/ Skye Route recommendations
I'm off to Scotland for two weeks in September, probably going to head to Skye first I've but also been recommended Diabaig. Not booked any accomodations so we can stay flexible and move around to try and follow the sun!
I've not done any summer climbing in Scotland before, and I've never been further than Aviemore. So what routes would people recommend we aim for? Looking for things up to E1, but probably mainly around VS. Or if they are really long and the weather looks dodgy then some nice Vdiffs would be good...
Having recently been to Skye, I'd say two things. The mountains can be very cold when the sunshine isn't on your back - which unless you're lucky will be most of the time. Even on sunnier crags in the Cuillin you can end up surrounded in clag while sunshine frustratingly bathes the rest of the island just out of reach.
That said, it can be a fabulous place to climb in the afternoon or evening sun. And the sea cliffs can be a good prospect in dodgy weather.
If the weather is good you absolutely must visit Sron na Ciche in Coire Lagan and pick off the classics whether Collie's Route on the Cioch (the best Mod I've ever climbed and that includes the Inn Pinn) or Arrow Route (bold but easy VDiff) or Integrity (easy VS) with much else on offer besides. Meanwhile, anywhere on the ridge you'll find engrossing scrambling with the odd tricky obstacle. If, as has been suggested, the Cuillin remains the only part of the island in clag, then Neist is your best bet for climbing VS and up. Hundreds of routes in an accessible and stunning location.
Oh, and Diabaig is fantastic.
I had been looking at a few things on the Cioch :) Neist looks good, not heard of it before, thanks!
In the North East of Skye.Sea cliff climbing
Rock Island Line is good(severe?)
I've always wanted to do Spantastic(HVS),but never had the right conditions(Including one time when my climbing partner bottled out of it)
There's a good underground V diff on the east coast somewhere as well which is probably a good be in poor weather.I seem to remember that you go past the diatom lochs and park on a corner,then head up the hill until reach a passageway into the hillside.It's in the guide book
Spantastic is one of the most exciting routes I have ever done and that was on the blunt end of the rope. Not particularly difficult, but quite bold on the first pitch and definitely intimidating. A fantastic adventure though.
Near Elgol is a sea cliff called Suidhe Biorach. Everyone seems to rave about Jamie Jampot and Hairy Mary there. Not done them but could be worth a gander if you can't get on the bigger cliffs.
The rule of thumb in Scotland is to go east with westerly winds or west with easterly & northerlies. Next week is largely forecast for westerlies.
We do get dry westerly weather on Skye, particularly away from the hills. Neist has many aspects and dries fast. Shocks & Stares in financial sector and Man of Straw (cover shot of the new book) are both ace routes @ VS. Both require a seperate abseil rope. Sonamra & Baywatch just below the carpark are also very good with a walking descent.
Elgol is made for that sort of grade band with the 3 corners @ S, HS & VS then walls @ HVS & E1 upward. If the hills do clear try Western Drainpipe Ridge @ HS or White Slab Direct @ VS on S facing, lower level cliffs.
I was on Skye this week, the Cuillin is cold already, so numb hands on Sron na Ciche. Neist was great yesterday, but is more west facing so more sun from midday. Grab the new SMC Skye Sea Cliffs and Outcrops guide early though, there was not one for sale on the island this week!
I guessed that, unfortunately your address isn't in the Skye Cuillin Guide, nor is it in the Skye tourist magazine we picked up. The man in the library was amazed that the guide wasn't in the Portree library, nor any other library in the Highlands! (They were very helpful in Portree.)
Skye best selection: (standout routes & areas)
-Grey panther E1 or selection on kilt rock
-Trophy Crack E1
-Vulcan wall HVS
-Paradise ledge near elgol has a great selection VS-E1
Diabeg is great, better if you can lead E2 (pillar)
Mike's weather guidance above is best approach
You can also go bouldering when the cloud is hugging the cullin and the rain the mainland...
Have never experience dry enough weather for any of the Skye outcrops but in the Cuillin, Window Buttress, Cioch West, crack of Doom and Double Doom all made good wet day routes. And it will rain...
Although a bit higher gradeswise than you are looking for, these are four amazing routes that I did in a day on Skye and would totally recommend:
Grey Panther http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=5469
Tartan Terror http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=5465
Wish You Were Here http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=145062
Wall Street http://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/c.php?i=93443
Diabaig is excellent at HVS+, route II is one of the best 2 pitch routes around.
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