Showing posts from July, 2011


Yesterday Amy and I had a great day out exploring the Rhinogau. It's a fascinating place full of intriguing fine gritstone crags and rocky buttresses. In terms of climbing it's a bit of a backwater; its lack of popularity is probably down to many things: lack of easy access, proximity to Llanberis and density of foliage.

We approached from Cwm Bychan and first visited the crag Y Grisau (Meirionydd guidebook P.313). The crag is easily visible from the popular Roman Steps path. I climbed Wilderness Gritstone E3 6a, a very nice route. Hard bouldery few moves at the start followed by slightly bold climbing up to a finger crack which can be laced with gear ready for some awesome finishing moves.

From Y Grisiau an interesting looking crag with a prominent lighting-bolt crack can be seen below and few 100m away to the NE, by the stream flowing from Llyn y Morwynion This crag isn't in the Meironydd Guidebook. I've called it Dan y Grisiau (meaning under the steps). A short batt…

King Wad or Bad Boy?

Seems that this July is one of the driest and sunniest we've had in North Wales for a good few years. Long may the good weather continue! The result is that I've been climbing quite a bit recently.

A couple of weeks ago I succeeded on redpointing I'v Been a Bad Boy 7c/7c+ at LPT. This was the first route that I've spent more than a day working on. I kind of enjoyed the redpointing experience but I was defiantly glad to finally get it done!  The route probably took me about 7 redpoints spread over 4 days. On most of my attempts I got withing a move to the top; being quite short I found a move slapping round an arete to a small sidepull desperate. The route is given 7c but is common knowledge that that top move is harder for the short, not that it matters but I'm going to take 7c+.

The route is very good, a hard boulder problem start followed by a pumpy traverse, technical groove then a dynamic on-off finishing sequence climaxing with a big move to a massive jug. Fant…

Supermassive Blackhole

Yesterday Calum and I made the second ascent of a new multipitch slate sport route called Supermassive Black Hole in Twll Mawr put up by local slate activist Ian Lloyd-Jones. See news article.

Twll Mawr is quite an intimidating place with lots of hard and serious routes. I'm sure this route will become very popular as it allows the Twll Mawr experience atmosphere to be enjoyed in the safety of 35 bolts!

More importantly it is also an excellent route, with four pitches of absorbing but never desperate climbing. Calum and I climbed the route in two long pitches. The pitch grades given were 7a, 6b+, 7a/6c+/6b. Calum and I though they were more like 6c,6b+,6c,6b although each pitch looks many times harder than it actually is. Big jugs seem to appear from nowhere!

The best way to access the route is probably by walking through the tunnel from the Golgotha Slab (level below Monkey Bar area) into the bottom of Twll Mawr. The route can be seen going up the wall just to the left of the le…

Pembroke sun sea and sending

Last week I spent a few days in Pembroke, I just can't get enough of the place! The weather was much better than last time; wall to wall sunshine every day. It was almost too hot one day, not that I'm complaining! I love the sun.

Unfortunately since it was midweek Range East was closed during the day for firing practice, so we climbed mainly on Mother Carey's and Carreg-Y-Barcud. A couple of the days we nipped into Range East after the firing had finished at 4:30pm and climbed till dark.

I was lucky enough to climb with some good friends and strong climbers. Being on a trip with good mates is always a laugh.

I had already been down in Pembroke for a day or so with Amy when Luke, Barni, Konrad and Ewan joined me.

After dropping  Amy of to get her train home then playing a game of van vs. train when we missed it I popped over to St Govens for a few routes in the evening sun.

I had never been to Carreg Y Barcud in North Pembroke before, the climbing is very different to that on…

North Wales DWS

Yet again I'v been pretty poor at updating the blog over the past month. So many good days out, its hard to know where to start.

One of highlights was defiantly deep water soloing a few weeks ago at Rhoscolyn. Dan Macmaus was keen to try a line up through the cave of Electric Blue. Unfortunately on this attempt we tried to traverse into the cave on the left wall and found it desperate and slimy. Dan returned to following week armed with the knowledge that the route starts from the right hand side of the cave and managed to onsight the new route! An amazing effort. See V12 outdoor news article and photos here.

On the right hand side of the cave there is an aptly named route called Around the Horn E6 6a. It can also be deep water soloed, just! The 'horn' is a big fin of rock, the moves getting up into and and then behind it are amazing and totally wild, being a good height above the water at this point! After the horn there is a chimney which requires some rather scary back-…