Showing all routes 47 routes total
It's nothing great, but it's close to Palmy Nth. Introduction Ok, so we will assume that the only people REALLY interested in the Manawatu Gorge are from the Palmerston North area, so that is where this guide will base it's driving directions from. Warning- The rock here is Greywhacke and is therefore not the most solid of climbing mediums. Be aware that over time routes may change slightly as holds may break. On this note, it is advisable to wear helmets while climbing/ belaying here. Also, as stated for all climbing areas in the Gorge, mind your valuables in the car as that theft can be a problem.
Access: From downtown Palmy, hop on Main St. heading east, Main St. becomes State Highway 3. Follow Hwy 3 east towards Woodville. Just after the turn off for State Highway 57 there is a big car park on the left side of the road (this is the parking area for the gorge hiking track). This is a good landmark to base odometer readings for the 3 climbing areas through the gorge, so when you get to this point, keep track of your distance travelled. For the sake of directions, this parking area will just be referred to as the start of the gorge. On a side note.... it is technically illegal to park anywhere along the road while driving in the gorge, though many of the pull-offs can (and often do) happily accommodate a few cars. It should also be mentioned that the gorge is unfortunately well known for break-ins, so it is recommended that if you park at any of the locations mentioned it is advisable to lock your car and leave all valuables out of site (or take them with you.
Attribution: Hosted on www.freeclimb.co.nz. by Cliff Ellery. Written by Matt Natti.
This is the first bay on the left AFTER the gorge hiking track parking area.
Access: It is located (0.4)km from the start of the gorge and is easily identified by a yellow "S" (wiggly road ahead) sign just past the pull off. Bay 1 offers both bouldering and lead climbing possibilities. There are some decent cliffs, some of which can be top roped from the guard rail using a few long slings. The bouldering is an interesting (albeit small) venue which is actually UNDER the highway. It can be reached by walking just past the yellow "S" sign and then down a makeshift path on the left. The cliffs are actually directly below the car park. To reach the roped climbs, you can walk down the hill (past the boulder) and make your way along the river using a series of guide ropes. The other option is to abseil from the guard rail and pull your rope when you reach the grassy patch at the bottom of the crag. "Groovy Gecko" is the face you will typically abseil down and because of it's location and easy grade, it makes a great "final climb" as that you can opt to place a quick draw at the belay and continue up to the guard rail. This enables you to belay the remaining people up the route from the parking lot (perhaps while listening to the car radio even!).
Balance bridge offers the best "ground up" climbing in the gorge. The Corner- In between Red Block and the Main Wall is a short, steep and blank face. If the landing was better it would be a great boulder problem! The Main Wall- This one is fairly obvious..... it is the big cliff right along the water.
Access: Unlike the White Horse Rapids area, it is possible to walk to the base of most of the routes at the bridge (depending on how high the river is). It is also a bit different as that the rock there is limestone as apposed to greywhake. The bridge is located 6.6km from the start, and signifies the end of the gorge.
The Palmerston North region's "premier" bouldering destination. History: This fun little climbing venue was discovered on a rainy day by Matt Natti, Heme Wallace and Fabian (work mates from a local arborcultural firm) in the early spring of 2006. Matt's goal was to drive around the access roads to the southern Ruahinies in search of solid rock, the other two just wanted to get out of the house, see some sights and have a bit of an adventure. Despite the fact that everyone got wet, the day was tons of fun and did turn up some potentially good areas. The pick of the lot was a group of sandstone(?) blocks at the end of line 2 just outside Ashurst..... and with that, the Ashurst Boulder Area was born. After the initial discovery, a handful of the local climbers started making fairly regular trips up to the "tea tree boulder" (the main bouldering event in the area) trying to pull as many lines out of the rock as possible. There is still plenty of rocks in the area, but do to the walk involved to some of the other blocks.... progress in the development of other boulders has been a bit slow.
Access: Directions: From State Highway 3 between Palmerston and Woodville, take the main turn off into downtown Ashurst (Pohongina Rd.). Head North through/ past town about 10km and turn right onto East Pohongina Valley Rd, just after the Waterford Cafe and Bar. 6.5km down the road, turn right onto Line 2 and drive all the way to the DoC parking area/ trail head at the end. Follow up the track up hill until you can see a big boulder (this is the tea tree boulder, and you CAN just cruise down the hill to it) down low on the left hand side. If you walk as far as the fenceline/ DoC gate, it is best to head down left to the stream. From here, the Tea Tree Boulder is down stream 1 minute and the rest of the rocks are up the river between 2 and 15 minutes.
Attribution: Hosted on www.freeclimb.co.nz. Written by Matt Natty.
This is the main event of the area. As the above directions imply, it is the first boulder you see on your left when walking up the DoC track from the parking area. Although it may not look like much from above..... it offers some beautiful overhung problems as well as a few TALL (6 meter+) slab climbs. This guide only lists the obvious lines on the boulder, but there are HEAPS of eliminates and variations to play with if you really want to get the most mileage out of the trip out!
The advantage to these 2 boulders is that they are the easiest to find. From the car park, they are on top of the first hill to the right. One of the boulders is so prominent it can be seen from half way down the road! The disadvantages are that they need a to be cleaned as they are a bit out of the way in regards to the other rocks, they have no routes yet, and the "to be" lines aren't all that inspiring.
Just before reaching the bushline heading up the hill on the river, there is a cool boulder about halfway up the hill on the right hand side. Although this boulder has a great little roof on it.... there are SO MANY HOLDS that there are not really many "pure" lines on it. That being said, if you head up there you can spend a good bit of time doing HARD eliminate problems or playing "add-ons."