If you can say "I'm really looking forward to our trip to [area] - I might finally get out to [crag]" without your mates giving you funny looks then it's a major crag.
I sometimes wonder if you could allocate stars to routes on a similar principle, ie based on the difference between a route that you might reasonably plan a weekend for, a route that you'd pick a crag for, and a route that you'd walk to another section of the crag for. As per the Michelin guide:
One star - Very good climbing in its category
Two stars - Excellent climbing, worth a detour
Three stars - Exceptional climbing, worthy of a special journey
> I sometimes wonder if you could allocate stars to routes on a similar principle, ie based on the difference between a route that you might reasonably plan a weekend for, a route that you'd pick a crag for, and a route that you'd walk to another section of the crag for. As per the Michelin guide:
> One star - Very good climbing in its category
> Two stars - Excellent climbing, worth a detour
> Three stars - Exceptional climbing, worthy of a special journey
We have done a similar thing in the recent Rockfax books, on the maps the size of the locator star is a measure of how good the crag is,
You mean Fallen slab at Blacknor? I'd class that (and all the beach boulders) as part of Blacknor.
But yes Cloggy and Scafell are good examples of crags that are not popular due to conditions but 'major' nonetheless. Probably more due to the quality of routes rather than length that makes them 'major'. Otherwise every grit crag is a minor crag.
In reply to Fraser: Well, you suggested a criterion which would rule out a lot, if not all, grit crags, including some indisputably major ones. I was pointing out that this criterion couldn't be very good for that reason.
I'm unsure if you're being deliberately tiresome or genuinely needed that explaining to you. Mind you, the same goes for Offwidth.
Some would argue the short routes should never have been listed on grit except as boulder problems. In any case, that wasnt what you said and a man who can be so picky about words should expect to be held to hihger standards.
I reckon all pretty minor. Brean is possibly the most major of the bunch. I've met people from London and Birmingham there (on the sport, of course), so it is known outside of the local scene. Bear in mind that from London it's a similar drive to get to Portland (definitely a major area) and from Birmingham Malham (also definitely major) is not much furher.
> So basically everything in the Bristol/ Mendips area apart from Cheddar and Avon gorges would be classed as minor?
Depends on the context, I guess. Nationally, I would say that's a fair assessment. If I were, say, writing a "Bristol and Mendips limestone" guidebook, I might be inclined to list Avon and Cheddar as "nationally important" (or some such) and some of the others you mention as "other major local crags". Does that seem reasonable?
> As someone else said, that's font gone and a lot of significant grit crags.
> Length of routes doesn't seem to have a great deal of bearing.
Well it does to me. The OP asked "How would you define each?" I defined 'major' ones by the criteria I stated - that's my opinion and hoefuly answered the OP's question. The minor ones are the rest. I'd agree Font is major, but equally I'd not call it a 'crag' as such.
Not entirely sure what cox is moaning about, but no doubt it's just him doing his usual smug, argumentative shtick. It seems we're not allowed to disagree with him, ever. Tiresome indeed.
> Well it does to me. The OP asked "How would you define each?" I defined 'major' ones by the criteria I stated - that's my opinion and hoefuly answered the OP's question. The minor ones are the rest. I'd agree Font is major, but equally I'd not call it a 'crag' as such.
> Not entirely sure what cox is moaning about, but no doubt it's just him doing his usual smug, argumentative shtick. It seems we're not allowed to disagree with him, ever. Tiresome indeed.
So which gritstone crags would you consider to be "major crags"? Apart from Millstone and the Upper Tier at the Roaches, I'm not sure how many would actually fit your definition...
In reply to The Pylon King:
The question is relative;
When I lived in the Forest I used to think that the Wye Valley crags were minor. Now that I live midway between Auchinstarry and Rosyth quarries, I've had to revise that opinion...
As for all that junk south of Bristol: local crags for local people. Cheddar excepted, of course.
It's not really about the climbing but the legends and the aura. Avon has them. Wintours doesn't. Kangaroo Wall and the rest are nice enough outings, but really, what are they? Who put them up, even? They're just not great routes. Whereas Amanita Muscarina is a great route.
My mate and I would choose outcrops that you can see from the road, few more than 50' high, not really crags. That was to avoid crowds. Because we didn't know what to expect grade or protection wise, we soon learned to top rope them. We must have put up lots of new "routes", Didn't think that they were worth claiming. So if you come across an outcrop with channel peg in the top, that was probably us.
I don't particularly care whether Wintours routes were put up by 'names'. On a national scale it is most certainly OT a minor crag. OK I'll concede that the rest of the Wye is not in major crag territory but not Wintours.
>On a national scale it is most certainly OT a minor crag
What does OT mean?
It's borderline, I suppose. Like I said before, it's a bit of a daft debate. It depends how many 'major' crags you think there should be. To me, it's pretty obvious that in the Bristol area Avon and Cheddar are first and the rest by comparison nowhere.
In reply to The Pylon King: Sorry, it was the Lakes. However on thinking about it we could have been in the guide books today. They have bouldering, we were between that and proper crags. We didn't keep any records. It may be worth the UKC starting a new category. But what to call it? Halfway house? Boulder climbers, you can advance? All suggestions welcome.
It really was a good time though, no-one around except the ravens and buzzards. No teams before you. We did whatever we wanted, including falling off the rock, without being jeered by a silly person on the ground.
Armus was my climbing partner in those days.
> Sort of what i am doing now with all the esoteric stuff i go to ;)
Good luck to you, it is really enjoyable. What does esoteric mean?
About my ex climbing partner armus. he was no good. He could only lead two grades, Severe and HVS whereas I could lead three grades, Moderate, Diff and V.Diff.
Oi, I was just giggling at some of the inane comments the PK has got out of you lot and then one of my photos appears. Next jcm will be slagging it off for not being far enough north or having proper routes.
I'd like to point out that after two visits to Tockington I feel I have some history with it. It's not yet in my major crag list but it is definitely minor. It's also S. Glos so may not be part of Mark's guide.