Mt. Tibrogargan summit - Caves Route

Glass House Mountains National Park
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Could be also classified as a very hard bushwalk or an easy rock climb. Either way this is a short but classic scramble that displays the complexity of Tibro's majestic east face, on a series of unforgettable pitches, each with their own character and style.
Some parties prefer a roped ascent when some climbers think the solo effort is the way to fully enjoy the tremendous exposure this route delivers.
Route finding is easy and straightforward but falling is not an option on most parts. Some fixed abseiling/belay station are present at convenient spots to either retreat safely or bring following climbers up on a rope.
Each pitch of the whole route can be abseiled with a 60m rope and the experience is equal to the climb.
The hardest climbing move is below the big chimney, basic rock climbing skills are required to make a couple of grade 14/15 moves to build a belay or install an aid point.
Descent can be made safely via tourist track (very busy at times) or as mentioned, abseiling back (5 abseils).
Helmet and grippy shoes are mandatory and the route shouldn't be attempted when wet or downclimbed by the novice.

Picnic Facilities
Scrambling or Climbing
No Dogs Permitted
Maximum Elevation
Total Climb

Getting there

From the climber's carpark on the east side follow the track past the gate until you get to the trachyte circuit trail, turn right. At the first intersection keep follow the track on the right until a smaller track is visible on the left. Follow this steep track uphill until you hit the rock apron. Traverse right for 20m until a small CR mark is found on the rock. This is the start of the route.


Route/Trail notes

From the "CR" mark scramble up for 25m on easy terrain to a solid steelwood tree and optional belay or keep scrambling for another 25m to a set of chains.

Follow the ledge on the right and keep scrambling up on clean rock to a headwall, follow the corner heading to the right, staying slightly out on the buttress on excellent holds and big exposure until you reach a ledge and chains.

Walk around the ledge to find the mouth of a cave, enter the cave keep going up entering another larger cave. Walk to the left until the cave ends and down on a very exposed little ledge. Traverse the ledge with extreme care, from here onwards a fall would be fatal.

Once at the end of the ledge climb up to another ledge and just below another clean low angled rock wall. Climb this for 20m on good holds but with huge exposure to a set of old chains. Escape the wall from the chains on the left to find a steep dirt track.

Follow this track to a bushy area "the scrub" and enter the bush. Keep following the faint track until you hit the rock again. You are in the summit caves area. Keep walking up and right to find a big chimney above.

This is the crux: to enter the chimney you need basic rockclimbing skills to make a couple of grade 14 moves just below and right of the chimney on good hand holds but poor foot holds. Once in the chimney keep climbing up until easy terrain and on the top of Tibrogargan's north east shoulder and breath-taking panoramic point over the east face.

From here follow the shoulder towards the summit to find another dirt track. Follow this until you hit the tourist track near the summit.

An alternative to the chimney exist by scrambling up exposed slabs above the scrub area and traversing right (huge exposure and unprotectable) until you find a gully and scramble to the shoulder.

Descent via tourist track or abseil back using convenient rap stations.



Other References


GPS Tracks


climbed many times great climb just wondering if a 60m double rope to 30m is enough to abseil caves

sean9008 on 21 Dec, 2020

Bit hard to find this trail if you don't know the climber's carpark. We didn't and it took us a while following the instruction under Getting There.

From the carpark, just follow the Tibrogargan Circuit, you'll eventually get to the part where people typically turn left to head towards the Summit Route, and there's a green wooden sign saying you're 830m from the trailhead. Continue right, turn left when you get to a y-junction, after a while you'll see a green marker post, right after this there's a smaller track visible on the left, follow this steep track and you'll be there.

hanzkafka on 26 Mar, 2020

Enjoyable way to the summit. The hardest part I found was entry to the chimney which is about 10 feet of climbing. Whilst ascending the chimney I heard a noise looked up at the summit and saw a BASE jump happen right before my eyes. Crazy.

Juiced Pixels on 5 Jan, 2020

Extremely steep, I call this track a easy level rock climb with medium to extreme exposure . Definitely not a bushwalk or a scramble. Some people will require knotted ropes or roped harness for parts of the climb. Getting into the chimney requires a short grade 16 climb of about 4 meters. This is definitely not a beginners climb, mainly because of the huge exposure on very steep, sometimes vertical terrain.

Matthew Rae on 5 Oct, 2019

Did White Rock in the morning and East face Tibro in the afternoon - wonderful adventure :)

Aggy on 1 Mar, 2019

Caves route in the morning and the tourist summit peak in the afternoon - feeling alive :)

Aggy on 11 Jan, 2019

A classic.

Anonymous on 18 Sep, 2009

Went with an experienced climber to lead the way which is the only way to do this. Went down the western path and the walk back around to the Eastern car park sucked balls!

Tim on 13 Nov, 2001


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