Townsville is the perfect place for climbing close to the city and offers something for everyone, with most areas within half an hour drive and many different styles of climbing. From the large as life boulders of "Harvey's Marbles" & "Magnetic Island", to the high quality trad and sport climbs of "Mt Stuart" & "Frederick Peak" and the 100m multi pitches of "Castle Hill", you will easily find something to suit you.
Townsville is a popular travel location for rock climbers from all around Australia for the sheer number of high quality and easy accessible climbs. Townsville will leave you feeling like Spiderman by the end of your stay.
Most areas are free to access to the public, some are closed for short times during the year due to car, bike and running races and other events such as flooding, bushfires or landslides after heavy rain but they will open again soon after.
1. Frederick Peak (Trad & Sport)
The rock formations are amazing out here! A healthy mix of trad and sport. Lot of variety of climbing types (top rope, easy, hard, trad, sport, single and multi-pitch) with beautiful views in a very adventurous and remote-feeling location, despite its relatively easy access from nearby Townsville. An excellent guide on climbing at Frederick Peak is available. This crag requires a 4 wheel drive vehicle and goes through private property.
2. Mt Stuart (Mainly Trad)
The playground is very easy to access with very well developed climbs. More climbing has been done here than anywhere else in Townsville! Quality granite, shady in the afternoons with a cool breeze and can be climbed all year round. Mt Stuart is mainly a trad crag but has some sport climbs bolted. The majority of climbing on Mt Stuart is on defence land.
3. Castle Hill (Mainly Trad & Bouldering)
With 100m main walls & boulders scattered throughout the area, you can't go wrong. It's perfectly located in the middle of the city. Bouldering, Sport climbs & Multi pitches, Castle Hill offers something for all styles of climbing. Having such a large monolithic rock in the middle of the city is truly unique and super convenient. Climbers have been drawn to Castle Hill for many years, who knows when it was first developed... Castle Hill is part of Townsville City Council and you may need a permit for some of the climbs.
4. Harvey's Marbles (Bouldering)
World class bouldering! A must do while in Townsville! Quality granite boulders amongst scrubby eucalypt bushland ranging in grades and sizes, some as big as houses. You can easily lose countless hours exploring this vast area, and that’s not counting the climbing time. Located out at Hervey Range, Harvey's Marbles has over 1000 problems documented with scope for more than 5000 more problems. From low angled friction slabs to crimpy overhung walls and even some decent Elvis Leg inducing highballs. It was first discovered by Madoc Sheehan in 1999 and with the help of Steve Baskerville, they have developed many of the problems and wrote an excellent guide on bouldering at Harvey's Marbles.
5. Rocky Bay (Mainly Bouldering)
Magnetic Island is a boulderers dream! The island is covered with granite boulders varying in sizes with an uncountable number of potential problems. It's the perfect place to explore new areas and contribute your own first ascent. Catching the Ferry across to the island only takes 20 mins with SeaLink. The most developed areas are found in the bays, but don't stop there go explore! Rocky Bay is only a short walk from the ferry terminal and offers a wide range of bouldering problems. The first and only sport climbing currently on the island is Pride Rock. Keep an eye out for snakes as death adders are quite common on Magnetic Island.