Bannockburn Bridge - Cromwell

(22 routes)

Nice crag by the lake. Mostly good rock. The routes are described from left to right, starting at the small buttress to the left of prominent east facing wall. This wall is shaded by early afternoon and the steeper northeast facing routes are in the shade by 5pm in summer. There is a good swimming hole just a few metres from the base of the crag.

Type: 
Crag
Altitude: 
200m
Aspect: 
East
Walk time: 
3
Access: 

Driving from Cromwell to Bannockburn on Bannockburn Road, cross bridge over the Kawarau River, turn left onto Cairnmuir Road. Pull over at first pullout on left and walk down and left to crag. It is easy to walk to either the top of the crag to set up topropes or to the bottom to lead.

Lat/Lon: 
-45.080248000000, 169.169669000000
NZMS260: 
F41 085 627
Topo50: 
CC12 985 010
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Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
Sluice Box 23 12m
0
4bolts
This route is located on the small buttress beyond the big gum tree. Tough moves to set up for and mantle the bulge. Pleasant from here up the slab and though the overlap.
Kieran Parsons 2019
Flash in the Pan 21 12m
1.02
6bolts
This route is located on the small buttress beyond the big gum tree. Clip the first bolt from the boulder, this bolt can be used to protect the belayer. Then make your way up the lovely water warn face and desperately establish your self on the slab. From here the climb rears up again to the crux section. A nice technical test.
Kieran Parsons 2019
The Tardis 15 7m
0
1bolts wire representing trad
On the small buttress to the left of Chain Gang. Start up the crack which is easily protected then clip the bolt and pull the entertaining mantle. Lower off the chain or walk off the back. Worth a moment of your time.
Kieran Parsons 2017
JAM JAM 21 8m
0
3bolts
Start to the right of the first bolt. Harder than it looks, especially if you go direct. Nice moves on the upper section.
Ben Rohde 2018
CG Chain Gang 15 14m
0
4bolts
Right of the broken corner with the beehive. If you don't mind the bees they don't mind you. The route climbs well and is a good introduction to the crag. One of the original routes circa 1991, it was re-bolted in 2021. First ascent unknown.
Unknown
BB Bogan to the Bone 16 15m
0
6bolts
A pleasant route that eases off near the top. One of the original routes circa 1991, retro bolted in 2017 to remove the significant ground fall potential. First ascent unknown.
Unknown
HD Heart of the Desert 17 15m
1.02
6bolts
Good face climbing with the crux protected by the first bolt.
Kieran Parsons 2017
SAA A Shade of Afternoon Arête 19 15m
0
6bolts
Left of the prominent arête. Start to the left of the ruins with a rising traverse past the first bolt. This line is sustained and it will keep you engaged all the way to the top. New anchor with rings on the face or you can top out to the old anchor.
Jamie Hall, 2017
NE No Excuses 22 14m
2.01
6bolts
Start over the stone wall just right of the arête, then climb the arête proper to the small shelf with a half rest before tackling the crux. Rest at the ledge but keep your head in the game for the final section. Steeper than it looks.
Kieran Parsons, Ben Rohde 2017
BOW Take a BOW 21 15m
1.02
5bolts
Starts a meter right of No Excuses. Climbs the big flake and then directly tackles the upper face.
Ben Rohde 2017
CP Cherry Picker 20 14m
1.02
6bolts
Stiff moves off the ground then up the slopey slab before making a couple of high tension moves to establish your feet on the right leaning ramp. Less jugs than you might like for the gently overhanging finish.
Kieran Parsons 2018
Just in Thyme 24
1.02
Start on the brown rock to the left - worth stick clipping the first bolt - then up the right hand side of the arête. Clip the left ring from high on the arête then hand traverse to clip the right ring. This line strikes a pleasant harmony between power, balance and core tension. However, the rock is friable, as is the case for the other two routes on this wall.
Mark Herzog. Kieran Parsons 11/01/2020
Sands of Thyme 24 10m
1.02
4bolts
On the short but steep wall. Technical moves from start to finish make this an enjoyable route. The rock will continue to clean up with more ascents.
Tanja de Wilde 2018
A Thyme to Remember 21 13m
0
6bolts
Scrambling start from left to right followed by fun jug hauling with a short, crimpy crux section and mantle above. Clipping the anchor is strenuous but well protected by the last bolt.
Kieran Parsons 2020
It's Business Thyme 19 15m
1.02
5bolts
Start on the left hand side of toe of the buttress right of Sands of Thyme. This line tackles the narrow face of brown to black rock just left of the arete. Enjoyable climbing on steepening rock with good holds. Keep left of the arete at the top. 18ish if you use the holds on the right of the arete.
Steve Fortune 2018
Space-thyme continuum 12 16m
1.02
6bolts
Climbs the slab side of the arete, to the left of 'Thyme is Money'. At the 5th bolt ledge either step up to clip (feels exposed but is technically straight-forward) or else borrow a bolt from 'Thyme is Money' and extend it. Nice climbing.
Presumably been top-roped for years. Bolted by Dave Ryan. June 2022
Thyme is Money 11 15m
0
6bolts
Nice climbing on the slab at the beach. Negotiate the little bulge at the first bolt and then you're away. Good quality rock. Top roped for years but bolted to lead by Kieran Parsons, 2019.
Thymeless 14 16m
0
8bolts
To the right of 'Thyme is Money'. Thin opening moves, then cruise straight up the centre of the slab.
Presumably been top-roped for years. Bolted by Eddie Murphy. June 2022
No thyme to die 10 10m
0
5bolts
The right hand side of the slab by the beach. Clip first bolt from obvious semi-detached flake. Beware that rock quality deteriorates towards top of climb.
Presumably been top-roped for years. Bolted by Dave Ryan. June 2022
Quick Thyme 12 10m
1.02
5bolts
Located on the right hand side of the gully above the beach. A good and consistent route for beginners, or your last climb before a swim in the river. Grade 15 if you climb it with bare feet.
Vaughan Snowdon 2017
Thyme Sharing 14 10m
0
wire representing trad
The dirty crack just right of Quick Thyme. The first ascent was on double ropes and made use of the third bolt of the adjacent route. The gear in the middle section should be treated with great caution. Not for the inexperienced trad climber, despite the grade.
Graham Smith, 2019
Warrior on the Edge of Thyme 16 13m
0
wire representing trad
The obvious right leaning crack and semi detached pillar above the beach. Hand jam or lay back as you burry your big hexes and nuts in this beauty - it can be hard to see all the way into the depths when placing gear. Then slip through the willow leaves onto the tricky upper section with less than satisfying pro. There is a loose but keyed in block at about half height. The first ascent, in good 1975 fashion, was made using only hexes and nuts. A good test of ones head space and not a route to be taken lightly. Anchor 4m back from the edge.
Graham Smith, 2019

