Climbs 125
Rocktype Limestone
Altitude Tidal
Faces S

Two jugs are better than one… Philatus E3 5c © Ben Richards

Crag features

Subluminal is the place everybody heads to for a first taste of Swanage steepness. The main reason for its popularity is the good selection of solid, short and amenably graded routes. Access is quick and there is a good ledge system running beneath the climbs that is well clear of the waves giving the place a friendly atmosphere. It lies just west of the lighthouse and the Black Zawn beneath open grass slopes. There is a clean-cut ledge above the climbs for gearing up and socialising, along with plentiful stakes for belays. Many of the climbs offer technical and fingery exercises as well as some bulging test-pieces in the Avernus Area.

Approach notes

Walk down the tarmac road from Durlston Car Park. From the lighthouse, a track leads diagonally right (looking out) down the grass slope to cliff-top ledges situated 100m west of the Black Zawn. It is only a 10 minute walk from the car park and all the climbs are approached by a short abseil from stakes above. The best abseil line is down High Street which also doubles as a good escape route.

Access Advice

Seasonal Restrictions

Dates: 1 March to 31 July

Reason: Nesting Birds

The restriction applies east of Scotsman Chimney to the start of Traverse of the Gods.

Rockfax App

Available in the Rockfax App

The Rockfax App brings together all the Rockfax climbing information with UKC logbooks and presents it into a user-friendly package for use on Apple iOS devices (Android version to follow).


Guidebooks

Dorset

The latest edition of the Dorset Rockfax features the now widely acclaimed full-page colour topos, and includes all the new lines in the areas previously covered, as well as many entirely new sectors. The crags are illustrated using bigger topos and there is a complete new set of action photos. This new Rockfax guide will concentrate on Portland, Swanage and Lulworth, covering all the sport routes in these areas, and also the bulk of the quality trad climbing at Swanage and Lulworth. Coverage of bouldering and deep water soloing, along with all the routes in Devon have migrated from this book.
More info

West Country Climbs

West Country Climbs is a major Rockfax guide to one of the UK’s most celebrated, sunny and diverse climbing regions. The book is fashioned in Rockfax’s award-winning layout and design, and copiously illustrated with action photographs of the climbs and cliffs that reflect the quality and variety of climbing experiences to be had on offer in the UK’s most popular holiday destination - the West Country. This is a selected route and buttress guidebook which covers the best 900 routes from the crags listed below.
More info

Deep Water

Mike Robertson's award winning Deep Water guide, covering DWS on the English South Coast, Pembroke, Scotland and throughout the world.
More info
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Climbs at this crag

