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THE GOOSENECKS

The Gooseneck Rocks, or “Goosenecks” are located at the north end of Gooseneck Lake, about 18km by road northeast of Minaki. The Goosenecks offer the greatest quantity and variety of accessible climbing in Northwest Ontario, and it is here that rock climbing in the area began in the early 1970s.

Gooseneck consists of three climbing areas: the Main CliffSouth Cliff, and Cave Cliff.

Besides the climbs described in this guide, numerous opportunities exist for bouldering, and short, gymnastic routes have been put up in recent years (see guide produced by Robert Hester) – for clarity, routes under 30’/9m in length have not been included here.

Camping right at the cliff is considered bad form, as it impinges access by other climbers. Four camping areas are frequented by climbers near the Goosenecks. “The Snake Pit” is located between Cave Cliff and Cygnet Lake Road off #525 on the side away from the lake; the deeply rutted trail leading to it is opposite the sign that reads “Cygnet Lake Road-500 m.” The second spot is “Fisherman’s Launch” on Gooseneck Lake; to get to it, drive 2 km down the Cygnet Lake Road until you pass a blasted-out hole and a large pile of rocks (quarry); the next right turn leads to the lake. The third spot is known lovingly as “The Hilton,” situated 4.5km past the quarry – pull off the road onto smooth bare rock at a small opening in the brush. There are numerous mossy tent spots along the rounded rock ridge. Finally, there is a commercial camping site (showers and heated washrooms!) 11 km down the Cygnet Lake Road.

Help preserve the quality of this fragile environment by sticking to trails, using the outhouse (discreetly camouflaged near the road, as well as along the trail to the lakeside climbs) and packing out all trash, even stuff you may come across that’s not yours.

Access

Main Cliff

From Winnipeg, go east on the Trans-Canada highway (#1) for approximately 200 km. Take the Kenora-Keewatin bypass (#17A) and after 9 km turn left/north onto the Kenora-Minaki road (#596). After approximately 40 km this road comes to a “T”; turn left/east here onto the Whitedog Falls road (#525, gravel). Goosenecks’ Main Cliff is 12.2 km down this road, 1.7 km past the Cygnet Lake road which turns off to the left. The trip takes about 3 hours from Winnipeg.

South Cliff

South Cliff is located on the south shore of Gooseneck Lake, directly south of the Main Cliff. It may be accessed from a canoe but can also be approached on foot. To do so, drive 1.2 km down Cygnet Lake Road and park on the right. Hike 10 minutes north through the bush along a well-defined trail to the top of the western section of the cliff. South Cliff is divided into an eastern section and a western section, with a broken area in the middle through which an exit route winds.

Cave Cliff

This cliff lies on the right side of the road as you drive to the Main Cliff, 3/4km south of the Main Cliff, and is partially hidden by trees.

Classic Routes (Main Cliff)

Following are classic routes for the Main Cliff. To visit the other Gooseneck cliffs, visit South Cliff and Cave Cliff.

Roadside Face
The Roadside Face is located on Gooseneck’s Main Cliff. All climbs are listed from left to right when facing the cliff.

The Scenic Route 5.0, 40m
From the road, follow a path up and left to the end of the cliff. This route starts in the trees at the left edge of the slab. Mantel onto a large rounded ledge, then climb the corner where the wall meets the slab. Move past the tree to a more gentle slope. An easy scramble leads to the top of the cliffs. Frequently downclimbed, slippery when wet.


Desire 5.9, 8m
Robert Hester

Start at the trees 4m right of the second bulge on the way up The Scenic Route. Ascend the obvious crack through a short roof to the top.

 

Exit Staircase 5.1, 12m
From the road, follow the path that leads up towards the huge low-angled slab (Beginner’s Slab) at the left end of the cliff. The route starts 3m from a large spruce tree, at an inside corner at the left edge of the slab. Climb the corner using the edge of the flake and cracks where the wall meets the slab. An easy scramble left then right leads to the top of the cliffs. Frequently downclimbed, but be wary if you’re unfamiliar with the bottom.


Lust 5.10d, 7m TR
Robert Hester

Start from partway up Exit Staircase, 6m left of Utah Crack. Ascend thin horizontal ledges to bolts above.


Utah Crack 5.8, 7m

Robert Hester

From partway up the Exit Staircase, ascend the crack at the left end of the huge flake to tree on terrace above.

 

Wiggle & Thrash 5.4, 17m
Robert Hester

Start from the ground half way between Exit Staircase and Beginner’s Corner. Follow blocky ledge system to prominent ledge.

Beginner’s Corner 5.3, 9m
This route begins at the highest point above the rubble slope below an outside corner. Climb up the outside corner and continue to a big ledge with a tree.

