Black Rocks

Climbs 184 – Rocktype Gritstone – Altitude 250m a.s.l – Faces NW

Crag features
A dark imposing bastion with huge prows and impressive side walls, split by fine cracks and home to some of the best slopers on grit. Can make a big first impression (see comments!) but time spent adjusting to the place will be well rewarded.

A historically important venue- follow in the footsteps of gritstone greats such as Puttrell (Stonnis Crack, HS 4b), Piggott (Sand Buttress, VS 4c), Harding (Demon Rib, E3 5c, Promontory Traverse, E1/2 5b), Dawes (Gaia, E8 6c) and Grieve (Meshuga, E9 6c).

Exposed and quick drying, but lower sections on the north face can be green and stay damp after rain.

Sadly many non-climbing visitors leave their rubbish here- doing your bit to remove some of this is proven to earn karmic protection on the bolder routes.

Access notes
From Cromford follow road to Wirksworth (B5036) for 3/4 mile. Rocks (and picnic site!) are signed to the left.

Pay & display parking but there are a few roadside bays opposite the higher car park entrance.

A short but uphill walk from Cromford rail station.
Read more... Regional Access notes are available from the BMC.

Peak Bouldering (2014), Peak District: Bouldering (2011), Froggatt to Black Rocks (2010), Peak SE Pokketz (2007), Eastern Grit (2006), On Peak Rock (2003), Peak Climbs - Chatsworth (1996), Derwent Gritstone (1985),
Out of print: Rock Climbing in thge Peak District (1987), Rock climbs in the Peak - Derwent valley (1981)

