At UKC we are all climbers and we understand the strong urge to be outdoors as the weather is finally improving. Please proceed with caution though.
Altitude 402m a.s.l
Winter sunset, The Roaches © Adam Long
Magnificent imposing buttresses of superb natural grit up to 30m high. Shaded in summer, but slow to dry and green early in the year. 'Must do' routes include the astounding Valkrie (VS 4c), the delectable Elegy (E2 5c) and the immaculate The Swan (E3 5c). Slab and crystal lovers will be sated with a unique collection of desperate routes, the hardest of which is Doug (E8 6c). Some of the best bouldering on grit can be found both in the woods and on the spring boulders
The area faces southwest receiving the sun from mid-morning. It is often beautiful in late-afternoon sunshine. It catches the wind and dries quickly after rain but offers little shelter from bad weather. Most of the rock is clean although some north-facing sections can be green. The area around the Spring Boulders is usually very boggy in the winter.
The Roaches is situated to the east of the A53 between Buxton and Leek. At busy times, it is necessary to park at Upper Hulme, on the A53, from where the local council provides a bus link to the crag. At less busy times, parking is available on the road below the crag but please park considerately. From here, a well-worn path leads to the two main tiers past the conspicuous Rockhall Cottage (the Whillans Memorial BMC hut).
Please keep to the established footpaths and avoid taking short-cuts across open moorland areas. In particular please approach the ‘Cube’ boulder along the sheep track running due south.
Rockhall Cottage is run as a climbers and walkers hut by the BMC. It can be booked for up to 12 people - further information on the hut and the booking system can be found here.
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