Some long time climbing friends were getting married, so off we went without kids to Australia for 8 days with some friends.
After taking a red eye flight to Sydney. We landed, rented a car, drove to Blue Mountains 1.5h away, had brunch checked in to our Airbnb, bought a guidebook, and went straight to climbing. I had hoped to do some sightseeing, but it was raining and extremely foggy so there was no sightseeing to be done as we could not see more than 10 meters in front of us.
It ended up raining for the first 3 days of the trip but luckily there were some top quality rain roof crags despite some areas being closed due to the severe forest fires earlier in the year. So the first 3 days we went to Centennial Glen, Bell and Binary Cave for a lot of steep and powerful climbing (which I quite enjoy).
After 3 days of climbing, we took a break to go Ax Throwing with the bride to be, drink wine and have a barbecue. Ax throwing was quite fun and I was a lot better than I expected to be!
The sun finally came out on Day 5, so we went to Shipley for some lovely technical climbing. Unfortunately, due to the heavy rain, parts of the wall was quite wet. But there was more than enough hard climbs to keep me busy. When the sun came out it also meant it got unbearably hot; so in the afternoon we headed over to Centennial Glen where I attempted to work the 26 again.
Day 6 was the wedding and the weather was fantastic! We spent the morning sightseeing and hiking Wentworth Falls. Unfortunately due to the heavy rain the previous day’s parts of the trail was closed. However, the weather was still brilliant.
Then we drove over to the venue to enjoy a lovely and intimate outdoor lawn wedding followed by a bonfire.
Day 7 was another lovely and beautiful day. We decided to go to My. Piddington to do some Trad climbing. I hadn’t Trad climbed since Squamish last summer , but found my groove again. We did several Trad cracks before the sun made it insufferable. Then we headed to Mt. Boronia for some very pumpy sports climbs.
Our last day , it was pouring rain again so sightseeing in Sydney didn’t seem too attractive. We decided to go for a few hours to the Wave Wall at Centennial Glen. Luckily it was quite dry and I got to do some beautiful and overhung jug hauls. We ended the day at noon and went to Sydney to enjoy some shopping and happy hour before we headed to the airport.
Overall the trip was really great. We got to catch up with friends. As our Airbnb, had poor 4G connection and didn’t have WiFi but had a barbeque. We spent the nights grilling food and playing Scrabble. Overall, a lovely week to detox from always being connected.
The climbing was also brilliant. The sandstone felt great and the views on a clear days was awesome. Originally we had assumed Blue Mountains was mostly Trad climbing because we didn’t research. But it turned out of be mostly sports climbing which was also fine. I would say that the Grampians has better rock and Arapiles has better Trad in Australia. But Blue Mountains is much more convenient with amenities and amazing Airbnb. Whereas Grampians and Arapiles had no supermarkets on Sundays or cafes; Blue Mountains had all the amenities and great coffee you wished for.
But we miss our kiddos so we are happy to go home.