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Crowden Great Quarry - thank you to the pixies

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Me and another old guy were in there today, Easter Sunday, and were surprised to be the only team on a warm and sheltered crag for the whole day.

Anyways, the point of this is to say "Thank you!" to whoever the kind soul is who's placed a bunch of scaffolding pole belays along the top of Mythology Wall, where they were desperately needed.

That same person might also have been doing some cleaning right of The Big Flea and in a few other areas. The quarry is certainly adventurous, but don't let that put you off. We did four 100ft routes today and enjoyed every minute of it. "Crowden HVS" takes a bit of getting used to, but it's good training for the Culm.

Crowden Great Quarry

 Brown 04 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

We climbed there on Saturday and met the crag faeries themselves who were busy with some significant gardening equipment.

They were doing an excellent job of making a couple of strong looking crack lines look more appealing by trimming back some troublesome vegetation and shifting s few loose rocks.

We also enjoyed the 35 m gritstone and thought Trundle Warfare (E2 5c) was reminiscent of climbing  St Johns Head which in my mind is high praise.

In reply to Brown: we took advantage of their efforts and were grateful. Who are they? I’d like to extend my thanks personally, and I’d like to offer my help as it’s a big job and there’s more to do...

In reply to Frank the Husky:

It's heartening news that people care about this place and are prepared to put time and effort into it. I must admit that, many decades ago, we passed on CGQ (Itcouldn't be Tintwistle Knarr, could it? Err, no. Read the sodding map, Boggie!) But just because it's not the Knarr doesn't mean it can't have merit. And that's so of many unfashionable trad crags. You can still have great days out on them.

If locals (and it usually does need to be locals) put time and effort into improving venues, it's a good thing for all of us. More power to the pixies!

Mick

 Brown 05 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

I did not ask their names so I can't help I'm afraid.

 pec 05 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

> Me and another old guy were in there today, Easter Sunday, and were surprised to be the only team on a warm and sheltered crag for the whole day.

I'd be surprised if I went there and wasn't the only team!

Not because there isn't some worthwhile climbing there but because venues like that are so "unfashionable" these days and CGQ feels like one of the least fashionable of the unfashionable crags. The more climbers there are, the less imagination they seem to have, if it isn't on perfect Eastern Edges grit they aren't interested.

Anyway, good to hear that there are still a few people willing to explore these venues.

 mrphilipoldham 05 Apr 2021
In reply to pec:

Crowden is Stanage compared to Cowbury Dale ;-)

Edit - I’ve just realised that I’ve got about 8ft of scaffolding pole in my garden from when I took the tv aerial down. Happy to help plant some more and bring it to the party.

Post edited at 11:41
 Tom V 05 Apr 2021
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

Maybe Dovestones Main will come back into fashion.

In reply to Frank the Husky:

Is CGQ the one that's at risk if they actually do the Mottram by-pass?

In reply to Michael Hood:

I think that's John Henry Quarry, although it might be saved if one of the plans gets the go ahead over the other. Something like that.

In reply to Frank the Husky:

I went once on a Summer evening 25 years ago - didn't do anything and never returned! 

 Philb1950 05 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

Crowden says it all. Wonder if anyone was on Tintwistle, pure class in the e grades.

 Paul Ha 05 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

Crowden ah now we are talking.. up there with the 'rocher' in imho

In reply to Brown:

Agreed, Trundle Warfare is very good, especially as a single pitch on a blowy day - very varied and involving.

Whether it's as good as Testament to the Insane is another question for another day...

In reply to Frank the Husky:

Also, if the pixies are reading this I have one of your stakes that you perhaps forgot to take back with you. It's a Wilton Style stake (flat top with a crossbar) but is slightly bent. You can have it back, or if you don't want it I will hang onto it and then use it for my own nefarious moorland purposes.

In reply to Frank the Husky, Brown and Paul Ha:

This thread has - for better or worse - left me massively inspired to go.

Anyone care to recommend a route and/or routes for the first time visitor? 

 Brown 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

If you took your "big arms" then anything on the steep overhanging right hand wall looks very good. I'm intending to head back later in the year when I have found my big arms that are currently missing somewhere.

In reply to Brown:

> If you took your "big arms" then anything on the steep overhanging right hand wall looks very good. I'm intending to head back later in the year when I have found my big arms that are currently missing somewhere.

