Climbs 33
Rocktype Schist
Altitude Tidal
Faces E

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Greg Boswell on the route Dangleberries at Orchestra Cave © Ecosse Images

Crag features

The jewel in the crown of the north east coasts sport cliffs. The cliff faces due east and is essentially a shallow cave with the roof of the cave set at about 50 degrees. However unlike so many other steep cliffs of micro schist along the coast it is generally excellent quality and uniquely laced with at fine red granite for extra interest. In some places the red granite pushes through the schist in tufa like formations which provides the finest routes (Blobstrop and Air on a G String). On the right side of the cave is an impressive wall of red granite overhanging at about 50 to 60 degrees.

A visit is not recommended in the nesting season (End April to Mid August) due to the volume and stench of the summer residents. That said some years there are few birds and climbing is possible on the back wall routes but the cliff should be avoided when birds are present here. It's often best not to risk it and head to the Fin instead. For optimum conditions it is best to visit on sunny cool mornings in spring and autumn when the sun is lower in the sky and can penetrate its rays deep in to the cave. Strong Northwest to North winds usually provide ideal conditions however a good workout can often be had on any cool fresh breezy day but beware of the tide and swell. Although the routes aren’t affected by the tide access to them is! 

Approach notes

From the A92 just north of Portlethen follow signs to Findon village drive through the village and park considerately on the last road (not the grass) on the right (old Inn road). Take the track leading down the left side of the first house until a grassy track leads off right down onto the moor. Follow this east until it bends south at a low broken dyke and cross the fence here into the field and head south east across this field and through a gap in the dyke. Now head due east to cross a fence onto the headland trend down and left until a block with rope threads is reached. It is possible to abseil in here to reach the routes at high tide as long as there is no swell or you can abseil in directly above Dangleberries from old bolts (make a judgment on their condition) in a big block to the left low tide required. Egress is either 1) climb the rock up the line of the ab rope using the ab rope as a back up (about E1) 2) carefully ascend the ab rope (rope ascenders needed be careful of sharp edges) 3) soloing a V Diff chimney 10m South of the Ab point. None should be taken lightly!

On the far left looking into the cave are some short but worthwhile easier routes.

Access Advice

Please be considerate when parking and make sure you are not blocking driveways and at the local resident request avoid parking on the grass.

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