/ Crag Lough

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.
The Mole - on 21 Sep 2012
The Crag Lough restoration day last weekend was a great success with over twenty volunteers turning out to do some gardening.
Original thread:
http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=514066

The job of cleaning routes was found to be harder and more time consuming than anticipated however a good number of routes were given a make over and some resurrected from the undergrowth.

A list of what was done and by who is below. Many of these routes should be a lot more enjoyable than they were and some may now see regular accents after many years of being understandably ignored
Please be aware that there may be the odd loose bit around as a result of what was in some cases some pretty impressive gardening. The winter should help to stabilise things a bit

Enjoy!

Helix S** (including a new path to it)
Face route, S
Cleaned by Mick Fischer and Alison Page

Pinnacle crack, D
Bracket, VD**
Cleaned by Naomi Hatto

Pinnacle Face Obverse,S
Cleaned by Oliver Millington

Impossible wall, E4 6b
Cleaned by Oliver Millington (lower half) and Davey Briggs (top third)

Right Organ Pipe HS (top third)
Main wall Route 2, VS 5a* (top third)
Botany Crack, S (top third)
Cleaned Davey Briggs and Graeme Armstrong

Ash Tree Wall, S**
West Corner, S
Wall and Crack, D
Cleaned by David Chalmers

Tarzan Buttress (various routes)
a lot of turf removed from top third of the buttress by John Lowes

Spuggies Gully, VD**
Back Alley, D*
Cleaned by Steve Blake

Impossible Slab, E3 5c
Route Two, VD
Route One, HVS 5a **
Intermediate Treatment E2 5c
Route Three, VS 5a*
Cleaned by Cliff Lowther and Jayne Speight

Crescent Cracks, VS 5a**
Raven Crack, MVS 4b**
Cleaned by Dan Middleton

Left Organ Pipe, HVS 5a**
Cleaned by Richard Alderton

Central Organ Pipe, HS
Cleaned by Liam Dervey

Jezebel, D***
Jezebel direct, MVS 4b
Sinister corner, S*
Main wall, HS***
Cleaned by Sarah Hawker and Bob McAdam

Why Not Direct, HVS 5b**
Why not, VS 5a**
Cleaned by Mark Anstiss


In reply to The Mole:


Excellent job guys n' gals.



Chris
The Mole - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Chris Craggs: If, in future, the routes to the East of Main Wall were cleaned up, would you include them in the next edtion of the Rockfax guide :-)
In reply to The Mole:

If they are any good that would deffo be an option,


Chris
teh_mark - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:

Excellent work! In lieu of partners I was tempted to do some shunting at Crag Lough this weekend but decided on Causey for ease and warmth. I might just have to reconsider...
teh_mark - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:

It's also quite sad that the crag doesn't see more traffic. There are some fantastic routes on both Crag Lough and Peel Crag, and I'd head there over a lot of the sandstone crags in the county any day.
Andes - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Brilliant, many thanks.
John Biggar
JDal - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Great stuff, sorry I couldn't make it.

Nobody clean Wooden Tops? Oh well, I suppose I could do it on my tod!

Simon Caldwell - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Excellent work. We did Helix last month, and getting to the start was the hardest part. If you ignore the vegetated muddy top out to the layback crack - which hopefully is a little better now :-)
JDal - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Chris Craggs: I've heard Whinstone Churchill is a bit of a dolerite classic, surprised it isn't in your selective. Also surprised it didn't get a clean.
In reply to JDal:
> I've heard Whinstone Churchill is a bit of a dolerite classic, surprised it isn't in your selective. Also surprised it didn't get a clean.

It should have gone in on the strength of the name alone!


Chris
Bulls Crack - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to teh_mark:
> (In reply to The Mole)
>
> It's also quite sad that the crag doesn't see more traffic. There are some fantastic routes on both Crag Lough and Peel Crag, and I'd head there over a lot of the sandstone crags in the county any day.

In some ways THE best outcrop for severe-HVS anywhere. Maybe that long dull cliff in Derbyshire/Yorkshire border too but ....
Bulls Crack - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Bulls Crack:

single pitch sev-hvs obviously
The Mole - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to Chris Craggs: There are another 15 - 20 routes beyond main wall, 5 of them have stars and many of the others could get some if they were cleaned.

The ommision from the Rockfax guide has not enticed visitors down to that end. Whinestone Churchhill is a classic
The Mole - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to JDal: Sorry John, I know you made a special request. I was going to do it but got sucked into cleaning The Why Not buttress which took all day. It really was slow going.
Left Organ Pipe took one lad about 6 hours top to bottom!

