Wye Valley 15/16 Sep

A plan is coming together to open a few guide books that I have to admit have been on my shelf for a number of years, unused. Ticklist ideas please @jrtomlins or anyone else that isn’t simply going to offer overgrown sandbags.

@johnw1 and @Tutu are coming with me Saturday early am and we’re going back Sunday evening. I have no more space for the trip out but can bring up to 2 more for the way back.

We will stay at Beeches Farm campsite on Saturday evening. What are the local pub options for dinner?

I think @george_margesson is interested.
@PaulSagar for Saturday night / Sunday?
@ajmorris228? @ChrisD? @HollyP? @chizharward? @bullopolis?
@anyone else?


there’s a lake? i want to try the climb on the cover of vol. 1 whatever it is!

I can’t make it I’m afraid @khalidqasrawi - we are seeing @Tom_S and @naomi_sorrel this weekend.

In terms of recommendations though, and bearing in mind I can make no promises about current vegetation levels since my more active period there was ~5 yrs back:

  • shorncliff - the HVSs on the main slab are basically all good. Run for home is good if you’re happy with threads on the concretions.
  • wyndcliff - not done much. The quarry is a fast drying last resort in inclement weather
  • wintours - most of what I’ve done on fly wall has been good. GO wall is the obvious big adventure, and King Kong and Kangaroo Wall are both good ones I’ve done. Zelda, at least one of the HVSs left of it (cheetah?), the central rib routes, Big Brother and Yesterday’s Dreams (is that what I mean? By White Feather, which is also good) are all worth doing further left. Strange Little Girl also good at the harder end.
  • the recently developed quarry (staple edge? In the Yat guide, things like lost treasures of Mercia or whatever) is good if it’s still clean enough these days
  • the Yat gets a bad writeup. However as in many places (Avon, I’m looking at you) lower grade scruffiness and polish is extrapolated to the whole crag. I’ve not done that much here but Red Rose Speedway, Golden Fleece, Never trust a Smiling Cat and Orange Wall (the variant on Whitt) I would all recommend.
  • if anyone is tempted by the promises of sport climbing, my understanding is that only the hard wall (Red Dust?) at Tintern isn’t choss, although I’ve never climbed in the quarry at all. There are currently big access considerations at Woodcroft (which affects Wintours access more generally).


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Thanks for the tips Andy. Great detail from you as always. I’m interested in climbing on the GO wall. Have heard that the routes are strong. I’m quite partial to comfy spots to place gear. Certainly will want to take a look.

I did look into Tintern Quarry once and came to a similar opinion. Wait until I’m climbing 7s before going there again. Shorn Cliff sounds like the venue of choice for a Wye Valley rematch.

That’s the River Wye. You don’t want to jump in it, the currents are very powerful!

Good recommendations Andy…I’ve done loads at Shorn Cliff…with the notable exceptions of Motion Pictures and Touch the Fire. Would also suggest Side Effects, Tigers Don’t Cry, England’s Dreaming, Organ Grinder and The Bone.

Cadillac and Questor are good but long and tough VSs at Wyndcliff. The rock is often suspect though.

Can’t make it either unfortunately…have fun. I think there’s a slight lack of accessible pubs in the area, although Tintern Abbey has at least one next door.

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@MattGee I’ve swim across the wye and lived to tell the tale, although I thought the Wye Valley backdrop was mist anyway?

@khalidqasrawi King Kong is a fairly traditional bridging/jamming corner that some Peak-trained folks will tell you is HVS (my friend, for clarity, this isn’t a personal view on the grade). From slightly vague memory, Kangaroo Wall is gear, albeit in situ, that’s very well placed to protect the hard bit on each of the first two pitches.

I swim in the Wye most weeks Matt…although I stay upstream of Brockweir as down lower the mud is horrific.

That is mist on the Lower Wye cover. Quite common and usually to crag height… Currently dry and sunny here, but has been a bit moist the last week.

Shorn Cliff is my favourite venue, there’s nothing below HS (1 route maybe) but the lower grade stuff is good. The Cavalier slab is ace, and you can gear up sitting on the oak tree that used to be the belay… take small wires. It’s a short walk to SC through the woods from Beeches campsite, and then further walk down to the pubs by Tintern (Anchor does food), big car park there too by the abbey, used to be a money off deal with the car park and pub, no idea if still is.

I’m in the Forest on saturday but busy, but hopefully done by end of day so could join on Sunday for at least half a day?

Yes, as I recall the Wye is much browner than that…! Maybe at low tide your biggest hazard is getting stuck in the mud.

Did I suggest something called England’s Dreaming? Total nonsense if I did, that’s in Portland. Try Renaissance instead.

Shorn Cliff is a very friendly crag. Good stuff in HVS-E2 range. There’s enough to keep a VS climber busy for a day.

HVS - all the HVS on the cavalier slab are very friendly, nice moves, good gear (direct finish on musketeers is a well-protected e1 tick).
Tigers don’t cry is well-protected - think king bee crack - one for @PaulSagar (tigers might not cry, pretty sure Tomlinson did).
Organ grinder is good value and I found it more straightforward than it looks - was able to bridge a lot. Emotional dyslexia also worthwhile.

E1 - Motion Pictures and Side Effects are both fairly friendly E1s.

E2 - Touch the Fire has a bit of a bold start. Run for Home is basically a sports route if you trust the threads.

Wynd Cliff is good for VS.

it’s certainly brown lower down, a lot clearer higher up in summer. I nearly drowned in the Adur when I got my legs stuck in the mud. Its not good.

the Cavaliers HVS’s are all very good, and quite possibly soft, but the final few metres can be a bit exciting if you’re not solid at HVS, they certainly build to the end

The route is Freedom (VS 4b, 4c) at Wintour’s Leap. There an HVS 5b direct option.

I think we may be thinking of the same route re Cool Heat/Run for Home - quasi clip-up if you believe in concretion threads? I’ve not got a guidebook to confirm which of us is right though!

I will drive down on Saturday night, hangover permitting.

Original plan was to climb with @george_margesson on Sunday, but if my late arrival buggers the numbers up I think @Catrin could be persuaded to accompany me. @guyarnold being all responsible and stuff ahead of his new job. APPARENTLY.

Hey, Brockweir is not far from the campsite. Maybe Tutu will get to go swimming after all!

You’re right. Run for Home is the one I was thinking of. Have edited my original entry.

Latest UKC logbook entries on Cool Heat suggest concretions and threads largely gone and now E3 5b or similar.

Run for Home still gets E2 and has threads but these may be a bit old.

Now I’ve done a 2-mile Thames swim, nothing should scare me!

El El jue, 13 sept 2018 a las 16:01, jrtomlins discourse@nlmc.co.uk escribió:

Yes I’m up for this weekend - I’ll head up from Devon on Saturday morning and see you there. I’ll have space in the car if anyone wants a pickup at Bristol Parkway station or something.
George (07763 906335)