Ailladie (Aill an Daill - The Blind Man's Cliff) is an 800m long limestone sea cliff with routes varying in height from 8m to 30m. It lies out of sight below the Lisdoonvarna to Ballyvaughan road (R477) 11km north of Lisdoonvarna and about 1.5kms beyond where this road reaches the coast. The approach from the north is described in the introduction.
From the layby where cars are usually parked (OSi Discovery Series map 51 grid ref M 090 028) a short walk northward along the edge of the cliff brings one to a grassy ramp (OSi Discovery Series map 51 grid ref M 090 032) which leads down to a 3m step. This descent is used by local fishermen and is usually equipped with some rope and two metal spikes. Below this are the Dancing Ledges - an extensive non-tidal platform from which the first 90+ routes can be reached. Another 20+ routes are in the Mirror Wall area and access depends on the tide. For all routes further south descent is by abseil (see note on page ?).
The rock is steep with sharp incut holds and most routes take crack lines. Protection is reasonable. Many of the routes are subject to change due to high seas and winter storms. Boulders are shifted around from year to year and consequently the grades of the starts of routes can vary considerably.
Right of the descent the cliff gradually increases in height. 40m to the right is a short square-cut corner with an obvious wide crack (Pink Cleft). The wall is initially broken and overhanging but as Pink Cleft is approached it becomes more smooth and vertical. Left of the descent there is a long 1m wide overhang 1.5m above the boulders. The routes in this area are short but worthwhile and only a few have been recorded.
ROUTE 1 10m HS 4b
S. O Brien, 1977.
Start directly beneath the second corner to the left of the large overhang left of the descent. Climb the bulge to a ledge at 4m and up the corner to the top.
NOSTRIL CAPERS 10m HVS 5b
D. O Connell, S. O Riordan, August 1981.
Start below the first groove left of the large overhang and 2m right of Route 1. Climb bulging rock and gain a ledge below the groove. Climb the wall just left of the groove to the top.
This is the area of cliff which stretches left from the foot of the descent route to the boulder pile near Rollerball. The next set of routes can be found to the right of the descent on the wall which runs as far as the corner of Pink Cleft.
THE REVOLUTION WILL NOT BE TELEVISED 10m HVS 5b
G. Whittaker, C. Smaje, 12/4/90.
Start left of Orang Utang, below the capped, hanging corner, just left of the widest point of the roof. Climb the roof to gain the corner, up this, then over the capping roof. Finish directly up the small groove above.
ORANG UTANG 10m HS 4b
D. O Connell, S. O Riordan, February 1982.
Takes a thin crack just right of the start of the overhang. Climb the crack and traverse right on jugs to a broken wall.
HONEY MONSTER 10m HVS 5a
E. Cooper, September 1981.
A bouldering route which starts at a pile of boulders below a short thin crack near the left end of the long overhang and 2m left of Gambit. Climb the crack to a ledge on the left. Gain a higher ledge moving slightly right and up the final overhanging wall.
GAMBIT 10m HVS 5c
T. Ryan, K. Higgs, 27/11/77.
Start about 20m right of the descent below a crack which runs from the right end of the long overhang to an overhanging corner. Climb the first overhang (strenuous). Gain the corner niche and climb the overhang above to the top.
The rock between Gambit and Cripple has been climbed at several points at up to 5b.
CRIPPLE 10m VS 4c
T. Ryan (solo), 27/11/77
The smooth area of rock left of Pink Cleft ends at a broken crack. Just right of this there is a short diagonal leftward-trending flake crack near the ground. Climb directly up the wall just right of this.
LUGER 10m VS 5b
T. Ryan, 27/11/77.
About 11m left of Pink Cleft there is a small overhang at about 2.5m. Climb the overhang, trending left to a handhold. Now trend right to the top.
YING YANG 10m HVS 5b
K. Higgs, T. Ryan, 27/11/77.
Start on a boulder 5m left of Pink Cleft below a steep wall with patches of yellow lichen. Climb steeply to a horizontal crack, gain a higher horizontal crack and up to a groove. Continue more easily to the top.
DODO 10m HVS 5a
K. Higgs, T. Ryan, 27/11/77.
Start on the first boulder 5m left of Pink Cleft opposite a small stepped overhang and yellow rock. Gain a horizontal crack and large holds slightly higher. Straight up over a small bulge and groove to the top.
JONATHAN 12m MS
K.Kennedy (Maharees), E. Hobbs, 23/03/2012.
Start directly left of 'Pink Cleft' without using it as an aid. Climb the obvious crack line to ledge three quarters up and go slightly right to top out.
The 1997 guidebook says that the groove left of Pink Cleft has been climbed in the past at D
PINK CLEFT 10m
D J. O Connor, C. Whyte, 7/8/72
This is the corner and wide crack 40m right of the descent.
CRATER 10m S 4b
T. Ryan (solo), 27/11/77.
Take the short wall 3m right of Pink Cleft. Climb the wall to two horizontal cracks. Move right and climb to the top.
THE CRAFT HVS 5a
Nigel Callender, David O'Neill, 17th June 2001
Takes the wall between Crater and Gogo via a long reach from a pocket to a sloping hold
GOGO 10m HS 4b
J. O Connor, C. Whyte, 7/8/72.
Start below a shallow groove 5m right of Pink Cleft and climb the groove to the top.
CÉILÍ 10m E1 5c
T. Ryan (solo) 7/8/76.
There is an undercut groove with a triangular overhanging block 6m right of Pink Cleft . Climb the overhang strenuously and finish up the groove.
BACKBREAKER 10m E2 5b/c
Nigel Callender, David O'Neill, July 2001
Takes the shallow yellow groove 3m to the right of Céilí. Climb directly to the pod and ﬁnish direct. A poor R.P. protects crux. Serious despite the length, due to the poor landing.
MAD MACKEREL 13m HS 4a
T. Ryan, D. Windrim, 7/8/76.
A contrived route. Start on a boulder below a small Y-groove just around the arête left of O Connor's Corner (boulder gone, route now much harder Aug 2017). Climb diagonally left to a ledge. Move left and up steep cracks to the top.
The ledges and boulders between Mad Mackerel and O Connor's Corner are usually used as a descent by climbers. The wall to the right is referred to as Long Ledge Wall. Update 2014: big boulder gone from the bottom, so now a much worse way of descending.
IMEALL AN CHUIS 10m S
B Watts, C Saas, 7/5/2018 (first recorded ascent).
(The edge of reason) Takes a line between Climbers' Descent and O'CONNOR'S CORNER. Climb the left most crack at ground level 3m left of O'CC to the big ledge, move right and climb the left side of the vertical wall to the top.
O'CONNOR'S CORNER 10m D
J. O Connor, 7/8/72.
This is the right-facing corner before the wall with the long ledge at one-third height.
DART 16m HS 4a
T. Ryan (solo) 27/11/77.
Start as for O Connor's Corner and climb the wall on the right. Scramble up to wall. Hard first move, then easy to the top on jugs.
OPEN AIR FLAKE 16m VS 4c
S. Windrim, D. Windrim, 7/8/76.
This route starts just right of the corner and climbs the wall via the sharp flake. Climb the wall to a small ledge and continue up using cracks and flakes.
LISDOONFAROUT 15m HS 4a
D. Windrim, T. Ryan, 7/8/76.
Start 5m right of O Connor's Corner below a shattered crack just left of the long ledge. Climb to the base of the shattered crack and follow this to the top, treating the rock with care.
ALTERED IMAGES 15m E1 5c
E. Cooper, C. Torrans, April 1984.
Climbs the wall just right of Lisdoonfarout. Serious and poorly protected. Start near the left end of the long ledge. Make a hard move to reach the ledge. Mantelshelf awkwardly onto a foothold on the wall above, trend right, then back left to the top.
UNCONTROLLABLE 15m E4 6b
R. Browner, J. Coughlan, 29/4/95.
The central line up the wall left of Ground Control. Start as for No Control and move onto the long ledge. Step left and climb straight up the smooth wall just right of Altered Images using small holds and a tiny flake to reach better holds and a finish. Marginal protection.
NO CONTROL 18m E3 6a
K. Murphy, E. Cooper, 6/4/85.
An eliminate just left of Ground Control. Make a bouldering move onto the long ledge below the finish of Ground Control. Climb a couple of feet left of the top of Ground Control. Grab a jug on Ground Control and step back left again to finish up the wall.
GROUND CONTROL ** 16m VS 4c
T. Ryan, D. Windrim, K. Higgs, August 1976
A popular route giving steep fingery climbing with good protection. Start below the left-trending cracks which cross the centre of the long ledge. Make a bouldering move onto the ledge and climb the diagonal crack above.
PHOENIX * 17m HVS 5a
T. Ryan, S. Gallwey, S. Hyland, January 1979.
As for Ground Control to the long ledge. Move 1m right to an obvious hold on the wall, from here climb steeply to the top.
JUMBO 18m HVS 5a
T. Ryan, M. Prendergast, July 1982.
Start as for Ground Control. Climb Ground Control to the long ledge. Move 3m right past Phoenix to a curved crack. Step up into the crack, move right and up steeply to the top. Hard for the grade.
Direct start 6a/b J. Price. Climb directly up to the start of the curved crack.
WASP 16m E2 6a
E. Cooper, K. Murphy, S. McCrory, April 1985.
Start just where the lower ledge ends, about 2m right of the direct start of Jumbo. A problem start leads to the ledge. Move slightly right and then back left to gain a short crack and finish up this.