Places

Type Title Link to edit content
Wall Cheese Grater (main area) (0 routes)
Wall Sands Wall and Thyme Gully (0 routes)
Wall The Mine Shaft (0 routes)
UUID: 
cd1f5af5-45c2-4bfe-a50a-e7db25ab9771

Comments

Hi Dave, yip, I'm local. Great work on all that cleaning, sounds like you put a lot of effort in. I went and had a scramble round on the slab and it looked like a lot of the loose rock has been removed. From experience, a leaf blower helps a lot with that final clean ;-) Thanks for adding the extra lines. I'll get in contact via email if you I have any further thoughts on the bolting. Feel free to reach out to the local climbing page called Central Otago Rock Climbing on Facebook if you're back in the area sometime and want to get out to some other crags - loads more development options available too.

The beginner slab at the beach now has x4 bolted beginner lines, ranging from grade 10-14 ("Space-Thyme Continuum", "Thyme is Money" [existing climb], "Thymeless" and "No Thyme To Die"). Beware the new climbs are currently dirty and will need a good rain and/or scrub. Some loose blocks were removed, though keep an eye out for more. New climbs' grades are open to moderation. A great spot for teaching leading.

Hi Dave, just reading through the descriptions of the 3x new lines. Space-Thyme Continuum is mostly new so you can probably claim the FA on that one (looks like a nice line too) as I've only seen the bottom handful of moves top roped from the Thyme is Money anchor. Thymless has been top roped and abseiled for years. We did a couple of hours cleaning of that line back in 2019 with the intention of bolting it to lead and then decided the rock was pretty marginal for bolts... No Thyme to Die has been scrambled on before. The rock is pretty loose the further right you go on that slab. One consideration is that the beach can have up to 20 people there on a hot summers days. Have all the loose blocks been removed? It's one thing to break a little crimp but another to pull a block out...

Hi Kieran, cheers for your comments. Nice to hear about some of the history of the climbs. I can understand your concerns - for sure the rock quality decreases as you head R on the slab, and there are definitely places you wouldn't place bolts due to rotten rock. We certainly took a long time assessing each bolt placement to make sure they went in to good rock, and we yarded, yanked and kicked at blocks and got a tyre-iron involved too. We pried off 3 computer-screen sized blocks and a number of smaller ones. Due diligence was completed, but it would be remiss of me to say that we definitely got it all (as would be the case with any natural rock crag). I take it you're a local? It's a great resource you've got down there. Feel free to email me any feedback about the routes: dave.mark.ryan@gmail.com. Cheers and happy climbing.