/ East of England Sport Climbing
Happy valentines and all that....
I was wondering if anyone could suggest any good sport climb locations? I am in Essex, which is miles away from any decent crag I know (the cycling is pretty decent around here though). Wondering if there are any hidden gems?
Cheers in advance.
Portland or Swanage the closest sport climbing to you, along with the Peak.
Use the UKC maps in the logbooks Ryan - really every climbable bit of rock is in there (along with some brick bridges, holes in the ground in Cambridgeshire etc etc. You'll see you probably need to go to the Peak for real climbing, although you might pass some dodgy Leicestershire quarries on the way (probably best to keep driving though!). Otherwise south of the river into Kent to find some well loved sandstone lumps - but definitely not sport climbing!
Essex has a whole series of railway bridges with interesting bouldering. They also provide good aid climbing going back to the sixties. Maybe now is the time to learn how to bolt routes
If you are in Essex and want sport climbing it's worth looking at the possibilities opened up by Ryan Air and Stanstead Airport.
I'm only being partly tongue in cheek there
Haha, thanks all!
It looks like a trip to the peaks or Stansted for me!
Being in Essex is ideal. You're perfectly placed for reaching much rock.
None of this only climbing on one crag or rock type for you.
Closest real rock is sandstone.
Lead climbing you're just about equidistant (in time) from Dorset limestone, Bristol area limestone, Peak grit and peak limestone.
If you have a whole weekend to spare, Devon, South Wales, Yorkshire, wye valley are just a little further, about an hour more.
If you have the motivation or 3 days.... think bank holidays etc, North Wales, lakes, pembroke, deeper into Devon and Northeast. Are a similar distance time wise.
I guess just follow the good weather and decide if it's 3, 4 or 5 hours drive you're happy with. As long as you're ok accepting it's as drive to anywhere, it's not a bad location to find yourself in.
And if you are happy with 4 to 5 hours, the airport truly does open up Europe.
The selection of indoor walls nearby might also motivate getting outside too. They're ok, but it isn't quite as good as being outside......
It's not all dodgy quarries in Leicestershire. Recent news report here on UKC was about a boulder problem on a piece of quarried Leicestershire rock.
Edit: actually that location has an E1 5b that is as good as most 3* routes of the same grade in the peak (if it's clean).
You beat me to it... there is plenty of quality... access to it is the main issue there.
> Being in Essex is ideal. You're perfectly placed for reaching much rock.
> None of this only climbing on one crag or rock type for you.
That's some impressive positive spin right there! You don't happen to be a member of the ERG do you?
I second the Leicestershire quarries, quite a bit of trad and sport. Kept me sane when I moved back to the east of England for a year after uni. All granite and slate, and practically next to the M1, never had any problems with access. Definitely do able for a day trip from Essex.
hangingstone slate quarry (sport) near wood house eaves was a particular favourite with some very enjoyable climbing. Just check the UKC crags map, loads of options in that area.
New surveys have prompted a number of changes to the Deweys, the list of the 500m summits in England and Wales. If you're bagging them, then you need to read on...