/ Orkney, Harris & Lewis bouldering

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mattrm - on 02 Sep 2013
I'm going up to Orkney next week for a week and then Harris and Lewis for a week.

We're staying near Stromness on Orkney. And on Harris/Lewis we're actually on Scalpay.

I've not got any guidebooks and was wondering if anyone could suggest some easy bouldering in either area. VB - V2 range would be ideal. I'm happy just to bimble around an area trying to find stuff to do, so don't really need a guidebook, just an idea of where to go. Bonus points if the bouldering is by a nice beach.

Or if there are any local climbers, who wouldn't mind showing me around for a day (or afternoon/morning) on either island, I'll bring my harness and lid.
Toby S - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to mattrm:

Head to Uig beach on Lewis, you can easily spend a day there playing on the various wee crags by the beach. The beach is great too :-) If the weather is shite (and there's a reasonable chance of this!) then there's a small indoor wall at the sports centre in Stornoway. Many of the beaches on Lewis have crags and stacks that you can play on, if memory serves rightly, Traigh Ghearadha (Garry sands, up by Tolsta on the East side of Lewis) has a few wee stacs that are worth a look if the tide is out. The beach itself is a lovely spot and there's a heritage trail from there to Ness that I'd recommend doing if you have time for a walk.
Mark Bull - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to mattrm:


There's a free Stone Country miniguide: go to http://www.stonecountry.co.uk/page15.html and follow the "Outer Hebrides" link.

A more detailed guide for Aird Mighe is here: https://scottishclimbs.com/wiki/Aird_Mhighe
Mark Bull - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to Mark Bull:

Have a poke around on here for Orkney bouldering: http://www.orkney-seastacks.co.uk/newroutes.htm
Sealwife - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to mattrm: Orkney Climbing Club have a Facebook page. Ask on there. There might be someone free to show you around.
IceBun - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to mattrm: Hi Matt, don't bother with the Orkney seastacks site for bouldering as it has none but 2 options.
1. At yesnaby walk right round passed the stack and all the main cliffs and follow the coastal path south to the next headland. It is low and rocky and has some pleasant bouldering in a great setting looking back north to Yesnaby.
2. The Pools of Birsay is a cracking wee spot I discovered this year and has the benefit of being close to the excellent Birsay Tearooms. Pics are here http://www.flickr.com/photos/8027420@N04/9383586793/ This is the main pic and there are several others in my photostream plus a heap of yesnaby. It is a wee bit snappy as it is so new but essentially very sound. Ideally you want an afternoon and a lowish tide. Head to Birsay and then aim for the cemetery south of the village. Follow the road seaward to a right angled bend where a rough track continues seaward. Go down this path and when you reach the coast the Pools and the extensive area of geos and arches is immediately south. Enjoy

Ps good bouldering wall in the Pickaquoy centre but a pain in the hoop getting in it as you have to be inducted. Try the Orkney climbing Club on facebook and they may be able to help
mattrm - on 02 Sep 2013
In reply to IceBun:

The Pools of Birsay look really nice.

The suggestion of the beach on Harris sounds good as well.

Keep the suggestions coming tho, thanks to all so far.
Mark Bull - on 03 Sep 2013
In reply to IceBun:

> don't bother with the Orkney seastacks site for bouldering as it has none

Oh yes it does!!
IceBun - on 03 Sep 2013
In reply to Mark Bull: Where would that be then? If it's there I've missed it and over the years Tim Rankin and I have tried a fair few places and apart from the headland south of Yesnaby and now Pools of Birsay anything else is very poor (eg the scapa beach quarry)but I would be happy to here of some hidden gems.
Mark Bull - on 04 Sep 2013
In reply to IceBun:


I'm not a local, and maybe you know about these anyway (they're not on Mainland):

http://www.orkney-seastacks.co.uk/stronsay.htm
http://www.orkney-seastacks.co.uk/westray.htm

The site also mentions the Yesnaby area.
IceBun - on 04 Sep 2013
In reply to Mark Bull: I stand corrected and will be packing my mat;) Or not! The pools of Birsay and the Headland south of Yesnaby knock these two into a cocked hat and don't involve another boat journey
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mattrm - on 15 Sep 2013
In reply to mattrm:

Ended up going to Clisham Pass in the end as we drove past it and it looked good, so had to give it a try. Nice boulders, but totally trashed my fingers.

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