Climbs at this crag

Sort climbs
 Climb nameGrade
2Percy (Boulder problem #1)f6A 32
3Henry (Boulder problem #2)f3+ *47
4Trevorf5+ *108
5Thomas (Boulder problem #3)f6B **29
6Thomas Eliminatef6C+ 5
7Toby (Boulder problem #4)f2+ *94
8Gordon (Boulder problem #5)f4 *120
9Edward (Boulder problem #6)f4+ 37
10The Fat Controller (Boulder prob #7)f6B 10
12Route 2 Left Handf5 *14
13Route 2 (Slab problem #1)VS 5a 178
14Island of Sodor (Slab problem #2)HVS 5c *95
15Route 1 (Slab problem #3)VS 4c *217
16Duck (Slab problem #4)M 61
17Mallardf3+ 20
18Railway Ribf4 11
19Harold (Slab problem #5)f6B+ *8
20The Bufferf5+ 12
22CrackedM 25
23ObverseVD 13
24CrackersE1 5b  
25Physical GraffitiE3 6b  
27Easy Aretef4+ 3
28Megalythic Manf7A 1
29Neanderthalf6B 1
30Angel Delightf7A+  
31Easier Aretef2 2
33My Pet DaddyE5 6a *1
35Hot Dog SnifferE6 6a **4
36RafflesE3 5b 2
39Slab and TableHVD 2
40Are We Nearly There Yet?E1 5b  
41East ArêteS *3
43Crack and Facef5 19
44Valerie Ann, I'm Desperate Danf4+ 18
45Rubyf5 17
46Easy Slabf3+ 16
47Dollyf6B *6
48Ledge Climbf5+ 11
49Maybellef6B+ **3
50APf5 16
51The Clamf5+ 16
52Flaked Slabf3 13
53King Edwardf7B+ ***8
55EasternerE1 5b  
56MarmotteE5 6b  
57HushVS 4c *6
59VJ CrackVS 4c 1
60Benjamin BicklesthwaiteE4 6a  
61East CrackHVD 18
62Mental PygmyE3 6a *2
63New Year ButtressHVD 54
65RastafarianismE3 5c  
66Queen's Parlour SlabVS 4b **90
67Queen's Parlour GullyVD **180
68Queen's Parlour ChimneyHS 4b *28
69Original RouteS 4a *61
70DynoMightE7 6b * 
71The RaungeHS 4b 1
72MoonchildE7 6c  
73Pine Tree GullyD 33
74Birch Tree ClimbS 4a 9
76Pirate's StaircaseM 16
77Green CrackHVS 5a 4
78Black CrackVS 4c *25
79Stonnis PinnacleHD *2
80Central ButtressHVD 3c ***151
81Central Buttress DirectE1 5a *44
82Central Buttress ChimneyVS 4c 3
83Soft RushE6 6a **1
84Blind Man's CrackVD 4a *78
85Blind Man's ButtressVD 4a *21
87Left Promontory GullyD 50
88Rope TrickE2 5c **1
89Vikings in a Sea of SweatE2 5c  
90LongshipsE2 5b *2
91FirebirdE2 5c **21
92The BounderXS 6?  
93MeshugaE9 6c ***5
94Pog's WallE4 6b  
95A Day at the PromE4 6b * 
96Kit KatE3 6a *1
97Promontory TraverseE1 5b ***47
98The Easy Exit (Promontory Nose)E1 5b  
99Prominent Tory ReverseE2 5c *1
100Twisted SmileHVS 5b *3
101Lucky JimHVS 5a  
102Right Promontory GullyM *78
103Right Promontory RibS 4a 3
104Green WallHS 4c  
106SilicosisE1 5c  
107Garden Wall TraverseVS 4c  
108Stonnis Arete VariationsVD 4a *22
109Stonnis AreteS 4a **146
110The Eighth FoldE6 6c **1
111Ladykiller PeakE3 6b * 
112Fireworks for the BlindE4 6a 1
113Stonnis CrackHS 4b **301
114DiscombobulatorE5 6c **2
115Caught SmilingE6 7a * 
116Sand ButtressVS 4c ***233
117UntowardE5 6b *2
118Sand GullyD *77
120Right Hand ExitHVD *11
121Camel HotE6 6b ***4
122The Indirect StartE2 5c 9
123Lean Man's ClimbVS 4c ***185
124Feeding the PonyE8 6c *1
125The Superstitious StartHVS 5b *3
126Lean Man's SuperdirectVS 5a ***36
127Cider FrenzyE3 6a  
128Fat Man's ChimneyD *72
129Lean Man's EliminateVS 4c *12
131Branch ChimneyM 47
132The Nuage TravellerE3 5c  
133GomorrahE1 6a 3
134The SprainE2 5b *41
135Liquid AbsE5 6b * 
136Smears for Earsf7A+ **1
137GoodmotorfingerE5 6c * 
138BadmotorfingerE5 6c *3
139Twin CracksVD 33
140Finale WallHVS 4b 8
141Curtain Call (Finale Slab Left-hand)E2 5b *32
142Finale Wall Direct (Finale Slab Right-hand)E2 5b **13
143Cybertron MissionE6 6b **3
144Lawyer's Left FinishS 4b  
145Lawyer's ChimneyVD 22
146Chancery SlabVS 4c 16
147Chancery GrooveM 4
148Our KidE4 5c 3
149Slanted and EnchantedE6 6b * 
150Jammed Stone ChimneyVS 4c 3
154Curved CrackHS 4b 59
155Curve Ballf6B **1
156Kra S'HaonVS 4b 23
157Noah's ArkVS 4b 11
158GaiaE8 6c ***23
159Harder FasterE9 7a * 
160Taxi to the Cragf7B *3
161Through the K-holeE7 6b *1
162Curving AreteE5 6b ***14
164Bring Back the BirchE5 6a  
165Birch Tree Wall VariationsHVS 5a **178
166Birch Tree Wall- variation startVS 4c **1
167Desert Island Discof6C  
168Birch Tree Wall- variation finish (The Leaching Birch Tree)HVS 5b ***3
169Birch Tree WallVS 5a ***385
170Birch Tree Wall EliminateE4 6b **5
171The CriticE3 5c * 
172Demon RibE3 5c **38
173Lone Tree GrooveVS 5a **387
174Lone Tree GullyS 4a **376
175Occam's RaisinE5 6b *1
176Route 66f7C ***2
177PseudonymE5 6b **8
178The Devil Is In The DetailsE7 7a **2
179Hat Trickf7A ***12
180Non Stick Vicarf7B+ 1
181Black Book JohnE7 6c  
182Fun TraverseE4 6b *7
183South Gully RibHS 4b 29
184South GullyVD 4a 141
185South CornerHVS 4c 36
186Bad Hair DayE4 6b 16
187Runnel Rib Direct FinishE4 6b  
188Runnel RibE2 6b  
189Fat Girl Rodeof7B * 
190The RunnelE2 6b 18
191Slab EndD 161
193Diagonalf4 18
194Shredded FeetE3 6b *2
195Small ThingsE6 6c *3
196Golden DaysE3 6a *50
197Jumping on a BeetleE7 6c *9
198The Angel's ShareE8 7a **5
199Velvet SilenceE6 6c **15
200Make it SlappyE6 6c  
201Tree CrackHVS 5b 12
202Excellent SocksHVS 5b  
203DampS 4b 1
204DryS 4a 2
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Cool, challenging crag with some great and testing routes. Absolutely heartbreaking to see so much litter though.
Go_Climb_A_Rock - 24/Aug/14
"Rough, round, big, ugly, hard and unforgiving." A perfect description of the climbing and the people you are likely to encounter on a weekend trip to Black Rocks. Shame really as it has some of the best lines on grit. If you fancy it go during the week or evening, outside holidays.