MOSQUITO 16m E2 6a
E. Cooper, K. Murphy, April 1985.
Starts as for Wasp. Follow Wasp to the ledge. Move 2m right and gain the crack left of Jet. Follow this to the top.
JET 16m E1 5b
K. Higgs, T. Ryan, 8/5/77.
At the end of the long ledge there are two thin rightward trending cracks. This route takes the first crack 6m right of Ground Control. Climb the thin crack past a ledge at 5m. Hard to protect.
SPITFIRE 16m E1 5b
K. Higgs, T. Ryan, 8/5/77.
Start below the second rightward-trending crack 1m right of Jet. Gain a small foothold and climb a thin crack to a horizontal break (crux) and up to a narrow ledge. Continue up the steep crack to the top.
FINALE 16m E2 5c
T. Ryan, D. O Sullivan, 17/3/85.
Right of the long ledge is an undercut overhang at 1.5m. The centre of the overhang is split by a crack (The Ocean). Start under a flake just left of this crack. Gain the flake. Traverse left to a niche and climb the steep wall above.
ORCA 16m E2 6a
E. Cooper, C. Torrans, April 1984.
Start as for Finale. Gain the flake and horizontal crack. Climb up to the second horizontal break and finish up the steep wall on good holds.
THE OCEAN * 16m E2 6a
S. Windrim, D. Windrim (1 nut for aid), 7/8/76. C. Torrans, J. Colton (free), 1977.
This popular little test piece takes the crack splitting the overhang. Using the flake pull strenuously over the overhang and move rightwards into the crack (crux). Gain good holds at a horizontal break. Up more easily on large holds to the top.
BUTTERFLY GIRL E4/5 6b/c
Nigel Callender, John Harrison, 11/09/05
The face to the right of The Ocean, gain a juggy ledge via a brutal start, the crux is moving from this to the sanctuary of the break. Failure on the crux results in a poor landing 20' below (tested this, feel lucky to still be walking). Ample gear in the 2 breaks leads up to a steep pod. Move right on hollow holds to finish steeply.
Top roped following ground up attempts.
UNDERTOW 16m E3 6b
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 10/3/85.
A strenuous and technical problem which is not well protected. About 5m left of Dagger there is an open groove that starts at head height (the second groove left of Dagger). The route takes this (hard move to start) and continues straight up.
DEAD RINGER 16m E3 6a
D. O Sullivan (solo) 8/7/85.
Start up the crack 2m left of Mutcher. Climb the crack and then move right to the ledge at the top of the white wall of Mutcher. Finish straight up as for Mutcher.
DAGGER 16m E1 5a
T. Ryan, D. Somers, 26/11/77.
The overhang right of the long ledge ends at a small ledge 2m above the ground (ledge gone, route now much harder Aug 2017). This route takes the white wall above the ledge. Gain the ledge. Avoiding the shallow groove above step left and make a hard move up the white wall to reach a good hold at a horizontal break. Climb steeply up to a good ledge. Finish up the crack in the bulging headwall.
MUTCHER 16m HVS 4c
C. Motyer, P. Ewen, 20/12/76.
Serious for the grade. Start as for Dagger. Gain the ledge at 2m (ledge gone, route now much harder Aug 2017) and climb the shallow groove to a horizontal crack. Trend up rightwards to a good ledge. Up more easily to the top.
ANGEL 16m E3 6a
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 12/5/84.
This route takes the thin crack trending slightly rightwards from the right end of the black ledge. Start 2m right of Mutcher. Gain the right end of the ledge and climb the crack to sloping ledges near the top. Move right and up a steep wall to finish.
BATTERY HEN * 16m E4 6a
D. O Sullivan (solo) 4/6/88.
Takes the wall between Atomic Rooster and Angel. Serious. Start 2m left of Atomic Rooster. Make a tricky move up the bulging wall to gain holds leading out left to a sidepull which is cranked upon to reach a spacious ledge. Finish directly up the wall above. (The start can be easier, depending on the position of the boulders).
ATOMIC ROOSTER ** 16m HVS 5b
S. Windrim, D. Windrim, 8/8/76.
A very good climb. Start below a short overhanging and curving groove 10m left of the deep corner, Genesis. Pull up into the groove and exit right to a good hold (crux). Move up and back left and follow a steep crack to finish.
AUTOMANIA 16m E2 6a
D. O Sullivan (solo), 8/7/85.
Start 2m right of Atomic Rooster. Climb up a faint groove in the wall until it is possible to move left to a ledge (crux). Continue up the bulging wall to the right of a V-groove to the triangular niche. Finish as for Preacher-Heckler.
PREACHER-HECKLER * 16m E1 5b
A combination of two routes. A serious climb with poor protection it follows the shallow groove 6m left of the deep corner. Climb the groove to a ledge at 3m. Continue up until it is possible to step left and up to the vertical wall above (Preacher traverses left at this point). Move right and finish up the leftward trending crack of Heckler.
PREACHER E1 5b
B. Richardson, C. Richardson, Easter 1976.
Climb leftwards up the headwall via the triangular niche. No protection.
HECKLER 17m E1 5a
J. Colton, 21/8/77.
Start at the short, smooth wall 2m left of Genesis. Climb the blocky groove to the overhang and follow the crack trending leftward to the top.
DIRGE 16m E1 5c
M. Manson, June 1985.
A contrived route taking the arête left of Genesis, easier if you bridge off the right wall Start up Genesis and move left to the arête. Climb this without bridging.
GENESIS ** 16m HS 4b
J. Mulhall, S. Young, 7/8/72.
This climb takes the deep south-facing corner which bounds the right-hand end of the long wall. A justifiably popular route. Gain the ledge at the bottom of the corner (awkward) and climb this passing a short steep section with a rattly block (crux).
GENOCIDE 15m E4/5 6a R. Browner, J. Gillmor, 6/5/96.
Start right of Genesis. Climb past a series of ledges to a good hold on the bulging wall above. From here a long move leads to an easier finish. Limited R.P. protection.
STONED * 15m E3 5c
N. Holliday, T. Sauerbridge, 19/4/79.
Easy for the grade but with spaced gear. Start below a thin crack in the wall 5m right of Genesis. Climb to the base of the crack. Step left and up the crack (crux) to obvious flakes (loose). Continue steeply to the top.
AN PUKA* 15m E4 6b
Start as for Stoned. Gain the left trending crack on Stoned, arrange gear and step back to below smooth wall. Move out and up on small edges to gain a layaway hold (good peg). Pull through to a ﬂ at ledge which isn’t as comfortable as it looks. A desperate move leads to the crack and an easy ﬁnish.
BONNAN BUI ** 15m VS 4c
J. Mulhall, J. McKenzie, 26/11/72.
A fine and popular route, it takes a groove which starts at mid-height on the wall right of Genesis. Start 7m right of Genesis under an arête. Climb just left of the arête and up past a hollow-sounding flake (crux).
NUTROCKER ** 15m HVS 5a
S. Young, J. Mulhall (aid used on first ascent), 7/8/72.
J. Levy (free), May 1975.
Excellent climbing up the steep corner 8m right of Genesis, easier if you are tall.
SUBSTANTIAL DOUBTS E3/4 6a
Dave Ayton, Neal McQuaid 05/2004 (Lead onsight)
Get established at the base of the corner of Nutrocker. Place some bomber gear and traverse out left to the arête using some enticing edges. From here mosey on up the arête to the ledge at 3 quarters height passing some pleasant moves on tinies for feet. A fall from the crux, which is the last move before reaching the ledge, would not be advisable. From the ledge climb the last 3m directly up the wall to finish
UP IN SMOKE 15m E2 5c
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 30/4/84.
A musical route on dubious flakes, it climbs the wall 4m right of the corner. Step left off the boulder and climb a short, blank groove to rattly blocks. Step right to a large ledge. Move back left onto squeaky flakes and continue to the top.
SADDLEBACK SOW * 14m HVS 5b
T. Ryan, S. Windrim, 23/7/77.
Good climbing with a hard start and a gymnastic finish. This route takes the rightward-trending roof crack which starts at mid-height. Start 4m right of Nutrocker. Climb the triangular rock (hard) and make a difficult move up rightwards into the groove. Move left to a large ledge below the overhang. Climb the crack strenuously to the top.
PINK POSY SLAB 14m E1 5b
B. Richardson, J. Levy, May 1976
This serious little route with the crux at the start and poor protection all the way takes an obvious rightward-trending ramp. Start as for Saddleback Sow. Step onto the wall and make a difficult move up rightwards into the groove. Climb the slab to its top right-hand corner and finish up the groove.
EIGHTY MINUTE HOUR E2/3 5b
Diarmuid Duggan, James Cruickshank April 2004
Start as for The Tilt. After 2 meters traverse back left and rock over onto the Pink Posy Slab. Climb straight up the head wall on side pulls and shallow pockets.
THE TILT 14m E2 5c/6a
C. Torrans, T. Ryan, C. Evans, 1987.
A gymnastic climb with a bold finish taking the short slab below Pink Posy Slab. Start directly below the white stain on the sloping shelf and climb the short wall to the bottom of the shelf and stain (often wet). Gain the shelf with difficulty and then climb the groove above (small wires down on the right).
