Seven climbers and a dog had a fine time bouldering and climbing at Baring Head in a vigorous norwester. Most of the group caught the east-by-west ferry across the harbour, bikes stashed on top and treated to the occasional salty splash for no extra charge.
After a token brunch, we blasted 18km down the coastal track to the Head where it was gusty but dry. There we met Paul Maxim, and Mitzi, the King Charles spaniel who is getting back into climbing after an unexplained period of absence.
Although gusting at up to 40 knots that day, the wind seemed better at Baring Head than elsewhere in the harbour. The scene was vibrant with flowering scrub, hassled blue sea and the bright reds and oranges of the greywacke. It was raw pleasure getting our hands on the rock, working various bouldering problems.
In a wee while we set up top ropes on The Slabs and delicately fell off a few holds there before retiring to the lee of the Head for some nice tomato soup. Murray cranked up the stovetop espresso while we breathed in the great Baring Head scene, Mitzi regaling us with tales of climbing epics past.
Too soon it was time to head back for the last ferry. We streamlined as much flapping clothing as possible, and set off into the gnashing teeth of the breeze. We quickly discovered that riding en peloton was the only way to go - by doing this we managed 15-18 kmh all the way back to Days Bay.
The return harbour crossing was even rougher than the morning, but we were just too tired to care! A great little eco-friendly local adventure.
- Party members
- Marion Castle, Murray Fitzgerald, Mark Hearfield, Christine Leighs, Paul & Mitzi Maxim, Oliver Seiler and Dave Grainger(leader and scribe).