. I've been able to drag my arse up a few of the routes out there so far. Rowan's route Brummel Hook, 30, could be one of the best routes for the grade I have ever done. Long and sustained climbing with hard moves off the deck winding up with the potential to take some serious air time on the last few moves as you fight a vicious deep pump. Yesterday I got out again with Rowan and was also able to do Aristocat, 31. This is one of Lee's additions to the cliff and is also an absolute classic. With a very bouldery lower crux, easy climbing in the middle and another crux at the end just to keep you honest this route is sure to get many more repeats in the future. 

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