Otago Section of the New Zealand Alpine Club

Section Event

Spur Road Trad Climbing

Friday, November 10 2023 — Sunday, November 12 2023

The Basics
Event type: Rock climbing
Start date: Friday, November 10 2023
End Date: Sunday, November 12 2023
Registration cut-off Friday, November 10 2023 12:00 AM
Trip organizers
Mathijs van de Ven [Otago]
John Goulstone [Otago]
Cost ~40$ pp + Fuel + Food
Participant Information
Who's invited Members and guests
Attendee screening Attendees are pre-screened
Maximum number of participants 12
Total number registered 3
Who's registered You must be logged in to view participant list


Weekend trad climbing trip to a crag which is not too far away from Dunedin. The crag is about 15 mins out of Timaru. 

Spur Road is a basalt crag with a wide range of trad climbs from grade 8 through 24. Check out for more info and the topos. It is possible we might vist Mt Horrible as well, depending on people's interest.

 We will be camping at the Top 10 Holiday Park in Timaru

Getting There

I plan to leave Dunedin after work on Friday 10 November (around 5pm) and arrive at Timaru at around 7:30pm with dinner on the way. That leaves all day Saturday to climb and relax at Spur Road. We would then climb on Sunday morning at Spur Rd again or possibly Mt Horrible and leave for home around 1pm or slightly later depending on when people want to be back in Dunedin (2 1/2 hr drive approx.). 

What to Expect

Relaxed weekend  (possibly - depends on what you are lured into climbing) exploring a crag that is a bit off-the-beaten track but still has interesting climbing and an easy 10 min approach. This crag only has trad routes and most of the climbs require knowledge of rigging tree anchors as only a small number of the easy trad lines have bolted anchors. 

Great crag for those wanting to build confidence in trad climbing due to the large number of easy lines but also has plenty of challenge to keep the more advanced trad climbers happy. This is not a weekend to learn to trad climb as no instruction will be offered. Must be confident to belay people who are climbing trad and of course to safely place trad gear and get it out again if seconding.

Possible Hazards

Standard rock climbing hazards such as falling, rock fall and other overhead hazards, heat exhaustion and hypothermia. Falls that may rip gear if poorly placed or belayer standing in wrong position. Incorrect use of belay devices or incorrectly set up anchors. Failure of belay if root gives way if tying off to a root. 

Covid 19 is making a little comeback this spring. Please get tested before the trip if you have any symptoms even if they are slight to ensure we don't spread it around.


Plan is to stay Friday and Saturday nights at Timaru holiday parks (10 min drive from crag) which has camping sites from $40 per 2 people and cabins starting at $70 per 2 people. This campground has a full kitchen and showers etc. so you would only need to bring a tent (if tenting) plus bedding/sleeping mat. This campground has plenty of availability for camping so we don't need to book ahead but if you wanted to book a cabin then you would need to organise this in advance yourself.

Food: Bring lunch/snacks for 2 days, breakfast for 2 days and we will probably buy Sat dinner in Timaru (lots of takeaway food options available) but feel free to bring food to prepare if you prefer. 

Gear: You will need normal climbing gear (harness, helmet, shoes, belay device, quickdraws etc.) along with a trad rack or be sharing one with someone else. It is important to have plenty of long rigging ropes or cordelettes for setting up tree anchors from the pine trees at top of crag.


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