Rachel 5.11c, 7m TR
Mike Baxter

Ascend the face just right of Beginner’s Corner. Toprope from trad gear to bush on sloping ledge (part way up slab).

Beginner’s Slab 5.3, 37m *

Hugh Spencer, Barbara Spencer – 1972 July 1
Start at the left end of a large ramp leading right at the top of the rubble slope, right of Beginner’s Corner. Move up ramp, then left to a small pinnacle, then up and right to the base of the slab. Continue directly up the centre of the slab to a large ledge and a good tree belay. Many variations are possible (bolts at 2/3 height now permit a multi-pitch hanging belay).

Hung Hammer 5.4, 37m

Peter Aitchison, Larry Jordan, Elmer Howitt – 1972 Aug 12
Start on the right edge of Beginner’s Slab, below a steep ascending staircase of small ledges. Ascend the ledges more or less straight up to the edge of the slab. Climb the slab, seeking the line of least resistance; don’t go too far right, as this leads to difficult terrain.

Sparkle and Fade 5.11d, 15m TR *

Mike Baxter – 1996 Oct
Scramble up the first 5m of Groper, then traverse left 3m to an obvious white and black water-streaked line. Thin and sustained face climbing leads to a hand crack finish.

 

Groper 5.7, 34m *

Peter Aitchison, Hugh Spencer – 1972 Sept 23
This route starts at the large inside corner right of Hung Hammer. * Pitch 1, 15m: Climb the right side of the ledges to the corner below the obvious crux – a wide, slightly overhanging crack – which leads to an alcove. * Pitch 2, 18m: Continue up the corner to a ledge with trees.

Groper Direct 5.8, 40m *

Doug Leonard, Caroline Marion – 1989
After the first pitch of Groper, go straight up the wall on the right above the alcove.

Groper Deluxe 5.8, 46m **

Peter Aitchison, Robert France – 1980 May 4, Variation: Ralph Wright, Mark Giesbrecht, Peter Aitchison – 1989 Sept
After the first pitch of Groper, traverse right from the alcove along the ledge on the steep wall. Follow cracks through the freshly broken area over a large detached block. Ascend the slab above to finish. A safer variation that avoids most of the loose rock goes straight up cracks to the left of the large detached block.

Minuet & Trio 5.10d, 26m TR

Rafael Munoz, Peter Aitchison, Ralph Wright – 1994 June
Starts 5m right of Groper. Trend up and right through upside-down ledges, connect with 4th bolt of Pick Yourself Up, and move left to finish 3m past chains.

 

Pick Yourself Up 5.12a, 24m **

Casey Shaw – 1991 Aug
Follow bolts that start near a 5cm crack on the face 7m right of Groper. Continue up the face when the crack pinches out. Climb directly through two small overhangs to the notch/rock scar to chains.

Funny Face 5.10d, 27m
Doug Leonard, Terry Makos – 1990 Sept 23

Starts a few meters right of Pick Yourself Up. Climb past a piton in a horizontal crack and then up past 7 bolts to the top.

Flying Down to Rio 5.11b, 28m TR **

Doug Leonard, Mike Baxter – 1993 June
Start by climbing left of the arete just left of Swing Time. Face climb to a large no-hands rest and continue up to the chains. A 55m rope is needed if top-roping from the Swing Time chains.

Swing Time 5.11b, 27m TR

Doug Leonard – 1989 July 8
Begin right of Funny Face at the wide crack below a small arête. Climb to the top of the wide crack then up the arete, finishing on a small ledge below two bolts and a chain. Note: a 55m rope is needed for this one.

 

When Oceans Explode 5.11c, 23m ***

Mike Baxter – 1996 May
Great Climbing! About 5m right of Swing Time, ascend large holds to a horizontal crack for your first piece (# 2 Friend) then follow 7 bolts and a #7 nut to the chain anchor at the top.

Frog-in-the-Crack 5.9! 63m ***
FA: (5.8/A2) Peter Aitchison, Hugh Spencer – 1972 Aug 13

FFA: Ian Clark, Geoff Murray, Trevor Down – 1978

An excellent varied route. Start below some ledges about 7m left of the prominent outside corner.

Pitch 1 (12m): Climb the ledges and hand traverse right to a prominent flake. From a stance on the flake, hand traverse right to a crack, and mantle onto the belay ledge (the good foothold that previously existed below the crack is gone; the crux is now a grade harder and difficult to protect). On the first ascent, the leader stepped in a sling attached to a piton in the crack at the back of the hand traverse ledge.

Pitch 2 (15m): Move around the corner to the right and struggle through a bush. Beautiful cracks in the arete above end at a good ledge.

