Climbs 62
Rocktype Limestone

Faces S

Belay or photo's not both please. © riddle

Crag features

A huge wall with several routes which are the longest at Swanage. Abseil approach to a non-tidal boulder beach. More reasonable finishes than other swanage cliffs. No climbing 1 March to 31 July because of nesting birds on the main West face.

Approach notes

Guillemot Ledge is approached from Langton Matravers. To reach the parking spot, turn off the A351 towards Langton Matravers, just outside Swanage town. Once in the village, go past the post office and turn left into Durnford Drove. The car park (which has recently had a pay and display machine installed, very expensive for vans) is 300m down here by Langton House. From the parking walk south on a good path past four fields and a spyway barn. After the 4th field, before you drop down to the quarry, turn left (looking out) and follow the ridge track to cross another stile in the next stone wall. Drop diagonally right down a steep hillside to reach the valley bottom then head out towards the cliff edge past a last stone wall. Where the path forks take the middle track via the valley bottom to reach a rickety stile in the cliff-top fence. Cross here to find the lower cliff-top quarry on the left. The main abseil and gearing up ledge lies at the base of the deep gully on the right (looking out) of the stile. Steep rock steps lead down a gully to a small ledge. There is a stake is cemented in at the back of the ledge. An alternative abseil is from boulders in the quarry. Rucksacks can be safely left in the gully but be wary if approaching from the quarries.

Access Advice

Seasonal Restrictions

Dates: 1 March to 31 July

Reason: Nesting Birds

Restrictions apply between the Dancing Ledge and Valkyrie Buttress Direct, and also east of The Razor's Edge.

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).



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
More Guidebooks:
South West Climbs - Volume 1 (2012)
Dorset Route Database (2000)

Out of print:
The National Trust car park isn't free any more. They've installed a pay machine (very recently, from the look of it). Prices for cars are reasonable but the longest period you can buy is 8 hours (for £4), possibly not enough for a long day. They charge extra for minibuses and vans, though. £14 for 8 hours. Fair enough for minibuses that might be carrying 15 people but pretty extortionate for a couple in a van! We went elsewhere (and good job we did because we weren't back inside eight hours anyway).
Luke90 - 27/Jul/17
The dead cow is now decomposing and cooking in the sun. Take a nose plug! you can now smell it from the top of the Ab. Rank!!
darren hudson - 15/Jul/13
There is a dead cow in the boulders below the lower abseil point (in the gully). Probably worth avoiding the area between Mistaken Identity and The Spook due to the smell.
Monkey_Alan - 12/Jul/13
Warning! Look out for the second pitch on smutti. The leader had just started on the second pitch of smutti last Sunday 03/07/2005, and had just reached the section where he was traversing right to make the ascension, when the rock quite literally gave way in his hand, leading to a 50ft fall which pulled out a (threaded through the rock)no. 5 nut and a cam, shattering the rock! This top pitch is treacherous!! Thankfully the leader survived with just a few nasty bruises and a fractured hand, BUT BEWARE.
Tim Kinloch - 05/Jul/05
warning !! Valhalla, HVS on Guillemot West (just left of popular Zo-Zo, VS), has suffered rockfall, which extends from the top down to the overlap. The "steep pull through the roof" on pitch 1 no longer exists. All of pitch 2 is changed and is loose. We survived the route, just, but big lumps of rock were pounding the ledge at the base. Hope we did not kill anyone!
charlifarli - 26/Jul/04
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Climbs at this crag

Climb name Grade
  West Face
2 Dougal the Great E6 6c **  
3 Race for the Oasis E5 6a * 1
4 Sons of Pioneers E6 6b * 1
5 Tudor Rose E2 5b *** 128
6 Facedancin' E3 6a *** 36
7 Oceanid E2 5b ** 61
8 Fly Crazy But Free E5 6b ** 6
9 Warlord E4 6a *** 52
10 Vikings E4 6a ** 30
11 Nemesis
E2 5c * 1
12 Caiaphas E3 5c * 3
13 Deaf Mosaic E6 6c * 1
14 Norseman
E5 6a/b 1
15 Valkyrie VS 4b 12
16 Be-Bop-Deluxe E2 5b * 1
17 Valkyrie Buttress Direct HVS 5a ** 23
18 Valhalla HVS 5a 13
19 Zo Zo VS 4b * 197
20 Smutti
HS 4b 4
21 Dysentry HVS 4c 3
Climb name Grade
22 Summit Route HS 4b 10
23 No Mistaking E3 5c ** 6
24 Mistaken Identity VS 4c ** 277
25 True Identity HVS 5a ** 71
26 Lichen Wall
E1 5b 10
  East Face
28 Outside The Wire E1 5b 12
29 Exit Chimney Two - The Sequel E4 6a *  
30 Sapphire E1 5b ** 171
31 Glooked
E5 6b 1
32 The Spook E1 5b *** 312
33 Toiler on the Sea E5 6b * 4
34 August Angie E1 5b * 49
35 Necromancy E4 5c * 9
36 The Heat E4 5c * 11
37 The Big Heat E4 6a ** 11
38 Deep Heat E3 6a 1
39 Funeral Pyre E5 5c * 2
40 Manana HVS 5a * 114
41 Joy Luck Dragon Phoenix E4 6a 1
42 Tensor II VS 5a *** 659
Climb name Grade
43 Strapiombo HVS 5b ** 202
44 Helen's Return E2 5b * 8
45 Ledgend HS 4b * 400
46 Graffiti Bomber of New York City E2 5c * 9
47 Ledgend Direct HVS 5a ** 281
48 Vampire (direct start) E1 5b * 20
49 Vampire HVS 5a * 41
50 Batt Crack VS 4c ** 433
51 Ever-heady E3 6a 1
52 The Moon Is Down E4 5c 1
53 The Crevice VS 4c 19
54 Friends from the Deep E3 5c ** 19
55 Yellow Belly Wall E5 6b * 1
56 Yellow Wall E1 5b ** 127
57 Robud HVS 5a * 53
58 Cascara VS 4b 13
59 Younger Days E3 6a * 5
60 Razor's Edge HVS 5a * 6
61 Landslide Victory E1 5c 3
62 Michelle HVS 5a 4
63 Isolation ward HVS 5a 2
* Climbs listed in red are waiting to be checked by a crag moderator, and may not be accurate.

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