GUILLOTINE 12m HS 4b
H. Hennessy, M. Walsh, 5/8/2009
Re-climbed after Boulder moved E3/4 6a H.Hennessy, D. Dillon 30/5/2020
Start as for "AMHRASACH" move left to the bottom of the groove, climb this with increasing difficulty to a sloping ledge. Finish up the overhang on good holds. (Toproped prior to accent)
AMHRASACH 12m HVS 5b
J. McKenzie, D. Mitchell, 5/11/72.
Re-climbed after storm damage. C.Ryan A.Abele 2014
Climb up on the right of the bulge to the large loose hold. Passed this gain a poor hand jam via some undercuts. Reach out left to a good hold and continue to the top.
SON OF SAM ** 11m E1 5c
T. Ryan, S. Windrim, 24/7/77.
A muscular sort of route. Start below a steep corner at the top of the rockfall and 2m right of the detached pillar. Climb the corner crack to a ledge at mid-height and finish up the overhanging groove above.
ROUTE 32 ** 11m E2 6a
T. Irving, P. Wynne, 24/7/77.
Several nuts were used for aid on the first ascent but these were eliminated by T. Irving on the second ascent. Short but with excellent sustained climbing, a popular and well protected route. This is the thin crack at the top of the rockfall and 2m right of Son Of Sam.
WHITEWASH * 11m E2 5c (E3 5c)*
A. White 26/3/94, (practised on top rope).
6m left of Blasket there is a peg at 4m in a faint rib. Climb to this and delicately rock past it into the loose faint groove above. Follow this to the top.*** The peg is now rotted, a bouldering mat and slider nut is recommended when attempting this route***
GREEN WASH 11m E2 6a
S. McEvoy, 26/3/94, (practised on top rope).
An eliminate start to Whitewash which goes directly up the thin crack to the peg and reaches out to the end of the diagonal crack on the right.
DROP THE DEAD DONKEY 11m E4 6a
F. Richard's, 26/3/94, (solo)
Boldly boulder up the seemingly blank wall just right of Whitewash on small crimps to the horizontal break. Continue more easily direct to the top, passing some suspect rock.
BLASKET 10m E1 5c
T. Ryan, L. Higgs, 8/8/76.
This is the short undercut corner above the top right-hand end of the rockfall. Originally graded Severe, rockfall has produced a tricky start out of keeping with the rest of the route.
Right of Blasket the boulder pile is lower and consequently the climbs are longer. The projecting 28m high wall right of the rockfall is Aran Wall. The first obvious feature on this section is a corner which starts at half-height just right of Blasket. The next feature is a pair of parallel cracks, still at the left end of the wall. The central section has several fine cracks and further right is a large deep cave from which a leftward-trending crack leads to a smaller cave near the top. All the routes on Aran Wall are very steep and of excellent quality. Boulder movement during winter storms can change the starts of these routes.
THE INNER TORMENT OF PROFESSOR ROBERTS E7 6c
R. Druce, R. Browner, R. Bell, N. Callender. 12. Sept. 2005 (Top-roped prior to ascent)
Essentially the direct start to Rollerball. Ramble up the confused ledges to a large sloping sidepull directly under the finish of Rollerball. Stab your way up a series of dramatic soapy edges with potential for small gear in the leftward leading seam to your right. Aim for the top from here.
ROLLERBALL * 28m E3 5c
T. Irving, August 1977.
A technical and serious climb on excellent rock. This route takes a short corner that starts at mid-height right of Blasket. It is reached by a line of weakness from the right. Start below a vague arête at some whitish rock. Climb the wall (hard) to a niche. Move up and diagonally left to a resting foothold on a slab and finish up the corner.
Stranger Things E6 6c
Climb Rollerball until below the final corner. Step right onto the steep wall and make a serious of strenuous moves to finish around the arete.
FORBIDDEN KINK 28m E6 6c
R. Browner, H. Hebblethwaite, 16/3/97.
Start as for Rollerball and continue up the blunt arete without the blatantly manufactured peg placement.
GALLOWS POLE *** 28m E2 5c
K. Higgs, T. Ryan, S. Windrim, 21/8/77.
A superb climb, the classic E2 of the crag. Start below the obvious pair of right-slanting parallel cracks near the left end of Aran Wall and just right of Rollerball. Climb steeply up a groove to a small overhang and around this to the base of the cracks. Climb these (crux) directly to the top.
MARCHANDED CRACK ** 28m E2 5b
B. Richardson, J. Levy, May 1975.
An interesting and at times awkward route from the early years of development. Start on the boulders just right of Gallows Pole. Trending rightwards climb steeply to a sloping ledge. Gain another ledge on the right. Move up left into a small niche and up to a larger niche (crux). Move right and finish steeply on good holds.
MIDNIGHT SUMMER DREAM ** 28m E3 5c
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 18/9/82.
This route takes a crack that starts at mid-height just right of Marchanded Crack. Climb Marchanded Crack to the second sloping ledge on the right. Step right to the crack. Climb this (crux) to a poor rest in an inhospitable niche. Finish steeply up the crack on the left.
DESOLATION ROW ** 28m E4 6a
E. Cooper, C. Torrans, April 1984.
An exciting and varied route taking the crack and right trending fault line just right of Midnight Summer Dream. Start as for that route. Step down from the second niche to the bottom of the crack. Climb this (sustained) to a niche. Move up and follow the fault on the right to the top.
Direct Start 6a
K Murphy, T. Ryan, 15/5/84.
Climb the ramp of Sunstone, step left and climb the bulge to the bottom of the crack.
SUNBANE ** 30m E6 6b/c
K. Murphy, J. Adams, 31/5/90. (Climbed with falls and then redpointed on gear left in place).
Takes the little crack which runs from Sunstone to Desolation Row. Start up Sunstone until it is possible to step left into the base of the thin crack. Climb this to finish up Desolation Row.
SUNSTONE *** 30m E3 6a
T. Ryan, D. O Connell, 25/5/83.
An excellent route with a steep and technical start. It follows a right-trending ramp and crack right of Marchanded Crack. Make difficult moves onto the ramp and continue up and right to the steep crack. Sustained climbing to the top.
Direct Start 6a
K. Murphy, 1984.
Climb the bottomless groove to the crack
ELIMINATOR *** 28m E5 6b
D. O Sullivan (yo-yoed), 12/8/85.
This route takes the thin crack between Sunstone and Kleptomaniac. Start just left of Kleptomaniac at the edge of an overhung niche. Climb a short corner to the overhang. Traverse left using a good crack until it is possible to exit straight up. After a few metres move left and gain a good stance beneath Sunstone. Move right to a spacious ledge under the obvious crack. Climb the crack to the overhang (crux). Continue up through the apex of the overhang following the continuation crack to the top (sustained).
Direct Start 6b
E. Cooper, 1988.
Climb directly to the end of the traverse.
KLEPTOMANIAC *** 29m E3 6a
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, August 1982.
A magnificent climb, sustained and strenuous. Start below the obvious straight crack with yellow lichen in the middle of Aran Wall and 10m right of Marchanded Crack. Climb over a bulge at the start and gain a sloping ledge below a thin section of the crack. Climb this (crux) to good jams where the crack widens. Continue past a small bulge to the top.
EARTHLING 29m E6 6c
R. Browner, H. Hebblethwaite, 30/3/97 (Worked on top-rope prior to ascent).
The hacked and pegged crack-line just right of Kleptomaniac. Start 3m right of Kleptomaniac. Climb to the ledge, continue up the thin crack and finish trending slightly rightward.
GREY DAWN ** 30m E5 6b
H. Hebblethwaite, August 1988. (Runners pre-clipped above the crux)
Takes the thin crack left of Point Blank. Climb Point Blank to the ledge below the thin crack. From the thin crack move left on face holds to reach another thin crack. Climb this strenuously to a ledge and continue up the crack to the top.
POINT BLANK ** 30m E4 6b
E. Cooper, C. Torrans, (1 rest point), 4/6/85. G. Gibson (free), 1986.
A superb technical pitch which takes the thin crackline up the wall left of the cave. Climb the corner formed by a hanging slab to a small ledge below a thin crack. Gain the shallow corner above (crux). Sustained climbing to a ledge with a hard move to reach jugs. Move left and up to the top.
POINTLESS 30m E4 6a
E. Cooper, 1992.
Start just right of Point Blank. Climb the bulge right of Point Blank to the cave on Lucy. Traverse right under the overhang and then climb positively through it and up the steep wall to the top.
LUCY ** 32m E2 5c
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 18/9/82.
This fine route takes the obvious left-trending fault that starts in a cave near the right end of Aran Wall. Start just left of the fault line. Depending on the position of the boulders reach or jump to gain the horizontal lip. Climb steeply into the wide crack. Up this easily to the deep cave above. Move out left and climb the diagonal crack in the headwall to the top (crux). High in the grade.
Alternative start E2 6a
E. Cooper, September 1984.
Gain the slabby nose of rock on the left side of the cave. Move right and climb a short V-chimney to join the original route. This can be much easier, depending on the position of the boulders.
STIGMATA *** 32m E6 6b
C. Waddy, 1986.
Start at the back of the cave to the right of Lucy. Climb the steep overhanging groove past the peg (rusty), continue up the groove and finish up the wall above.
BLOCKHEAD ** 32m E4 6a
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 12/5/84.