Pitch 3 (12m): Climb the corner above the ledge, move left onto a small slab, and up to the tree. * Pitch 4, 23m: Climb straight up the slabs to finish. An alternative of equal difficulty traverses left from the belay stance onto an intimidating face. Ascend the crack in the face to finish.
 

Knee Deep in the Hoopla 5.11b, 49m ***

Mike Baxter, Sue Baker-Baxter – 1996, June


Pitch 1 (25m): Begin at starting point for Frog-in-the-Crack but continue up the thin seam and small inside corner to a triangular shaped belay ledge.
 

Pitch 2 (24m - 5.7): Continue over a small bulge and move onto slabs to finish at the top of Frog’s belay tree. (Thin & awkward gear!)


The Lost Connection 5.8, 49m **
Doug Leonard, Dan Price – 1986 May

This route introduces a novel first pitch for Frog-in-the-Crack. Start up the Great Corner. After the first overhang, break left up a steep ramp and move around a roof to the belay ledge on Frog-in-the-Crack.
 

Great Corner 5.9! 49m ***

Peter Aitchison – 1975 July

Spectacular and sustained climbing up the huge inside corner right of Frog-in-the-Crack.

Pitch 1 (24m): Climb the corner and slab, overcoming two overhangs to the ledge with a birds nest.
 

Pitch 2 (25m): Climb the corner and face.

Tickling Ten 5.10a, 45m

Rafael Munoz, Ralph Wright – 1989 July
Start 2m right of Great Corner. Follow shallow inside corners up to first bolts of Great Slab (runout). Follow a thin seam straight up on small wires to the next bolt. New bridge of overhang follows direct line to top of cliff.

Great Slab 5.9, 55m **

Peter Gough, Peter Aitchison – 1979
Start to the right of the Great Corner, approximately 4 m left of the outside edge of the slab, almost directly in front of the large boulders.

 

Pitch 1 (34m): Go straight up 12 m then trend left to the large ledge with bolts at 1/3 height in the middle of the slab. Move left and climb up the slab to the left side of the overhang. Traverse right under the overhang and up through a weakness to a ledge with bolts.
 

Pitch 2 (21m): Several variations widely varying in difficulty are possible for this pitch. The original: ascend 2 m on small holds then go right and up a left trending crack.

By Hook or by Crook 5.10c, 46m **

Ralph Wright, Peter Aitchison – 1990
A direct line up the slab. Start as for Great Slab or use small holds 2m to the right.

 

Pitch 1 (30m): Climb straight up 10m then move up diagonally to the right across a blank section to a left trending crack. Ascend the crack, then move up to the overhang. Follow right under the overhang to the weak point (as for Great Slab). Belay from the ledge with bolts above the overhang.

Pitch 2 (21m): Same as Great Slab.

On the Edge 5.11b, 46m ***
FA: (5.9/C2 in 3 pitches) Ralph Wright, Peter Aitchison – 1990 June 12

FFA: Mike Baxter, Doug Orr – 1996 Aug

Start on the terrace above the right side of the Great Slab. Climb a thin inside corner which leads onto the far right side of the slab up easier ground (past 1 bolt) to overcome overhang. Over the roof is easier climbing to the top of the slab.

The Mitre 5.11b, 48m ***
Peter Aitchison, Ralph Wright, Mark Giesbrecht, Rafael Munoz – 1989 May

The original start ascended the left side of the huge inside corner immediately right of the Great Slab; a direct start begins on small holds 2m to the right.

 

Pitch 1 (24m): Climb to a belay stance at a large jammed block above a small triangular shaped slab at 2/3 height. Beware, this block it is not solid.

Pitch 2 (24m): Climb straight up through the corner and overhang (crux) past a fixed nut until an exit can be made left, just before the peak of the corner. Cross over the top to the right and up a small inside corner to finish.

The Seam A4, 55m
Ralph Wright, Colin Innes-Smith – 1989

Climb Pitch 1 of The Mitre. Then aid up thin crack 2m to the right of the belay. After 10m of thin gear (at bolt) follow crack to left 3m, then up shallow corner to right.

The Mitre/Eastwall 5.7/A3, 60m
Ralph Wright – 1990 Mar

Begin 8m left of The Great Orc. Aid a network of fine cracks 15m to a small overhang (bolt) and traverse left to a rising left trending ledge. Free climb or continue on aid to the base of the large dihedral. Belay from here or continue up a solid crack to the first overhang, which is passed on the right. Continue up the corner to the top. Exit the corner on the left and ascend the slab on one of two cracks to the top.

Questionable Ethics A2 (12a/TR), 28m ***

FA: (A2) Ralph Wright, Dave Waters – 1990 May

TR: Mike Baxter – 1996 Aug
Start on the terrace by spray paint, up the thin crack/hollow flake system to face climbing, then move towards a right-facing flake /shallow corner system heading towards a 6m long hand and finger crack. Excellent climbing and very sustained!

