At UKC we are all climbers and we understand the strong urge to be outdoors as the weather is finally improving. Please proceed with caution though.
Becky, terriers tooth © ben_lea
A huge and intricate sea cliff offering stunning multi-pitch routes up to 70 m, mostly in the S to E1 grades. Solid and endowed with cracks and holds. Must-dos include Pendulum Chimney (S), Pegasus (HS), South Face Direct (VS 4c), Diocese (VS 5a), Bishops Rib (E1 5b).
Note that the start of the classic Terrier's Tooth was destroyed by rockfall in early 2014. It is now harder and less pleasant than before.
The base of many routes can only be reached for three hours either side of low tide. However, worthwhile climbing can still be found at high tide, for example
- traverse onto Wolf Buttress from Ash Can Gully to do Aerial or Corporals Route.
- climb The Mitre starting in Pinnacle Gully
- abseil down East Chimney to get to the start of South Face Direct and Pendulum Chimney (calm seas only).
Nesting fulmars can be a problem in spring and early summer, especially on Bulging Wall and the Main Cliff.
Park at the Porthgwarra car park (pay and display, may become busy in summer and holidays). Follow the tarmac lane uphill past granite buildings on the left. Follow the road in a loop to the left above the houses, then take the path right across heathland to the coastguard lookout. Only the summits of the buttresses can be seen from this level; take care to orient yourself before heading down. Ash Can Gully is the broad gully below the lookout.
The crag is south facing for the most part and quick drying, especially with a bit of sea breeze. However, it's worth bearing in mind that traversing along the platform at the base of the crag (needed to get to most routes) can be exciting in anything other than calm seas. The traverse is generally accessible 3 hours either side of high tide for most of the crag and the base of Terrier's Tooth and Bishop's Buttress for slightly longer, although these times are significantly reduced during neap tides. During high tides or when big seas are running, it is also possible to abseil in to the upper pitches of several routes.
Dates: 15 March to 15 July
Reason: Nesting Birds
The restriction applies from Lacertion to The Mitre.
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