Altitude 1m a.s.l
Swanage Sport © Tommy Harris
The Promenade is the first of the predominantly sport climbing crags passed on the approach from Durlston Country Park and is one of the best roof climbing crags in the south of England. The savage bulging walls here give a host of powerful pitches that hit you from the first move and keep going until you heave yourself around the final lip to clip the lower-off - exhausted but satisfied. Whilst most visitors will come here for the excellent bolted roofs, the trad lines that sit comfortably between the bolts should not be ignored. Many of these also take on the stacked roofs at some impressively big grades.
There isn't too much here for those leading in the mid and lower grades though although the routes described are worthwhile and you can also easily combine a visit with the near-by Unknown Ledge. A handful of the recorded boulder problems have also been included, as they stay dry in the rain.
The big flat belay ledges at the base of the crag are another of The Promenade's enticing features although they are prone to being wave-washed even in moderate seas - watch where you leave your rucksacks!
From Durlston car park, follow the road towards the lighthouse then turn west (right - looking out) along the coast path. Continue to a stile just before the two mile pylons. From here, drop down a steep grass gully to a ledge above a large rock amphitheatre. Descend this (Diff) past a tricky step at the bottom to gain the platform. There are abseil bolts if required (the rope can be pulled down afterwards) and this is probably advisable on a first visit.
|13/08/2012 almost all the routes have new bolts.
Haydn Jones - 13/Aug/12
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