A tremendous spectacular climb. Start just left of the right arête of the cave on Aran Wall. Climb up on good holds until a long reach leads right to the arête. Step up and reach back left to a good hold. Difficult moves lead to a vague niche, then gain a slab on the right (crux). Climb up steeply past a corner to a large ledge and finish up the steep crack on the wall above.
SKYWALKER ** 32m E2 5c
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, September 1981.
A popular route with good sustained climbing. Right of the deep cave on Aran Wall there is a huge projecting block at two-thirds height. This route takes a thin crack that leads up the right side of the block. Climb directly to the crack and follow this to the overhang and jutting flake formed by the right edge of the projecting block. Continue up a short corner above to the top of the block (crux). Finish up steep cracks in the top wall.
Direct Star - The original start was via the horizontal crack running in from the right. E. Cooper climbed the direct start at 6b (September '84) but boulders piled in the area can make it the easier option.
F. Richards, J. Thompson, August 1996.
A link between Skywalker and Blockhead has been climbed. >From the bottom of the vertical crack move up leftward on the yellow rock to the bottom left-hand corner of the block. Finish up Blockhead.
MOMENTS OF INERTIA ** 30m E3 6a
J. Colton, D. Somers, July 1977.
Low in the grade for those with a long reach. It takes the blank corner and arête just right of the thin crack on Skywalker. Climb directly to the ledge as for Skywalker (the original start was a traverse in from the right). Step up right to the foot of the corner. Up this until a good hold halfway up a yellow streak on the right can be reached with difficulty. Using this climb the arête and corner to a good ledge on the right. Climb a crack in the wall above to the top.
W. Rock, 1995.
Continue up the corner without traversing right.
HIGH PROFILE 30m E3 6a
K. Murphy, E. Cooper, 5/4/85.
Follows the diagonal crack going left out of Moon Rill. Follow the Moon Rill corner to where a crack leads diagonally left. Make a couple of hard moves across to the arête and follow this, going just left to the corner to finish. (Possible to climb the crack up the arête).
THE LITTLEST CROWBAR * 25m E3 6a
C. Shannon, J. Harrison, 3/5/10 (Worked on top-rope prior to ascent).
This route climbs the steep head wall just left of Moon Rill. From the large ledge half way up Moon Rill, climb the hollow flake on the left to gain the first of 2 ledges. Arrange gear and then make a hard move to gain the second ledge. From here it is possible to move right onto the aret and finish on easier ground. A direct finish is possible, avoiding the arete completly and following the hair-line crack on crimps to the large niche and then the top. Probably E4 6a.
Note: The hollow flake was once loose and should probably not be used for protection.
MOON RILL * 25m VS 4c
J. Mulhall, S. Young, 7/8/72.
This climb takes the first of the two right-facing corners forming the southern end of Aran Wall. Scramble up to the corner. Move up, trending right, to a large ledge. Climb up ledges to a corner and step left to finish up a good crack (crux) or finish directly up.
STARDUST ** 25m E3 5c
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 13/5/84.
This strenuous and sustained route takes a steep right-trending overlap and crack just right of Moon Rill. Start below the right-hand corner and climb it to a ledge below an overhanging right-trending crack. Climb this and over an overhang to gain a thin crack above. Follow this steeply to the top.
SEA OF DREAMS 25m E6 6b
Andy Long, Pat Nolan, 31/07/05
Start as for Stardust. As for Stardust, climb the corner for 3m before heading out right on a thin diagonal crack (often damp). Hard moves gain the vertical crack which is followed to a peg. Continue up the not so juggy ﬂake to the top.
The Crying Game 25m E6 6b
Start below a shallow groove leading to a broken crackline. Thin and bold moves lead up the groove to the base of the crack(good wires up high). Hard moves then lead to a large ledge followed by the ﬁnal steep headwall which is climbed direct.
VERY BIG SPRINGS *** 25m E6 6b
G. Smith, 1993.
The thin crackline in the gold-coloured wall 10m right of Stardust. Mantel the ledge and clip a peg (good no. 1 Friend). Stretch for some side-holds high above. Gain the handrails above, leading to more beyond (good wires in the crack). A desperate move leads to improving holds straight above or a plummet.
The MacPhearson Strut 25m E7 6b
Andy Long, Jason Pickles, 2006,
Essentially a direct start to Hoping. Start 3m right of Very Big Springs. Climb the groove and blunt nose to a peg runner and good friend above this at 8m. Hard moves past this lead to another peg (best tied off). Move right into a scoop then back left. Follow crack to top.
Hoping* 25m E5 6a
G Gibson, T Ryan, June 1989.
Start as for Line of Fire. Climb up 6m of this route until the ledge on the left wall is gained. Peg runner. Move left from here around the arête to an exciting position on ﬂ at holds. Summon the courage and move out along the diagonal crack to arête. Small wires at top of crack. Step left into the upper crack system and up this to top.
LINE OF FIRE ** 25m E2 5b
T. Irving, P. Wynne, (1 nut for aid), July 1977.E. Cooper (free), Easter 1982.
A good route giving excellent bridging up the overhanging groove in the next big corner.
The next two routes are on the fine wall to the right of Line of Fire.
ICE QUEEN *** 25m E5 6a
G. Gibson, M. Manson, J. Codling, 24/6/85.
An immaculate pitch taking a line roughly up the centre of the wall. Quite bold and fingery. Start from a small ledge at a slight depression. Follow the depression up rightwards to a peg runner in a thin crack. Move up left to a slot then straight up to good holds below the final thin crack. Climb this leftwards to the top.
The Manhattan Project * E5 6b
R. Browner, M. Duffy. 24.07.09,
A worthy link-up, which has more than enough quality to compensate for any lack of independence.
Start at the base of Wall of Fossils but stay left, out on the face, where a series of awkward right facing lay-aways lead upward (past a small wire runner) until it is possible to stretch across into Ice Queen below the peg. Follow Ice Queen as far as the, pleasantly odd, side-pull jug. Then depart leftward on undercuts and side-pulls into a shallow groove with a disappointing pocket which is used to gain the horizontal brake, crux. Escape left across the brake to join the upper corner of Stardust.
WALL OF FOSSILS *** 25m E4 6a
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 22/7/84.
A tremendous route, bold and exciting. It takes a thin crack up the wall right of Line of Fire. Start under a groove and overhang near the right arête of the wall. Climb the groove and layback over the overhang to an easy groove on the right. Up this to a second overhang and step up left on good holds. Climb the steep wall and thin crack (crux) to the top.
FALL OF WOSSILS ** 25m E4 6b
G. Gibson, M. Manson, J. Codling, 23/6/85.
The striking right arête of Wall Of Fossils gives an impressive and unusual pitch. Start as for Wall of Fossils and follow it until it moves up left through the overhang. Arrange gear and move right to the arête with difficulty. A peg runner in the break above protects the arête which is climbed on its right side.
HANG ABOUT 28m E2 6a
T. Irving, P. Wynne, July 1977 (original HVS route).
This route was once an innocuous HVS but lost its start in a storm and now shares the tricky groove at the start of Wall of Fossils. Follow this route as far as the easy groove on the right. From here trend rightwards to the steep section of Ladda. Climb the crux of Ladda, step left and finish up the wall above.
LADDA 26m VS 4c
A. Douglas, D. O Murchu, (1 aid point), 28/10/72. S. Windrim, (free), 1974.
The next corner system. Climb corner easily to a ledge below this next corner system. Climb the steep corner (crux) and continue to the top. Hard for the grade
CHOCKS AWAY 26m HVS 5a
J. Hawkins, J. Beard, 6/2/95
Take the right-hand crack and corner. Climb easily on sloping ledges to where the corner steepens. Climb this for 8m (crux) after which the angle eases.
HY BRASIL E2 5a 35m
R. Browner, J. Mulloy, 14 June 2013.
An airy traverse, with serious pendulum potential, that crosses the upper bulge of the yellow wall between Chocks Away and Tombstone Terror.
Start as for Chocks Away and as the angle of the steep corner eases, move out right onto the face to good wire protection. Leave this behind and cool the long traverse right across the wall, passing marginal micro wires in a horizontal crack, before the crux which gains the finishing 2m corner of Tombstone Terror.
Note: This route was particularly hard to grade and the grade suggested is unconfirmed. The climbing is not difficult and it may be easier than E2 but it could also feel a lot harder to a leader who loses confidence while facing a possible 20m ground fall.
TOMBSTONE TERROR 25m E3 5b
C. Torrans, N. O Dea, June 1990.
A bold route taking a line up the wall beside the huge monolithic boulder to the right of Box of Chocks corner. Chimney up between the wall and this plinth until you reach the top of the boulder. From here throw yourself onto the wall (and the mercy of the gods, this is the crux). Once you are on move up and left on good holds until you gain the ledges above and onto the corner and the cracks to the top.
LOSING TOUCH 24m E6 6a
R. Browner, P. Leane, (Practised on top rope) 9/7/95.
This takes the arête between the huge block of Tombstone Terror and the wide crack of Hooked on Crack. Climb past a ledge to a long move which gains a good hold high on the arête. Swing left and make another hard move to gain another good hold. Continue up onto a ledge at the base of a steep groove. Climb this on good holds and move easily on to a mantel finish.
