Climbs 293
Rocktype Sandstone (hard)
Altitude 100m a.s.l
Faces NW

Committing time © A Crook

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.

Approach notes

Lies directly above the town of Helsby: park there and make an "exhausting" scramble up the hillside.

Access Advice

It is worth avoiding the crag after rain as the porous rock absorbs water - this causes the holds to become brittle...

Seasonal Restrictions

Dates: 1 March to 30 June

Reason: Nesting Birds

Peregrines nest left of Clashhooks Gully, please avoid all routes on Upper & Lower Central Buttresses during this period. Raven have also been sighted around the route 'The Notch' - climbers are advised to avoid this area if the birds are in residence.

Guidebooks

Western Grit

The 2009 edition of the award-winning guidebook to Staffordshire, Kinder, Bleaklow, Chew, Lancashire and Cheshire areas covered with photo-topos and descriptions.
More info
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
Login as Existing User to add your comments

Climbs at this crag

Climb name Grade
  ----------- East Buttress -----------
  Far-East Buttress
3 Wrinkled Slab M 3
4 Halfway Ledge D 2
5 Far Eastern Traverse VD 2
6 Cobweb Crack HVS 5b  
7 Torsion Crack VS 5a 2
8 Millwall F.C. HVS 5b  
9 Jericho Wall HVS 5c *  
10 Philistine's Prowl HVS 5a  
11 Wall and Slab VD 4
12 2001 none 6c **  
13 Space Odyssey none 6b **  
  Undertaker's Buttress
15 Groove and Slab D 4
16 Quarry Buttress Direct VS 5a 1
17 Quarry Buttress Superdirect
-
E2 5c  
18 Tyburn Wall E3 6a  
19 Gallows E2 5c ** 1
20 Lynch Mob Mentality E3 6b  
21 Corpse's Walk S 5
22 Night of The Living Dead none 5c * 1
23 Undertaker's Buttress S 4b ** 12
  The Nose
25 Stoic's Corner
-
VD 3
26 Upper Lip HVS 5b 1
27 Upper Lip Direct E3 5c  
28 Napoleon Complex
-
E5 6a **  
29 The Nose VD * 5
30 Nose Gully VD 1
31 Cinderella HVS 5b 1
32 Omega VS 5a * 2
  ----------- Central Buttress -----------
  Central Area and Marshall's Tower
35 Marshall's Climb HVS 4c *** 8
36 Marshall's Tower Eliminate E1 5b * 1
37 Slanting Chimney
-
VD 9
38 Coffin Buttress
-
VS 5a 1
39 Eliminate II VS 5a 3
40 Cemetery Wall
-
HS 3
41 The Coffin HS 4b 3
42 Tombstone Wall HVS 5b 1
43 Lookout Climb
-
HS 4b * 1
44 Zig Zag Climb
-
VD 9
45 The Thingummy
-
VS 5a 1
46 Spider Crack
-
E1 5b 1
47 Green Chimney
-
S 4a 2
48 Greenshield
-
none 5c  
49 The Beetler
-
E2 5b * 1
50 Strength Through Joy
-
XS 6b *  
  Central Buttress - Middle Tier
52 Sculptor's Climb HS 4b 5
53 Chimney and Traverse
-
S * 7
54 Superdirect
-
HS 4b 2
55 Direct Route
-
S 4a 10
56 Super Duper Direct VS 4c * 2
57 Central Climb VD * 29
58 Easy Buttress D 32
59 The Illegitimate E3 5c *** 12
60 Carsten's Abortion E2 5b ** 13
61 Brown's Bastard E2 5b 3
62 Downe's Doddle E2 5b * 11
63 Clockwork Orange E3 5c *** 11
64 Technicolour Yawn E6 6a ** 4
65 The Cornice VD ** 65
66 The Cornice Indirect S * 22
67 Mafia Bear HVS 5a * 2
68 Deception HVS 5a * 26
69 Mossy Slab VD * 28
70 Gather No Moss E3 6b 1
  Central Buttress - Upper Tier
  Grooved wall
73 Grooved Wall Route 1 Direct Finish
-
E1 5a  
74 Grooved Wall Route 1
-
VS 4b ** 6
75 Grooved Wall Route 2
-
VS 4b * 2
76 Grooved Wall Route 3
-
E2 5b  
77 Fat Man's Crack
-
VD 4
  Clashook Slab and Limpet Wall
79 Clashooks Slab
-
VD 4
80 Crimpier V2 5c * 2
81 Crimpiest V3 6a 2
82 Limpet Wall
-
