Altitude 60m a.s.l
simon, Berlin 7A+, Dinas Rock © simon rawlinson
Tucked away in a narrow gorge at the northern end of the Neath Valley, Dinas Rock is one of the best cliffs in South Wales. Its walls of high quality limestone are covered with overlaps, roofs, subtle grooves and water-worn features which combine to give some fine climbing. Technique and perserverance are needed as much as power and guile. Not all of the climbing is in the higher grades and the Roadside crags contain some very accessible routes in the lower and mid-grades.
Take the A465 and Glyn Neath Rd (via B4242) to Pontneddfechan. An unclassified road then follows the Afon Sychryd river upstream to a sharp right at a bridge, then the car park. Climbers are asked to avoid parking in the residents parking areas on the approach road, and wherever possible consider sharing transport to minimise the number of cars required.
Take the path to the left from the car park for the main face, heading over the hill, right at the fork, and then right at the river to get to the main cliff.
For the roadside crags and Kennelgarth, take the more obvious track on the right. It is also possible to reach the upper crags by scrambling up from the river at the end of this path.
An SSSI and a Special Area Of Conservation, the vegetation in the gorge area is especially important. Among the rare species to be found in the area are Scarce Turf-moss, Tunbridge Filmy-fern, Deratocarpon miniatum and Rock Fingerwort. The rock face and exposures are also nationally important geological features. Vegetation clearance and modification of the rock faces is to be avoided without prior consent from the Forestry Commisson and the clearance of trees and undergrowth has in the past has led to the real threat of access restrictions.