help establish climbing in Swaziland

New Areas. New routes. Retrobolting. Add-ons. Re-grading. etc.
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Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:19 pm

help establish climbing in Swaziland

Postby zoed » Fri Jan 30, 2009 11:50 am

On a recent trip to Swaziland Jimbo and I were asked to check out the climbing potential.
An old friend of mine has a large property in the Ezulwini valley which backs on to Sheba's Breast mountain. We took a hike up to the top of the property to check out the granite cliffs. We didn't have a drill on us at the time but there is definitely potential for bolting several routes on the main cliffs (probably ranging through grades 15 to 22 or so), and then the potential for some much much harder stuff elsewhere (Jimbo got excited about an impossible looking line up the Elephant Rock).
Anyway - the owner of the land is a nice guy called Kim Roques who has a backpackers hostel and an international volunteer project office on the property - and he's looking to expand the range of activities currently on offer. He has tried his hand at climbing with Gustav in Boven, and is really keen to get some routes bolted on his cliffs. He has made suggestion that he will offer free accommodation at his backpacker lodge for anyone who wants to come and bolt some routes on his land (you'd have to bring your own drill and hardware).
If you're interested please contact Kim by email on:

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Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2007 1:59 pm

Re: help establish climbing in Swaziland

Postby pierre.joubert » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:03 pm

Hey zoe,

I don't think I've been in the Ezulwini valley, but went out to Chichetse rock (I have no idea about spelling) last year with Gustav, the closest village being Hlatikulu I think. Anyway, there is a sizeable free standing granite tower in the horseshoe of a river with another, smaller tower next to it. The big one can be summitted by scrambling around and through and up the chimney that runs down the middle. The smaller of the towers, as shown in the photo has some pretty sheer sides, with the access route being a 26/27 technical slab/arete opened by Mark Seuring (read: sandbagged nothingness). I'm sure Gustav has some of the photos we took on that trip. Awesome place.

Chichetse Rock (Medium).jpg
Chichetse Rock (Medium).jpg (42.77 KiB) Viewed 1201 times
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20080501154 (Medium).jpg (64.02 KiB) Viewed 1203 times

Posts: 141
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:19 pm

Re: help establish climbing in Swaziland

Postby zoed » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:29 pm

there is certainly endless bouldering potential all over Swaziland - especially up at the top of Sibebe (close to the capital Mbabane). here are some dodgy pics of Jimbo exploring the bouldering, and of Elephant Rock up at Kim's place.
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