Climbs 72
Rocktype Limestone
Altitude Tidal
Faces SW

Disappearing ball of gas , White hole , Portland Dorset 17.45 hrs 24.03.11 © LaMentalist

Crag features

This area of relatively short cliffs near Portland Bill has a set of good little routes with an atmosphere which belies their size. The rock is solid but also extremely rough and it can be a bit tough on the fingers. The recent development of Memories Zawn has added another dimension to the area with some committing routes and solos requiring blind approach abseils into tight zawns. Overall White Hole is a small but worthwhile area with a lot of variety and grade spread. Forgotton Wall - there is a hidden bay of fine vertical rock situated below the fence and path into the mirthmaid wall. 6 boulder problems have been established all on solid rock but high top outs. Easy to identify as there is a footramp to start the route 'These Waters'. Landings ok but mat essential.

Approach notes

Drive to Portland Bill and either park by the lighthouse (not free) or back at the Coastguard parking before the Pulpit Inn. From the lighthouse parking walk west (right - looking out) next to a fence and above an old quarry, for 300m. Turn right at the cliff-top and follow the fence. The South Cliff is just below the top after 20m. Mirthmaid Area is the large square-cut prow further into the bay. It is reached by following the fence closely past a creek, before dropping down onto a large rock platform. To reach Memories Zawn continue from the rock platform along a narrow cliff-top ledge that runs right (looking out) around a square cut zawn to a narrow rift beneath the weird conglomerate rock bridge. More details are given with the route pages for the approaches from the cliff-top.

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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

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
More Guidebooks:
Portland (2008)
Dorset Route Database (2000)

Out of print:
The fence mentinoed in the description now includes a barrier preventing easy access to the routes on the promontary. Nowadays, one must scramble along ledges to the back of the zawn and make a scary pull across a narrow (but deep) gap.
Steve Taylor - 30/Sep/03
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Climbs at this crag

Climb name Grade
  Memories Zawn Area
2 Second Attention 6c+  
3 Crossing the Boundaries of Affection 7a+ * 2
4 Kinaesthesia 7a+ *** 2
5 Intricacies of Dreaming 7b ** 1
6 Memories 6a+ * 5
7 Hung, Swung and Zawned Out E2 5b ** 2
8 Paraphilias E5 6a * 1
9 Aphasia E3 5b 1
10 The Drill Sergeant 6c+ *  
11 Until the End of Man 7a **  
12 Karate Kid 6a+ 9
13 Bar, Bar, Black Sheep 6c+ * 1
14 Excalibur's Edge 6b+ ** 1
15 The Labyrinth 7b *  
16 One Life 7b ** 1
17 Faceache 7b **  
18 The Code Breaker and the French Teacher 7a+ * 1
19 Obscene Gesture (Part 2) 7a+ *  
20 The Skin Trade 7a+ * 1
  Mirthmaid Zawn Area
22 Sad Young Biscuits 7a+  
23 Dead in Europe 7a+ *  
24 Splendid Isolation 6c * 9
25 Just for a Day E4 6a * 2
26 Mirthmaid 7a+ *  
27 Nightmirth 7c *  
28 Sister of Night E5 6b **  
29 Any Last Requests? E4 5c  
30 Spanish Air E3 5b  
31 Tiny Smiles 7a+  
32 Totally Stoked
-
HVS 5a  
33 Route 12
-
E3 5c 1
34 Route 13
-
E2 5b 1
35 Get Some Air, Fatso!
-
E1 5b *  
36 Route 15
-
E3 6a  
37 Route 16
-
E3 5c * 1
38 True to the Game
-
E3 6a  
39 Dragon's Lair
-
VS 4a 6
40 Route 19
-
E2 5c 1
41 Route 20
-
E2 5c 1
42 Route 21
-
E2 5c 1
  South Cliff
44 Evening Delight 4a 3
45 Song of the Sea 5c 1
46 Balance of Power 8a ** 2
47 The Pipers of Portland 6c *  
48 Funnel Web 6b * 2
49 End of Season Sale 6b  
50 The Reign of Steel 6b+ * 3
51 Red Raw 7a+ 1
52 Tickled Pink 7c * 2
53 Wafer Thin 6b * 15
54 Run, Rabbit, Run 6b+ 18
55 Staple Diet 6b * 27
56 Painted Lady 6a+ 29
57 The Feather 6c 11
58 Rust Never Sleeps 6a 8
59 The Cruel Sea 5c 42
60 Adonis Blue 6b+ 24
61 Chalk-hill Blue 6a+ * 29
  White Hole Bouldering
63 Different Souls V1 ** 3
64 Crack of Doom f6C ** 4
65 Vert Ramp f6B+ * 6
66 Raised Beatch f6A+ * 6
67 White Hole Slab f6A * 9
68 Portland Dirt Bed f4 9
69 Cherty Freshwater Member f6A * 6
70 Toe Poke f6C+ ** 2
71 White Hole Arete f5+ ** 7
72 Six Strings Attatched V2 * 3
73 Gav's long link-up *
-
6b * 2
74 Stinkmata *
-
f6A **  
75 No Liability *
-
f5+ * 1
* Climbs listed in red are waiting to be checked by a crag moderator, and may not be accurate.

Moderator Updates to this page are checked by UKC volunteer Ben Stokes