HOOKED ON CRACK 24m E1 5b
J. Hawkins, J. Beard, 6/2/95.
This is the last corner at the southern end of Dancing Ledges. It also forms the northern (left) limit of Mirror Wall. Climb easily to the base of the corner. Climb the crack (strenuous) and make an awkward move at half height on to the sloping ledge on the left wall (crux). Pass the block which is wedged here with difficulty and finish more easily.
FAITH E7 6c
Andy Long, Chegs Evans, 03/08/05
Starts R. of Hooked On Crack. Climb the L. hand of the two cracks to the narrow ledge. Arrange gear in the crack above then fall up the headwall moving slightly R. then back left at the top. view comments(1)
This is the very impressive wall south of Dancing Ledges. Most of this section of the cliff is tidal and the routes are reached by boulder-hopping at low tide or by abseil. Great care should be taken in this area as it is tidal and the rock at the base of the routes is sharp. At low tide you can boulder hop as far as the corner of PIS FLIUCH.
FLAWS IN THE GLASS 35m E6 6b
G. Smith (on sight).
This is the obvious rightward facing slim groove near the left end of Mirror Wall. Climb the groove (easy at first) to where it steepens and make difficult moves onto the ledge out left. Continue with difficulty up the groove above and over the overlap past suspect pegs in the headwall.
SEEING THINGS *** 36m E6 6b
A. Wainwright, G. Smith, 1993
The thin crack left of Refraction, as good as it looks. Climb onto a ledge and go rightwards past a peg into the thin crack. Sustained climbing past a further peg leads to better holds and a crack proper. Follow this more easily and make a wild move into Refraction. Gasp to the top.
REFRACTION *** 36m E5 6a
J. Codling, G. Gibson, M. Manson, 23/6/85. (The account of the first ascent does not mention the numerous yoyos and the rest point which were seen to be used. )
An outstanding pitch which takes the dog-leg crack 20m right of the groove-line near the left-hand side of Mirror Wall. Stretch from a large flat-topped rock to boulder over a bulge past a thread to a rest point below the crack. Race the crack for 10m to a respite where it turns left. Move up and left to a better rest above the overlap. Follow the crack until it runs out. Sequence the wall above past a peg - strenuous. The original start described above became more difficult when the boulders shifted and was climbed by D. Lee at 6c. Climbers usually abseil to the first ledge.
VIRTUAL IMAGE ** 30m E3 6a
K Murphy, T. Ryan, 19/9/82.
Excellent climbing in a superb situation. The route takes an obvious straight and continuous crack line near the left end of Mirror Wall. The route was originally climbed starting from a boulder at the bottom but as this has since become much harder it is customary to abseil to a hanging belay in the crack 2m above a small ledge. Continue up with sustained difficulties (crux) to a horizontal break and rest at a niche. Climb the crack above to the top with help from a niche on the left.
SNELL’S LAW 36m E7 6c
Sean Villaneuva, Kevin Power, May 2007.
Climb as for Refraction to the resting ledge, arrange gear and move out right and up the thin wall above. A dynamic move leads to a break and more gear. Finish directly.
ZEBEDEE ** 35m E4/5 6a
D. O Sullivan, C. O Cofaigh, July 1991.
A strenuous alternative to Virtual Image, this takes the right-trending fault that breaks out about mid-height from said route. Follow Virtual Image to the bulging section at the top of the corner/groove. Move right to a large pocket and then up over a bulge to better holds. Keep going until you can move right to gain entry to a shallow runnel. Up this (past an elephant-stopping thread) to a horizontal break and finish hastily up the thin crack to the top.
THE CUTTER *** 43m E4 6a
G. Gibson, J. Codling, 24/6/85.
This is the stunning rightward-trending crack right of Virtual Image. Strenuous and sustained climbing on a brilliant line. Abseil to a ledge at the bottom of the crack. Climb past a niche and a break until the crack begins to fade. Continue directly to the top. High in the grade.
PHOENIX IN THE MIRROR *** 35m E6 6c
D. Lee, G. Lee, July 1996.
The striking thin crack in the wall 12m right of The Cutter gives a superlative route with a good finish up the wall above. Start on an appropriate boulder. Gain the crack quite boldly and follow it with sustained interest but good protection to where it runs out. Make a hard move leftwards to gain a series of holds running slightly leftward up the wall. Finish more directly from a break.
FACE TO FACE ** 45m E5 6a,6a
J. Codling, G. Gibson, 24/6/85.
Start 15m left of Through The Looking Glass by stretching from a boulder to an overhanging wall. (1) 15m Climb directly up to join and follow Through The Looking Glass, up a groove and then left to the crack. Teeter leftwards, then down with difficulty to a ledge and belay (backrope required for the second). (2) 30m Move leftwards and climb boldly up a series of blank ramps to a ledge. Climb the crack and walls/ledges above.
THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS *** 36m E3 6a
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, August 1982.
An excellent climb. This route takes a right-slanting crackline left of the ramp which is the obvious line of weakness on Mirror Wall. The crack peters out near the bottom but is reached by a traverse and vague groove on the right. Belay on a spacious flat boulder below the groove. Cross boulders on the right to the start of The Ramp. Step across to a narrow ledge at the base of the wall and start at the left end of this, opposite the belay boulder. Make a hard move up to gain a horizontal break. Traverse left to the bottom of the vague groove. Climb this until it is possible to traverse left to the crack and up this to a sloping ledge. Climb the thin crack above (crux) to a horizontal break (rest). Continue up with difficulty to a wide crack and hence more easily to the top.
Direct start E3 6a
This starts from a boulder in line with the bottom of the crack.
LOOKING BACK * 36m E5 6a/b
E. Cooper, P. McArthur, 9/7/95.
Follow Through the Looking Glass to the ledge below the thin crack. Move up and right to a pedestal. Exciting climbing should lead to a standing position on top of this. A series of thin cracks and flakes and a short fingery wall leads to the top.
ON REFLECTION *** 36m E6 6a
G. Gibson, M. Manson, J. Codling. 23/6/85.
A magnificent route taking the thin grooves just left of The Ramp. Sustained with only adequate protection. Gain and climb the groove using the thin crack in the left wall for protection until it fades. Swing boldly right and attain a standing position on a shelf. Continue straight up to faint right-veering cracks. Follow these to a small ledge and finish up the wall above.
THE RAMP *** 40m E1 5b, 5a
D. Somers, J. Dwyer (1 aid point) 9/7/77.
C. Torrans (free), 1977.
A fine route with exposed climbing in a superb situation. Near the right-hand end of Mirror Wall there is a very obvious rightward-trending ramp. Start on boulders below the base of the ramp (1) Step across onto a ledge directly under the base of the ramp and climb up and mantelshelf onto a ledge 3m higher. Climb a groove and move out right onto the ramp. Continue up and along this to a sitting belay ledge in a fine position. (2) Traverse right to a short corner. Up this, traverse right and finish straight up.
NARCISSUS ** 35m E5 6a, 6a
E. Cooper, A. Moles, 11/6/88.
A desperate start leads to highly enjoyable climbing up the wall above. Start just right of a short hanging corner situated to the right of The Ramp. (1) Climb the wall and then the arête of the groove to gain the bottom of the crack in the wall above (crux). Continue with less difficulty up the crack and wall above to the ramp. Belay as for The Ramp. (2) From the apex move left and follow the line of weakness until a ledge is gained delicately. Step right to a crack and up easily to the top.
PRISM SENTENCE *** 38m E5 6a,6b
G. Gibson, unseconded. 25/6/85.
Climbed in one pitch on first ascent. A powerful line taking the groove below The Ramp and the wall above. Good protection although the move off The Ramp is most disconcerting. Start at the foot of the obvious groove. (1) 20m Gain the groove and climb it by inverted laybacking until it disappears. Swing right and up a short crack to a ledge. Move up left to The Ramp and follow it right to its belay. (2) 18m From just right of the point of arrival on The Ramp climb straight up the wall above with a very awkward start.
QUICKSILVER *** 31m E5 6a
E. Cooper, S. McEvoy, 18/6/88.
A brilliant route. Start below the first corner and chimney line of the southern end of Mirror Wall (Peanut Butter Special). Climb up a few metres until it is possible to traverse left to the base of a thin crack system. Follow the crack until it becomes too thin, make hard moves up to gain better holds and continue up the wall above with sustained interest, ﬁnishing up a single crack with a small ramp on its right.
Direct Start: Avoids the chimney of the start of Peanut Butter Special by climbing the desperate black wall. (6b)
PEANUT BUTTER SPECIAL 33m VS 4b,4b
B. Richardson, S. Young, 28/10/72.
Start on a ledge under the first corner and chimney line at the southern (right) end of Mirror Wall. (1) Climb up and step right to a small ledge, then go left into the chimney to a crack on the right wall. Climb the crack to a large ledge and belay. (2) Gain the top of a large wobbly-looking flake and traverse into a short corner which leads to the top.
OBSCENE SARDINE 30m VS 4c,4c
S. Young, B. Richardson, 28/10/72.
A short awkward start leads to a pleasant chimney pitch. Start on boulders below a groove just around the arête right of Peanut Butter Special. (1) Climb the groove passing a chockstone to a ledge. Move left and up the open groove (crux) to a ledge and hence to the belay ledge of Peanut Butter Special. (2) Pitch 2 of Peanut Butter Special.
TEMPTATION 26m E4 6a,6a
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 22/7/84.
