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Over The Moors KINDER / BLEAKLOW / CHEW / MARSDEN

THE DEFINITIVE CLIMBER’S GUIDE TO MOORLAND GRITSTONE


Kinder Downfall – xxxxx Ride ‘em cowboy! Andy Turner canters up Rodeo,VS 4c (page 47) in the morning sunshine, after completing the famous “lasso” throw to get a big sling over a big knob. Photo: Dan Lane.

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The Kinder Plateau Map Grinah Stones

Western Front crags

Ridge Upper Moor Tor

Pen nin e

Wa y

Glossop

Snake Summit

ay eW

weekdays only Derwent Reservoir

nin

Kinder North

Snake Pass

alley ent V

Snake Inn

The Grouse

A624

Derw

Pen

A57

Downfall The Sportsman

Kinder Reservoir

road blocked at weekends Ladybower Reservoir

Kinder South

Hayfield

Pen n

ine

Coldwell Clough

Wa y

e Way Edale

Pennin

Barber Booth A624

N

0

Chinley

Back Tor 2km

Mam Tor

Hope A6187

Castleton Winnat’s Pass Bradwell Chapel-en-leFrith A6

Sparrowpit A623 A6

B6049

Peak Forest

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1: Kinder Downfall Area Mill Hill The Western Buttresses Kinder Buttress The Amphitheatre Great Buttress Near Red Brook and many more

Kinder Downfall is a natural amphitheatre, within which are some superb climbs. Here, Neil Foster makes the crux moves on Hard Times, E3 6a (page 52). Photo: Martin Kocsis.

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Kinder Scout South-Western Edges by Ben Tetler ‘In general terms, the crags on Kinder Scout are rather too remote for many modern rock athletes – they’d rather step straight from the car onto the foot of the crag. The long slog up Grindsbrook or William Clough from Hayfield is not to their liking. So you can often find these rock exposures quiet and much as Puttrell and Baker and Alf Bridge found them in the early part of the 20th century.’

Roger Redfern, ‘The Bad Old Days’, Kinder Scout: Portrait of a Mountain (2002) ‘Some distance away in front of him, beyond the undulating heather ground at his feet, rose a magnificent curving front of moor, the steep sides of it crowned with black edges and cliffs of grit, the outline of the south-western end sweeping finely up on the right to a purple peak, the king of all the moorland around.’

Mrs. Humphrey Ward, The History of David Grieve (1892) Heading north-westwards from the Downfall, along the Pennine Way and towards the head of William Clough, one encounters various edges, buttresses and scattered boulders of differing character, height and quality. The long walk-in, coupled with its proximity to Kinder’s more eminent crags, means that this area remains one of the least visited of those upon the plateau. This provides a bonus for those who enjoy solitude and somewhat of a mountaincrag feel, as it is very rare to find yourself climbing here in the company of another team, except on the busiest of summer weekends. Hares, grouse, peregrine falcons, the sublime views out across the reservoir and, rather more unfortunately, the ubiquitous and insatiable midges are your more likely companions.

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Conditions and Aspect Angled towards the south and the west, the crags get a good deal of sun and, at up to 600m above sea level, enough wind to keep them in a generally good condition, although the less popular routes can be very green and dirty. During a dry spell these edges can make a decent venue at any time of the year. In fact, climbing up here outside of the sweaty summer months can often be a far more pleasant experience, coming, as it does, without the attendant flies, midges, and hordes of people trudging along the Pennine (high)Way.

The Climbing Out of roughly 150 routes from D up to E6, scattered classics of the utmost quality reside alongside many neglected but worthwhile lines, much else that is mediocre and plenty that only a mother could love. This area is not really a bouldering venue for obvious reasons but there are many short walls and problems to discover.

Parking and Approach

Kinder Road leads from the village of Hayfield towards Kinder reservoir. A car park on the left at Bowden Bridge marks the furthest point at which cars are allowed to go, and although the car park itself is pay and display there is ample space to park on the road for free. A 15 minute walk along the road allows a path to be taken around the left-hand side of the reservoir. This leads, after a further 15 minutes, to the base of William Clough, from which a path can be seen heading straight up the hill on the other side of the stream. On reaching the plateau turn left for Mill Hill Buttresses. Upper Western Buttress is obvious immediately to the right. Kinder Buttress is a further 10 minute walk: just past Upper Western Buttress at an old stone wall veer off the path and head downhill in the direction of a pile of boulders, the crag will eventually appear. Walking in from the top of the Snake Pass or from the brow of the hill between Hayfield and Glossop involves far less ascent, but are both tedious, especially on the way back.