VS 4b ** 7
83 Mussel Wall
-
VS 5a ** 5
84 Hidden V1 1
85 The pillar
-
V1 1
  Central Buttress - Lower Tier - Honeycomb Wall
87 Little Light MS 4a 8
88 Blue Light E1 5c 9
89 In the Pie E1 6a 1
90 Pigeonhole Wall VS 5a * 55
91 Pigeonhole Arete E1 5c * 17
92 Crack of Doom VD 43
93 Whimper E2 5c 13
94 Wafer Wall E1 5b ** 27
95 Z Route VD * 28
96 Z Route Direct S 4a 16
97 Oblique Crack VD * 44
98 Muffin Crack HVS 5b * 28
99 Crumpet Crack E3 6a *** 24
100 Hades Crack HS 4b * 18
101 Wild Oat Wall HVS 5b 4
102 Two Step Crack VD 39
103 Honeycomb Wall VS 4c * 23
104 Nameless Wall VS 5a 10
105 Nameless Crack S 4a 18
  ----------- West Buttress -----------
  Clashook Gully - West Wall
108 Celerity Crack
-
HS 4b 2
109 West Wall Climb
-
D 1
110 West Wall Mantelshelf
-
S 4b * 2
111 The West Wall
-
E1 5c 1
112 Un-named
-
none 6b  
  West Buttress - Upper Tier
114 Hemingway's Wall E3 5c ** 3
115 Late-nite Greenhalgh E3 6a ** 1
116 The Missing Font E3 5c 2
117 Senile Saunter E1 5b * 4
118 West Wall Chimney VD * 23
119 Windy Corner VD * 16
120 Windy Corner - The Nose Finish HS 4b * 11
121 Diopera HVS 5a * 8
122 Eroica HVS 5a 3
123 Erotica none 6b  
124 Coward of the County E4 6a *  
125 Spooky E5 6b *  
126 Brandenburg Wall E4 5c *** 8
127 Brandenburg Wall Direct E6 6c *  
128 Stingray E4 6a ***  
129 The Mangler E3 6a *** 22
130 Gorilla Wall E3 5c * 8
131 Gorilla Wall Direct E4 5c * 2
132 Double Trouble E4 5c ** 1
133 Sandy none 6b *  
134 Evil Uncle Quentin none 5c  
135 Shoie McFee none 5c  
136 Overleaning wall
-
E1 5a 4
137 The Notch D * 104
138 Tree wall
-
E1 5b 5
139 Once Upon a Time (Arcograph) E2 5c * 2
140 Arco
-
VS 4c * 6
141 Terrace Wall D 13
142 Delilah
-
HVS 5b * 1
143 Why, Why, Why? none 6a  
144 Betrayed by a Women E3 5c 2
145 Short Back and Sides none 5c 2
146 Samson's Wall
-
E1 5b 4
147 Greenteeth Groove HS 4a 1
148 Tyro's wall E3 5b 2
149 Black Wall
-
S 4b * 14
150 C.B. Crack
-
VD ** 30
151 C.B. Wall
-
VD 23
152 The Squirm
-
VD 13
153 Spare Moment
-
S 6
  West Buttress - Lower Tier
155 Cloister Traverse S 4a 18
156 Chromium Crack E2 5c * 42
157 Golden Pillar E1 5b ** 148
158 The Overhanging Crack VS 4c * 101
159 Agag VS 4c ** 74
160 The Mersey Runnel
-
E2 5c * 3
161 Cadaver Eyes none 6b *  
162 Hope Street
-
E5 6a ***  
163 Magical Charm E5 6a * 3
164 CFK E4 6a ** 19
165 Morgue Slab E2 5b *** 76
166 Mogadon's Good for You E3 5c * 2
167 Necrophiliac E5 6a * 7
168 Time Regained E7 6c * 7
169 Beatnik E5 6a *** 22
170 Desperation
-
E5 6b * 1
171 240 Volt Shocker E5 6c * 9
172 Twin Scoops E1 5c ** 93
173 The Gangway VS 4b * 64
174 Grooved Slab VS 4a *** 220
175 The Anvil Intergrale E1 5b *** 10
176 The Brush Off E4 5c *** 46
177 The Brush Off Direct E4 6a * 20
178 It'd Be Alright If It Was Cold E5 6b ** 3
179 Jim's Chimney E3 6a ** 21
180 Little by Little S 4a * 252
181 Oyster Slab Super Direct HS 5a * 38
182 Oyster Slab
-
S 4a 12
183 Oyster Slab Direct VS 4b * 47
184 Oyster Slab Route III VS 5b * 26
185 Trojan Crack S 4a 28
186 Trojan Nose S 4a 8
187 Waterloo Wall E2 6a * 1
188 Fragile Wall Direct E3 6a 4
189 Fragile Wall Left
-
E3 5c * 1
190 Fragile Wall E3 5c ** 28
191 Daniel E2 5c ** 45
192 Wood's Climb HVS 5a *** 201
193 The Residue E5 6a ** 5
194 Party Blues E4 6b * 5
195 Liverpool Lady Boys E6 6c ** 6
196 Greenteeth Gully
-
M 68
197 Hard Rock Traverse
-
V0 5a ** 1
