Since 1974, sporadic bursts of attention have established a good concentration of alpine rock routes on the south-western buttresses of Mt Onslow and Cloudy Peak. The rock is of somewhat variable quality. In general, the harder routes have much better rock, and indeed Bill McLeod has suggested that some of the climbing here is the equal of climbing in the Darrans. The compact nature of the rock can make protection hard to arrange, but many of the routes climbed in the 1990s on the lower walls use some bolts for protection.
Close to Christchurch and with relatively good rock and dry weather, these routes deserve to be climbed more often. However, the Clyde River must be crossed to reach Cloudy Stream, something that should never be taken lightly.
Cloudy Stream provides the usual access to Mt Onslow and Cloudy and Ferrar Peaks. It is reached after walking for an hour or so upstream from the confluence of the Clyde and Havelock Rivers. Head up Cloudy Stream following terraces on the true left, then sidle around to the stream negotiating scrub near the stream itself. There are several campsites on grassy flats further upstream, which provide good bases for rock climbing in the area.