Climb name Grade
  Face Area
2 Nutcracker Traverse
-
S * 17
3 Subnutcracker
-
S * 16
4 Subluminal Traverse
-
HVS 5b 8
5 Via Christina HVS 5a ** 96
6 Dead Good E5 6b 4
7 Greasy Chimney VD 247
8 Suspension S 4a * 498
9 Whynot HS 4b * 159
10 Dolphin VS 4b 132
11 Curving Crack S 4a * 638
12 Face Left VS 4b * 26
13 Face S 4a * 604
14 Face Central VS 4c * 188
15 Face Away VS 4c * 179
16 Grey Rib HS 4b 9
17 Tittsworth HVS 5a * 117
18 Dead Man Hunt E1 5b * 29
19 Baboon HVS 5b * 192
20 The Grobbler E1 5b * 39
21 Transcript Direct HVS 5a * 270
22 Paralysis E2 5c 86
  Stroof Area
24 Balcony HS 4b ** 1120
25 Gangway S * 1096
26 Joker VS 5a 152
27 Juggler E1 5b * 96
28 Stroof E1 5c ** 425
29 Graunchy Grippers E1 5b * 105
30 Spreadeagle VS 5a * 792
31 Back Street VS 4c * 510
32 High Street D * 1405
33 Station Road Variation E1 6a 14
34 Station Road HS 4b 258
35 Bypass S * 978
36 Slip Road VS 4c * 523
37 Republic E2 6a 15
  Freda Area
39 Thompson's Chimney HS 4b * 228
40 Straits of Hormuz E3 6a 1
41 Botany Bay VS 4c * 235
42 Battleship Bow HVS 4c * 44
43 Double Chockstone HVD * 503
44 Skinhead HVS 5a 88
45 Bird's Nest S 4a 312
46 Puffin VS 5a * 179
47 The Indirect Route E1 14
48 First Corner S 4b ** 819
49 Philatus E3 5c ** 191
50 Poetry in Motion E3 6a * 67
51 Second Corner S 4a ** 928
52 Freda VS 5a *** 882
53 Freda (Direct) HVS 5a 6
54 Grandma's Groove E2 5c ** 165
55 Grandpa's Grope VS 4c * 167
56 Pedestal Crack D 403
57 Interlude HS 4a 4
58 Pedestal Face VS 4b * 104
59 Pedestal Chimney VD 248
  Avernus Area
61 Styx S 37
62 Cerberus S 4a 14
63 Strenuosity HVS 4c 5
64 Graduation Day E2 5c * 7
65 The Ferryman Waits E3 6a 2
66 Avernus S 4a *** 505
67 Crepitus HVS 4c 2
68 Rainy Day, Dream Away E2 5c 2
69 Chance Encounter E4 6a  
70 All the Shakespearoes E3 5c * 8
71 The Great Rock 'n' Dole Swindle E3 6a *  
72 Tangerine Dream E1 5b * 10
73 A Subtle Shade of Emptiness E5 6b **  
74 Close to the Sun E4 6b *  
75 Gentle Touch
-
HVS 4c 2
76 Vaseline
-
VS 5a 3
  Lighthouse Cliffs
  Black Zawn
79 Grooved Arete VS 4b 17
80 Deaf Boy Hug
-
E3 5c *  
81 Sweet Sixteen E5 6a * 2
82 The Peccary E2 5b ** 52
83 Astrid HVS 5a ** 189
84 Morbid Orbit
-
E2 5b 1
85 Melpomene E4 5c *** 17
86 Mars E2 5b *** 134
87 Triton
-
E3 5c 1
88 Achelous E5 6a *  
89 Io VS 5a * 21
90 Last Great Innocent E5 6b *  
  Mellow Yellow Ledge
92 Mellow Yellow VS 4c ** 139
93 Catch the Wind
-
E3 5c 3
94 Ray of Sunshine E2 5c ** 47
95 Cider With Rosie E4 6a * 2
96 Magic Mountain E5 6a * 2
97 Magic Mushroom E4 6a ** 3
98 Fraggle Rock HVS 5a ** 58
  Gold Ledge
100 Live at the Witch Trials E2 5b * 16
101 Hard Nose the Highway HVS 5a * 37
102 Harvest Gold HVS 4c * 52
103 Yellow Brick Road VS 5a * 36
  Toad Ledge Area
105 Shakin' Off the Ghosts HVS 5a 5
106 Zoe VS 5a 16
107 Lizzie
-
HVS 5a 3
108 Babes in Toyland HVS 5a * 2
109 Rout HVS 5b 14
110 Surface Hippy VS 4c * 7
111 Under Toad
-
S 4a 10
112 Stone Doubt
-
VD 3
113 Mother Duck
-
HVS 5a 3
  Scotsman Chimney Area
115 Drop in the Ocean
-
HVS 4c * 4
116 Heathcliffe E2 6a 1
117 Withering Heights E1 5b 10
118 No Great Shakes
-
VS 4c 4
119 Accidents Never Happen VS 4c 3
120 Dreamboat Annie
-
VS 4c 4
121 Scotsman Chimney
-
VD 5
122 Rhodesian's Retreat
-
VD 5
123 UDI
-
S 2
124 ZAPU
-
VD 3
125 ZANU
-
S 3
126 Traverse of the Gods HVS 5a *** 27
  Birds Nest Bay
128 Stir Crazy
-
6a+ * 8
129 The Puzzle
-
6c+ * 4
130 Bathtubb
-
6b * 5
131 Bird's Nest Arete
-
5c * 12
132 Sweet Surrender
-
6b ** 11
133 White Flag
-
5c * 9
134 Gid's Landing
-
5a * 12
135 The Scotty Dog Traverse
-
6a+ * 16
136 Mars With Original Melpomene Finsih E2 5c 1

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