The Great Orc C2, 40m *

Peter Aitchison, Ken Lertzman – 1976 Feb 18

TR: Mike Baxter – 1994
A challenging aid route which follows a thin vertical to overhanging crack. Start at the foot of a small inside corner (the second inside corner right of Great Corner). and climb the crack using clean aid (small wires). A few free moves finish the route left of the crack to a tree.

Ken’s Revenge 5.10, 46m
FA: (5.7/A3) Peter Aitchison – 1975 Oct

FFA: Geoff Murray, Trevor Down – 1978 May 20

A striking climb up steep corners and ledges. Start below the corner where the cliff turns away from the road to the right of The Great Orc.


Pitch 1 (20m): Ascend the obvious crack, traverse left, and follow a system of left-trending cracks to the ledge just past the thin flake.


Pitch 2 (26m): Continue to the left, then up a vertical corner or climb the face to the right of the corner to a lower ledge.

A New Beginning 5.10, 46m

Doug Leonard, Peter Aitchison – 1986 Sept
Start 10m right of Ken’s Revenge. Climb left-trending cracks to a prominent shelf below a bulging headwall. Face climb (crux, past bolt) to a large shelf and walk 3m to the base of a steep crack. Follow the crack to a right-trending layback and a series of corners to the top.

Hobbit’s Knees 5.6, 12m *

FA: Ken Lertzman, Peter Aitchison – 1975 Feb 21

FFA: Peter Gough – 1978
Follow the path that starts from the road, about 12 m right of Ken’s Revenge, crosses the ditch, and winds along the base of the large terrace. The route can be found where the path crosses water and meets the cliff. Start in front of the bulging ledge at the bottom of an obvious right trending crack. Ascend the overhanging cliff following the crack to the top. This route finishes on the terrace. Two bolts found left of the finish are used to belay.

My War 5.7/A1, 12m *

Robert Hester, Jamie Collins, Cam McKenzie – 1989 Oct 9
Start at the right trending overhanging crack10 m right of Hobbit’s Knees. Aid out the roof and above the overhang. Some free moves can be made starting from the horizontal crack below the large block right of the main crack and a few meters above the overhang. More aid moves are used at the top.

Terrace Climbs
The Terrace Climbs are located on Gooseneck’s Main Cliff. All climbs are listed from left to right when facing the cliff.

Autumn Glow 5.8/A1, 18m

FA: Ralph Wright, Rafael Munoz – 1990
Start on the highest level of the terrace 15 m left of the top pitch of Gooseneck Chimney. Move up and left to a right trending inside corner/finger crack; aid through this section to easier ground. Continue up the crack system, trending right. Beware of loose blocks in this area.

I’ve Got the Devil In Me 5.11b, 17m **

FFA: Mike Baxter – 1995 July
On the terrace, climb the face just left of the start of the top pitch of Gooseneck Chimney. Tricky moves with good rests before crux at the top (4 bolts + chain anchor).

Gooseneck Chimney 5.8, 58m **

Peter Aitchison, Larry Jordan, Hugh Spencer – 1973 July 1
Offers the best chimneying in the Minaki area. Start on the ground beneath the right-hand end of the largest terrace. * Pitch 1, 18m: Climb up then move right past a large block to the overhanging crack. Climb the crack and through the overhanging crux to the top of the large terrace. * Pitch 2, 23m: Ascend the short chimney and walk straight up to the base of the main chimney. * Pitch 3, 17m: Ascend the chimney.

Insitu 5.5, 28m

Peter Aitchison – 1980
Start on the terrace at the top pitch of Gooseneck Chimney (the main chimney). Leave your ropes and gear behind as the narrowness of the chimney/cave renders them useless. If you wear a helmet, decide at the bottom which way to face – it’s that narrow. Starting at the base of the main chimney, climb inward then diagonally upward to the top. Exit 12m to 15m from the outside edge of the chimney.

Slapping Yourself in the Face 5.11, 27m ***

FFA: Doug Orr – 1996 Aug
From the terrace, climb up the crack 2m right of Gooseneck Chimney to overhanging face climbing. After 2 bolts the angle lessens. Follow the small blunt arete to sustained face climbing to the chain anchor (3 bolts, mixed gear and chains).

Bound by the Beauty 5.10c, R 27m TR

Doug Leonard, Casey Shaw – 1990 Sept 29
From the terrace ascend the wall right of Gooseneck Chimney. Begin left of the large pine tree and to the right of the tiny chimney. Ascend the face through a pyramid shaped notch. Continue straight up the face to a small ledge. Finish through the notch at the top. The bottom 2/3 of this climb is dangerously loose.

