Climbs 176
Rocktype Limestone
Altitude 222m a.s.l
Faces W

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Paul Cox on the soaring crack-line of ...One For All (HS) at The Great Central Cave Area, Shorn Cliff. © Mike Hutton

Crag features

Unquarried limestone, generally sound, single pitch routes, many of outstanding quality, 10-30 metres. A couple of routes are over graded but some are hard for their grade - Touch The Fire (E2 5c) is no pushover. Majority of routes HVS-E2. Descent by abseil from trees. 60m rope necessary for some routes if single-roping. Beware loose rock at cliff top.

Approach notes

R3 approach no longer exists. R3a takes one to the Great cave area traversing right is doable if a bit unpleasant.. R2 is quite overgrown needs re-establishing. There is another path  between the two - couple of stones marks the start and comes up between Bridal Butress and white tower.

A guide book was found below Easy Rider (E1). Could you post a note?


The foot bridge from Tintern has reopened as of June 2023.

17/2/2020: *** Cavers have been digging out a cave to left of Renaissance and Bubble Memory and have left debris on the path, please take care until the situation is resolved ***

Park for free at the Lower Wireworks public car park (cars only) (Behind the Royal George Hotel NP16 6TQ), which is a little closer than the pay and display at Tintern Abbey, walk back to the A466 and head NW for about 50 metres turning right after the Abbey Mill down a lane that leads foot bridge over the river. Follow the level track until metal posts on the left indicate a steep path. Follow the path, taking the rightmost option at every fork to reach a forestry track after about 25 minutes walk. Turn R onto the forestry track, and carry on for about 500 metres where a sign "R4" is visible on the LHS. This access path leads to "Tigers Don't Cry" on Abbey Buttress at the L end of the crag.
For other buttresses, either (i) follow the crag path rightwards, or (ii) continue on the forestry track until a sign R3a indicates the access route to Great Central Cave Area. Beyond this R3,R2 & R1 lead to Pinnacle Wall, The White Towers & Hit and Run Buttress respectively. Note: bring head torches - you don't want to scramble down in the dark.

If you access from the Tintern Quarry parking please do not block any of the gates. These are very important to facilitated the access of emergency services in case of an emergency so it can save your own life.

Restricted Access

The rock at Shorncliffe is generally sound, but there are some areas of more questionable rock which need to be treated with caution - in particular at the top of the crag where the last few metres can be more broken. Placing an extra piece of gear or two in solid rock before topping out is worth considering.

Descent for all routes is by abseil from trees at the top of the routes. These have been fitted with rope slings and abseil rings to prevent damage to the trees so please use them, but don't forget to check the anchors (both the strength of the tree and the quality of the rope and ring) before commiting to using them. It is also worth having some spare cord to replace any rope which is showing wear. A single 60m rope doubled over should allow you to reach the ground on all routes but double check first.

Seasonal Restrictions

Dates: 15 April to 31 May

Reason: Nesting Birds

Wireworks bridge in Tintern is open again after refurbishment works. Park for free at the wireworks and walk-in through the woods takes about 40 minutes. Thanks BMC for the excellent new cable anchors!
simoncov - 06/Jun/23
Found today a recent, fair sized rock fall to the right end of pinnacle wall (if memory serves me right... It might have been fallacy buttress). Should be obvious from the pile of stones and wall of mud above. I'd advise not climbing it, or even hanging out underneath until it stabilizes.
Stone Muppet - 26/Sep/20
Yesterday (11/07/2016) we had an accident at The White Towers. Trying to climb Cultural Revolution a block came off, a protection popped and my climbing partner hit the ground with a bit of slow down from the protection that hold. Extraction was tricky and involved paramedics, rope rescue and a couple of teams of firemen. He is fine now, just one vertebra broken and a nasty cut in his leg. In the same route just at the top of the initial corner we found a massive block that is about to come off. I am planning to come back, recover the gear left and clean up. In the meantime I would suggest to avoid the route and "The Little White Tower" area in general. Also note it is very important not to block the wooden gate if you park at Tintern Quarry parking as it facilitated the access of emergency services.
FerClimbs - 11/Jul/16
A warning has been posted on the forums about a rockfall on the upper reaches of "Llamas in the Loft" (The Buttress with No Name) - it may be worth avoiding this (fairly poor) route for the moment Rick
Rick Sewards - 13/Apr/15
My friend fell of "Hit and Run" (E2) in the hit and run area (R1) today and hit the deck from twenty meters all gear was left on route if you are next up please contact to return it. The kit left institute may become part of a police investigation. 07879084688 is my contact number Felix.
Felix Ottey - 15/Jun/14
A really brilliant crag. Perfect for high volume days of climbing. I dont think i've actually climbed a bad route here. Most routes are very safe. Well deserving of it's reputation as a softly graded venue. Though there's a few stiff routes to keep you on your toes.
Kemics - 24/Jun/13
I'm not convinced about the star distribution at Shorn cliff, as nearly all the rock and routes are good. I don't think there is one route that is truly worth three stars but then i think there are many that are worth one and certainly a lot that are worth two.
The Pylon King - 11/Oct/09
Thread Security (VS 5a) - 2/3rds of the way up a massive block (4ft high) has slipped down about a foot or so and a large, wheel sized flying saucer of rock is just resting against it. I'd go as far as saying don't climb this route becuase these rocks are going to go big style.
Dax - 25/Mar/09
Climbed "Thread Security - The Buttress with No Name" today. 2/3rds of the way up a massive block (4ft high) has slipped down about a foot or so recently and a large wheel sized flying saucer of rock is just resting against it. I'd go as far as saying don't climb this route becuase these rocks are going to go big style.
Dax - 21/Mar/09
Did Laughing Cavaliers HVS on 19th May. Awesome route. There is now a huge fallen tree at the foot of the cliff, which looks like it has fallen from the very top of the route. The big flake at the top still feels very solid but the loss of the tree might have compromised its long term stability.
lmarenzi - 22/May/08
take lots of small wires and quickdraws
Dr Caterpillar - 04/Aug/07
Re: above comment -Wall cleaned up nicely - Did "Iron Curtain", definately a worthwhile VS, "Another brick in the wall" looks ok as well.
The Pylon King - 17/Mar/07
The section of the crag between Dirty Harry and Organ Grinder has recently been stripped of its ivy. The routes will now be a much more pleasant proposition! I've not climbed any of them myself yet, but they look worth the effort.
katonka - 19/Oct/06
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