The Cuttings

Climbs 476 – Rocktype Limestone – Altitude ? – Faces SE

Crag features

The Cuttings is an excellent and popular inland crag with a fine aspect looking out towards the Purbecks across Weymouth Bay. The crag is in fact an old railway cutting which has left several contrasting walls rising directly from a flat clear base. Although mainly quarried the climbs are highly varied on good clean vertical rock giving routes which need lots of finger strength and technique. It is a superb morning venue (often too hot in the summer) with routes to suit all grades of climber from VS to 8a. There is also a beginners sector especially set up for groups and individuals to cut their teeth on. However the best quality routes are the numerous cracking powerful test-pieces which are attractive enough to encourage many climbers to dog beyond their capabilities. The variety of climbing has been added to recently with some quality bouldering at the New Cuttings from V0 to a mega hard V12. Some of these problems can be high so bring a bouldering mat. Climbs at 'the Ditch' are included for historical reasons only: the Ditch was excavated during the winter of 2008/ 2009.

Approach notes

The Cuttings is 5 minutes from the road behind the terraced houses in Easton. Park in the main street near the Portland Museum. The guide books will say to park near the Mermaid Inn however this pub is no longer there, it has been replaced by The Mermaid House Tea Gardens. Unfortunately, at time of writing, no sign hangs outside the Tea Gardens Property. It is 195 Wakeham (DT5 1HS). Alternatively park down the road, around the bend from the museum, in Church Ope Car Park, this is a free car park. This is better in that you won't annoy the house owners of Easton so much. The drawback is that it is secluded and ripe for car theft so leave an empty car. Just by The Mermaid House Tea Gardens, next to the bridge, a track leads east for 30m toward waste ground alongside houses. Then a small track ducks through some bushes to follow a wide dirt track up an incline for 200m to a summit. Another track leads rightwards to reach the Main Cuttings above a covered pipeline. The shorter New Cuttings is just to the right (looking out). Another more direct approach (with no uphill bit for the lazy boulderers) is to follow a track leading directly east out of the back of the Mermaid Tea Gardens car park which leads to the coast path running past the New Cuttings. The Ditch - Sadly this venue(and its routes) are no more!

Read more... Regional Access notes are available from the BMC.

Dorset Bouldering (2015), Dorset (2012), West Country Climbs (2010), Portland (2008), Dorset Route Database (2000), Swanage and Portland (1995),
Out of print: Dorset 2005 - Fax19 (2005), Dorset 2000 - Fax11 (2000), Dorset 1994 - Fax05 (1994)