Revolution 5.8, 12m

Rafael Munoz, Gregor Brandt, Gerald Brandt – 1999 June 6
Follow thin right trending (5m) crack to ledge. Finish up as per Revelation.

Revelation 5.7, 49m *

FA: (5.4/A!) Peter Aitchison, Bob Sanford – 1972 Oct 21

FFA: Ian Clark, Rick Hiebert – 1976
Start from the ground as for Gooseneck Chimney. * Pitch 1, 21m: Climb to the first set of ledges then traverse 7m left to a crack. Follow the crack up to the large terrace. Cross over to the top of the first pitch of Gooseneck Chimney. * Pitch 2, 9m: Scramble up the short broken chimney to the large pine trees and belay. * Pitch 3, 18m: Climb the small right trending chimney/crack on the right wall. Continue up the face, trending right, until a large ledge is reached on the right

Hypnotic Wall
The Hypnotic Wall is located on Gooseneck’s Main Cliff. All climbs are listed from left to right when facing the cliff.

 

That Terry Bull Weakness 5.7/A2+, 37m *
Ralph Wright, Roddy Briggs, Rafael Munoz – 1990 Aug

Start in the large left facing inside corner under the large overhang. Aid up the corner to the big ledge and belay off two bolts. Aid out left under the overhang on bolts. Follow the bolts up to a horizontal crack running along the lip of the overhang. Aid left across the lip on pins until a vertical crack is reached. Aid up the crack to the top ledge and belay.

Petan Crack 5.10, 34m **

FA: (5.8/A2) Anil Shukla, Peter Aitchison – 1975 Oct

FFA: Casey Shaw, Everett Fee – 1984 July 15
This route offers incredible jamming. It follows the obvious crack 15m left of Inner Limit. Start below the overhangs. * Pitch 1, 15m: Scramble up to a good ledge and go left to the overhanging crack. * Pitch 2, 18m: Ascend the crack.

Inner Limit 5.10b, 37m **

Peter Aitchison – 1974 Sept 15
This route ascends the prominent inside corner. Start against the right wall beneath the small overhang. * Pitch 1, 24m: Climb the overhang then move up and left to the flaky edge. Ascend the flaky edge to the broad ledge.* Pitch 2, 12m: Climb the overhanging offwidth corner to finish.

Inner Sanctum 5.11c, 26m *** TR

TR: Mike Baxter – 1994 July
A direct line up Inner Limit, straight up the thin, shallow inside corner to the broad ledge. Continue up the overhanging offwidth corner. Thin and runout at the bottom, but excellent climbing.

 

Rajack A3+, 50m
Ralph Wright, Jake Klassen, Collin Innes Smith – 19??

The Rock Garden
The Rock Garden is located on Gooseneck’s Main Cliff. All climbs are listed from left to right when facing the cliff.

 

Hugh’s Horror – Alternate Start 5.9, 12m *

Doug Leonard, Rafael Munoz – 1987
Start 10 m left of the chimney on the same side as Inner Limit. Climb the prominent crack through a small overhang to the top of the block. Then finish as for Hugh’s Horror Direct.

Hugh’s Horror Direct 5.8, 34m ***

Peter Aitchison, Ian Clark, Richard Tilley – 1976 Apr 11
Chimneying, solid hand jamming, and a delicate finish. Start to the right of the outside corner right of Inner Limit, at the base of a chimney.

Pitch 1 (12m): Climb the chimney to a big ledge.

Pitch 2 (22m): Jam up the inside corner crack to the sloping arete. Stand on the sloped arete and duck left past the bolt (the horror move), then ascend the face to finish left of the juniper bush.

Hugh’s Horror 5.7, 20m **

Hugh Spencer, Peter Aitchison, Grant Stiver – 1974 June 9
Shorter and easier than Hugh’s Horror Direct, it starts on a ledge at the large pine to the left of No One Nose. Climb the slab and undercling crack to the left and join the direct route at the arete (the horror move).

No One Nose 5.6, 21m **

Peter Aitchison, John McKenzie – 1973
A delightful route named after the obvious “nose” of rock 2/3 of the way up the route. Scale the slabs and crack below the large black streak. Climb the large crack right of the black streak to finish, occasionally moving onto faces on either side of the crack.

I’m Losing You 5.9, 15m

Geoff Murray – 1980 May
An offwidth (take large pro) that starts 3m right of No One Nose, beneath an overhang. Climb a dirty crack to the overhang and jam up the crack to finish.

Richard’s Reply 5.6, 15m

Richard Tilley, Peter Aitchison – 1975 Oct
Climb right of I’m Losing You to the base of a broken slab. Ascend the corner on the left side of the slab and traverse left above the overhang to a ledge. Move up from the ledge trending right to finish.