There was much talk of a repeat next year. If that happens the whole crag would be transformed
JDal - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:

Let's see what nature does this coming year, one may need to clean some of this stuff again!
MadProfessor - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Just got back from outing to Crag Lough......bloomin' 'eck you left a right mess.....but seriously, thanks to everyone who ade the effort.
Amongst other stuff we did Neglect, omitted from your list, which I did 25+yrs ago but have not been tempted since. However , now clean (well actually, right pretty dirty with loads of soil & stuff covering edges, but will clear), it really is a great route with a crux right at the top.
But take a brush......
Chris Shorter - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to Chris Craggs:
> In reply to JDal:
> I've heard Whinstone Churchill is a bit of a dolerite classic, surprised it isn't in your selective. Also surprised it didn't get a clean
> (In reply to JDal)
> [...]
>
> It should have gone in on the strength of the name alone!
>
>
> Chris

It's an excellent route Chris. My favourite at Crag Lough but you are right: it's a brilliant name!
skarabrae - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:

botany crack & main wall route 2 now completed (tho need a brushing, which should get done tomorrow)

will keep posting updates as & when i clean others.

d.
JDal - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to skarabrae: You are a hero. Keep posting, I may pop over next week to do a route.
MadProfessor - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to skarabrae:
Hi, I am one of the climbers on Mian Wall, after Neglect, and used your ab rope this afternoon......just to say, thanks for doing what you're doing!
skarabrae - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to MadProfessor: thanks for that, did you lose anything shiney at the top of neglect?

Right organ pipe now cleaned, tho it'll need brushing (or a heavy downpour)

skara.
The Mole - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to MadProfessor: It is rather dirty now and a lot of holds will need brushing. On the Saturday when we did most of the cleaning it was very very windy meaning that the dirt just blew around everywhere.
This winter should finish the job off nicely
skarabrae - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole: hi Moley, agreed a few heavy downpours over the winter should clear all debris away, the routes will be at their best next spring.
The Mole - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Good work this weekend - a selfless effort. Tim and I stayed in the Lakes all weekend. I was intending to come over and give you a hand today but couldn't drag myself away!
The Mole - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to MadProfessor: A lad named Dan (didn't get his surname) from The NMC must have cleaned Neglect. He turned up at 3 in the afternoon headed to the East end of the crag and went missing - we were beggining to get worried. He turned up in the pub around 9 having finished gardening in the dark! He couldn't remember what he had cleaned!
skarabrae - on 23 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole: no worries, the crag will still be there & in need of cleaning next we ;-)
Kev came along today & made a start on another route (name escapes me at the mo)
Organ pipes area looking really promising!! Great looking routes now that They're clear of veg!!
Rog Wilko on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole: Just want to add my thanks to all concerned. Much appreciated.
Simon Caldwell - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
> The ommision from the Rockfax guide has not enticed visitors down to that end

How do you explain the state of Main Wall this summer? One of the country's best Severes (and included in Rockfax), yet we were pulling ferns off as we went.

My theory is that it's partly because of the peregrines that nest down that end, making climbing impossible during the spring and early summer when the plants are growing fastest.
skarabrae - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to Toreador: there`s no ferns there now ;-)
ads.ukclimbing.com
Tim Rodgers - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:

Excellent effort guys
The Mole - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to Toreador: As you say the Perigrines nest down there which does keep some folk away (but I'm not certain the scrape is actually on that Buttress). That said, this 'summer' has made a difference - the rate of growth on the crag between April and September was remarkable. I guess in part due to lack of traffic and partly due to the climate

My point about the Rockfax guide was that the ommision didn't help matters, not that it was the sole cause of the problem for the neglect of routes like Helix and Whinestone Churchhill.
skarabrae - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole: i believe the peregrines nest further east of the main wall area.
JDal - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Re the Peregrine, at that site the bird tolerates lots of noisy humans at the top of the crag, I wonder how near sideways? Maybe the next buttress along? Maybe we could walk past the foot of the crag to stuff beyond the nest? Could we have a discussion with the NT about this and install signage at the bottom of the crag. Currently it is effectively ruling out the best bit of the crag for the best bit of the year when we may only need to lose a few routes.
skarabrae - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to JDal: maybe mr mole could bring the subject up at the next bmc area meeting ;-)
The Mole - on 24 Sep 2012
> (In reply to MadProfessor) A lad named Dan (didn't get his surname) from The NMC must have cleaned Neglect.

Daniel Hirst has got in touch with me. He said he can't say exactly which routes he cleaned, but it was the two routes next to the Organ Pipes, so probably Brutus HVS 5b and Neglect HVS 5a **

The Mole - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Indeed I will.

This approach has worked well at crags in Yorkshire and in the Peak allowing climbers and nesting birds to happily co-exist
Simon Caldwell - on 24 Sep 2012
In reply to JDal:
I don't know where it nests, but a year or two ago we were there in mid June, and headed for Main Wall. The bird made it abundantly clear that we weren't welcome! I can't remember how far right we had to go before the noise stopped, but it was a fair distance.
martinph78 on 25 Sep 2012
In reply to The Mole: Well done and thanks all. Sorry I couldn't make it (genuine reasons, I would have loved to have come along for the weekend).

Looking forward to getting up there and climbing soon.