198 Twinkletoes Traverse
-
V4 6a **  
199 Swings
-
VS 4c 9
200 Greenteeth Crack HS 4b 71
201 Dinnerplate Crack S 4b ** 172
202 Ho Ho Ho E3 6a 5
203 Twin Caves Crack S 4b ** 240
204 Pathfinder E3 6a * 10
205 Flake Innominate E2 5c * 20
206 Flake Crack VS 4c *** 500
207 Flake Wall E5 6a *** 33
208 Foolish Finish E4 5c * 17
209 Licentious Jug E5 6a * 11
210 Black Hole Arete E5 6b ** 3
211 Calcutta Wall E4 5c * 5
212 Eliminate 1 E1 5b *** 208
213 Cinemascope E4 6b * 17
214 Easy Chimney M 62
215 The Wendigo E3 5c ** 18
216 Shoe-in E2 5b 9
217 End Crack S 4b 110
218 The Parasol
-
VS 5a 15
219 The Umbrella E2 5c * 21
220 The Parapluie E1 5b * 9
221 The Wart
-
E3 5c 9
222 Angel's Face
-
E1 5b ** 29
223 Ape's Crack
-
HVS 5b 16
224 Gabriel's Garter / Ape's Amble VS 5a ** 8
  ----------- Helsby Bouldering -----------
226 Gaz's Gapeing Girdle V2 1
  Cashooks Wall
228 Western Roll
-
V2 5c 1
229 Right Shelf
-
V2 5c ** 1
  Overhang Buttress
231 Pillar
-
V0 5b 7
232 Roof Direct
-
V2 5c 6
233 Roof Right-hand
-
V2 5c 9
  Jay'sButtress
235 Left Arete V0 4b 30
236 Steep Wall
-
V0 4c 24
237 Thin Crack V0 4b * 32
238 Diagonal Crack V0- 4a 24
239 Ledge Route
-
V0 5a 19
240 Another Ledge Route
-
V0 5a 14
241 The Nose (Jay's Buttress)
-
V0 5a 12
242 The Nose (sit start) V1 5b * 11
243 Cave Wall
-
V0 5a 8
244 The Pinch V0 4c 18
245 The Mantle VB * 20
  Scoop Buttress
247 Left Edge V0 4a 24
248 The Scoop V0- 4a 32
249 Arete and Mantel
-
V3 6a 18
250 Long Pull
-
V2 5c 13
251 Easy Pull
-
V1 5b 20
252 Flaky Wall V0 5a 16
253 Green Wall VB * 20
254 Sandy Wall V0 5a 19
255 Black Hole V1 5a 17
256 Grasper
-
V2 5c 9
  Pocket Wall
258 The Nose (Pocket Wall)
-
V1 5b *** 31
259 The Nose - sitting start V2 *** 1
260 The Arete
-
V3 6a 5
261 Pocket Wall
-
V3 6a *** 11
262 Centre Route
-
V1 5b * 24
263 Right route
-
V0 5a 15
264 The Step V1 5a * 21
265 Green Step V1 5b 9
266 Green Wall
-
V1 5a 3
267 Jugs V0 5a ** 8
268 Ho-Ho
-
V0 5a 7
269 Lew's Traverse
-
V0 5b 9
  Barrel Buttress
271 Helter Skelter
-
V2 5b  
272 Roll Out the Barrel
-
V3 5c ** 2
273 Speckled Hen V1 5b 2
274 Ron Burgundy's Mustache
-
V8 6c ** 3
275 The Groove V1 5a * 10
276 The Beak V0+ 5a 7
277 The Niche V1 5a 9
278 Bitter V0 4c 10
279 Crank It V1 5a 11
280 Harold's Wall V3 6a 4
281 Left Overs
-
V1 5a 4
  Long Wall
283 Left Groove V0 4c 17
284 Left Wall
-
V0 4c 16
285 Two Egyptains
-
V2 5b 12
286 Popeye
-
V2 5b * 5
287 Martin's Eyes
-
V2 5c 3
288 Central Nose V1 5a 9
289 Hot Fuzz
-
V1 5a 6
290 Three Left Hands
-
V2 5b ** 9
291 Right Nose
-
V2 5c * 4
292 Oliver
-
V3 6s ** 9
293 Shuffle V0 5a 10
294 Right Groove V0- 4b 9
295 Zig-Zag Traverse
-
V1 5a * 17
296 Artful Dodger
-
V4 6b *** 2
297 Atful Dodging
-
V6 6b *** 2
  Cave Buttress
299 The Arch
-
V1 5b * 8
300 Green Slab
-
V0 4c 3
301 Archibald
-
V4 6b 3
302 The Grimace
-
V4 5c 1
303 High Brow
-
V3 5c * 1
304 Stiff Upper Lip
-
V3 5c 1
  Traverse Buttress
306 Problem 65
-
V3 6b 2
307 Problen 66
-
V2 6a 2
308 Problem 67
-
V1 5b 3
309 Problem 68
-
V1 5b 4
310 Problem 69
-
V1 5b 4
311 Problem 70
-
V0 5a 4
312 Ramp Eliminate
-
V6 6b ** 2
313 Problem 71
-
V0 5a 4
314 Upper Traverse
-
V1 5b * 3
315 Lower Traverse
-
V4 6b * 1
316 Left Pocket
-
V1 5b 1
317 Fly
-
V2 5c  
318 Right Pocket
-
V0 5a 2
  Unknown / New / Awaiting Moderation

Moderator Updates to this page are checked by UKC volunteer Graeme Hammond