Rocktype Sandstone (hard)
Altitude 1m a.s.l
Yesnaby Castle © mikemartin
Yesnaby Castle is a sea stack found just south of the Brough of Bigging in Yesnaby on the west coast of Orkney mainland. The stack was made famous by Joe Brown and his mates who made the first ascent in 1967, subsequently this stack and the Old Man of Hoy are the only two stacks in Orkney who regularly receive assaults by visiting climbers.
The easiest approach is from the roadend car park (Grid reference HY 221161) at Yesnaby about a kilometer to the north of the stack. To reach the base of the stack an abseil down the surrounding cliffs is required. Reliable anchors on the cliff tops are few, the fence posts and the small stone cairns in the field have been used by previous parties. If you walk past the stack heading south for about 100 metres, where the cliff turns through 90 degrees, you will find a sheltered wee platform just below the top of the cliff. There are lots of good anchor points here and a very short abseil to a huge sea level platform. once on the sea level platform walk to as close to the stack as possible and swim.
DESCENT: To descend the stack it is easiest to abseil down the landward face, use the nose of rock overhanging the seaward face as anchors and run your abseil tat across the top of the stack to the top of the landward face.
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