Grampians Bouldering is the only guidebook to bouldering in the Grampians National Park. It includes all the major bouldering areas around Mt Stapylton – the Hollow Mountain Cave, Andersens, Trackside, Campground Boulders, plus every major area – in the northern Grampians, the three main areas around Halls Gap – Venus Baths, the Bleachers and the Valley of the Giants – as well as three major areas in the Victoria Range – Buandik, the Tower and the Cave of Man Hands – in the southern Grampians.
At 352 pages plus covers, printed on a high-quality gloss paper, Grampians Bouldering contains updated information for all the famous existing areas around Mt Stapylton, as well as six brand new areas.
The largest, most extensive and convenient bouldering area in the Grampians, Mt Stapylton is where it all started. Here you will find many of the Grampians’ most famous bouldering areas and problems, from the Hollow Mt Cave (Wheel of Life, American Pie, gaston problem) and Loopeys (Bitch Slap, Highball thingo) to Andersens (Peter Parker, Lightning Arete), Trackside (On the Beach, Ministry of Love, Sick Nutter), the Kindergarten (Nevin Rule, Spankin’ the Monkey Bars, Orang Arete thing), Campground Boulders (Butthole Surfer), Between the Sheeps (When We Were Kings), the Citadel (Ammagamma), Cave Clubs, Ground Control Caves (Killer Dwarf, Rota Loo, etc) plus many more areas. Most of the boulders are within a 20 to 30 minute walk from car parks, with many being closer. Stapylton is generally the best place to climb when the weather is damp, with the Hollow Mountain Cave and the Kindergarten being the most weather-proof areas.
The areas around Halls Gap have quite different rock to Mt Stapylton and the Victoria Range, with the rock being a slightly softer grey sandstone that produces excellent moderate problems.
Venus Baths, only ten minutes’ walk from Halls Gap, is a limited area, but what is there is generally of very high quality with a good range of grades from easy moderates up to V12.
The Bleachers is a short drive from Halls Gap, then about a 20 minute walk from the car park. It’s a more extensive area set on an exposed ridgeline and holds a range of superb problems from easy moderates up to V12.
The Valley of the Giants is very close to the Bleachers and only about a 20 minutes walk from the car park. It’s a large area on big boulders, although there is still a lot more development to be done. It holds a good range of problems from easy moderates up to V12, although it should be noted that as the name suggests many problems are quite high.
Buandik is the most extensive bouldering area in the Victoria Range, although the steep walk up the hill puts some people off. The best problems are generally in the harder grades, although there are some good easier problems.
The Cave of Man Hands is a small, highly-featured cave that holds a good range of problems and links ups, most in the V5 to V9 grade. It’s only a short walk from the car and is quite sheltered when it rains.
The Tower is a large area without many tracks, so it’s quite an exploratory place to visit. The densest concentration of problems is around the Tower itself, although the Windowlicker area is also good. This is the home of the classic moderate highball arête. There is still plenty more development to do here for those who enjoy exploring.
The guide doesn’t include all the areas in the Victoria Range, Mt Fox and the Shire were omitted due to major fires in the area and some Indigenous heritage concerns, although it should be noted that these areas are open to boulderers and will likely be included in future editions.
Banner image this page, Tom Thudium on American Pie, Hollow Mountain Cave. Dave Pearson