Climbs 286 – Rocktype Sandstone (hard) – Altitude 100m a.s.l – Faces NW

Crag features
A fine sandstone cliff overlooking the River Mersey and the motorway. It is often driven past at speed and scorned by uninformed climbers travelling to North Wales. One day they should take the time to have a look at the place since most will be pleasantly surprised by the compact and clean walls offering some superb routes on great rock.

In winter the rock does turn green and slimey but after a spell of dry weather it cleans up nicely.

It should be mentioned that this crag was very 'unfashionable' for many years and the grading system left unchallenged for decades. Many climbs are poorly protected and dubious rock is ubiquitous. Therefore the grades may well be inaccurate. Feedback on grades and qualitative ratings would be welcome.

Access notes
Lies directly above the town of Helsby: park there and make an "exhausting" scramble up the hillside.
Read more... Regional Access notes are available from the BMC.

Cheshire & Merseyside Sandstone (2012), Western Grit (2009),
Out of print: Western Grit (2003), Sandstone Climbing in Cheshire and Merseyside (1998)

Climbs at this crag

Sort climbs
  Climb nameGrade
 ----------- EAST BUTTRESS ----------- 
3Wrinkled SlabM
4Halfway LedgeD
5Far Eastern TraverseVD
6Cobweb CrackHVS 5b
7Torsion CrackVS 5a
8Millwall F.C.HVS 5b
9Jericho WallHVS 5c *
10Philistine's ProwlHVS 5a
11Wall and SlabVD
122001none 6c **
13Space Odysseynone 6b **
15Groove and SlabD
16Quarry Buttress DirectVS 5a
17Quarry Buttress SuperdirectE2 5c
18Tyburn WallE3 6a
19GallowsE2 5c **
20Lynch Mob MentalityE3 6b
21Corpse's WalkS
22Night of The Living Deadnone 5c *
23Undertaker's ButtressS 4b **
25Stoic's CornerVD
26Upper LipHVS 5b
27Upper Lip DirectE3 5c
28Napoleon ComplexE5 6a **
29The NoseVD *
30Nose GullyVD
31CinderellaHVS 5b
32OmegaVS 5a *
 ----------- CENTRAL BUTTRESS ----------- 
35Marshall's ClimbHVS 4c ***
36Marshall's Tower EliminateE1 5b *
37Slanting ChimneyVD
38Coffin ButtressVS 5a
39Eliminate IIVS 5a
40Cemetery WallHS
41The CoffinHS 4b
42Tombstone WallHVS 5b
43Lookout ClimbHS 4b *
44Zig Zag ClimbVD
45The ThingummyVS 5a
46Spider CrackE1 5b
47Green ChimneyS 4a
48Greenshieldnone 5c
49The BeetlerE2 5b *
50Strength Through JoyXS 6b *
52Sculptor's ClimbHS 4b
53Chimney and TraverseS *
54SuperdirectHS 4b
55Direct RouteS 4a
56Central ClimbVD *
57Easy ButtressD
58The IllegitimateE3 5c ***
59Carsten's AbortionE2 5b **
60Brown's BastardE2 5b
61Downe's DoddleE2 5b *
62Clockwork OrangeE3 5c ***
63Technicolour YawnE5 6a **
64The CorniceVD **
65The Cornice IndirectS **
66DeceptionHVS 5a *
67Mossy SlabVD *
68Gather No MossE3 6b
71Grooved Wall Route 1 Direct FinishE1 5a
72Grooved Wall Route 1VS 4b **
73Grooved Wall Route 2VS 4b *
74Grooved Wall Route 3E2 5b
75Fat Man's CrackVD
77Clashooks SlabVD
78Limpet WallVS 4b **
79Mussel WallVS 5a **
81Little LightMS 4a
82Blue LightE2 6a *
83In the PieE2 6a
84Pigeonhole WallHVS 4c ***
85Pigeonhole AreteE1 5c *
86Crack of DoomVD *
87WhimperE2 5c *
88Wafer WallE2 5b **
89Z RouteVD *
90Z Route DirectS 4a
91Oblique CrackVD
92Muffin CrackHVS 5b *
93Crumpet CrackE3 6a ***
94Hades CrackVS 4c *
95Wild Oat WallHVS 5b
96Two Step CrackVD
97Honeycomb WallVS 4c *
98Nameless WallVS 5a
99Nameless CrackS 4a
 ----------- WEST BUTTRESS ----------- 
102Celerity CrackHS 4b
103West Wall ClimbD
104West Wall MantelshelfS 4b *
105The West WallE1 5c
106Un-namednone 6b
108Hemingway's WallE3 5c *
109Late-nite GreenhalghE4 6a **
110The Missing FontE3 5c *
111Senile SaunterE1 5b **