A difficult and serious climb. Start on boulders below a short corner just right of Obscene Sardine. (1) 20m Climb the corner to a ledge on the right. Step left and follow an awkward jamming crack to a narrow ledge. Climb the thin difficult crack above to the wide belay ledge of Peanut Butter Special. (2) 6m Gain a shallow groove on the right wall and up this to the top.
PEANUT SHELLER 30m HVS 5a,4b
J. Levy, C. Richardson, P. McMenamin, Easter 1977.
A brute of a chimney. Start on boulders below the second (middle) corner at the southern end of Mirror Wall and 10m right of Obscene Sardine. (1) Step down off the boulders into the corner and up to a small ledge below a tight chimney. Climb the chimney (crux) and continue up the corner crack to a belay ledge. (2) Finish up the corner as for Peanut Butter Special.
PEPPERMINT KISS ** 30m E5 6a
A. White, S. McEvoy, 12/6/94. (practised on a top-rope)
An excellent, sustained and poorly protected route although the nearness of the Peanut Sheller crack reduces the seriousness of the crux. Start on the left of the wall on good holds and move up and right, placing skyhooks out right and a crucial no. 4 at the rest in a crozzle pocket, before committing to the crux moves up through the niche. Exit this (don't use the corner) up to a horizontal break. From here, step right, and continue up the wall and slab, passing near the right arete to the top.
FATAL ATTRACTION ** 30m E4 6a
E. Cooper, T. Cooper, 20/5/88 (on sight).
A committing lead with a very serious start. Climb the arête left of Black Baron to a ledge. From the left side of this step onto the wall and make a difficult move over a bulge to gain the arête above. Continue up the arête to an overhang, step left and follow the wall and slab directly to the top.
BLACK BARON ** 30m E2 5b
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 19/9/82.
Excellent climbing with poor protection. Start on boulders below the arête left of Pis Fliuch. Gain a ledge near the bottom and climb a crack on the right wall of the arête. Place runners near the top of the crack. Descend, and from about halfway up the crack traverse left on small holds to the arête and up to a small ledge beneath an overhang. Pass the overhang on the right and enter a slabby groove below a second and larger overhang. Move right under this and up the shallow groove above with a surprisingly difficult move to finish.
JOKER MAN ** 30m E6 6b
E. Cooper, 20/5/88 (one rest point).
E. Cooper (free), 4/5/96.
An exhausting and technical climb that is well worth the effort. Climb the crack and groove of Black Baron and continue to the roof. Take a good rest before attacking the energy-sapping crack above, which leads to a break (rest point just below the break). Move left and gain the crack above which is followed to the top.
DAMN THE TORPEDOES *** 30m E5 6a
E. Cooper, 1992.
Enjoyable, sustained climbing up the offset crack left of Shark Bait. Follow the crack to the break, move left to the continuation crack which is followed to the top. Well protected.
SHARKBAIT *** 30m E5 6b
H. Hebblethwaite (one rest point), June 1988. E. Cooper (free), 1992
Takes the continuous crackline up the wall left of Pis Fliuch. From the boulders traverse into the right-hand of two savage-looking cracks (not as bad as it looks). Climb the sustained crack with difficulty to reach a jammed block and a rest. Continue up the crack to the top.
PIS FLIUCH *** 30m HVS 5a
J. McKenzie, J. Mulhall, 25/11/72.
The impressive corner south of Mirror Wall gives one of the classic routes in the country. Traverse the boulders to the foot of the third and biggest corner at the right end of Mirror Wall. Climb the corner, crux at mid-height.
DANGEROUS SPLIFF FACE* E6 6b
Craig Adam, Andy Marshall
Climbs the slab left of Key Largo, start as for that route. From the ledge below the ramp step left and cross the bulge using a slanting crack. Climb straight up to rejoin Key Largo. Traverse the break leftwards to a stance before pulling up to an undercut below the centre of the slab. Make hard moves up and then right to a good hold below the final break. Pull up to stand on this then finish up the corner. Excellent bold climbing but escape would be possible from the middle break. Take 4 or 5 1 nuts and don't even think about it if it's greasy
KEY LARGO ** 30m E3 5c
C. Torrans, D. O Sullivan, 30/9/84.
Dramatic climbing up the arête right of Pis Fliuch, small wires for protection, a serious route. Climb the slabby wall easily to a large ledge above the tide line. Move left and climb the short steep ramp (crux) to a ledge. Move left and climb the overlap to a small shelf on the left. Mantel onto the shelf and move back onto the arête, climb this to the top.
Direct Finish 20m E3 5c
James O Reilly, Peter Owens, June 1997
Climb Key Largo to the point where the route moves left to the shelf out on the left face. Instead of moving left continue directly up the arête to gain a good finger lock in a spectacular position (#4 wire). Make a difficult move up the arête to reach better holds and the top.
HOPELESS ACTS OF DESPERATION ** 30m E3 6a
C. Torrans, E. Cooper, 1987.
A very good route taking the wall right of the arête of Key Largo. Start as for Key Largo below the first ramp of this route. Easily up ledges to the bottom of the ramp and move right onto the wall and vicious crack (this section is often wet and can be bypassed by using the ramp of Key Largo), whichever way you go finish up on a large ledge. From the right end of the ledge climb the bulging wall via a short groove. Continue up and then left on good cracks and edges. add comment
The sea cuts off access to the climbs around the arête south of Pis Fliuch. The cliffs are 30m high, very steep and smooth and resemble Mirror Wall.
Stone Wall is the projecting cliff immediately south of Pis Fliuch. It gets its name from the stone wall that runs down from the road to the edge of the cliff.
Access to all of these routes is by abseil. It is essential to be aware of tide and weather conditions before climbing on them. See note on abseils, page ?.
DASIES, BUTTERFLIES AND BRICKS * 18m E2/3 5c
D.Smyth, J.McCune 15/4/2009
4m North of Garbh a thin crack marks the finish, ab in just N of the crack to stance at bottom of right trending crack. Shuffle sharply up this to join Garbh via a mantel. Follow Garbh until a jug and horizontal break, sequency moves out left and a stretch to a slopey ledge gains a flake to the top.
GARBH ** 21m E2 5b
C. Torrans, C. Sheridan, 21/5/78.
After a finger-tearing start the climbing is excellent. Start 7m south of the arête on Key Largo, a wide crack marks the top. Abseil down to a belay at the foot of a left-facing corner. The crack is difficult to start. Continue up passing three small niches to an awkward finish.
FORTY COATS 18m E4 6a
D. O Sullivan, J. Dugdale, June 1994.
First climbed in a gale, this route takes an unlikely line directly below the stonewall/fence line. Strenuous. Abseil from triangular niche directly below the fence to belay in a large triangular niche (Friend 1 and small wires). A prominent fault breaks out right from the apex of the niche. Gain this (Friend 3.5) and climb rightwards for 3-4m. Now climb up to the break above (crux) and finish directly via the brown runnel.
WESTERN PRIDE ** 17m E2 5c
C. Parkin, P. Blackburn, 19/4/79.
A good route which justifies the effort to reach it. Abseil down a crack 3m south of the fence to a ledge. Climb the crack, crux at 5m.
FISH RISING 24m E4 6a
F. Richards, J. Thompson, August 1995.
There is a black groove with a thin crack line about 3m left of Jug City. Climb the crack/groove to the second break, traverse left and then finish up the obvious thin ledges (crux).
The Horizontal Dance 25m E2 (4c, 5b)
Frank Cox, John Harrison, August 2006
The Stone Wall girdle traverse although stopping short by ﬁnishing at Garbh. The full traverse has yet to be climbed. 1 Climb Jug City to the break line and follow this to Western Pride and get a hanging belay. 2 Move out along the break with sustained moves to reach a rest by a “noisy” block. Follow the break to Garbh and ﬁnish up easily.
JUG CITY ** 17m VS 4c
T. Ryan, S. Gallwey, July 1979.
Abseil down the corner 10m south of the fence. Climb a short shallow groove and step right to a diagonal crack. Climb the crack steeply to a horizontal break and then up a short corner to the top.
CITY OF TINY LIGHTS 20m E2/3 5c
F. Richards, J. Thompson, August 1995.
Follow Jug City to approximately half height then traverse right across the steep wall via the large hole and finish easily up the arête.
CONGER 10m HVS 5a
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, M. Prendergast, 1/8/81.
A serious and intimidating route which takes a steep crack (not visible from above) about 7m south of Jug City. Abseil down the cliff about 5m south of Jug City and swing right to a spike near the bottom of the crack about 5m above high tide mark. Belay on the spike and abseil rope. A bag is needed to keep the rope out of the water. The leader should abseil down on a separate rope. Climb the crack directly to a niche below a short overhanging section. Climb this (crux) to a large ledge and up to another ledge on the left. Finish up a short steep wall.
THE WEED 30m E4 5c
T. Ryan, K. Murphy (1 rest point ) August 1984.
G. Gibson (Free) 8/6/89.
This takes a line on the wall left of the arête left of The Emigrant. Abseil down to a hanging belay at the left end of a crack which trends right towards the arête. Step up and traverse right on very rough rock along the crack to a shallow vertical crack. Climb this to a good ledge. Move right under a bulge and up until it is possible to step back left to a ledge above the bulge. Climb steeply up the wall above on good holds to a ledge. Finish up the short black wall.