Stepomatic 5.9, 18m

Doug Leonard, S. Smythe – 1986
Start at Richard’s Reply. Climb slab and bear right beneath the overhang. Climb wall to the top of the overhang; finger traverse left, then make a delicate step into the steep dihedral, which is followed to the top.

Sail Slab 5.2, 15m
Follow Richard’s Reply to the base of the broken slab. Ascend the right-hand side of the slab then climb up the small gully to the top. A harder variation follows left up the steep slab 3m to finish.

Doctor Little 5.10c, 22m TR

Gerald Brandt, Rafael Munoz – 1996 Aug
Start left of big blocks, just left of Doctor Doo. Move up steep face to a small ledge, then follow obvious ledges.

Doctor Doo 5.10a, 20m TR
Gregor Brandt, Glenn Bailey – 1995 June

 

Durin 5.6, 21m

Bottom part: Peter Aitchison, Anil Shukla, others – 1974

Full climb: Everett Fee, Doug Leonard – 1980 Sept 6
Starting 3m left of the dark inside corner, climb up the left wall to a good ledge. Traverse right 3m, then move up to the left to finish at the overhang.

Toad-in-the-Hole 5.6, 21m

Peter Aitchison, Chris Armstrong, Bob Sanford – 1975 Sept 14
Ascend the dark inside corner about 18m right of No One Nose. The crux is in final moves. This route is often wet.

Winter’s Tale 5.9, 21m *

Doug Leonard, Rafael Munoz – 1988 Oct
Start to the right of Toad-in-the-Hole below a steep crack or the prominent buttress at the beginning of the overhangs. Climb the crack to a ledge (mantle shelf). Finish up a hand crack.

El Bruto 5.10c, 22m

TR: Rafael Munoz – 1996 July

FFA: Rafael Munoz, Gregor Brandt – 1999 June 25
Start 2m left of Dreams of B.L. and the Beach, 8m left of The End. Go up prominent corner, following crack to roof, traverse left (no feet) and mantle onto terrace. Follow weathered crack, over two small roofs. Exit trending left.

Dreams of B.L. and the Beach 5.9, 27m **

Casey Shaw, Peter Aitchison – 1984 Apr 10
Start right of Toad-in-the-Hole at a large inside corner. Climb up the vertical hand/finger crack to a large ledge on the right. Ascend a loose column to a narrow, awkward ledge. Move left to an inside corner and up the left wall and go around an outside corner onto a small steep slab. Climb up to a small oveerhang with a flat bottom and move slightly left up a steep wall to a juggy ledge. Finish on a big ledge with a tree.

The End 5.10b, 24m *

Doug Orr, Mike Baxter – 1991 Apr 6
Start at the bottom left hand side of the large flat-topped block at the beginning of Dreams of B.L. and the Beach. Ascend the vertical hand/finger crack to the large ledge. Move to the right 3m and climb straight up the overhanging bulge past bolts. Continue straight up through the crux to the top (chains).

The Rubble Variation 5.10b, R 24m TR *

Doug Orr, Nelson Klason – 1990 July
An alternate and more sustained start to The End. Begin in the large dark inside corner (sometimes wet) to the right of the block. Traverse up and left to an outside corner. Ascend the overhanging arete to top of The End.

The Terminus 5.11a, 25m TR **

Dave Kenefick, Bob Grabowski – 1997 May
Start as for The End. From the third bolt, move right into the shallow corner. Then move up and right through the overhang onto the slab, following a crack.

Pinnacle Overhang 5.4, 30m ***

Peter Aitchison, Brian Metcalf, Bev Parslow – 1972 Oct 8
A superb route with moderate climbing and great exposure. Start anywhere within 2m of the outside corner that is to the right of the big overhang. Climb up the ledges to the terrace. Move left onto the top of the pinnacle and step above the overhang. Traverse left, moving along the top of the overhang 10m then climb up the face to finish.

Pinnacle Overhang Direct 5.11, 20m

Robert Hester – 1994 May
Start as for Pinnacle to the terrace. Climb up past bolt through the overhang to next big ledge. Finish as for Pinnacle Plus.

Pinnacle Perfection 5.8, 23m *

Robert Hester – 1991 Sept 7
An alternate second half finish for Pinnacle. From the ledge above the pinnacle, ascend the face past the bolt, left of the outside corner.

Pinnacle Plus 5.8, 23m **

Robert Hester, Cam McKenzie – 1989 Sept 17
Another alternate finish. From the ledge above the pinnacle ascend the crack/face right of the outside corner to the sloping left trending ledge. Move left onto the corner then left onto a bulge. Climb straight up through the cracks to finish.

