Australian Climbing Festival 2014


Three Sisters Rock

Photograph by Wesley Walker.

Ok, so being the type of person I am I picked up a leaflet for the Australian Climbing Festival (ACF) from my local gym, went home and spoke to everyone I know about the event. Basically it is a place where you can spend an entire weekend learning about climbing, adventures and talking to others about it all too. I think I may have just discovered my idea of event heaven. Hosted in the Blue Mountains (anyone up for a trip), it is also where and when the Australian bouldering competition is being held (sigh, one day…) and thirdly Hazel Findlay, as well as others, will be speaking.

Hazel is a bit of a hero in my eyes even if she is 25 and therefore 5 years my junior.  She’s been sponsored by The North Face for the last three years probably the coolest adventure company in the world which has meant she has had access to some of the worlds best climbing. The way I see it she is an inspiration to women in a mainly man orientated sport (sorry boys, still love you) giving future generations a role model that isn’t Martha Stewart or Nigella Lawson. Her adventures from around the world are inspiring- check out her blog for more information…

Andy Kirkpatrick will also be there guest speaking. Frankly, this guy is badass. He likes winter climbs, very cold winter climbs. Oh, and long climbs, somewhere around 1,000m. To put this into perspective I’m lucky to climb three 70m climbs on a day out, and that takes all of my energy, not forgetting that i’m climbing at a much lower level than this guy. Andy recently raised £1.5m for sports relief leading TV presenter Alex Jones in Zion after only a months rest from his last trip in Antarctica.  Just unreal.

There is however a little more to the ACF than the bouldering comp and some awesome guest speakers. I’m keen on the adventure films. I’ve always enjoyed hearing about others adventures, nothing is more motivational than seeing another’s story unfold in front of you. This year is the first Vertical Film Festival where you can submit your own entries and win prizes so it could be an exciting year for watching.

The list could go on… there are Novelty Comps, trade shows, workshops on everything from Aid-Climbing to slack lining and training clinics. So yes, as one of my friends pointed out it is not the same as a weekend climbing in the outdoors. Not as all, but if I had to choose a number two position it would probably go to this.

The Australian Climbing Festival is held from 17th to 19th October 2014 in the Blue Mountains. Visit for more information.


6 responses to “Australian Climbing Festival 2014

  1. Hi Crux! I am new to blogging and stumbled upon your blog…and I look forward to reading more posts! I started climbing a year or so ago and was 31 years old….and I too feel like why did it take so long to find this. I am headed out on my first outdoor adventure to Red Rocks outside of Las Vegas to climb tomorrow. Soooo excited, and a little nervous too. I hope you were able to go to this event you posted about….I LOVE Hazel! I would be so excited to actually meet her in real life, but for now I just watch her videos on YouTube haha!


    • Hi Bolhofnersmith, Great to know there is someone else like me out there! Who discovered climbing late in life… Good luck at Red Rocks… Can’t wait to hear more! Hazel is great, here’s hoping we can meet her and get some tips soon! 😀


    • Hi Wes,

      Was that your work… Its great. You’ve inspired me and I’m looking to book a trip now. Thank you.

      I’m pretty sure I got paid rights on the pic, but happy to credit you too if you want?

      Thanks, Crux


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