Yes, I seem to have misplaced mine too, so any "small arms" routes would be welcome in the meanwhile

 Offwidth 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

Good adventurous place.  Overhang Buttress must be made for you.

 neilh 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

Are these the same Pixies who cleaned up John Henry quarry by any chance.

In reply to Frank the Husky:

> I think that's John Henry Quarry, although it might be saved if one of the plans gets the go ahead over the other. Something like that.

Just looked on map, I'd mistakenly thought CGQ was the other quarry near John Henry, now seen where it is.

Looks a bit like the grit equivalent of Horseshoe or Harpur Hill, but without the bolts - won't be sanitised enough for many.

 Brown 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

I thought that Trundle Warfare (E2 5c) was good and clearly the first ascensionist had a good time trundling as it was totally solid.

Seconded The Emergence of Talos (HVS 5a) which climbed a detached tower of tottering blocks which should get three stars and a disclaimer as it is a classic of its kind. Think light thoughts......

The Shabby Tiger (HVS 5a) despite getting two stars was a bit disappointing. 

Post edited at 11:31
 Brown 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Brown:

I've uploaded a photo of the inspiring detached pinnacle on The Emergence of Talos.

https://www.ukclimbing.com/logbook/crags/crowden_great_quarry-928/the_emergence_of_talos-102145#photos

This is clearly a valuable crag feature and not a candidate for cleaning.

In reply to Brown:

Please tell us, do you climb the chimney-crack on one or other side (laybacking? 😁) or does this route go intrepidly up the front face of that lovely looking piece of gritstone.

It certainly makes one want to get the crow bar (or maybe a hydraulic jack) out. Surely there's a wonderful face climb behind it just waiting to be discovered - unless any "landing" vibrations would shake the nearby "solid" rock into less vertical configurations.

 Brown 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Michael Hood:

I followed in my wife's footsteps boldly up the outside of the feature. I'd foolishly assumed it would feel ok due to the ease in which she climbed it but even on TR it felt full on.

My photo fails to do justice to the fact it's perched on two rocks, slipping forward but pinned themselves by the weight of the pinnacle, in the process of falling off the tiny mid height ledge.

In reply to Brown:

That pinnacle is a thing of beauty...

All eyes must be on this thread too, because two different people have now got in touch to say they want to go. This either means that I'm popular, or - more realistically - that the gene pull of people who are potentially into this form of climbing are quite limited, hence I am a necessary evil.

Either way, I really hope to get there sometime soon. 

In reply to Rob Greenwood - UKClimbing:

Hey Rob - interesting isn't it, how a thread like this stirs once-dormant urges?

I recommend routes that others have suggested - Trundle Warfare is a classic quarry climb, The Big Flea is also great - take a cam 4/5 for good luck and be careful of the loose flake low down - you'll see it easily enough. The Thin Man & The Shabby Tiger are both good lines, with an entertaining pop for the top if you're less than 5'10 on the Tiger. The Emergence of Talos as mentioned above is scary - that pillar has been teetering for nearly 100 years so it "should" be fine - but it is precariously balanced! Anything on Mythology Wall with a star is worthy, as is Mounties Go Anywhere at E1. A couple of lines at the far left of MW are good - Ride the Waves, Bowsprit and the alternative finish to that "One Quick Peep" are all great. I recruited Pete Whittaker for that after we'd polished off an LGP at Rolliick Stones that morning, the legendary & "impossible" Dana (E5 6c). I'd seen the alternative finish to Bowsprit and thought it was likely E4/5 with zero gear. How wrong I was - and that taught me never to give up a project to someone without at least abbing down it first.

Overhang Buttress is classic - The Primer is very good indeed which a chap such as yourself with devour with pleasure, and the E4 of Crowden Pillar is  neat and protectable. The others i haven't done but look good and hard. The E1 (Rhodeswood Crack) right of Crowden Pillar is a good straight fight in the best traditions of grit.

Enjoy!

 Paul Ha 06 Apr 2021
In reply to Frank the Husky:

Yep Overhang Buttress for you Rob in particular The Primer, Limbo Dancer, Rhodeswood Crack and Crowden Pillar should sort your arms out. Shabby Tiger and Flame in the West are very worthwhile and the routes around The Big Stevedore felt a little like being down in a zawn on Lundy.  If you are in the area its also worth popping in to Brockholes Quarry, Wall of Brock is rather good. 


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