Place info

Tairua Crag

(16 routes)

As seen in the opening scene of "Hunt for the wilderpeople". The rock at Tairua is rhyolite from the Kapowai Caldera, a volcanic complex that was active around 9 million years ago. It has steep, featured terrain with crack systems, pockets, edges, sloping bulges and chickenhead knobs in abundance. Some of the more featured rock resembles bubbles and there is the occasional hollow sounding flake, but the vast majority is good quality hard rock. Once further developed this will be a great crag to climb in the rain due to how steep it is.

  • North West

    Aspect

  • 2 hrs

    Walk in

  • 300m

    Altitude

Type: 
Crag
Aspect: 
North West
Altitude: 
300m

As seen in the opening scene of "Hunt for the wilderpeople". The rock at Tairua is rhyolite from the Kapowai Caldera, a volcanic complex that was active around 9 million years ago. It has steep, featured terrain with crack systems, pockets, edges, sloping bulges and chickenhead knobs in abundance. Some of the more featured rock resembles bubbles and there is the occasional hollow sounding flake, but the vast majority is good quality hard rock. Once further developed this will be a great crag to climb in the rain due to how steep it is.

Access: 

The Tairua crag is located in the Second Branch valley of the Tairua river, it sits at the intersections of Camp and Scots stream, within the southern sector of the Coromandel Forest Park.

Directions:
The track starts from a farm at 373 Puketui Valley Road, you can Google Map your way there.
Manual direction to the farm; Head to SH25A that runs between Kopu and Hikuai. Along this road there is a turn off opposite the Waitomo gas and service station onto Morrison Rd, with a sign reading “Community Hall.” Follow this for 1km, at the end of Morrison Rd is a bridge over the river, at which you turn onto Puketui Valley Rd. Follow this for 3.8km.

You will have arrived at the farm when you see a cinderblock cattle station on your right. Turn into this farm and follow the driveway over two bridges, past the farmhouse and some cattle, into a field with some pines, leaving all gates as you found them.

Climbers have been given permission to park cars on the farm at the designated location, but please call the resident Dennis (Phone number 022 164 5463) before you go, and let him know your name, how many people will be going in and how long you’re staying for. If you are unable to get hold of him, stop by the homestead on the way in instead.

There is an old kauri logging track that goes up the valley, beginning from the marked location in the farm. It begins as a quad bike track, but quickly turns into a partially landscaped bush track, before becoming a less visible pathway through the otherwise dense forest. The track has been marked with pink tape, has a handful old pink DOC tags, and white tin tags nailed to occasional trees. The track follows the river bed for about hundred meters before crossing at one point, and the way across is marked by occasional cairns. This is an easy rock-hop in good weather or light rain but has been known to get pretty committing in the rain, take that into account if walking out in bad weather. Stick to the track to protect the environment.
There is a big cairn and a sign when you get to the campground/crag turnoff. The campground is down by the river.

Both large Waterfalls in the second branch of the Tairua have bolted rap stations at the top. Following the stream bed on the way out on a warm summer afternoon makes for a great wee stream-bash with a couple 10m abseils.

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Walk time: 
2 hrs
NZMS260: 
T12 478 554
Topo50: 
BB35 375 939
Reference Name Grade Quality Length Comments Actions
1
0
30m
Natural gear required
  An overhanging hand crack with no features on the face. It is to the far left of the buttress up the access ramp. Closed project.
2
22 ,19 ,23 ,21 ,17
3
121m
21X bolts
Natural gear required
 

This line follows a giant crack/chimney up the left side of the large central gully which splits the buttress.The first two and a half pitches were climbed ground-up on trad, but there is now a bolt at the crux on the first pitch. The last two and a half pitches are bolted. Every pitch of this route is worth doing in its own right... no boring bits! Note the hardest moves (3rd pitch) are on bolts. All anchors are bolted.
Descent: The line is a very easy rappel. All pitches are less than 30m so it can be done with a single 60m rope. Every rap leads you directly down to the previous belay, except for the first anchor which is slightly right of the rap line but is easy to swing across to.

  1. Slabby lefthand rising traverse leads to a few tricky slopy side-pulls protected with one bolt. This establishes you in a corner/chimney system which you power up to the first belay. DBC belay.
  2. A lovely hand crack turns into a mildly overhanging off-width, this pitch is awesome, bring big cams and a no 6 Camalot! Note the crux is run out if you do not have anything bigger than a #4 camalot. DBC belay.
  3. Continue up the corner system on good gear until it runs out and you hit bolts halfway up the pitch. Try to find a bit of a rest before you hit a challenging sport crux (hard 23). Mantle out to the belay. DBC belay. Note this really needs an extra bolt at the crux - bit scary currently.
  4. Follow the bolts up the shallow corner and then traverse right to the steep but juggy arete. Some small holds bring you back left to the belay on a bush ledge. DBC belay. Note there are a couple bolts missing on this pitch due to a lack of battery power! Soon to be corrected.
  5. Pure fun! Up the short wall with awesome features, mantle over onto a low-angle friction slab leading to the anchor a few metres below the bush line. DBC belay.

Pitches 1-2: Edwin Sheppard, Greg Kolbe Mar 2015. Pitches 3-5: Edwin Sheppard, Dave Spooner Dec 2017. Bolted by Edwin Sheppard with assistance and cleaning by Greg Kolbe, Matt Holcroft, Jono Dawson and Alex Kiechle-Cornish.