THE EMIGRANT 30m E2 5b
J. Colton, 21/8/77.
Near the south end of Stone Wall is a fierce-looking overhanging corner which can only be seen from the top of 'Siren' a few metres further south. Abseil down to a large tidal ledge below the corner. Climb the wet overhanging groove and pull into a vertical groove which leads to a good ledge 7m below the top. Climb the corner crack at the back of the ledge to finish.
Variation: Climb directly to the top from the edge of the good ledge.
THE RACK ** 40m E5 6a
K. Murphy, 19/3/84 (2 yoyos).
E. Cooper (free), 1996.
This climb takes a crack and groove which trend rightwards from the ledge at the bottom of The Emigrant. Abseil down to a tidal ledge and belay 3m right of The Emigrant. Climb straight up the crack and follow it rightwards to a ledge (poor rest). Move straight up to a horizontal break and follow this rightwards to rejoin the crack at the base of a groove (crux). Follow the groove and cracks to the top.
SHIP OF FOOLS ** 30m E4 6a
E. Cooper, S McCrory, Spring 1987.
The arête between Siren and The Rack gives a good climb with an exhilarating finish. Belay on the abseil rope, left of the arête at a long sloping foot-ledge. Climb the arête, good runners on the right, take the wall just left of the arête to a horizontal break from which committing moves lead you to the top or bottom.
Alternative start E6 6b
K. Murphy, J. Adams, 27/5/90 (practised on top rope).
Start from the sloping shelf at sea level on the right-hand side of the arête. Move left around the arête from the end of the shelf to the base of the short groove. Climb this and move right (crux) from its end along the traverse line to the arête. A move up the groove on the arête gets you to Ship of Fools and a runner.
SIREN ** 20m E3 5c
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 18/3/84.
From the black gloom of the belay this route ascends a superb and committing wall. Abseil down to a ledge left of Venusian Spray. Belay on the left of the ledge at the foot of the ramp. Climb the short ramp to a sloping ledge. Move up left and gain a small ledge on the wall (crux). Step right and climb the wall directly to the top.
SONG TO THE SIREN ** 21m E3 6a
F. Richards, J. Thompson, August 1995. (practised on a top-rope)
This wall-climb starts as for Siren and takes a line directly up to its right. Follow Siren to halfway up the ramp. Make thin moves up the face (crux) to an obvious small flake and easier climbing. Finish up the (higher) block right of Siren.
Heart Full of Arrows*** 20m E5 6a
Diarmuid Duggan, Peter Owens, June 2006 (practised on top rope)
Climb ramp as for Siren for 2m to below shallow corner. Move up boldly using a series of sidepulls to horizontal break and a peg. Traverse right along the horizontal break (often damp) for 4m onto a good hold (peg). From here, pull straight up the wall on small edges to gain sloping ramp. Follow wide crack to ﬁnish.
Robot Unicorn Attack E5 6a
Conor McGovern 12th August 2017
Follow Heart Full of Arrows to the first peg and climb directly up the wall on small positive holds.
An Falla Uaigneach
An Falla Uaigneach is the impressive inset cliff south of Stone Wall. The junction between the two cliffs is marked by a wide crack.
VENUSIAN SPRAY 30m HVS 5a
J. Colton, D. Somers, 20/8/77.
On the first ascent this climb was graded VS(4b). Strong climbers have often failed on the initial hard moves and the route is now rarely climbed. It takes the unpleasant-looking deep corner at the north end of An Falla Uaigneach. Abseil down to the ledges left of the corner. Climb just left of the corner chimney to good holds, traverse right into the corner and up this to the top.
The Happiness that Hurts** 50m E7 5c,6c
Ricky Bell, Diarmuid Duggan, June 2006
This mother of all traverses gives us the ﬁnest of Burren experiences. The ﬁ rst pitch is a brilliant E1 in its own right and could be continued to ﬁnish as for Space Monkeys. Abseil onto the big ledge as for Venusian Spray. 1 20m Walk along the ledge until it is possible to climb slightly up Venusian Spray to gain the tramline break. Traverse right on jugs and belay in the corner. 2 30m Step down and traverse the break to a hard move before a peg. From here, the foot holds run out and the pump begins. Gain arête and ﬁnish as for Black Widow;
SPACE MONKEYS 2 - THE SEQUEL E1 5b
S. McEvoy, D. O Sullivan, 12/6/94.
A spectacular route in superb surroundings and considerably easier than the pre-storm first episode. Belay at the left end of An Falla Uaigneach at the base of a corner below an overhang. Climb the corner to the overhang, traverse right to the end of this and then directly up.
BLACK WIDOW * 25m HVS 5b
T. Ryan, S. Windrim, K. Higgs, 21/8/77.
The route takes a series of leftward-trending ramps near the northern (left) end of An Falla Uaigneach. Abseil down to a good ledge at the bottom of the ramps. Climb the first ramp to a small ledge. Make a delicate move up the second ramp (crux) to another ledge. Ascend the third ramp to a ledge below a bulge. Step left and climb on large holds to the top.
FOREVER YOUNG E7 6c
Ben Bransby, Andy Long August 2004
Named in memory of Will Perrin
From a hanging belay, above high tide line, at the base of a small R facing corner (good cam 2?). Move L out of the corner and make technical moves (good RPs) until final bold moves lead to a good break. Launch up the wall above on good but spaced crimps to the final horizontal break. Move very slightly L to climb up the twin grooves above (crux) and the top.
A lower start would be possible starting in the base of the large corners to the L of the route, although this would be very tidal and probably a little harder.
The route was climbed after abseil inspection - moves were practiced.
AILLEADOIR ** 25m E5 6b
D. O Sullivan C. O Cofaigh, 15/8/87.
An excellent route. Start as for Seabird, belayed on small wires and abseil rope. The judicious use of slings in the initial section will reduce rope drag. Follow Seabird to the top of the corner below the huge overhang. From here traverse left for 7m along a juggy break to the overhang's end. The sequency crux moves up and left get you to a reasonable hold immediately above a peg. Continue up to a huge flat hold and finish easily direct to the campsite for a cup of tea.
SEA BIRD ** 25m E2 5b
M. Smith, M. Manson, T. Ryan, 22/5/81.
Fine spectacular climbing in a serious situation. In the middle of An Falla Uaigneach there is a prominent overhang, best viewed from the arête left of Venusian Spray. Abseil down to a small stance under the overhang (not tidal but the first section is usually a little damp). Belay on small nuts and the abseil rope. Step right from the belay and climb a delicate wall to an overhang. Climb a corner on the left (crux) to the main overhang. Traverse right and up into a niche. Easier climbing to the top.
GALLIPOLI ** 35m E3 6a
D. O Sullivan, C. O Cofaigh, 15/8/87.
- [Recent wave activity has changed this route. It is now more difficult and has yet to be reclimbed.] Takes a line up the wall right of Seabird. Start as for Seabird. Climb up a few metres to the bottom of a left-facing corner/groove. Move out right until below an obvious undercut. Move up to gain the undercut (2.5 Friend) and climb the wall above for a few metres. Traverse right to gain a bottomless corner. Bridge up this in spectacular position and finish more easily to the top.
THIN ICE ** 30m E3 6a
T. Ryan, K. Murphy, 10/6/83.
The crux offers highly unusual but superb climbing. There is a shallow black corner right of Sea Bird which can only be seen from the arête left of Venusian Spray. The corner ends at a pair of horizontal cracks at about half height. Abseil down to a small ledge at the base of the corner, good nut belay. Climb the corner (crux) to a small ledge at the horizontal cracks. Traverse about 7m left and climb up on good holds until it is possible to trend right to less steep rock. Continue to the top. A good selection of small wires is needed to protect the crux.
Direct Finish E3 6a
E. Cooper, S. McCrory, Spring 1987.
Move only 2m left at the top of the corner and follow holds through the bulge to easier ground.
RISING TIDE ** 30m E3 5c
E. Cooper, S. McCrory, 8/5/88.
An exposed wall climb with good protection where it is needed. Belay as for The Cold War. Move left with difficulty and up past a ledge to an obvious traverse line. Follow this until it is possible to move up and gain a standing position on a flat-topped spike/flake. Step right and up (peg runner) and finish directly up.
THE COLD WAR ** 30m E3 5c
E. Cooper, S. McCrory, A. Moles, 10/6/88 .
- [A massive block has fallen from this route. It is now more difficult and has yet to be reclimbed.] An enjoyable route taking the bulging wall between Thin Ice and Reprieve . Take a hanging belay at a flake in the horizontal break. Move right and make difficult moves onto a slab which is followed easily to a ledge. Traverse left until dramatic but reasonable climbing leads to the top.
THE VEIN E7 6c
Andy Long, Ben Bransby 04/08/04
Belay as for Reprieve.Traverse out left along obvious break/ramp. Sort gear then up crack for a way (crucial rp2 -always wanted to say that!!). Hard moves get you to the 1st break and some good gear. Push on up past more breaks with a nice move on the slab to finish.
REPRIEVE 40m E2 5c
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 29/4/84
The route takes a corner below large overhangs halfway between Thin Ice and the deep chimney on An Falla Uaigneach. Abseil down and belay on a foothold at the base of the corner 5m above high tide level. Climb the corner (crux) to a ledge below another corner. Step right around an arête to a slab. Climb delicately up this (poorly protected), moving back left under the overhang to the top of the corner. Traverse left under the overhang until it is possible to climb steeply over it and trend right to the top.
