Curio Bay

(13 routes)

These climbs are on the back of the campground headland, between Curio Bay and Porpoise Bay. The routes begin off a wave-cut platform, broad but exposed to the Southern Ocean - a small swell and lower half of the tide are essentials for most routes. Extremely short (6 - 10m), and with variable rock quality, they nonetheless offer quality jams, off-widths and chimneys; not many places in the South Island offer this density of wide cracks! Sound trad skills are essential - the business starts straight off the deck, so sew it up. Don't skimp on the larger cams. All routes are trad, with bolted top anchors (Titanium / Sika 3+).
If you encounter Hoiho/ yellow-eyed penguins (Endangered) on the platforms - less likely since the construction of the Curioscape Visitor Center and associated development - enjoy, keep calm, keep your distance (50m is ideal), and note; DOGS ARE NOT ALLOWED IN/ON THE CAMPGROUND AREA, OR WAVE PLATFORMS. This is critical for the remaining penguins.
Little Blue Penguins (At Risk - Declining) now nest on the sheltered side of the headland, and are often heard at dusk; Hectors dolphins (Endangered) may be seen in Porpoise Bay, or from the crag.

Type: 
Crag
Altitude: 
1m
Aspect: 
South
Walk time: 
5
Access: 

The climbs are on the back (ocean) side of the hill and headland dominating Porpoise Bay and the Curio Bay campground. Walk around wavecut platforms from either side of the headland. Beware large sets, rising tide and rouge waves. Align your visit with the lower half of the tide. Avoid this crag above half tide, especially during large swells! That's when the surf is cranking anyway...

Lat/Lon: 
-46.663465000000, 169.105702000000
Reference Title Grade Length Quality Bolts Gone Natural pro Link to edit content
Flotsam 13
0
wire representing trad
left leaning corner. Needs more cleaning.
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
Jetsam 16
0
wire representing trad
Steep Corner crack starting 5m R of Flotsam, anchors on left hard to see from below. Cleaner than Jetsam, but at this stage (2020) still requires a thorough scrub. These two routes have the lowest quality rock on the crag.
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
Southern Heart 11
1.02
wire representing trad
Nice(!) offwidth, offering face gear to the left, if you forgot your big bros. Worthwhile. Blocks near top seem ok but may benefit from further cleaning...
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
Once Were Hoiho 15
1.02
wire representing trad
Twin crack stembox. Feels North American, very cool. Caution blocks near top - could use some TLC with tools...
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
Starfish Stem 16
1.02
wire representing trad 2
Chimney into widening stem, may be harder for shorter climbers.
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
Shortbored 12
0
Up the West end of the large chimney behind the house sized flake, moving onto the Seaward block at the top, and walking across to rap from the Holy Mackrel anchor. Unprotected.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Totally Tubular 15
1.02
wire representing trad
Old school chimney behind the massive flake... shacked up! Get Californian on it. 15R, may feel harder. Initially runout, until increasingly reasonable gear begins to materialize towards the top (seaward wall). Shares anchor with Holy Mackrel.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Holy Mackrel 19
2.01
wire representing trad 2
Right side of the 'tubular' block. Start on cracks R of corner, transitioning into corner. Awaits an onsight.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Craysy Crack 17
1.02
wire representing trad 2
Beautiful wide corner crack. Lap it, and imagine yourself in Indian Creek.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Silence of the Snails 19
2.01
wire representing trad 2
Fantastic crack just R of arete (L of snails pace). Anchor is set back from lip. Possible to set up TR.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Snails Pace 18
1.02
wire representing trad 2
Deceptive right angle corner. Step across and up, jam to edges and jugs. Anchor is set back from lip. Possible to set up TR.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Death From Below 20
1.02
wire representing trad 2
L hand of the twin short cracks (6m) at the right (East) end of the crag. Shares anchor with its twin. Awaits an onsight.
Ruari Macfarlane, June 2020
Blistering Barnacles 16
0
wire representing trad
R of the two twin cracks at the left/East end of crag. Shared anchor. Good start leads to blockier ground. Possible to set up TR.
Ruari Macfarlane, Paula Macfarlane, June 2020
UUID: 
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