Altitude 111m a.s.l
Rainbow over Fair Head © bugs29
The massive dolerite sill of Fair Head is one of the best crags in Britain and Ireland. Located at the northeastern tip of Antrim, it gives an impressive outlook to Rathlin Island and the Mull of Kintyre, and offers many outstanding routes at every grade from VS to E9. In the E2-E5 range there are more than 100 ** or *** routes.
The most popular routes are the shorter and more easily accessed at either end of the main cliff. The most frequently visited of all are the excellent single-pitch lines on the Prow, and the routes in the Rathlin Wall area, both of which receive afternoon sun. The tall north-facing walls in the middle of the crag see less traffic, but are highly recommended to the more adventurous visitor.
As is the nature of a north-facing dolerite crag, on routes that have not been climbed for a while it is worth abseiling the line to clear out cracks, brush lichen and remove any flakes that have come loose.
There are a few different parking options depending on which part of the crag you're aiming for. Sean's farm car park at the Ballycastle end asks for a donation, while the signposted National Trust car park is a better option for routes approached by the Grey Man's Path. The approach walk to the top of the main crag from either is about 15 minutes. The eastern end of the crag can be approached from the Murlough Bay car park. The two descent options to the base of the crag on foot are by the Ballycastle Descent Gully or Grey Man's Path. Walking along the base of the crag for any distance is not recommended (it is possible but time-consuming and seriously unpleasant), so for routes in the middle a 90m abseil rope is handy.
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