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Willi

am C

lough

South-Western Edges – Kinder Downfall

Northern Edges Mill Hill Buttress

Pennine Way Kinder Summit Upper Western Lower Western

Kinder Buttress

wall

footbridge

Kinder Downfall

wall 500m

0

Near Red Brook

Wa y

N

Pen n

ine

Kinder Reservoir

Great Buttress Grin and Bear It

to Southern Edges

see map on page 27 Public Transport: For the young and keen, as well

as for the poor, the intrepid and the environmentally conscious, Hayfield village can be reached by hourly bus services from Buxton and Glossop (the 61), Marple and Chapel-en-le-Frith (62), and Stockport (358). From here follow the directions above or, better, take the old path called Twenty Trees and signposted to the Snake Inn via William Clough, which is on the left as you leave the village via Kinder Road.

Access: The walk up from Hayfield follows the very

route taken by the legendary Kinder Trespass of 1932, a mass action by the youth of the surrounding towns and cities, which challenged the restrictions imposed by private landlords upon access to the Peak District moorland. Nowadays, as one of the organisers put it in his account celebrating the trespassers’ achievements fifty years on,

‘Anybody with a good pair of legs and lungs, and the will to do so, can go on to Kinder’.

Benny Rothman, The 1932 Kinder Trespass (Timperley: Willow, 1982) Or if that’s too much: The crags lie in open access land and as such present no problems.

Pubs and Food: Hayfield has plenty of pubs. The

Sportsman, nearest the crags, and the Royal Hotel, down in the village, both know how to look after a pint. Rosie’s cafe, at the start of Kinder Road, is an excellent spot for tea and cake.

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Kinder Buttress by Ben Tetler

OS Ref. SK 077889 Alt. 560m

A large imposing buttress made up of two tiers and lying a fair way below the moor’s edge, Kinder Buttress stands like a sentinel guarding the entrance to the upper reaches of the Downfall ravine. The large jutting prow of the classic Final Judgement projects more or less southwards and divides the routes either side into their separate characters – to its left a clean, slabby, sunny side and to the right a steeper, danker and more brooding side accompanied by some of the associated vegetation and dirt one would expect to find. Down and left of the main buttress are some short walls and problems, the first of which contains a skittle shaped rock. Skittle Crack, VS 5a (2007), climbs the crack left of the skittle, to finish up the steep rib above. The skittle front on is Skittle Rock, VS 4c (2007). Directly above these routes sits a short undercut prow, which climbs very nicely from a crouched start, Never Work, V3 (6a). Twenty metres right is another short, well-featured buttress that, thanks to the local peregrine falcons, is somewhat of a pigeon graveyard. It gives two more micro-routes: The Butcher Bird, S 4b (2007) is the crack on the left. Ringed Feet, E1 5c (2007), strangely scary and pumpy moves lead up the scooped right wall and arête.

On the left of the main buttress is short cornercrack:

1 West Wall Climb HVS 5a «

1962

15m Climb the crack and the wall above to a deli-

cate traverse rightwards. Step back left onto a slab and up to a couple of threads under the roof. Another move left gains a short layback crack before the top.

2 Foreigner E3 6a «

1986

16m The initial moves up the rippled wall are in-

tricate, sequency and feel very insecure, whilst the block which sits menacingly below doesn’t help to

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inspire any confidence either. From the large ledge step up leftwards onto the slab as per West Wall Climb but move back out rightwards to finish.

3 The Mermaid’s Ridge HS 4b,4c «««

1910

30m A superb route, taking the full height of the

crag in two varied and interesting pitches, and first climbed by one of Kinder’s earliest pioneers, Siegfried Herford: photo opposite. 1. 12m From the foot of the ridge climb up past some perfectly round pockets and assorted flakes to a belay either in the small cave or (more conveniently for the second pitch) up and to the left. An alternative first pitch, Moron’s Stunt, S (pre-1976), starts up the groove to the left before traversing into the original. 2. 18m Climb the right-hand side of the south facing wall until a ledge traverse leads right to a wide groove. Another fine and varied pitch.