112West Wall ChimneyVD *
113Windy CornerVD *
114Windy Corner - The Nose FinishS 4b *
115DioperaHVS 5a *
116EroicaHVS 5a
117Eroticanone 6b
118Coward of the CountyE4 6b *
119SpookyE5 6a **
120Brandenburg WallE3 5c ***
121Brandenburg Wall DirectE6 6c *
122StingrayE4 6a ***
123The ManglerE3 6a ***
124Gorilla WallE3 5c **
125Gorilla Wall DirectE4 5c *
126Double TroubleE4 5c **
127Sandynone 6b *
128Evil Uncle Quentinnone 5c
129Shoie McFeenone 5c
130Overleaning wallE1 5a
131The NotchD ***
132Tree wallE1 5b
133Arcographnone 5c
134ArcoVS 4c *
135Terrace WallD
136DelilahHVS 5b *
137Why, Why, Why?none 6a
138Betrayed by a WomenE3 5c
139Short Back and Sidesnone 5c
140Samson's WallE1 5b
141Greenteeth GrooveHS 4a
142Black WallS 4b *
143C.B. CrackVD **
144C.B. WallVD
145The SquirmVD
146Spare MomentS
148Cloister TraverseS 4a
149Chromium CrackE1 5c **
150Golden PillarE1 5b **
151The Overhanging CrackVS 4c **
152AgagVS 4c **
153The Mersey RunnelE2 5c *
154Cadaver Eyesnone 6c *
155Hope StreetE5 6a ***
156Magical CharmE5 6a **
157CFKE4 6a **
158Morgue SlabE2 5b ***
159Mogadon's Good for YouE3 5c *
160NecrophiliacE5 6a *
161Time RegainedE8 6c ***
162BeatnikE6 6b ***
163DesperationE5 6b *
164240 Volt ShockerE6 6c *
165Twin ScoopsE1 5c **
166The GangwayVS 4b **
167Grooved SlabVS 4a ***
168The Anvil IntergraleE1 5b ***
169The Brush OffE4 5c ***
170The Brush Off DirectE6 6a **
171It'd Be Alright If It Was ColdE5 6b **
172Jim's ChimneyE2 5b
173Little by LittleS 4a *
174Oyster Slab Super DirectHS 5a *
175Oyster SlabS 4a
176Oyster Slab DirectVS 4b *
177Oyster Slab Route IIIVS 5b *
178Trojan CrackS 4a
179Trojan NoseS 4a
180Waterloo WallE2 6a *
181Fragile Wall DirectE3 6a
182Fragile Wall LeftE3 5c *
183Fragile WallE3 5c **
184DanielE2 5c **
185Wood's ClimbHVS 5a ***
186The ResidueE5 6a **
187Party BluesE4 6b *
188Liverpool Lady BoysE6 6c **
189Greenteeth GullyM
190Hard Rock TraverseV0 5a **
191Twinkletoes TraverseV4 6a **
192SwingsVS 4c
193Greenteeth CrackHS 4b *
194Dinnerplate CrackVS 4c ***
195Ho Ho HoE3 6a
196Twin Caves CrackHS 4b **
197PathfinderE3 6a *
198Flake InnominateE2 5c *
199Flake CrackHVS 5a ***
200Flake WallE5 6a ***
201Foolish FinishE4 5c *
202Licentious JugE5 6a *
203Black Hole AreteE5 6b **
204Calcutta WallE4 5c **
205Eliminate 1E1 5b ***
206CinemascopeE4 6a ***
207Easy ChimneyM
208The WendigoE3 5c **
209Shoe-inE2 5b
210End CrackS 4b
211The ParasolVS 5a
212The UmbrellaE2 5c *
213The ParapluieE1 5b *
214The WartE3 5c
215Angel's FaceE1 5b **
216Ape's CrackHVS 5b
217Gabriel's Garter / Ape's AmbleVS 5a **
 ----------- HELSBY BOULDERING ----------- 
220Western RollV2 5c
221Right ShelfV2 5c **
223PillarV0 5b
224Roof DirectV2 5c
225Roof Right-handV2 5c
227Left AreteV0 4b
228Steep WallV0 4c
229Thin CrackV0 4b *
230Diagonal CrackV0- 4a
231Ledge RouteV0 5a
232Another Ledge RouteV0 5a
233The Nose (Jay's Buttress)V0 5a
234The Nose (sit start)V1 5b *
235Cave WallV0 5a
236The PinchV0 4c
237The MantleVB *
239Left EdgeV0 4a
240The ScoopV0- 4a
241Arete and MantelV3 6a
242Long PullV2 5c
243Easy PullV1 5b
244Flaky WallV0 5a
245Green WallVB *
246Sandy WallV0 5a
247Black HoleV1 5a
248GrasperV2 5c
250The Nose (Pocket Wall)V1 5b ***
251The AreteV3 6a
252Pocket WallV3 6a ***
253Centre RouteV1 5b *
254Right routeV0 5a
255The StepV1 5a *
256Green StepV1 5b
257Green WallV1 5a
258JugsV0 5a **
259Ho-HoV0 5a
260Lew's TraverseV0 5b
262Helter SkelterV2 5b
263Roll Out the BarrelV3 5c **
264Speckled HenV1 5b
265Ron Burgundy's MustacheV8 6c **
266The GrooveV1 5a *
267The BeakV0+ 5a
268The NicheV1 5a
