climber Nick Arding. Route Twilight Zone, middle Fin, Lower Sharpnose, N Devon © nick arding
A major venue with incredible long thin fins sticking out into the sea facing both N and S (and some W). Tidal and abseil approach required. Bizarre construction but solid, and with a terrific concentration of hard face and crack climbs up to 150ft, with some tough 30ft testpieces for those lacking stamina. Many three-star routes, such as The Smile (E1 5b), Pacemaker (E5 6a) and Coronary Country (E6 6b). For the fit the grades will seem easy as the routes are mainly technically straightforward. The less travelled routes can be a bit dusty.
Near MOD land; best to park near the heavy metal gate a few hundred m N past the government buildings. Walk across the old airfield to join the coast path near the perimeter fence. Three narrow fins head out to the sea: that is them. Best to use the mixed slopes on the N and S of the fins.
|Superb venue. Lots of cams required. When checking tide times, use Bude not Bideford. We used the wrong one and came very close to being stranded because if it! Also well worth bringing an ab rope. The rockfax guide implies there is a nice shiny bolted ab point on North Fin - there isn't. It has 2 pegs (1 very recent and solid) plus numerous good nut placements, so needs a properly set up and equalised ab, not just twin ropes and pull through. I'm sure this all seems very obvious to sea cliff afficionardoes, but we haven't done much sea cliff climbing so weren't expecting this.
hms - 11/Aug/13
|If anyone is confused about the walk-in, it helps to know to walk between the COW HERD and RADAR DISHES, following the fence around before heading on the small path down to the fins. If it would be useful perhaps interested climbers could ask UKC to put a photo up illustrating this characterful approach.
Fiend - 11/Jan/08
|Mascon, E1 5a, on the North face of the North fin is well worth doing. Worthy of E1, possibly touching on 5b and definitely worth 3 stars.
dennis may - 27/Sep/05
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