Cheers, Martin
skarabrae - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to The Mole: heres a link to some pics i took today, the organ pipes area is looking great!!
bear in mind its been raining today & yesterday/overnight, so the pics are showing some seepage, but once dried, these routes will be well worth a trip up. also, all the rain we`ve had recently has cleaned off all the soil from the smaller ledges :-)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/23779070@N05/

skara.
JDal - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Cheers for that. Never seen the Organ Pipes looking so clean, and I go back a bit!
skarabrae - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to JDal: theres still a couple of routes to clean in the pipes area, i`m planning (with the help of a couple of others) to clean the following:-
great chimney HS***
bisector S
impossible wall E4***

that should free up the whole of the main wall/organ pipes area.
i believe mole is planning on further cleaning of the dexter buttress area.

depending on how i feel, i may? have a look at the broken ash buttress area.

skara.
Simon Caldwell - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:
Great Chimney didn't seem too bad when we did it last month.
Anyone venturing to the left of Helix? A scythe might be useful!
skarabrae - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador: i tried to bushwhack thru today, but had to turn back!
im sure i spotted a lost tribe & a ruined temple in the undergrowth!!
Bulls Crack - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to JDal:
> (In reply to skarabrae) Cheers for that. Never seen the Organ Pipes looking so clean, and I go back a bit!

I seem to remember - emphasis on 'seem' here! - that back in the early 80's most of the cliff was cleanish. Loved climbing there- one of the best outcrops in the land for severe to HVS
coinneach - on 01 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:

That's nowt!

I once saw a brontosaurus just before the foot traverse on Crystal.

:-)
The Mole - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador: I haven't looked down there for a while. There are some good routes though.

The access along the bottom of the crag was something that came up a lot in conversation on the restoration day. It's not too bad at all until Tarzan Buttress but thereafter it is quite broken and after Main Wall just disappears into the bracken. The Peregrine doesn't help matters at the Eastern end but also the lack of a convenient descent in that area is a factor as well. Deep Gully is reputedly a reasonable descent for the central part of the crag but is so overgrown now I wouldn't recommend it. Getting to and from the base of Deep Gully would be hard work as well.

Iím not really sure what the answer is, short of actually making an improved path from Tarzan Buttress to Main Wall and beyond which feels like overkill.

Simon Caldwell - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to The Mole:
I thought the access path as far as Main Wall was fine, just a bit of bushwhacking when you left it to get to the routes.
skarabrae - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador: the path as such, does end at Tarzan, tho you can still access main wall area. It is hoped that now organ pipes/main wall area is clean, that area will see more traffic & as a result the path will become more defined & maybe the bracken & tussocks could be kept at bay & become more like the western end of the crag.
Simon Caldwell - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:
> the path as such, does end at Tarzan

We definitely followed a narrow path all the way to Main Wall.
skarabrae - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador: ok, I'll be more precise, the good well defined path ends at Tarzan area, afterwards the path becomes less defined & meanders thru the large tussocks & braken.
Simon Caldwell - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:
All it needs is a bit more traffic to keep the bracken from obscuring the path. Though too much more traffic and the path will collapse (it's already begun to in a couple of places)!

Which one is Deep Gully? We descended one that was a couple of hundred metres left of the normal Hadrians descent, but never risked anything further left than that (so the descent from Main Wall took quite a while).
The Mole - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador:
> (In reply to skarabrae)
> All it needs is a bit more traffic to keep the bracken from obscuring the path. Though too much more traffic and the path will collapse (it's already begun to in a couple of places)!

That was rather my point about the path after Tarzan Buttress.

> Which one is Deep Gully? We descended one that was a couple of hundred metres left of the normal Hadrians descent, but never risked anything further left than that (so the descent from Main Wall took quite a while).

http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=41906

I had a look at it and it looks perfectly downclimable if clean and is in more or less the right place for Main Wall etc

skarabrae - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to Toreador: im not sure which one is deep gully, I think mole mentioned it being just to the left of Main wall?
There looks like there could be a descent route to the left of ravens tower, but its seriously overgrown to tell for sure, I,ll check the guide book when I finish work. I think mole mentioned cleaning this at some point in the future.
The Mole - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Deep Gully is to the right of Main Wall, I was mistaken before.
JDal - on 02 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Just a note for lovers of The Lough, one of the best S/HS outings is the bottom bit of Bisector, the Impossible Wall bit of The Girdle traverse (R to L) then the top bit of Great Chimney. Best bits of 3 routes in one!
Simon Caldwell - on 03 Oct 2012
In reply to The Mole:
Just looked it up, and Deep Gully is the one we used for descent in August. Though only once, after I spotted it mentioned in the guidebook. Seemed clean enough, and less scary than the normal loose descent near Hadrian's Buttress!
mariner - on 09 Oct 2012
I Cleaned another of the Main Wall Routes today.

Bisector 27m Severe

Previously cleaned routes weathering nicely after the recent rain, Why Not VS 5a was climbed today and only a little dusty, not bad considering the route was virtually unclimbable 4 weeks ago

rgds
skarabrae - on 09 Oct 2012
In reply to mariner: excellent work mr mariner.
coinneach - on 09 Oct 2012
In reply to mariner:

Good route Why Not

Why Not Direct, however, is a sandbag.................my right pinkie is still bent after falling off the fecker 15 years ago!

This topic has been archived, and won't accept reply postings.