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xxxxx – Kinder Downfall

The Kinder pioneers sure had an eye for a line. Ruth Taylor starts out on pitch two of the classic expedition that is Mermaid’s Ridge, HS 4c (opposite page) featuring weird rock, exposed climbing and a grandstand view of the world. Photo: Dan Lane.

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Kinder Downfall – Kinder Buttress 9

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4 5 7 3

4 Glory Boys VS 4c

1986

11m An S-shaped crack curves its way up the wall

right of Mermaid’s first pitch.

5 Left Twin Chimney HS 4b,4c «

1910

1. 11m An awkward corner crack leads to a belay in

the cage. 2. 20m Take the same start as for The Mermaid’s Ridge’s second pitch but keep traversing into the next crack along.

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6 Pumping Irony E3 5c

1987

15m Starting from the ledge above the first pitch

of The Mermaid’s Ridge, attempt the offwidth roof crack with a desperate move to turn the lip. Finish up Left Twin Chimney. A real thug-route.

7 Right Twin Chimney HVS 4c, 5a

1910

1 11m Back at the bottom of the crag, the rightmost

groove is hardest in its upper section. Belay on the ledge.

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Kinder Buttress – Kinder Downfall 2 15m Enter the overhanging chimney just to the

right with difficulty, then climb up to a ledge before joining the last two routes.

8 Semi E5 6b ««

2008

bulging wall to the right, with a crux sequence that is just about hard enough to make it exciting. Finishes on the large ledge. 1987

20m Quite an adventure, with a hard crux low down

and a wild finish up the disintegrating prow. The initial arête has a taxing move leaving the prominent jug and continues up the rib. From the ledge, stretch out left from an old stuck wire to a large bird-limed jug, then keep going left with the help of a hidden pocket to finish up either side of the prow. It is possible to split the route into 2 pitches to avoid flailing around with rope-drag at the top.

10 Blessed are the Interplanetary Ones

E5 6a «

2007

14m Step off the large curving flake to climb the

thin crack in the wall to the right and then the wall above the small overlap. Pull up onto the left-hand side of the prow above to an exciting and difficultto-read last move. The first move still needs doing directly but it will still be 6a.

11 Boulevard Traverse S 4a

pre-1948

14m Shuffle rightwards along the large curving

flake, then move back out left and up a wide crack to the ledge. Finish up the short chimney.

Somewhat superseded by other routes, Neptune, HVS 5a (1979), covers some strange and rather pointless ground by traversing the dirty break under the overlap to the left of the crack on Boulevard Traverse and then climbs the rib. The top section starts up the chimney, as for the previous route, but moves out left to climb the wall.

12 Atone E1 5b «

1964

14m Find a way onto the grassy ledge below the cor-

ner crack, which is climbed with a step right at the top to avoid the grass cornice.

10m Excellent moves up the shallow groove in the

9 Final Judgement E3 6a «««

13 Jinny VS 4b

14 The Ring HVS 5b

1979

14m Climb through the bulges to the right and

onto the ledge, and then the groove in the rib.

The next two routes amply demonstrate one of the frustrations of climbing on Kinder: both excellent routes with good lines and superb features that are marred by a heavy covering of algae and are hardly worth doing in their current state.

15 Unnamed HVS 5b «

1990s

14m A fantastic gritstone tufa adorns the arête

to the right and provides some steep and exciting moves before a slopey finish. Good if clean.

16 Siren’s Wall E1 5b «

1979

12m Climb through a small arched overlap to a big

flake runner. Step left to the same top-out as the previous route. Good if clean.

Twenty metres further right is Annexe Buttress.

17 Annexe Chimney S 4a

pre-1913

8m The groove on the left has a fairly strenuous

pull around the chockstone into the final grassy chimney.

18 Annexe Crack VS 4c «

1964

9m Good, sustained, although a little awkward,

climbing up the right hand crack.

1964

15m Head towards the obvious steep crack at the

top of the crag, which contains some fierce little crystals but is thankfully neither as formidable or as dirty as it looks.

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Kinder Downfall – Path Side Buttress 6

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5 1

2

6 Shallow Crack HS 4c

Path Side Buttresses OS Ref. SK 080889: Directly underneath the Pen-

2008

6m Precarious layaway moves around to the right.

nine Way, a little further on from the turn-off that leads to Kinder Buttress, lies a collection of moderately sized edges above a large boulder field tumbling down the steep-sided ravine beyond. The first of these micro-edges is comprised of three blocks of pale grit of excellent quality. The two cracks at the left-hand end give short D and VD pitches.