269BitterV0 4c
270Crank ItV1 5a
271Harold's WallV3 6a
272Left OversV1 5a
274Left GrooveV0 4c
275Left WallV0 4c
276Two EgyptainsV2 5b
277PopeyeV2 5b *
278Martin's EyesV2 5c
279Central NoseV1 5a
280Hot FuzzV1 5a
281Three Left HandsV2 5b **
282Right NoseV2 5c *
283OliverV3 6s **
284ShuffleV0 5a
285Right GrooveV0- 4b
286Zig-Zag TraverseV1 5a *
287Artful DodgerV4 6b ***
288Atful DodgingV6 6b ***
290The ArchV1 5b *
291Green SlabV0 4c
292ArchibaldV4 6b
293The GrimaceV4 5c
294High BrowV3 5c *
295Stiff Upper LipV3 5c
297Problem 65V3 6b
298Problen 66V2 6a
299Problem 67V1 5b
300Problem 68V1 5b
301Problem 69V1 5b
302Problem 70V0 5a
303Ramp EliminateV6 6b **
304Problem 71V0 5a
305Upper TraverseV1 5b *
306Lower TraverseV4 6b *
307Left PocketV1 5b
308FlyV2 5c
309Right PocketV0 5a
311Central RibVD *
312Gaz's Gapeing GirdleV2
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USER FEEDBACKLogin as Existing User to add your comments
Are you a troll or a moron?
Alex Winter - 12/Jul/13
Get it bolted!!
m88ulv - 07/Jul/13
such a waisted crag, so much to be done here and no 1 to climb with... loads fo protection up the top for those workin routes or intending top ropes.. i actually like helsby although its quite green
phil_freeman - 19/Feb/10
flake crack was my second lead getting off the pillar at the bottom is hard but once done the route is fab allan
ashaw - 19/Jun/06
Agree with above comments, but as Alan Rouse said in his 1976 guide, top roping is acceptable here on the longer and harder routes because of 'the general lack of suitable protection and the occasionally unreliable nature of the rock'. However, he also said that when you get to know the place 'you can derive great pleasure from soloing'. So be careful but have fun!
Pekkie - 17/Jul/05
Yes, a really excellent place to climb but be aware that the rock can be quite brittle and at times, holds do break - I know. Good place to learn footwork.
Paul H - 13/Jun/05
The crag boasts some endless classics with all difficulties of climbing. Many people forget that there is a pretty good low level bouldering above the crag. They are no more than 2.5 metres tall but there are some really technical routes, there are enough to make a short film about (which is what we are doing!). Its also a great place to learn the basics of bouldering seeing as you aren't going to get hurt if you fall from any height. check it out.
Michael Gee - 03/Apr/04
Since the last guidebook, with more modern descriptions and E grades, there has been a resurgence of interest in the crag as a whole and in particular in leading. With careful consideration many of the routes can be adequately protected and can be of as good a quality as found on more popular crags
Mark Hounslea - 13/Feb/03
A fine crag to develop finger strength
alan edmonds - 11/Feb/03
What about Colin Kirkus
Andy Clare - 23/Jan/03
An absolutely fantastic place to climb, and really doesn\'t get the attention it deserves. Climbs are of all difficulties Severe-E6/7. I mean, look at the people that climbed there - Alan Rouse, Hugh Banner, Chris Bonington. Timelessly classic. A great place to build up confidence and very easily accessible
Jon Cooke - 17/Jul/02
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These details were last updated on 16/Dec/2013

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Queensferry, FLINTSHIRE
Dedicated centre.
"A mighty fine indoor climbing venue just off the A55/M56 gateway to Wales. Stylish, relaxed and friendly with some beautiful problems, lead and TR lines. Over..."