nathanlee - 29/Jul/11
It was ever thus... Lots of names carved into the rock on the top - some of it quite artistic, some of it "AB luvs CD" etc. Some of it very new and some has been there for generations. Yobs? Not really, but plenty of weekend gawpers..."Oh look there's one! There's one!" Was the cry when the little group appeared on the skyline and pointed at us. Shame about the litter - lots of this. If you can put up with being gawped at then you will find some tough testpieces in a reather testing environment. The grades are a little less than generous for grit but there are some fantastic routes. A friend of mine once remarked that no birds sing at Black Rocks...nothing sinister about that - it's just that the sound of dogs, prams, bikes, shrieking people and cars drowns them out. Enjoy!
Rampikino - 18/Oct/10
Rough, round, big, ugly, hard and unforgiving, everything gritstone should be! One of the best gritstone crags in the Peak for hard climbing. If you want your grit technique to improve its a toss up between here, or the cowperstone. Shame about the yobs, i reckon you get an extra 'E' point for each empty can of stella you get thrown at you whilst ur on the lead.
tom allsop - 13/Oct/09
Taught climbing to an old friend there today. I was embarrassed with the rubbish, fosters cans and broken glass everywhere. Apart from that, there are some great routes, probably not the best crag for teaching a beginner on though...
Mattu - 22/Jun/09
Yes its a bit green on the off side but never mind, great climbs, sunset view point after the rounded gritstone struggles. To the people who post 'wont be returning to this one' good riddance dont come back!! xxx
ktmdave - 08/May/08
Went on sunday, beautiful day for climbing unfortunately most of the climbing here was poor. Obviously underclimbed as everything apart from the birch tree wall area was very green and slippery and most of the routes up to VS on birch tree wall were very polished. Shame as what we did do had a lot of potential and some of the routes are pretty high for gritstone. Still probably won't come back here again - at least the reports of Chav's and beer cans proved unfounded.
timbo - 31/Aug/05
went on saturday,took children to it,had an excellent day,no yobs of people,would go again
rachel - 06/Jun/05
Not impressed at all. Most of it very very green despite being June, sadly defaced by names cared into the rock, and frequented by grubby chavs swigging from cans of lager in the middle of the day who appear to think nothing of littering the place with their empties. Safe to say that we won't be coming back.
Dave - 05/Jun/05
An excellent crag - can be abit wet on the north facing area but loads of excellent routes and bouldering (with a mat) - it is sometimes abit litter strewn but i've never had problems with yobs throwing cans either (i feel i'm missing out!)
mark pollak - 31/Jul/04
Some excellent routes, but the crag suffers more than most from local yobs leaving litter, and from large groups of top-roping kids with dirty trainers damaging the routes :(
Nick Smith - 12/Jul/04
My local crag for the last 30 years and despite climbing there literally hundreds of times I always find it to be one of my favourite gritstone crags and not once in all those years have I ever seen anyone carving their name in the rock or throwing cans off the top. It has to be said though that some of the carvings are quite ingenious, the weeing donkey being a favourite with my children.
jonathan shepherd - 11/Jul/04
This crag is ideal for novices to experts, best avoided on weekends when total idiots decide to take hours chiselling their names into the face whilst drinking Stella and hurling their cans upon anyone attempting some of the excellent climbs! Watch out for broken glass on the ledges and make sure the cracks are clear before you hand-jam.
Stephen Farrer - 11/Jun/04
The first derbyshire gritstone crag I laid eyes on and it was enough to get me addicted! Found alot of the VS level routes absolutely nails and Stonis crackspat me off atleast four times. Ten years later I got back on it and it is still hard. My mate got his foot stuck in it for five minutes!! Prom traverse is one of my favourite routes..... Indeed an excellent crag.
Dave Evans - 08/Jun/04
BU - 26/Aug/03
A beast of a place. Some execellent routes, albeit a bit green in places. Easy access with nearby car parking below the crag. Shame about all the carvings in the rocks by mindless morons.
DS - 26/Jun/03
On reading my old diary from 1947 I see where Birch Tree Wall was a real bugger. As I remember it it was a lay-back up the crack but the slopping ledge to the left was a worse bugger,no hand holds 54 years ago I still remember sticking my hand in a crack then twisting it for a hold. Feeling sharp one early morning I detirmine to do her without a rope I nearly became religist that morn. Other climbs in my diary is Palm tree gally and groove, Lean\'s Ordinary,Q.P.slap,I dare say on the end of a rope.
Ralph H. Brailsford - 31/Aug/02
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These details were last updated on 24/Aug/2014

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