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Climbs 154
Rocktype Gritstone
Altitude 417m a.s.l
Faces W

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Summer evening cragging © Marek

Crag features

An excellent though not very extensive outcrop which can be considered as Windgather's bigger brother, with taller, steeper routes and more climbs in the orange zone. Many of the routes follow steep cracks and grooves and on most the protection is excellent.

Castle Naze has seen the attention of climbers for a century or so now. It is not as popular as nearby Windgather, the lack of really easy routes and the fact that fixing belays above the cliff is awkward tends to reduce the number of teams interested in top-roping. Also the style of climbing, often involving steep jamming, requires a bit of technique and gritstone savvy. If you have learnt the basics indoors or at Windgather, a session or two here should hone your technique before moving on to even bigger things.

The cliff faces west into the afternoon sun but is exposed to the west wind because of its situation close to the ridge of the hill - great for keeping the midges away in high summer but too bracing for most on drafty spring and autumn days. The crag dries quickly except for the north-facing areas of rock.

Approach notes

The crag is situated high above the village of Combs, to the south of Chapel-en-le-Frith. There is parking for 3 cars in a muddy layby on the minor road that runs between Dove Holes and Combs. Walk up the road for 30m and then follow the steep track that slants rightwards up the cliff passing a steep wooden fence to the left-hand end of the cliff.

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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
WARNING: As of the 13.05.12 the “hidden” flake was loosened by a climber, and the flake was deemed to be unsafe and the flake was subsequently removed. There may still be some loose rock, so be aware.
peat - 14/May/12
Super venue.
BennoC - 12/Jun/09
Come on all you sexigenarians or whatever the term is for a 6 decade piss artist. Last night I sampled the sublime delights of Timothy Taylor's Landlord at the Beehive. Oh yeah, nearly forgot - the climbing was pretty good too!
Colin Ardron - 02/Sep/05
I shouldn't really say this, but I think Castle Naze is a little unknown gem. Granted it's not an enormous crag, but it does have a lot going for it. It's generally pretty quiet with only a few people ever climbing there, and you might even find yourselves the only ones. That kind of solitude is pretty rare these days in the Peak. It also has, one could arguably say one of the best views in the Peak District and its pretty stunning on a nice sunny mid week evening. Even if the climbing isn't extensive, it does have (for me) some classic climbs. A note, it is pretty loose up top, so a helmet is definitely advisable. Finally, there is also a great pub down the hill in Combs called the Beehive which is a nice finish to an evening.
Stuart Barker - 10/Jan/03
The parking is very limited (3 cars) and the road single track. However, the walk from the ample parking at Chapel railway station, is pleasant and takes about 25 mins. Cross the track and take the RH path.
Paul J - 18/Jun/02
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Climbs at this crag

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