Lakeside
The Lakeside Climbs are located on Gooseneck’s Main Cliff. All climbs are listed from left to right when facing the cliff.

Take it so Hard 5.5, 9m

Robert Hester, Cam McKenzie, Duncan Frazer – 1989 Apr 30
Start at the left end of the large block, 3m right of the outside corner. Ascend the left trending crack to where it meets the crack travelling right (crux). Climb straight up between both cracks. Finish on the large ledge and belay from the crack behind the tree.

Gimme Gimme Gimme 5.10a, 23m *

Robert Hester, Cam McKenzie, Peter Aitchison – 1989 June 4
Start at the right end of the large block, 8m right of the outside corner. Ascend the left trending crack to the ledge above. Next, starting behind the tree, move right onto the face and climb the cracks and grooves (crux with bolt) to the ledge above. Climb straight up the face, right of the small pine tree, to finish.

Gimme Some More 5.10a, R 29m *

Robert Hester, Evan Fox-Decent, John Moore – 1989 Oct 14
This route offers a harder and longer finish to Gimme Gimme Gimme. Start as for Gimme Gimme Gimme. Climb to the second ledge then traverse right (poor protection). Move right and traverse 7m along the thin ledges to a crack. Climb straight up the crack to finish.

Weasel Crack 5.7, 21m *

Hugh Spencer, Peter Aitchison, Larry Jordan – 1972 Aug 13
Start at the base of the large impressive crack which splits the bulging face. Climb up an easy crack to the broad terrace. The wide, right-sloping crack above the terrace is the crux.

Keelhaul 5.6, 18m

Peter Aitchison, Chris Armstrong, Bob Sanford – 1975 Sept 14
Start at the first inside corner, about 6m right of Weasel Crack. Start up the dark corner then move left past some brush to a big ledge. Move left along the ledge a few meters to a series of vertical cracks. Climb the cracks and move through some small inside corners to finish.

Rainout 5.5, 15m
Follow the corner at Keelhaul higher (but it’s easy to get off route and into desperate situations if you go too high). Take a rising traverse to the right along ledges and cracks. Finish at the top of Exit Route.

 

Rainout – Too High 5.9, 16m
Rafael Munoz, Conrad Hoeppner, Roland Ward – 1993 June

As per Rainout, climb until up against roof. Take thin right trending traverse (thin gear/crux), then straight up wide crack.

Seeanil 5.5, 15m

Anil Shukla, Richard Tilley, Gerard Messaros – 1974 Sept 14
Ascend the wide hand crack to the right of Rainout. Move up to the left of the main crack then back into it when two cracks merge a short distance off the ground. Finish at the top of Exit Route.

Seeanil – Crank Variation 5.10, 15m

Anil Shukla, Richard Tilley, Gerard Messaros – 1974 Sept 14
Start a few meters right of the main crack below a small overhang. Climb the overhang and follow the short finger crack to the main crack. Continue up as for Seeanil or downclimb.

Exit Route 5.1, 12m
Start behind a short wall and move diagonally up from right to left, following an easy system of cracks and ledges. This is the easiest way up or down at this end of the cliffs and is often climbed without ropes – but be careful!

Tricky Trip 5.5, 9m *
Peter Aitchison, Hugh Spencer – 1972

Ascends the short corner set back to the right of Exit Route. It offers great mantling moves.

Geoff Murray Weekend 5.9, 7m *
Casey Shaw, Peter Aitchison, Robert France – 1982 May 2

Start 5m right of Tricky Trip. Ascend the left trending crack under the large flake. Join Tricky Trip at the ledge on the left.

Gutclutch 5.6, 18m

Hugh Spencer, Peter Aitchison – 1973 June 30
Start on the left side of an alcove, left of a prominent arete and right of the large overhang. Climb into the corner, then up the left wall. At the top jam past the blocky ledge on the right to finish.

Class & Exam 5.9, 18m

Rafael Munoz – 1994 Aug
Begin 2m right of Gutclutch. Start is slightly overhanging with thin pro. Wide angle corner offers a committing challenge. Move over small overhang to a sloping terrace, then mantle to reach higher crack.

Blood on the Tracks 5.9, 18m **
Geoff Murray, Peter Gough – 1978

Follow the obvious overhanging left trending crack, left of Ratchet and just left of a prominent arete.

Ratchet 5.3, 18m *
A solid 5.3. Start below the inside corner right of the prominent arete. Climb over the somewhat loose ledges to the corner. Ascend the corner to finish up the chimney. Many harder variations can be made near the bottom and near the top.