Climbs at this crag

Sort climbs
 Climb nameGrade
2Eat, Stick and Die2 316
3We're Only Placing Bolts for Nigel3 354
4Choose Your Own Adventure5c *16
5Cheese and Pickle4c 155
6Parsnip Soup5a 119
7Corporal Punishment5a 268
8On Manoeuvres3 346
9Arc Angel2+ 259
10Charity Work Mate3 290
11Magical Misty Tour3+ 295
12Bonsai3+ 339
13Sting in the Tail5c 321
14Baron's Revenge3+ 154
15Chicken Boy3+ 119
16Tantrums and Tiaras3+ 168
17100 Sunny Days3 285
18Juggernaut5a 414
19Rock Lobster4c 405
20Amazonia4c *687
21The Great Hamburger Disaster4c *775
22Definitely Maybe6a+ *375
23Little Chef5c *618
24Little Sod6b *218
25The Sod5c *687
26Lup Dup6a+ *45
27Mindmeld7a+ *235
28Sign of the Vulcan7b+ **85
29Hillman the Hunter6b+ *139
30Hole in the Wall E1 5c 2
31Flying Peach6b *31
32Grapefruit takes a Whipper6a+ *44
33Princess and the Pea6b+ 15
34Pillow Talk6c 18
35The Cutting Edge6c+ ***355
36Dumbfounded7b *135
37Can't recall it *6b * 
38Chalkie and the Hex 55c **712
39The Ramp5a *616
40Lusty Wedlock Needs Coil of Prevention7b 5
41Rusty Chubblock Needs Oil of Lubrication7c *22
42Evening Mistress6b *179
43Men Behaving Badly7a+ *21
44Amen Corner5a **574
45Mousefolk6c *218
46Too Many Cooks Spoil the Broth6b **599
47Jam4c **794
48Chips with Everything5a *771
49Quality Family Day4c **641
50True Love6b+ 24
51Bridget RileyE2 6a *5
52The Mind Terrorist7c+ **8
53Knockout Punch7b+ *10
54SpicerE2 5c *3
55Levitation By Proxy6c *42
56That Chill Divine E2 6a 1
57Finesse7a 10
58Hidden Treasure6a *105
59Kestrel VS 4c 4
60Looking for Love E2 5b 2
61Blowing the Gimp7a+ *39
62The Sears Tower7b+ *15
63The Holy Hand Grenade7a **173
64Brief Encounter6b **430
65Infernal Din7b+ ***66
66European Flavour6b **298
67Europe Endless6b+ **62
68Gourmet6a 8
69The Breathing Method8a ***23
70Hall of Mirrors7c ***136
71Want Out7b ***113
72New Saladin6c **267
73Hurricane on a Millpond7c+ **2
74Consommé6a+ **830
75Haute Cuisine7a **213
76The Mouth Waters7a+ **108
77Two Fingers6a **634
78Three Fingers6a *552
79Bob Hunkhousef7A+ *12
80Opus5a *622
81Rusty the Red Neck TakesOne for the Team6a+ *313
82Perihelion6b **197
83Disobedience Contest6b **144
84Live is Life6b *35
85The Potting Shed6a *213
86Rules is Rules6b+ 31
87Old Buffer6b *121
88Live by the Sword7a+ **197
89Another Notch in the Gun6b **418
90Figgy Dropwise6c+ *58
91Dusty Fred's Winter Collection6c 18
92Aperitif5c 70
93Ectomorph6a *99
94Unknown Arete7a+ 19
95The Bournemouth Flyer6b *126
96Hors d'OeuvresE1 5c 2
97Nightmare Scenario7c **36
98Modern Nightmare7a **119
99Bad DreamE4 6a 1
100Fighting Torque8a **50
101Under Duress7c+ **24
102Shiver Me Timbers7a *69
103Weird Shit, Keep Drilling6b+ **109
105Whispering Gallery2 219
106Queen of the New Year2+ 228
107Suntrap3 300
108The Bumper Fun Book4a *319
109Tinkerbell6a *268
110Far From The Madding Crowd5c *229
111Six Finger Exercise6b+ *159
112Godbeams4a *332
113Ladybower3 *158
114All Bowered Out6a *12
116Come on Eileen6a+ *28
117Grand Tour6a+ *12
118Boys Will Be Girls6c+ *18
119Shockwave5c *33
120Sunlover5a *35
121The Portland Crowd5a *44
123Sjambok the Skelem4c 31
124The Naughty Corner4a 46
125West of Vanity Fare6b 27
126Hot FlushE1 5c 8
127XerdnaVS 4c 15
128Hot Fuzz5c 25
129Don't Bring Your Mum2 21
131Voices in the Bower3 255
132Up the Junction6b *105
133Round the Bend6b *104
134Winter Sun6a *316
135Time Out of Mind5a 342
136Voices in the Mind5c *43
138Rock Logs6b+ 3
139Gold Dust7b 2
140Ditch the Bitch7a 4
141Pitch in the Ditch6a+ 3
142The Dump Pump6a 6
143This Shit's Something6c+ 1
144Juggernaught5b 2
* Climbs listed in red are waiting to be checked by a crag moderator, and may not be accurate.
Moderator Updates to this page are checked by UKC volunteer Ben Stokes

USER FEEDBACKLogin as Existing User to add your comments
Great climbs, However do agree with other comments, grades are slightly lower than I feel they should be. Best climb of the year so far, (it is only the first of January 2014). Great day though, great fun.
TerryHoward - 01/Jan/14
Great crag and boulder field, drys out super quick so makes the perfect winter bouldering location! :-)
Beastly Squirrel - 01/Jan/13
The Ditch no longer exists.
Richard Horn - 15/Dec/08
Excellent crag. Lots and lots of reachy, technical test pieces. However, not really worth visiting if you can't climb F7a or harder. Fred
FredMead - 06/Mar/06
The guide is fantastic - congratulations! One point on the Cuttings though. Page 165, route 17 "Three Fingers" is surely not a grade 4. Two of us climbed it and thought it a polished 5+. The third finger has of course fallen off as your photo shows and I wonder if it has been regraded since then. In your 2003 miniguide you put it at 6A rather than 4 which may be mistake (or is it?) but its certainly not 4, - which might cause problems where people are trying to up their grade in an area where except at the short worn out left hand end, there are few lower grades to try out. Hope this is useful.
marcus - 22/Aug/05
Agree, Blacknor is much better for novices, some of these routes are so pollished as to be at least a grade harder. My girlfriend thinks 2 grades!
Russ - 21/Aug/04
I was taken down to the Cuttings for my first bit of sport climbing and was pointed to the \'easy\' grades up one end (2 to 4+). Unfortunately these routes are now highly polished and I\'m sure that most people are likely to find them a great deal more difficult than their grade may suggest.
John Wellbelove - 22/Jul/02