The next flock of craglets lie a further 100m toward the Downfall; the first routes described sit some 50m down below the path on a steeply overhanging buttress.

1 Finger 1in the Volcano E1 5b ««

2 Little Buttress HVS 5a

2

2008

6m Follow shallow scoops and dependable pebbles

joyfully up the leftmost line on the attractive short wall and past a superb, unique hold.

2 The Bud Samaritan E2 6a «

2008

6m Another enjoyable micro-route up the right-

most line taking in more pockets and pebbles, as well as a particularly mean sloper.

1 Little Buttress Roof E1 5b

1998

9m Straight up and through the big roof with a

sandy thread for protection.

1998

9m The crack in the centre leads steeply right-

wards to good jugs and grass.

The dirty cracks in the wall to the right yield a further two short pitches, Little Buttress Route 3, VS 5a, and Little Buttress Route 4, VD (both trad).

6m The undercut arête next to the chipped initials

Up and right, across a small watercourse, can be seen a large, triangular block of beautifully pale gritstone embedded into the hillside. A platform runs along its base and culminates in a wonderfully positioned arête. On its front face Greater Than, S 4a (2008), walks along the platform until the first good handhold leads back left and to the top. The arête itself is:

4 Front Face VD

8m A great little route with an impressive line. The

The larger, right-hand block, undoubtedly climbed upon for years, has some good, clean lines:

3 AT Arête E1 5c

2008

leads to the beast’s head-like projection above.

3 The World in the Evening E3 6a ««

2008

7m The cracks and slopes up the front of the but-

tress.

5 Cleft Route D «

2008

7m The large fissure splitting the top of the crag is

easiest to approach from the left.

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1998

initial moves, starting down at the base, are the technical crux, but with the short height being quickly felt the final moves take some nerve. The short wall to the right is The World was Silent When We Died, HVS 5b (2008). Further to the right are more small edges, which are worth exploring.

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xxxxx – Kinder Downfall Emma Twyford fights her way up the relentless Independence Crack, E2 5c (page 52). Photo: Martin Kocsis.

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The Amphitheatre Area by Martin Kocsis

OS Ref. SK082 888 Alt 600m

The Amphitheatre is a grand place to come in high summer. There’s a certain calm gentleness to the land at those times, and the calls of the curlews and grouse, meadow pippet and skylark carried on a warm summer breeze are enough to make your toes tingle. The climbing is varied, and you can choose your style for the day: brutal and tough, gentle and serene, adventurous and classic.

makes up for it. Some of the routes will feel grainy and gritty early in the season, or after rain but that, as you will have guessed, is just how things are. Other routes are really quite clean; you’ll get used to it.

There is a great weight of history on these crags. Jimmy Puttrell and Ernest Baker were the original Kinder pioneers and it was here that they did their first routes. On a very good day, the Downfall is visible from the urban sprawl of Manchester and it was a magnet to those who lived there. It still exerts a pull on people today, and is a truly wild and wonderful place.

Conditions and Aspect: The Amphitheatre faces

generally south, and gets a fair bit of sun throughout the day. It’s exposed and consequently most of it is quick to dry. In blustery weather the crag can feel chilly, but the situation (and a little sun) more than

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5 2 3

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Routes: Mostly, the climbing up here is E3 and be-

low, with a really good collection of routes up to HVS. There are some much harder routes (we’re talking E5 – E8) but most of us just gape at them in wonder. Climbing here can feel like hard work. The descents and steep traverses all take their toll, and you will get back down to the valley feeling like you’ve had a proper day out.

Approaches and Access: See map on page 31.

The preferred option is to start at Bowden Bridge Quarry near Hayfield, then go via Kinder Reservoir straight up to Sandy Heys. This is a direct line of attack, and it is also the shortest. This approach puts you in a good position to call in at the Western Buttresses and, perhaps, to nick a few cheeky ascents at Mill Hill. Other choices are available, if you study the map of the area.

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The Amphitheatre – Kinder Downfall Two Tier Area

7 Loose Block Arête HS

Many of the routes are relatively small, what our American pals might call highballs, but we don’t have any truck with That Sort of Thing up here. Routes start on the Upper Tier. There’s a little square-cut buttress on the left with bouldering and gentle highballs on good rock between 4a and 5b.