Snail 5.5, 21m R
Hugh Spencer, Larry Jordan, Barbara Spencer – 1972 July

A confusing, awkward climb. Start at a clump of birch trees 7m right of Ratchet. Move left up the sloping ledge to a pine tree. Climb back to the right around the corner and along the ledge. Finish up some ledges at the extreme right and end as for Excretoria, or ascend left from the large ledge. Beware of large, dangerously loose rocks.

Excretoria 5.6, 15m **

Peter Aitchison, Hugh Spencer – 1972 Aug 5
Start at the base of the wide chimney (the boulder in front of the climb offers excellent seating for belaying and spectators). Make a wide stem across the chimney (facing the lake is preferred) to ascend to a big ledge, and finish to the left at the top. Alternatively, offwidth the jam crack to the right to finish.

Summer Butterflies 5.11b, 18m TR

Mike Baxter, Doug Orr – 1995 Aug
Start on left side of prominent arete, 3m right of Excretoria. Move up and to right of arete (strenuous moves).

It’s so Easy 5.4, 12m

Cam McKenzie, Duncan Frazer, Robert Hester – 1989 Apr 30
This route ascends left of the inside corner to the left of Poser. Climb the large pillar and over some blocks, or climb around right of the pillar, to the crack and slab. Ascend the slab to the top ledge behind the tree.

The Lord of Darkness 5.10c, 9m **

TR: Robert Hester – 1989 Sept 23

FFA: Rafael Munoz, Gerald Brandt, Rob Peters – 1999 June
Ascend the black face between Poser and the curving inside corner to the left. Starting between two parallel cracks, climb the cracks, pockets, and edges straight up. Finish to the right of the top of the inside corner.

Poser 5.6, 9m

Casey Shaw, Dick Erkaw – 1980 Aug 24
A prominent, tight, squeeze chimney 12m right of Excretoria. It’s hard to protect.

It’ll All Come Out in the Wash 5.7, 12m

Doug Leonard, Robert France – 1982 July 4
Start right of Poser. Climb to the ledge and swing right. Ascend the crack and move through the overhangs to the right around the arete. Follow the crack system to finish.

Le Grand Traverse 5.8/C2, 300m+ **

Peter Aitchison, Robert France – 1983 Aug 2
A long, enjoyable, exploratory climb of the Gooseneck Cliffs starting at Excretoria and traversing left all the way around to the base of The Great Orc. (A shorter sortie ends at the base of Sail Slab, 145m in 9 pitches). Multiple pitches which cross, ascend and descend dozens of established routes. Note that the leader must carefully protect the second throughout!

 

Pitch 1 (16m - 5.8): Start at the base of Excretoria. Traverse left along the obvious ledge, then duck around the corner and belay part way up Snail.

Pitch 2 (22m - 5.3): Continue a rising traverse left past Ratchet and Blood on the Tracks and finish on the ledge left above Gutclutch.

 

Pitch 3 (25m - 5.5): Proceed along the ledge to Tricky Trip and reverse down it. Alternatively, reverse Gutclutch and climb Geoff Murray Weekend (5.9) to Tricky Trip. Then traverse left, descend a few feet of Seeanil, reverse Rainout, and move left out of the chimney to gain the large terrace bisecting Keelhaul and Weasel Crack.

 

Pitch 4 (28m - 5.2): Walk along the terrace and around the corner to Pinnacle Overhang. From here squeeze down the inside of the pinnacle.

Pitch 5 (28m - 5.2): Move over the boulders near ground level to a short wall.

Pitch 6 (7m - 5.7): Ascend the face to the large ledge, using a difficult arm reach move and belay from the top.

Pitch 7 (9m - 5.5/C2): Move left, staying high, by reaching across the large corner and inserting clean aid, to pass over the blank facing wall. Continue around the corner and belay on the next large ledge.

Pitch 8 (22m - 5.6): Move left to the bottom section of Toad-in-the-Hole. Continue left, climbing part way up Durin to a series of ledges and belay.

 

Pitch 9 (16m - 5.2): Reverse Sail Slab to the ground.

Pitch 10 (XXm - 5.XX):Traverse across to No One Nose, climb half way up, and delicately traverse to finish up on Hugh’s Horror.

Pitch 11 (XXm - 5.XX): Climb to the top of Hugh’s Horror and rappel to near the base of Inner Limit.

Pitch 12 (XXm - 5.XX): Climb up start of Inner Limit and do a long traverse left along the obvious ledge system (several difficult crux moves).

Pitch 13 (XXm - 5.XX): Continue until ledge system ends just before Gooseneck Chimney.

 

Pitch 14 (17m - 5.8): Climb up Gooseneck Chimney onto the terrace.

Pitch 15 (XXm - 5.XX): Move left and climb to the top at the left end of the terrace, traversing left.

Pitch 16: Rappel down to the cliff base at the road, just left of The Great Orc.