The Big Bang Area

(18 routes)

A motley collection of routes with a couple of gems between Andromeda Buttress and the South West Arête, generally 10–15 metres long.

Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
Aurora 14
The right-leaning, overhanging, broken corner a metre right. Bridging with good holds and jams, sustained. Often wet. Lindsay Main, 1979
Tab A 19
Overhanging right-leaning crack system right of Aurora. Climb the overhang and grovel up. Step right to the slab and continue easily up over blocks. Good protection. Phil Stuart-Jones, 1993
Slot B 22
A major struggle just right. Climb the overhang to an awkward position below the slot. Pull through somehow to gain the slab, and continue up the easy crack. Good protection. Phil Stuart-Jones, 1993.
Skinny Bastards Revenge 11
Just left of the south-west arête is an off-width. Climb one of the two cracks at the bottom (left is easier) to the ledge then post yourself in the slot... Not for the claustrophobic. John Davis, 1993
Galileo 22
The right-hand skyline - you can see it from Lyttelton. On the arête at the far right of the face, with cams and a bolt at the top. Up the arête using the crack, then surmount the ledge and balance up to finish slightly left. Technical and gymnastic. Joe Arts, 1996.
Clostridium 13
The knobbly wall and gully above. The start is undercut and strenuous. Then climb the groove, with a move right at about 5m. Take a central line to finish.
Tim Wethey, 1978
White Dwarf 11
The deep corner on the south-west arête. Lindsay Main, 1978.
Extraterrestrial Crack 14
The undercut crack. Technical and strenuous start, followed by bridging and jamming. Lindsay Main, 1978.
Lunatic Fringe 13
The arête, bulge, and jam crack just right. Lindsay Main, 1978
Orion 14
Start on the wall left of Zodiac and move onto the arête. Delicate climbing with adequate pro behind the flake/crack. Lindsay Main, 1980
Zodiac 18
The wall with a flaring crack. Straight up with dubious protection, moving left below the headwall, and then right to the sloping ledge and exit overhang.  Needs cleaning. Sustained. Lindsay Main, 1980
Big Bang 16
Start up the clean-cut left-facing roofed corner (bridging), and move out to the right under the square roof, which is more intimidating than difficult. Finish straight up or abseil off a bush. Lindsay Main, 1978
Southern Cross 14
Climb the undercut arête just left of the black cave on reasonable holds. Step across to the corner to finish. Lindsay Main, 1979
Black Hole 19
Start in the black cave and bridge out until the crack on the right can be reached. Climb this to the top. Technical and committing, but well-protected. Anchor rings. John Howard (solo), 1979
Houdini's Nightmare 19
Start on the left side and trend right to a small ledge and protection. Then up the wall past the bolt. Anchor rings. The bolt was placed later. Lindsay Main, 1978
Cosmic Debris 17
Two steep thin cracks lead to a ledge four metres up, and a wide curving crack. A technical start. Lindsay Main, 1978
Pickin' The Nose 22
Prominent arête right of the steep brown wall. Up the hand/fist crack for a couple of metres, then swing across to the arête via sharp ledges. Up the arête then right at the overhang. Run it out up the arête. Two bolts plus natural protection. Technical and committing. Use the Houdini anchor rings. Joe Arts, 1996.
Challenger 22
Starts as for PTN and climbs the overhanging crack with spaced natural protection. The deep fist/hand crack thins to slopers then finger locks. A little loose on the top wall. Save a #1 cam or two for the top overhang. Strenuous and serious. Try not to explode before you top out! Phil Stuart-Jones, 1997.