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  • #8310 Reply

    My wife and I are thinking about heading over to sunny WA in a couple of weeks time for a bit of climbing touristy stuff. Melbourne winters suck. We only have a week and were thinking about heading down to the Margaret River area. Just wondering whether the best guide is “West Australian Rock” or “Margaret River Rock” for info on Willyabrup and Bob’s Hollow, and whether they are generally available at your outdoor shops? Those places would be the picks for 3-4 days climbing in the Margaret River area right? Also is bush camping possible anywhere, or is there a local spot that climbers go camping for those crags? Or is there a cheap and cheerful pub/motel nearby? And lastly should we expect a bit of rain or a lot? Any help much appreciated. Thanks.

    #8311 Reply

    Hi Clueless,

    Margs at this time of year? It could be 20 C and sunny, or it could be 10 C and pouring rain. Most people head to Kalbarri at this time of year where it’s 20 – 25 C and usually sunny (but cold at night!). But if you go to Margs and the weather is crap, there’s plenty else to do – nice scenery, vineyards, art galleries, etc etc.

    Guidebooks are all out of stock – new ones by CAWA and SR should be out later this year, I hear. You can get some info from the CAWA webpage however.

    Places are:

    Willyabrup – orange granite, trad and some bolts, grades 10 – 27ish. Fairly easy access.

    Bob’s Hollow – limestone, sports bolted. Harder access.

    Wallcliffe – pretty much the same as Bob’s. Easy access.

    Camping is possible at Willy’s and Bob’s, but being so close to the sea (like 10 m and 100 m) it may be cold and wet. Or it may not. There are a few camp-grounds nearby, which aren’t too bad.

    Cheap pubs? Marg’s has been yuppieafied and cashed-up-boganafied. Don’t expect anything cheap.

    If you put up your email address or phone no, I can send some details of somewhere that I’ve stayed at before, which is cheap and OK, although a little further away.

    #8312 Reply

    Thanks for your reply Susan!

    My email is: ajscott99 [AT] hotmail.com

    We were attracted to the wet weather options down that way and figured the drive up to Kalbarri could be a bit of an epic for a relaxing holiday. I gather that the weather in the Albany region is at least as unpredictable?

    I got a bit of info off rockclimbing.com which is probably enough for Bob’s, but probably not enough for Willy.

    #8313 Reply

    Hi Andrew,

    a bit of info here guide.climberswa.asn.au/

    and http://www.climberswa.asn.au/climb/mini-guides/

    And photos http://www.climberswa.asn.au/photos/

    Albany has fantastic climbing – Peak Head, West Cape Howe, Stirling Ranges, The Gap, Porongorups, Mt Franklin etc etc but the weather at this time of the year is usually cold and wet.

    Kalbarri is a bit further away, but if you really want to go climbing, I’d consider there. Nice hiking, canoeing etc as well. There’s aa few things to see on the way as well – Nambung (Pinnacles), Geraldton, etc.

    I’ll email some info too you soon.

    #8314 Reply
    Luke B

    There must still be a few copies of West Australian Rock hanging around in outdoor stores? I bought a copy from Mainpeak Cottesloe earlier this year.

    #8315 Reply

    Last time I checked there was heaps of copies of West Australian Rock available from Mountain Designs in Perth. This book has all you need for climbing in the Margret River area. Mountain Designs can be found at;

    862 Hay Street

    PERTH WA 6000

    PH: +61 8 9322 4774

    FAX: +61 8 9324 1105

    EMAIL: perth@mountaindesigns.com

    I highly recommend Willyabrup for a few days climbing. The next 7-10 days forecast is for relatively good weather for the Margaret River area.

    Last time I climbed at Willyabrup I stayed at Taunton Farm Holiday park. Reasonable camping prices and hot showers with kitchen facilities make it nice for the longer stays. The park is just up the road from Willyabrup.


    #8316 Reply

    Awesome. Thanks for the info. I actually tried ordering a copy direct from Shane but unfortunately he isn’t able to ship a copy to me for the next while. Then I tried MDs in Melbourne who told me that the Perth MD stores weren’t showing any stock. So I ordered a copy from Simon Carter, who definitely has copies. So it should be all good!

    #8317 Reply

    Copies of the West Australian Climbing Guide are also available at Rockface (63b John St in Northbridge).

    New(-ish) routes not in the guidebook,:

    h t t p:






    #8318 Reply

    All good info, but can people please not camp at bobs hollow. Especially in the cave,which has been trashed by camp fires. Alot of fishermen use the spot and are the major culprits( that I have witnessed).

    #8319 Reply

    Hi Andrew

    I hope you enjoy your time over here. Willy’s and Bob’s are fantastic spots, so hopefully the weather will be good for you.

    As far as camping goes, it is not allowed at Bob’s and the ranger does come and check. So as George says, please don’t camp there as we want to maintain a good relationship with the land managers and look after the area.

    There are plenty of camping options, Taunton Farm, Gracetown Caravan park and Contos.

    #8320 Reply

    Thanks for your help everyone. We are arriving first thing (!) Saturday morning and, if the weather looks vaguely reasonable, will be spending 8 days down near Margaret River. We are probably going to split it between camping at Contos and Gracetown with probably 4+ days climbing. Point taken about camping at the crag, we recognise how important it is to do the right thing for everyone’s sake. Might even see you guys around.

    #8321 Reply

    Well we just returned last night from a fantastic week in your state. In the end the weather only gave us the opportunity to go climbing for two days (really only one and a half) but we really enjoyed our time checking out the beaches, rocky coastlines, wineries and local food places. It really is a great holiday destination. And it sounds like this time of year is really off-peak which means that there are no queues and everything seems laid back (maybe it is all year). I must say that you guys probably don’t know how good you have it compared to how crowded any half decent spot is on the east coast. Your roads are pretty good too it seems although I can’t understand how Bussell Highway (single lane, not divided, kangaroos) can be 110 whereas the Kawina (sp?) highway coming into Perth is 100 (divided, double lane, kangaroo fences, etc).

    Anyway we spent a day at Willy and I thought that Stainless Steel was standout although Totally Awesome lived up to the hype. Fat Chance was also pretty good. Had planned to have a lash at Heavy Metal but was only there one day and the wife didn’t really like the rock. Yes she is crazy. IMHO Willy is up there with White Water Wall (Freycinet) and Point Perp for atmosphere although in a more user friendly way ;). Loved the frictional featured granite and those “sucker rails” that you thought were going to be positive.

    The other half day we spent at Bob’s Hollow which was another beautiful location. The walk in was quite enjoyable as well. Highlights were Black Lung and Shaved Cat, although I think that the latter might be a little over-hyped as the best 20 in the state. Surely WA has more to offer!!?? I had only climbed a limited amount on limestone before that day and was surprised at how sharp it can be! Would hate to imagine hard crimpy climbing. On the other hand Black Lung was just like gym climbing (almost Nowra like). There were heaps of other routes that unfortunately were seeping. Somebody had left a sling and locker on Fin Left at what seems like the last part of the vertical climbing before an extension that might be a touch harder? Someone had left a draw on the 18 to the right of Shaved Cat.

    Next time we will have to head further south to Albany area.

    Last comment, can someone explain why your state agencies feel the need to warn tourists of every conceivable risk at every opportunity? The funniest one was on the banks of the Warren River where there was a “river risk” which stated that the water could be cold??!! Can’t you just stick a toe in? The irony was that the agencies then encouraged you to climb the lookout trees around Pemberton which look crazy dangerous. Have people died slipping on those steel rungs?

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