The Arches

(11 routes)

This great feature wall is home to some Waipapa classics.


From the Millennium Wall head back along the track for about 15m and then scramble up onto the belay ledge below the big corner.

Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
Seattle Rain 22 8m
Balance moves up the wall to you reach the crack. Move left taking an exposed step onto the overhang, pull through then mantel onto the 1st Belay ledge of Mortality. (Pro: 5 Bolts).
Kelly Cudworth & Bryce Martin 15-Feb-02
Popeye 23 ,22 30m
So named because you will need to be fully armed to do the top move.
#EwbankAlpine (Technical)Alpine (Commitment)Alpine (Mt Cook)AidWater IceMixedBoulder (Hueco)LengthBoltsTrad

Climb the wall and arete 2m left of the large corner. Eases off after the 3rd bolt then moves left at 5th bolt to DBC belay. Shares the last 2 bolts and belay of Morality


Continue up the line of Mortality to the 2nd bolt, then move delicately right onto the slab and continue up till you reach the roof. Having gained the good hold on the lip make a big blind reach to get established in the groove, form here easy climbing leads to the DBC belay of Mortality. Twin ropes are advised, if not it maybe worth unclipping the 2nd bolt after you have clipped the 3rd, 25m abseil to ground. (Pro: 6 Bolts). Both pitch’s can be climbed in one on double ropes.

Martyn Owen, Andrew Whitmore, Florian Baffie: Dec-00
Fire in the Sky 30 25m
Start as for The Arches but head straight for the steepest, meanest part of the large overhang. Tackle this with kneebars and whatever else you have in your kit bag, then punch to the anchor on Popeye. James says it's the best hard route around these parts.
James Field-Mitchell, 2013
Mortality 17 ,22 31m
Climb up to the forth bolt on the Arches (see below) to where that route starts to break left. Traverse left at this point past two bolts on the narrow ledge then traverse left to a BDC belay around the next arete.
#EwbankAlpine (Technical)Alpine (Commitment)Alpine (Mt Cook)AidWater IceMixedBoulder (Hueco)LengthBoltsTrad

Climb up to the forth bolt on the Arches (see below) to where that route starts to break left. Traverse left at this point past two bolts on the narrow ledge then traverse left to a BDC belay around the next arete.


Climb directly up the steep slab past three bolts to a large flake. Climb the right side of the flake and gain the groove above and slightly right (crux). Follow the groove to a DBC belay. (Pro: 7 bolts)

Kevin Barratt,Jan Wasey: 2 Sep-01
The Arches 18 35m
Climb the corner of the arch past 3 bolts then veer right onto the face then traverse horizontally across the wall about 2m below the roof. Belay on a small ledge on the right hand end of the face. The crux is the first few moves and there is a difficult move gaining the belay ledge. DBC belay and 25m abseil to ground. (Pro: 9 bolts)
Kevin Barratt: Jan-00
Gauche mais pas Maladroit 18 20m
Climb the shallow corner and crack 3m to the right of The Arches corner then move onto the face (crux) and continue straight up, crossing the line of “The Arches” (NZ road code applies at intersection), to a two hook belay just below roof. (Pro: 10 Bolts)
Nick Adams, Florian Baffie: 2/Dec/00
Hiroshima 27 26m
An extension to Gauche mais pas Maladroit, through the roof.
James Field-Mitchell, 2014
Three Steps to Heaven 26 20m
The line up the right hand end of the Arch wall directly below the belay of The Arches. A frustrating move past the second bolt is followed by the crux at the 4 & 5 bolts, the climbing then eases off with a hard move to finish.
Martyn Owen, January 2001
Ben’s Big Day Out 20 22m
3bolts wire representing trad
Five metres to the right of the Arch wall is another buttress. Scramble up onto the narrow belay ledge. Follow the two thin crack lines (RP size) to gain the next ledge at 5m height. Move left and follow the bolts up the corner then continue up the crack line above. At the top step right to the double ring bolt belay of Fingers Crossed. (Pro: RPs, Wires, CD, 3 Bolts)
Martyn Owen , Andrew Whitmore, Ben Owen: 18 Jan -01
Fingers Crossed 22 25m
4bolts wire representing trad
Start as for Ben’s Big Day but move right at the ledge making an awkward move to gain the hand crack. Climb the crack until it tapers out then move left to the bolt (crux). Follow the line of bolts to the top. Two ring bolt belay station, 25m abseil to ground. (Pro: CD, Wires, RPs, 4 Bolts)
Richard Knott: Dec-00
Game of Two Halves 27 25m
The line immediately left of Fingers Crossed. Follow layaway crack line past 4 bolts, continue up the square arete to gain the small foot ledge and rest stance (avoid the dirty stuff out left). Pull right and kick off again up the thin slab to the ledge and DB belay .
Marytn Owen, Fran Louder 26/9/02