Contact Us

DJ MATHESON Christchurch 027 444 9774 EMAIL DJ
MARTIN WILSON Wellington 027 449 5408 EMAIL MARTIN
MARK FREEMAN Wellington 021 898 725 EMAIL MARK
ALEX WILMSHURST Nelson/Kaikoura 027 488 2849 EMAIL ALEX
GARETH HALLAM Christchurch 027 208 0592 EMAIL GARETH
MURRAY THESSMAN Wellington 027 262 4333 EMAIL MURRAY
ANDREW LILLIG Wellington 027 542 0536 EMAIL ANDREW
LEONIE STEAD Christchurch 027 550 0667 EMAIL LEONIE


15 Bute Street, Wellington
PO Box 27467, Wellington 6141

04 801 5336 enquire


26 Thackers Quay, Woolston,
Christchurch 8023

03 384 0336


Find out about our latest projects and success stories right here on our newsfeed

20th December 2017

SH1 Kaikoura

NCTIR did it, the road is open, the trains are on time, the whales are happy, the seals are safe, the holiday is starting, and Abseil Access have been part of it all. Blasting, drilling, scaling, netting, rescues, sweat and tears for 12 months, check out the video…

10th November 2017

Abseil Access to sponsor NZGS Symposium 2017

The New Zealand Geotechnical Society 2017 conference is coming up 24-25 November in Napier, and we are proud to be one of the sponsors of this event.

This years theme – What In Earth Is Going On: balancing risk reward, regulation and reality – will be a hot topic at our stall no. 12, along with tall tales of brave rock-scaling in the face of natural and perceived hazards, technical info on our rock drills and the latest & greatest grout mixing & pumping equipment.

We’ll have plenty of technical company information to hand-out, along with a variety of free-bees and a bottle of scotch to win for the best entry in our colouring-in competition!

See you there!

9th November 2017

Johnsonville rail line undercut.

The winter rains brought havoc to the Wellington region. One slip threatened to undermine the Johnsonville rail between tunnel 4 and 5. Abseil Access set to work, alongside Aurecon, to fix it up urgently. 77 GRP anchors up to 8m deep and wire rope re-inforced MacmatR were install within 3 months. Job done.

3rd November 2017

Million dollar boulder

The “Million Dollar Boulder” on Kaikoura slip 7 is finally down at road level. After 6 months of harassment by helicopters, sluice buckets, abseilers and geotechs the 300 ton boulder is finally given the big Amex shove. 120 kg of Orica Amex strategically positioned behind the boulder (by aerial antics) followed by the push of a tiny button was all that was required to shatter and dislodge the monster. The next blast, in a few weeks time, is “Rocky Balboulder” 650t…

10th October 2017

Kaikoura Colour in Competition

Abseil Access workers have been pivotal to the opening of access routes to and from Kaikoura. SH1 south of Kaikoura and SH7 from Hamner opened earlier in the year. Now, nearly a year away from the anniversary of the earthquake, the North Canterbury Transport Infrastructure Recovery (NCTIR) are confidant the devastated Picton – Kaikoura State State Highway One will open before the year is out. The combined work of over 30 Abseil Access workers, along with other geotechnical teams, with the support of NZTA, NCTIR, Opus, the helicopter pilots and the Kaikoura locals themselves – the light at the end of the tunnel is indeed nigh.

To celebrate we have got artist Stephen Templer to draw our inaugural Abseil Access colour in competition. We invite everyone – young and old – to print out a PDF  of the Kaikoura Scene and go for it with your colouring in implements.

THERE ARE THREE $100 PRIZES FOR: Best under 12, Most Wacky and Best Over All. Get wild, like colouring in a zoo, and when you are done, send a printed copy to: ‘Colouring in Comp’, Abseil Access, PO Box 27647, Wellington 6141 or email a scan to The best overall will be printed in the 2018 Abseil Access Calendar. The deadline is the anniversary of the Kaikoura Earthquake, 14 November.

Click here to print out a PDF: colour in kaikoura

20th July 2017

Rapid response to Ngauranga Gorge slip

The SH1 Ngauranga Gorge slip on 11 July caused epic disruption to commuters and affected the whole Wellington region. Our team was there in a flash and continued to scale and stabilize the area all day and into the night. Further works were required before all lanes could be opened including the drill and blast of a 10m3 boulder that hung above the traffic. Abseil Access pulled out all the stops to supply night and day shift for 5 more days, installing 12 top anchors and hanging 600m2 of rockfall mesh. All lanes opened in less than 1 week and job finished in 8 days.

A solid team effort from Capital Journeys, Fulton Hogan, Opus, NZTA, Websters, Command Aviation and of course our devoted Wellington crew.



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12th May 2017

Strongest shotcrete wall ever

The project on North Island Main Trunk line at Utiku for Kiwirail is complete. Over a 5 week period the geo team installed 51 GRP soil nails into the undercut face and then applied a fibre reinforced shotcrete layer on top of a layer of tecco rock fall mesh. The 35mpa shotcrete had sufficient Forta-Ferro fibres to ensure the shotcrete attained an RDP toughness of 400J. Face drains, drilled drains and a sub soil drain along the top ensure the area is kept dry. Tidiest geo project ever!

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30th March 2017

Historic site found by Abseil Access

Well before their millionth Kaikoura clearance rock, Abseil Access workers discovered a rock of much greater cultural significance – Tombstone.

Tombstone is rock on a site that contains a number of human bones, probably Maori from battles in the 19th Century. Abseil’s CHO (Chief Historical Officer) Tom Arnold said when they first discovered the human bones in late January, including a ribcage and a skull, it was a little unnerving and shocking. Abseil Access workers during their clearing along the earthquake stricken Kaikoura Coast have found many sizable and interesting rocks and features, which they in turn name – there’s Shark’s Tooth, the Coffin, and most significantly, and literally – Tombstone.



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16th March 2017

One million rocks

March 16 was a significant date for Abseil Access workers clearing earthquake slips along the closed State Highway One north of Kaikoura. That date according to Abseil Access CMO (chief mathematics officer), Donald Matheson, was the day Abseil workers shifted their one-millionth rock. “Though,” says Matheson, “if we included bits of dirt and small pebbles, the number would be in the trillions, but our millionth rock calculation has been based on rocks bigger than a legally sized paua – which most of them, substantially, are.”

The calculation has been made based on the fact Abseil Access workers have been working clearing slips above the scarred highway since 16 November. An average of at least 20 skilled workers are on site(s) each day, and each worker shifts an average of 485 legally sized rocks per day. Abseil Access CAO (chief accuracy officer), Martin Wilson, says, “The figures are all legitimate and accurate. I know for a fact that DJ’s abacus never lies.  As well, realistically I think most rocks shifted are actually bigger than really big balls”.

Abseil workers had expected to shift their one millionth rock on March 14, coincidentally, four month’s since the Kaikoura earthquake, but torrential rain and strong winds delayed the shift until the, extremely coincidental, four month (March 16) anniversary of Abseil starting work on the slope clearing.

For live footage of some previous rock clearing, shot by Richard Phillips of Tonkin+Taylor – Click here! Can you count how many are legally sized rocks?

11th March 2017

Deep in the heart of Transmission Gully

Proud to be part of this billion dollar road construction project which will transform the lower North Island.  Our services were called in for two 250kJ rockfall fences protecting the piers of bridge 20, the biggest bridge on the project.