THE WOUND THAT NEVER HEALS HVS 5a
Pat Nolan, Andy Long, August 2004
The apparently unclimbed wide crack in the corner at the right end of An Falla Uigneach. Despite its appearance this route gives excellent bridging and wide jamming. Camalots 4 and 5 protect. Abseil to a small platform at low tide.
So called because of the small boulder on the top close to the edge of the cliff. Below the boulder is a white slab with a convenient ledge at its base. The south end of Boulder Wall is bounded by black, north-facing chimneys.
SPLASH DOWN ** 15m E1 5b
T. Ryan, M. Manson, M. Prendergast, 19/4/81.
Serious climbing in a fine situation. This route takes the first arête left of the white slab on Boulder Wall. Abseil down from near the boulder. Take a hanging belay (small nuts) on sloping footholds half way down a black slab left of the arête. A rucksack is needed to keep the rope out of the water. Step up from the belay and move to the left side of the slab. Trend right to a small ledge on the arête. Climb the arête (minute spike runner) and over an overlap to a steep crack. Up this to the top.
E. Cooper, S. McCrory, Spring 1987.
The arête can be climbed in its entirety by starting from an obvious foothold on the right side of the arête just below the level of the belay.
BARRACUDA** 20m E4 6a
This route takes the black corner immediately above belay for Splash Down. Climb easily up the corner to overhang and arrange small wires and friends. Step left around overhang. Hard moves lead up to horizontal break. Finish up the arête as for Splash Down.
DOOLIN ROUGE *** 26m E1 5a
P. Blackburn, G. Jewson, 16/4/79.
A fine climb although protection is a bit sparse. Takes the left arête of the white slab on Boulder Wall. Abseil down to the left end of the long narrow ledge at the base of the slab. Belay on the abseil rope. Climb a very faint groove for 4m. then traverse left to the arête. Climb this to a ledge and trend right up a slab to the top.
CALANUS * 20m E1 5b
T. Ryan, O. Jacob, S. Gallwey, 8/5/82.
This route takes a line up the centre of the white slab between Doolin Rouge and a wide crack on the right (Great Balls Of Fire). Belay on the abseil rope near the left end of the ledge at the base of the slab and just right of the start of Doolin Rouge. Trend rightwards up the slab to ledges. Pass a small overhang above on the left and gain a pair of horizontal cracks below a vertical crack (the final section of Great Balls of Fire). Traverse left for 3m and climb the steep slab above to the top (crux, poor protection).
CREPUSCULAR RAY 20m E2/3 5c
J. Hawkins, F. Desmond, E. Fitzgerald, 31/3/96, (practised on top-rope).
This route takes the slab 2m left of Great Balls of Fire. Climb the slab to a mantelshelf at 6m (crack on Great Balls of Fire used for protection) Move left and gain the small ledge 2m above (pre-placed peg, since removed). Move up and right under the bulge. Difficult climbing to reach horizontal breaks. Continue up the bulging wall to the top.
GREAT BALLS OF FIRE *** 26m HVS 5a
B. Walker, M. Boushell, June 1977.
An excellent route with varied climbing. Start at the foot of a conspicuous crack near the right side of the white slab on Boulder Wall. Belay on the long ledge at the base of the slab. Climb the crack to a small overhang. Trend up leftwards and traverse delicately left using two horizontal cracks. Climb a good crack more easily to the top.
Alternative Finish E1 5b
K. Murphy, T. Ryan, 28/3/84.
At the overhang step right and gain a ledge up to the right. Step left from this and up steeply to the top.
WHITE SCIENCE 26m E2/3
C. Ryan, C. Shannon, June 2014 (Headpoint)
Climb New Black Magic to the last horizontal break. Move left and up on good undercuts.
NEW BLACK MAGIC 26m E2 5a
T. Irving, P. Wynne, 3/7/77.
Re climbed after storm damage. As of July 2014: Start significantly changed, *'s removed. Grade changed? New description: Abseil from the boulder to the start of a blank left facing groove. Delicately climb the bold corner with the use of holds on the right to a horizontal break (and gear). Move up and right to another break. From here move right to a finger crack and finish.
WHITE WITCH *** 26m E4/5 6a/b
E. Cooper, A. Moles, 10/6/88.
A varied and committing pitch with an air of seriousness, the grade depends on the climber's reach. From the right-hand end of the Great Balls Of Fire ledge climb delicately up to a good hold. From this make a committing move right into a second groove which leads to a roof (many dubious RP's and a peg). A long reach almost gains the hold above the roof which allows the wall to be climbed. Keeping just right of the arête continue to a slabby wall which is climbed delicately to the top.
SALT ROPE ** 26m E4 6a
Original Route E2(5c) - T. Irving, P. Wynne, (1 aid point) 3/7/77 K. Murphy (free) 1981. Reclimbed following rockfall - M. Daly, 1995.
Superb steep climbing. The route takes a thin crack line just left of the white groove of Glanced At A Snatch. Abseil down to belay on a small tidal ledge at the base of the groove. Climb the wall to gain the crack and follow this with increasing difficulty to a horizontal crack. Finish up the wall above.
GLANCED AT A SNATCH 26m E5 6a
H. Hebblethwaite, Jams O Donnell, August 1991.
The best protection you can get on this little gripper is a scuba team and a rubber dinghy in the sea below. Belay as for Salt Rope but opt for the groove on your right. A few RP's below the overlap some metres up help you get into a stance above. Put these out of your mind and make the crux moves to a large break at the top of the corner. A hidden hold helps when you move up. Continue easily and gratefully to the top.
STRING OF BALLS *** 70m E2 5b,5b
G. Jewson, P. Blackburn, Easter 1979.
A superb serious route taking the obvious horizontal cracks that cross Boulder Wall at about two-thirds height. Protection is poor and both leader and second should be very competent. Start at the large ledge at the top of Foot Loose. (1) Follow the crack left to an arête where an awkward step around can be made to the corner of Salt Rope. Continue left and up to a ledge. Step down a steep corner and belay below the overhang on Great Balls of Fire. (2) Step up left and continue leftwards to the final crack of Great Balls of Fire. Step down and traverse to the ledge of Doolin Rouge at an arête. Step around below an overhang and up onto a hanging slab. Step left across this and move to a final yellow corner. Climb this easily to the top.
SAMHRADH, SAMHRADH * 18m VS 4c
P. Daly, Damien O'Sullivan, 27/7/2011.
Abseil to tidal ledge below and to the left of Foot Loose. Climb first groove left of Foot Loose for 3 m. Swing around the rib on the left using a triangular hold (crux). Follow the groove pleasantly to the top. Well protected.
Direct Start VS 4c
P. Daly, R. Keane, P. Conran. 17/05/2012,
Takes the next groove to the left. Pleasant layaways lead directly to the finishing groove.
FOOT LOOSE * 15m E4 6b
E. Cooper, 20/5/88. A
Short but technically demanding climb which takes the smooth black corner immediately left of Aria. This is followed with difficulty to good holds where it is possible to rest and place a runner on the right arête. A committing series of moves up the corner leads to easier ground which is followed to the top.
ARIA 15m E2/3 5c
E. Cooper, T. Cooper, September 1984.
This is the arête right of Foot Loose. Abseil down to ledges as for Foot Loose. Step right onto the arête and climb it with a move onto the left side just below the top.
HIPHOP * 15m E3 5c
C. Torrans, M. Daly, September 1995.
This route takes the wall right of Aria. Start as for that route but continue past the arête to the middle of the wall. Follow thin cracks and pockets to the top.
STEVO 20m VS 4c
M. Daly, C. Torrans, September 1995.
Climb the black wall left of Two Hand Reel.
TWO HAND REEL 20m VS 4c
P. Blackburn, G. Jewson, 16/4/77.
This line takes a black wall between the black ledge from which Foot Loose starts and the deep chimneys further right. Abseil down to a sloping ledge and belay at its left end. Climb the crack and step left at an overhang. Finish directly up the wall avoiding an easier crack on the right.
Right of the black chimneys the cliff faces west again and is much lower. There are four short routes on the slab just right of the black chimneys, their starts are reached by abseil.
SEASICKNESS 12m S 3c
J. Hastings, P. O Connor, 3/7/77.
Belay at the crack at the back of a ledge near the left end of the slab. Climb up onto the slab on sharp honeycombed rock. At 3m traverse left to the left edge of the slab where it overhangs the sea. Climb the left edge to the top.
BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATERS 12m S 4c
P. Sloane, J. Leonard, B. Walker, 3/7/77.
Right of Seasickness there are three very shallow grooves. This route takes the first groove 3m to the right. Climb a broken crack to the smooth slab. Climb the groove above to the top.
BLACK POPCORN 10m VD
J. Leonard, P. O Connor, 3/7/77.
Start from a stance just above the high tide level at the right-hand side of the slab. Climb an obvious crack to the top.
SLIM PICKENS 9m VS 4b
I. Rea, C. Torrans, September 1984.
On the flat area south of Black Popcorn there are many numbers painted on the rock. About 10m south of No. 21 is a fine, if short, right-angled corner. Abseil in at low tide and climb the crack on perfect jams.
Lazy day - 10m VD
It starts in the left of build-in ladder. Perfect route for beginners who want to improve their abilities in leading and placing gear Gear used : micro nuts jammed into thin cracks
The DWS routes have been moved to their own page at Ailladie DWS Routes, so that a pin on the map can have a different colour to the trad routes.