8 Camel Ride HVS 5a

1986

9 The Squeeze VS 4b

1986

1 Irrational Fear HVS 5b

1999

6m A spicy finish gives the flavour.

2 Time for an Epic HVS 5b

1986

3 Hurry Crack HVS 5a

1976

8 7 6 6m The slopey finish too much. 5 is almost 2 3

6m Climb the wall to yet another sloping finish.

6m The flake terminates at an overhang. Squeeze

through a portal at the top. Reminiscent of Helfenstein’s Struggle at Stanage, but with a better view.

10 Classic VD «

pre-1974

10m Take the left-hand crack to a ledge then finish

6m Climb the short wall to an alarming finish.

1

1970s

4

4 A Sign of the Times E3 6b ««

1986

7m The crackline gives strenuous and technical

climbing to a break. Pull over the overlap at a small blind flake, then make a hard move up to the right to a rounded and testing finish.

5 Slanting Crack VS 5a

1976

6 Magnetic Moments E5 6b «

1998

7m A tough wall climb that uses the power of the

sloper to finish.

up the wider corner-crack.

11 Royal HVD

1986

12 Royal Tower HVS 5b «

1986

9 12m The big crack: photo on page 43. 10 bold, really. Climb the front of the but12m Quite

tress to a ledge below a short wide crack. Move up and leftwards into a scoop, then continue up the rib on the right to a tricky finish. 12 11

13 Summer Fruits E2 5b «

1998

12m The arête has great positions, and exciting

moves over the huge block at the top. It feels a little contrived to stay out of the chimney to the right, but if you do, you get the star .

14 Dubris HS 4a «

pre-1974

11m A fun, wide crack.

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Kinder Downfall – The Amphitheatre 14

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15 Autumn Chimney VD

1975

16 Fungi To Be With HVS 5c

2001

17 Mushroom Rib HS 4b

1986

18 Metaphysical Subtleties VD

2007

19 Theological Niceties HS 4b

2007

20 Dinosaur’s Head VD

2007

11m The wall using some odd-looking pockets.

10m A cheval up the arête.

past the eponymous feature.

21 Niche Arête S 4b 2 3 1986 1 10m A worthwhile route navigating its way up the 22 Incut Wall VS 4c

23 Eyeball Wall HVS 5b

5

1988

10m The wall.

Lower Tier: Starting on the buttress left of Block

24 Surprise, Surprise E1 5a «

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1986

9m Climb the left arête of this buttress on good

holds, finishing over a small overhang at the top.

25 Cilla Black E1 5b

1997

26 6 Not So7Surprising VS 4c

1986

9m The centre of the wall is technical and reachy.

8 9m The line of flakes leading from right to left, finishing up a short crack.

Kinder Buttress

42

1997

8m Climb the wall right of Tea Boy passing a sin-

Buttress:

10m Use the crack on the left of next buttress to get

front of the buttress.

Just right is a short corner: Don’t Rush Me, HS 4b (1997). Right again, Old Peculiar, VS 4c (1997), climbs the front of the buttress just to the right on weird holds. Tea Boy, VS 4c (1997), starts at the foot of this buttress, then follow the arête to the top.

gle pocket at half height.

10m Steep and committing moves up the flake.

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xxxxx – Kinder Downfall 27 Friend’s Arête E1 5b

1987

11m A tricky challenge up the arête and face, but it’s

all over quickly enough.

28 Heaven Sent E3 6a ««

1986

14m Hard work all the way. Technical and tough,

with reasonably safe moves high up, but a bold crux low down. Start just to the right of the arête where moves lead to a flake and the ledge above. Step precariously to the right onto the hanging rib and go up this to the huge block. Swing boldly out over the block to finish on good holds.

29 Moac Crack E1 5b «

1986

13m If you fancy a punch-up, this is for you; thor-

oughly unrelenting.

30 Block Buttress Chimney VD

1913

13m The challenge on the route’s first ascent was

how to get the hamper of cake and fine wines through the squirm at the top. Squeaky Bottom, E1 5c (1999), goes up arête and just right.

