Shark Attack!

Page Type
Otago, New Zealand, Oceana
Route Type:
Sport Climbing
Spring, Summer, Fall
Time Required:
Half a day
16/17 (french 5b/c, UIAA VI-/VI)
Rock Difficulty:
5.9 (YDS)
Number of Pitches:

Route Quality: 1 Votes

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Shark Attack!
Created On: Jan 25, 2009
Last Edited On: Jan 24, 2012


A very nice, slabby route on "the best greywacke you are likely to get your hands on". Beautiful climbing in a beautiful alpine setting. The name "Shark Attack!" was given because the first bolts on the route were made of snowstakes.

This route starts some 20 meters up the red slabs. To get to the start, you can either climb the 1st pitch of "Red Arete", or, like we did, the 1st pitch of "Let's go Bushwalking" (the leftmost line of bolts from the ledge below the slabs).

The rock climbing grades used are of the Ewbank system.

Getting There

Take road 80 to Mt.Cook village. Just past the NZAC Unwin hut, park beside the road. The Sebastopol Bluffs are to your southwest (a 30 minute walk).

The route is located on the Red Slabs. There's scree with bushes on the right of them. Walk to this scree and follow a track that zigzags up the slope. After a while it veers right and traverses through the trees to the ledge at the bottom of the Red Slabs.

Route Description

1st pitch (15:) the route start from the ledge (double bolt anchor) and takes the leftmost line of bolts. This is the first pitch of the route "Let's go Bushwalking". Follow this pitch to a small stance.

2nd pitch (14): from the stance, traverse a few meters to the right. A new line of bolts starts there and leads up through a small overlap. Climb to chains on the vegetated ledge that divide the lower from the upper slabs (the ledge is known as "sesame street").

3rd pitch (16/17): from the vegetated ledge climb straight up, directly over the slabs to the big ledge. This is the crux pitch.

From here, you can abseil down in 2-4 pitches depending on the length of your rope.

Essential Gear

Some quickdraws.

It's difficult to place your own protection, but this is not really necessarry. There's plenty of bolts.

A single 60m rope will het you down, but it will take less time if you take twin or double ropes.