Women's rock climbing in Australia

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Women's rock climbing in Australia
Stathams 9.JPG
Photo is taken from the southern wall of the Statham's Quarry, Gooseberry Hill, Western Australia looking north. The foreground is the base of the quarry, and the rockwall facing the view is the medium difficulty abseiling location. There are climbers at the base.
Country Australia
National team Australia


Women's rock climbing started out as a socially oriented mixed gender sport in Australia at the start of the twentieth century. Women wore the same restrictive costumes that they wore in other sports of the era like golf and cricket.[1]

By 1954, women were members of the Sydney Rock Climbing Club and were participating in club events alongside their male counterparts.[2]


In 1940, a study of 314 women in New Zealand and Australia was done. Most of the women in the study were middle class, conservative, Protestant and white. The study found that 183 participated in sport. The nineteenth most popular sport that these women participated in was mountaineering/hill climbing, with 2 having played the sport. The sport was tied with cricket, mountaineering, rowing, and surfing.[3]

Women were climbing at Katoomba in New South Wales by 1934.[4]


Women's rock climbing was being reported in Australian newspaper in 1930.[5] The media described the women who participated in the sport as "trepid."[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Howell, Howell & Brown 1989, p. 88
  2. ^ "Where every slip means danger.". The Australian Women's Weekly. National Library of Australia. 7 April 1954. p. 12. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  3. ^ Stell 1991, p. 75
  4. ^ a b "ROCK CLIMBING.". The Sydney Morning Herald. National Library of Australia. 15 November 1934. p. 7 Supplement: Women's Supplement. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 
  5. ^ "CLIMBING MOUNT COOK (N.Z.).". The Argus. Melbourne: National Library of Australia. 22 January 1930. p. 5. Retrieved 26 December 2011. 


  • Howell, Max; Howell, Reet; Brown, David W. (1989). The Sporting Image, A pictorial history of Queenslanders at play. Brisbane: University of Queensland Press. ISBN 0-7022-2206-2. 
  • Stell, Marion K. (1991). Half the Race, A history of Australian women in sport. North Ryde, Australia: Harper Collins. ISBN 0-207-16971-3.