31 Withering Arms E4 6b «

1987

7m Climb the prow direct. Well named; very safe,

but brutally hard with a particularly trying move to finish when your arms are at their least useful. Right of the arête is a dirty corner: Arthritic Ankles, S 4a. Evil Crack, VS 4c, is up the wide leaning crack.

32 Writer’s Block E2 5c «

1999

8m The arête from the right with some reachy ac-

tion, but good holds.

33 Chant of a Poor Man HVS 5a

Colin Foord making a stately ascent of Royal, HVD (page 41). Photo: Martin Kocsis.

1999

8m The curving crack to the right, which is far

harder than it looks.

Two Tier Area

Great Buttress Kinder Downfall The Amphitheatre

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Kinder Downfall – The Amphitheatre

12 1

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5 6

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The Amphitheatre This is where most of the famous routes live. There are some modern monsters here and some ageless classics alongside them. Many routes pack a punch for their size, and repay a little urgency in the climbing of them.

1 The Owl of Minerva S 4b

2007

2 Yellow Roses HVS 5b

1997

7m The undercut slanting corner.

ultimately useful feature.

3 Belial VS 4c «

1964

9m Climb the hanging flake to its top, then step

rightwards to finish up a steep crack on good jams.

4 The Buxworth Vulture E1 6a

1997

9m Mantel into the scoop, step left and follow

flakes to a crack through the overhang.

1986

reach a round boss.

1987

8m Committing, but good. The strange, pocketed

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wall that you’ll encounter here is a taste of things to come for the next few routes; unique gritstone.

7 Monkeys Only E5 6a «

8m Wow: you think you’re good enough? This was

climbed on sight by Andy Cave, with a wire brush shoved down his pants for good luck.

8 Oddity HVS 5b

1964

9 The Glossop Gelding E4 5c

1997

13m The wall. Weird pockets, rugosities and mini-

mal protection will be enough for some, but the sloping topout might prove too much.

10 Minstrel Crack HVS 5a

1979

11 Double Six E1 5b «

1998

12 Domino Wall E1 5b ««

1957

18m Interesting climbing up the strange features.

18m Despite the occasionally friable hold, this is a

9m Climb the wall using a small blind flake to

6 Italian Stallion E2 5b ««

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13m Challenging back and footing.

9m The large pocket is an obvious, tempting and

5 Wild Horses E1 5b

10

really enjoyable line with a big feel about it. Start just right of a shallow groove. Pull over a bulge to gain a good spike (runner) and move rightwards to a shelf. Continue up the shallow depression with a hard move to gain a large ledge. Finish up the easier face above and to the right.

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xxxxx – Kinder Downfall

Very exposed climbing gives Raggald’s Wall, E1 5b (page 46) its edge. As Andy Turner discovers, if you keep calm, remember to breathe and tread carefully you’ll be well rewarded. Photo: Dan Lane.

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Kinder Downfall – The Amphitheatre 17

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18 26

20 21 12

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13 Daredevil E3 5c

20m A parallel line to

1999

Domino Wall, but more ex-

posed, and somewhat thinner. Follow the wall then shuffle out to climb the arete on its left.

14 The Ledge Shuffler E6 6c ««

1999

18m Exhilarating climbing spoiled only by poor

rock low down. With side-runners far to the left and 26 to the break: Friend 6 and right, climb yellow rock RPs (3 ropes used on FA). Make hard moves up the wall then left above the overhang to an easier finish.

15 Raggald’s Wall E1 5b ««

1964

18m Got nerves of steel and huge cahones? You’ll need

‘em. Climb the hanging groove into a niche, then continue up until it is possible to traverse leftwards to the 22arête. Step to the left and continue up the wall exposed to a ledge. Finish 23 up the easier face above: photo on page 45. 25 27

16 Great Chimney Left-Hand VS 4c

pre-1957

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18m Direct and to the point. Continue direct from

the start of the previous route.

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17 The Great Chimney HS 4b «««

1903

18m Really good stuff. One of the hardest routes in the

Peak when it was first done, and not all that easy now.

18 Sorry Lads HVS 5a

1988

Great Chimney, move out and follow the arête then rejoin Great Chimney near 18m From 2m up

the top. The traverse is fun, and the finish is rather grinding if you fail to employ any technique.

19 The Ensemble Exit HVS 5a «

1964

18m Very good gear, and potentially a very good

route if it were cleaner. From the small stance on Great Chimney, continue up the groove then move rightwards to a ledge under a block. Make hard moves over this to finish (no escaping right at the top).

