Ti Point Rock Climbing
Nestled among pohutukawa trees on the eastern tip of Ti Point are rugged sea cliffs that are a popular destination for rock climbers. While the cliffs are not as large as the epic faces found in mountains and elsewhere, Ti Point is popular due to its favourable weather, picturesque scenery and proximity to Auckland. The first recorded climbing expeditions to Ti Point were in the 1970s and the crag has now grown to have over 40 unique routes. There are a mix of ‘sport’ style climbs (with pre-placed bolts) and ‘traditional’ style climbs (where climbers place protection in the rock themselves as they ascend).
There are many quality routes at the crag, but probably the best one is known as ‘The Fang’. It starts on a small boulder jutting out into the sea and can only be accessed at low tide. Avoid the barnacles and make your way up the face as waves crash in below you. Keep an eye on the condition of the bolts, as the salt water can corrode them and make the climb unsafe. Near the top you will reach a short, but intimidating, section of overhanging rock. This will require a cool head to navigate, but if you persevere the fantastic views from the top will be more than worth it!
Obviously rock climbing is not for the faint of heart, so it is important that you have the appropriate experience to climb here. At present there are no professionally guided climbing tours to Ti Point, so if you want to climb here your best bet would be to join a climbing group and learn how to climb (for example the Auckland section of the New Zealand Alpine Club). Another alternative, if you don’t want to go to all that effort is to go for a walk down the Ti Point coastal walkway, a picturesque outing in its own right. You might spot some climbers on the cliffs, or better yet some of the local wildlife such as dolphins, may make a showing.
The Ti Point coastal walkway is best accessed from the end of Ti Point Road, 15 minutes drive from Matakana. The walkway takes one to two hours return depending on fitness levels and can easily be done in walking shoes and you will get views to the south of Omaha and Tawharanui Regional Park. The walkway does not quite go all the way to where the climbing cliffs are. So from the end of the walking trail head up the hill (north) following the fence line until you reach a stile. After crossing the stile, descend the hill onto the eastern coast of Ti Point and then the large cliffs should be easy to spot.