The Arddu Bouldering Circuit

On Sunday, making the most of the sunny weather Amy and headed up into the Arddu area near Nantmor for a bit of bouldering exploration. This is an area I know well having grown up close by but until recently I hadn't been aware of much developed bouldering. The area was mentioned but no details given in the current guidebook. It turns out that the area was developed quite extensively by Paul Pritchard and co. The hand drawn (surprisingly good) topos were published in Northen Soul climbing magazine in 1988 and in Bouldering in North Wales volume 2: Mountain Crags in 2000. Thanks a lot to Simon Panton for digging out the magazine and scanning the relevant topos for me. Here are the scans with my annotations and grid references:


The bouldering in the Arddu is certainly a little esoteric but the enthusiastic boulderer will be rewarded with a good circuit of interesting problems in a quiet and beautiful area.

Today I visited most areas mentioned in Pritch's topos. The highlights for me were (in no particular order):

1.) Boulder Pass (SH 624 455) - Diagonal Crack V5** from sitting - attractive crackline

Diagonal Crack V5**
James and the Giant Reach V5 *

2.) Fly Wall (SH 623 458) - Streak V4 ** - thin slab

North Facing Fly Wall - cold! 
 3.) Cone Wall (SH 624 459)
- The Cone and the Librarian V5 *- high ball line with powerful small pocket moves
- Dixon and the Librarian V6 ** - link up of part of the best part of Dixons Traverse into Cone and the Librarian (FA Glyn Hudson 22/10/12).

Cone Wall - One of the best walls in the Arddu

Cone and the Librarian V5 * 

Setting up for the last couple of moves on Cone and the Librarian, it's not actually as dirty as it looks! 

Photographer Amy getting distracted with other forms of wildlife! 

Attempting Lordy Lordy on Drug Hoover Wall - Bit wet and a bit high today
5.) 'Classic V3' Groove:  Slightly away from the main circuit is another area of interest, a collection of large boulders with an off-width crack and a 'Classic V3' Groove:

'Classic V3' Groove ( GR 6325 4595 )

6.)  Garreg Bengam Bach: There are a few boulder problems on Garreg Bengam Bach crag its-self. I've yet to try these, but they look good. They're mentioned in the latest Tremadog guidebook P.284. There is a highball Elementary Wall V8, and a V1.

Approach map: 
Here's a map of the locations, I parked in Bwlchgwernog (space for a couple of cars) and walked up. Alternatively you could park in Croeso and walk down or higher up the Nanotmor valley and walk across (tough going).

Arddu Bouldering Circuit Map
Happy exploring!