20 Loose Control E8 6c ««

2010

14m The last great problem of the Downfall fell after

many years to give the hardest lead on Kinder. Deeply uncertain climbing leads up the left side of th e impending prow, whose seriousness and difficulty only 29 becomes apparent when you stand30beneath it. As you

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The Amphitheatre – Kinder Downfall

26

22 23

25 27 28

29

30

might expect, the hardest move is virtually the last one: photo on rear endpaper.

27 Right Fork Chimney S

21 Professor’s Chimney D «

22m The groove. Climb the wall to a ledge. Follow

1903

13m No chance of getting lost here, with a choice of

finishes left or right.

22 Aerobics in Bondage E3 6a «

1997

pre-1913

28 Embarkation Parade VS 4c

1939

the groove to a platform, then finish up the corner at the back. Potentially a good adventure, but always in need of a brush.

14m A technical climb, using the bottomless crack

29 Final Frontier E2 5b

23 Pegasus Left-Hand E1 5b

below the bulging headwall. Climb this via a flake to the platform. Finish up the corner.

in the sidewall and a high side-runner.

1957/87

14m Climb the short wide crack in the overhang

with great difficulty to gain the thin crack above. Continue up this with a sneaky move at the top.

24 Pegasus Right-Hand VS 4c

1962

14m Right again is a thin diagonal crack. Spring up

this to a hard move for the straight crack above, then follow this on good, though hidden, holds to the top.

25 Left Fork Chimney D

pre-1913

20m Climb easily to the fork, then take the left-

hand branch on good holds to the top.

26 Nerther Nor HVS 5b

1986

22m The wall leads awkwardly to a curious pedestal

30 Crooked Overhangs VS 4c

pre-1974

22m Climb diagonally rightwards to reach a cave be-

low the overhang. Follow the roof crack on adequate, if spaced, holds. Watch out for doubtful holds.

31 Crooked Arête HVS 5a «

pre-1974

22m From the toe of the buttress, climb the arête and

step leftwards to gain the cave of the previous route; belay. Climb the overhang then traverse rightwards to finish up the wall to the left of Zigzag Climb.

32 Rodeo VS 4c « 1997

14m The wall between the two forks. Very escapable.

1998

20m A direct effort up the arête itself, with a foxing

lasso manoeuvre half way up: photo on page 28.

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Over The Moors

47


Kinder Downfall – xxxxx

Jo Bowen follows in the footsteps of greatness on Zigzag, VD (opposite). Jimmy Puttrell climbed this in 1900; it was only the second route on the plateau, but what a superb find it was. Photo: Frederic Richard.

48

Over The Moors

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The Amphitheatre – Kinder Downfall

33

34

36 38

41

39

42

44

45 46

47

40

37 35

33 32

33 Zigzag VD «««

1900

16m Classic, juggy climbing that could do with be-

ing about three times as long. Beginning at a wide crack, climb leftwards to a short crack and a semidetached flake. Move up and across rightwards to a crack which leads to the top: photo opposite.

34 Zigzag Crack HVD «

1929

13m This route climbs like it looks: awkwardly!

35 Spin Up E2 5b «

by a cunning bit of gear in the crack to the right at the start.

37 Chockstone Chimney VD ««

1903

13m A good hold allows the start to pass easily, with

several opportunities for a nice sit down and a cup of tea en-route.

38 The Last Fling E2 5b ««

1987

14m Fabulous! Steep, then delicate with just the

difficult-to-place gear and steep moves. Short lived, but intense.

right amount of everything. Climb the centre of the bulging wall to stand precariously on the tiny ledge of the top break. Make a delicate move up using the thin crack to gain the top.

36 Toss Up HVS 5a «

39 Amphitheatre Crack S

1987

13m The groove is as thin as you think it is, with

1987

14m Lovely climbing, that might be eased slightly

pre-1913

12m The main corner.

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Over The Moors

49


Kinder Downfall – The Amphitheatre 40 Amphitheatre Face Climb HS 4a «

pre-1913

10m Climb the V-shaped groove to an overhang

then move leftwards to the arête. Follow the slabby corner above on poor holds to a dirty finish.

41 Five Ten S

1999

42 Playtime S

1999

43 Square Chimney M

pre-1913

6m Tucked away to the right. A good way down.

