In reply to UKC News: This looks like a great guide! Well done to the team on it!
Must be said, that this guide really isnt a definitive guide, but is absolutely great for anyone wishing to tick the classic and original lines in the southwest, without wanting to pay probably nearly £100 for all the local guides!
In reply to UKC News:
Looking forward to this popping through the letter box. I think it's a great approach when you are travelling to different parts of a big area. If you were climbing one area all the time you're bound to have the specific guides but not much point buying all of them when you are only climbing a few of the best routes in each area. The Pat LittleJohn guide of the similar name is excellent but lacks the great colour photos to dream over whilst reading at home!
> (In reply to royal)
> The Pat LittleJohn guide of the similar name is excellent but lacks the great colour photos to dream over whilst reading at home!
> Some of the B&W photos in SW Climbs are iconic (Satan's Slip, Saxon, Desolation Row etc).
South West Climbs has amongst it's pages some of the best climbing photos ever.
The photo of Saxon as said is amazing as is Heart of the Sun, Sacrosanct nearly all the Lundy pics. The Pic of Mercury makes me want to climb that route more than any other.
They also have something of an awful quality about them, somehow capturing the commitment and occasional terror that is encountered whilst climbing on sea-cliffs. For some reason the Clawtrack photo springs to mind and again the Mercury photo with it's ridiculous scale, the climber in his cramp inducing bridge position, runout and in the knowledge that that's only half the route!
The photos in West Country Climbs do look lovely and enticing, but they illustrate a different beast and I seriously doubt that they'll surpass those that so successfully and worryingly underscore the quiet understatement of the Littlejohn guide.
> (In reply to mloskot)
> Don't understand the question.
My understanding is that the West Country Climbs (WCC) is a compilation of climbs extracted from other guides dedicated to particular areas, plus some updates of course.
For example, the WCC consists of some climbs in Portland and Swanage. We also have the guide "Dorset" by Pete Oxley and Mark Glaister. So, which one provides better coverage of Portland and Swanage?
I understand that the WCC covers, let's say, an abstract of best classics (also updated after 2005 - year of release of "Dorset"), but the Dorset guide includes more routes in those areas.
I imagine similar relation exists for other areas: WCC abstracts an existing definitive guide. My question was, how I can find those definitive guides for those areas? By searching links at rockfax.com?
> The photos in West Country Climbs do look lovely and enticing, but they illustrate a different beast and I seriously doubt that they'll surpass those that so successfully and worryingly underscore the quiet understatement of the Littlejohn guide.
The difference between somebody seeking dramatic adventure and somebody a nice holiday!
> (In reply to John Willson)
> Is this a new new edition, rather than a reprint?
A completely new edition. As mentioned there will be a second volume devoted to the counties of Gloucestershire (Wye/Dean) and Somerset (Avon and Cheddar areas), so the Wye Valley will also get selective coverage (at last!).
As Mark says, the relevant guidebooks are mentioned in the text. For Dorset this is obviously a Rockfax publication. For the rest of the South West it is a combination of the Climbers' Club and Cordee.
The information in the Dorset section of WCC is actually 'extracted' from the Dorset Rockfax guide, although some updating has gone on, and Mark has new photos for much of this, and edited the text a lot. For the other areas the information isn't 'extracted', it has all been done from scratch using our own photos and route descriptions.
Your understanding of the relationship between Dorset and WCC is correct. WCC has just a handful of buttresses covered in Dorset, although it is more 'selected buttress', then 'selected route'. The 'selected buttress' aspect is something that runs through all areas in the guide to an extent ie. if we include something, we tend include most of the routes on the buttress.
In reply to mozzer: You cant get the cheesewring guide anymore, as its way out of date, and theres a new one hopefully late this year. The Dartmoor Guide is avaible widely. As is the north coast guide and the west cornwall guides.
The new guide is as fantastic as other recent rockfaxes - Pembroke, N England.
I suppose it differs from other rockfaxes is that it has more crags but less routes per crag - lots more venues are covered but often are covered in 2-4 pages. Many of the venues you'd only ever want to visit the once so perfect for roadtrips. Lots more crag to, say, Littlejohns SW Climbs. Can't wait to get out to Cornwall again now!
The one thing that I would undo is the inclusion of Lundy and Dorset. The book is fat enough already. Dorset seems irrelevant since it is all covered by another rockfax. Is this the first time that 2 regions overlap? And the Lundy section wouldn't be useful on its own to a visitor to the island so only serves as a 'coffee-table' section, but if it isn't useful at the crag should it be in the guide?
I have my nice new copy of west country climbs, and it's very nice (plus I picked up another extra E2 with the upgrade of Crinoid, and my first E grade, Crimtyphon, now seemingly a long way up the graded list?), but I have to agree that the photos somehow lack the atmosphere of those shots in south west climbs, good and colourful as they are...
Yes its the Iain Peters's 1988 guide! The photo diagram shows the line
being futher right.
I followed the description, but couldn't find the crucial hex 3 placement on the traverse? There is also mention of a very serious ground fall potential from 50ft (which I did find!) but you don't mention. I backed off from here with some difficulty!
I was closer to The Monk's Satanic Verses than Fay.
I climbed all the way down and drove home. Am I still on the onsight?
In reply to Owen W-G:
I'm glad they included Dorset - in fact I used my copy for the first time yesterday, at Swanage.
The point is there are definitive guides available for all these areas, but to buy them all is prohibitive for an occasional visitor from the north. The Dorset guide although a rockfax is still in the same category - Im well-enough off with just the contents of WCC for Dorset and get the other crags as well, so its great to have it in there.
PS some of the grades and descriptions have changed since the latest Dorset Rockfax too - I assume these new versions are intended for the 2011 Dorset guide?
Overall, great guidebook. Re: the photos that some have discussed, I prefer these to the ones in South West Climbs, as I dont like Black and White in general.
> (In reply to tmg)
> A completely new edition. As mentioned there will be a second volume devoted to the counties of Gloucestershire (Wye/Dean) and Somerset (Avon and Cheddar areas), so the Wye Valley will also get selective coverage (at last!).
That's not they way I went but then I didn't get to the top either! The half route that I climbed felt like E7 to me.
After I recovered Karin traversed as far as the spike on Fay but then continued to finish as for Heart By Pass. We called it Coronary Bypass E4 6a *** but have not reported it to anyone. It follows the break all the way, the obvious continuation can be seen in that photo.
I used the FA description in the '88 guide, checked by abseil. One of the problems of the S face of the Middle Fin is that there are too many holds (very small I grant you!) and that the diagonal breaks actually constitute the "strongest" features. Karen's line sounds logical to me and will be included in the next guide.
Great job on WCC, Mark. Have just got back from a lightning tour of Cornwall, using it, and have got a few comments which I'll post in the relevant sections of the logbooks.