5
21 ,19 ,
2.01
37m
1X bolts
Natural gear required
One or more images in route detail.
 
  1. Start up the overhanging blocky ground which is easier than it looks up to a slopy ledge. From there launch into the overhanging flaring groove (crux) which leads up to easier but run-out slabs to the chain belay.
  2. Climb up the obvious left leaning crack around the corner and up through a series of small caves to the bolted belay. A 60m rope just reaches the ground from here.
  3. Under development!

Greg Kolbe, Shafiq Lalloo April 2016

6
22
0
25m
Natural gear required
  Cranky moves off the deck to a couple of okay placements, then straight up the steep groove (crux). It actually helps if you know how to jam! Stay right after the ledge and cruise up easier ground toward the belay ledge. You'll want a #5 for the offwidthy bit at the end.

Edwin Sheppard, Gregor Kolbe, Selena Thyssen Mar 2016

7
23
0
26m
Natural gear required
One or more images in route detail.
  The hard(ish) trad challenge. Start 5m right of Jam and climb the vague diagonal crack as it trends left to join Jam at the ledge. Powerful moves on good holds, this would climb like a gym route if you didn't have to stop to place extremely fiddly little bits of gear. Scoping this one on top rope is probably a good idea if you're not English.

Edwin Sheppard Apr 2016

11
22
3
45m
16X bolts
  This is the Tairua classic! Accessible from sandy ledge. Climb easy honeycombed rock to the 2nd bolt, then power through the crux which consists of a series of good underclings with long reaches to small slopey edges. The rest of the route is delightful stemming up the steep corner to the large chickenhead visible from below. Can be done as one long pitch or two shorth pitches at 22/18. Must be rapped in 2 sections due to steepness.

Gregor Kolbe; Edwin Sheppard Nov 2017

8
19
0
25m
7X bolts
One or more images in route detail.
  Start up the slabs broken by 2 small overhangs (cruxes). Then up the short headwall to a chain belay on sandy ledge. This route was the first route at Tairua and was climbed ground up on the first reccie to the crag. It has since been bolted in order to make it a friendly access route.

Greg Kolbe, Robert Scott Feb 2015

16
25
2.01
12m
6X bolts
  Short but sweet. The line starts from a belay on the 'Alien Head' above Sandy Ledge. Climb Space Monkeys to access the belay.

Edwin Sheppard, Feb 2017

9
22
1.02
30m
Natural gear required
  A moderately technical first crux leads to a narrow bombay chimney. Jam a #4 or #5 camalot over your head and then squeeze, wiggle, grind and grunt your way through the luscious lips of an overhanging offwidth to a well-deserved rest. Make sure you keep a few medium cams for the top section and mind your rope doesn't get stuck in a groove as you descend.

Edwin Sheppard Apr 2016

14
0
20m
Natural gear required
  Like being born out of a manky vagina with teeth. The natural second pitch of Thundercunt. Awaits a clean ascent... open project! You will need a very special set of skills for this - suitable for caver/crack climber hybrids that like running it out on gear. This is a roof crack which is usually running with water but occasionally dries out in summer. Currently considered ungradable due to extreme quantities of dirt. Enjoy!

Climbed (not clean) by Edwin Sheppard & Max Hutchinson, Feb 2017. Open proj.

15
22
0
20m
6X bolts
  2nd tier. Starts from the anchors at the top of Thundercunt (far right side of Sandy Ledge). Rad moves out right lead to a stiff crux sequence into a cave. Top out on the Living Room ledge.

Max Hutchinson, Edwin Sheppard, Feb 2017. Bolted by Romain Albert

10
0
30m
9X bolts
  The blank overhanging arete to the right of "Are we tramping yet?"

Bolted by Daniel Krippner

4
21
2.01
20m
4X bolts
Natural gear required
  Starts on the block just left of Kapowai Calling, on the edge of the large gully that splits the face. Nice grade 17/18 moves up to a final crux up the small crack at the top. Currently a mixture of bolts and trad (likely to gain a few more bolts soon). DBC belay. For an easier variant, traverse up and right before the final steep section, joining the first pitch anchors of Kapowai Calling. This version is called Home is Calling and would be a nice 18.

Dave Spooner, Dec 2017.

3
23
0
30m
1X bolts
Natural gear required
  Start as for Home Again, before splitting off at half height following crack trending up and left. At the chocked block bust out left to flake feature before moving up to another chock (novel #4 camalot placement here). Sustained climbing follows with just enough gear to keep you going before joining Kapowai Calling at the bolt at the end of its second pitch. Recommended rack - wires, full set of cams to #4, doubles 0.3-1. Save the 0.75s to place after each chock.

Sam Waetford (on pre-placed gear), Dec 2017. Awaits ground-up FA.

12
23
3
22m
12X bolts
  Absolutely wild! Start at the same bolt as Coitus Interruptus but then trend right up the delicate slab before traversing right over ledges to the steeply overhung alien head feature. Take a deep breath before launching up the underside of this outrageous feature. Clip the green thread before you mantle out. DBC belay.

Edwin Sheppard Nov 2017

13
0
3X bolts
  A short, steep affair which is currently under development and needs another bolt. Probably 27. Starts from the anchors at the top of Are We Tramping Yet, and mantles out to join Space Monkeys.

Comments

Comments

So what has been climbed there ? Looks great!!!

A few of the trad routes have been climbed and anchors bolted but they all still need a few pitches!
The approach track also still needs some grooming...

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