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Climbs 26
Rocktype Diorites
Altitude 157m a.s.l
Faces NW

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Alex Mason on the brilliant Release the Hounds. The best sport route in north wales? © rockcat

Crag features

An historic venue with some traditional ridge routes from the '50s. More recently a brilliant 7c and a pair of fine trad test-piece arêtes have blasted it into the present day.

Situated on a hillside above the A55 and boasting some of the best coastal views in North Wales, these buttresses and steep walls are composed of ancient microgranodiorite - a hard and sharp grained yet blocky volcanic rock with relatively low co-efficient of friction which has a tendency to shed holds unexpectedly.

The crags generally face northwestwards and get plenty of afternoon and evening sun. Although there is a patina of lichen and the odd clump of heather, the routes dry very rapidly.

Approach notes

Turn off the A55 at junction 16 from the east and drive west through Penmaenmawr and at a disused petrol station turn left into Chapel Street. Follow this uphill through the terraces and around into a parking area on a steep side-hill. From the parking, walk uphill and right onto a small terrace, where a footpath leads up into the woods. At the top right-hand corner of the woods, just after a sharp left hairpin bend in the path, a smaller path heads up rightwards through the stone wall onto the quarry level. Follow the level rightwards for 1km to the main slab routes. Release the Hounds is 100m beyond the slab.

Guidebooks

The North Wales Limestone guide is incorrect for the approach to Release the Hounds etc. from Llanfairfechan. At the entrance to the country park turn left on the blue path not right.
rockcat - 26/Jul/15
To get to Camouflage Slab follow the usual approach to the "low fence supports" on the final horizontal section then head R up an old incline to a winding house. Just above the winding house follow a faint path R across the hillside until below the slab, which lies just past the first prominent (sharp) rock rib above the path. The slab is always black even when dry.
harold walmsley - 24/Sep/14
The new A55 climb book says to go right through the large black gate. Don't - it should say left!! Follow the turquoise waymark arrows until you reach a fence. This is a tall wire one, with a wirecuttered hole ripped in it. Go though the hole then bushwhack up a rough path to the incline.
hms - 24/Jul/12
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