The next few routes were overlooked for 100 years because of their apparent insignificance. They are deceptive little beasts!

44 A Little Bit Mooreish E1 5c «

1997

8m A thin, steep offset left-facing crack just right

of the chimney.

45 When The Wind Blows HVS 5b «

2003

46 No Surprises, Please E1 5b

1999

8m A steep tussle up the cleft with a grinding finish.

6m Follow bulges to the grassy ledge then steep

rock above.

1999

7m The groove. Finish with a bit of a struggle up

the overhanging crack.

Sixty metres to the right is a very steep, and usually wet, buttress.

ledges leads diagonally leftwards. Follow these to an awkward mantelshelf, then traverse left to finish up a little hanging crack.

49 Drabble VS 4c

1964

8m To the right, start up the steep wall, making

rightward movements to a grassy ledge and a finish up a steep crack.

Kinder Downfall Great rock in a fabulous setting, dominated by the seasonal caprices of the sometimes mighty, sometimes frozen, sometimes dry and sometimes upblowing, waterfall. The North Tier comes first, with a series of short, intense routes on good rock.

50 Germination VS 5a

1986

51 Damnation HVS 5a

1999

52 Hibernation E2 5b «

1989

8m The left end of the wall via an obvious flake.

8m The wall just right.

moves are not really all that hard. There’s a good hidden hold out right near the top somewhere.

53 Termination Rib HVS 5b «

8m The left arête is climbed direct.

Zigzag

Termination Rib

50

1964

8m On the left half of the buttress, a series of

8m The shallow groove. The grassy finishing

47 Seclusion HS 4b

Raggald’s Wall

48 Dribble VS 4c

Over The Moors

The Hunter

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Kinder Downfall

1986


The Amphitheatre – Kinder Downfall

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57

55

51 52

54 53

54 Extermination HVS 5b

1999

55 Terminal E2 6a

1987

8m The thin crack is as tough as it looks.

8m An excellent problem which takes the centre of

the wall to the right via a thin blind flake. Pull up on the horizontal crack and jump for a small flat hold! Continue, using the flake and holds to the right, to a frustrating finish. Round the corner, Wombat Wall, VS (1964), is rather vegetated.

56 My Part in his Downfall E6 6c «

1998

8m Crazy gritstone technicality up the pockets. By

the looks of it, it should be easier, but that’s how it goes. Very tough, but apparently well protected.

57 North Tier Climb VS 4c, 4c «

1964

1. 15m Climb the crack to the terrace. 2. 13m From the belay, climb the wall above to a short

To the right the opposite wall takes on a different character. Some of the rock is reminiscent of the best aspects of adventure climbing (i.e. a bit odd).

58 Stuck In A Groove E2 5c «

2007

14m Technical but not so frightening…a good in-

troduction to the routes on this wall.

59 Dud Chimney E1 5b «

1957

13m Reliable gear, but spooky climbing.

62

60 The Glorious Twelfth E3 5b «

1973

20m The steep groove is followed on good, but

doubtful, holds to a hard move rightwards to gain the long ledge above. Finish up the wide, bulging crack. A very strenuous route with a deceptive finish.

61 The Hunter E3 5b « 64

1976

22m Don’t be scared of Mr Flakey! He’s not as un-

58 alternative to the second dependable as rumours suggest… at least two people crack and the top. As an 59 climb further right have fallen onto him. Whatever you do, don’t hang pitch (1994), from the belay round the corner moving left into a recess with a around. Climb up to a long narrow flake then traverse pedestal. Stand on this and go over the nose to a leftwards on this to the crumbling flake. Climb up this ledge and another pull up to finish. 60 61to a niche and pass the overhang to a long ledge. Move slightly leftwards and continue the68 wall69 63 65 boldly up 67 The awful Grotter’s Gully, VS (1964), is next. (crux) to an unrelenting finish. Sparse66protection.

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Over The Moors

51


Kinder Downfall – The Amphitheatre

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64 58

59 60

61

62 The Beast E2 5b

63

1976

22m Not as hardcore as The Hunter, but not much

easier. A sprint finish might come in handy. Follow The Hunter to the long narrow flake, then continue straight up with a very long reach to gain a hold below an overhang. Move right to the Dovecote Cave. Go up to the long ledge and belay on a monster thread to the right. Finish up the rib on the left or, more easily, up the thin crack above the belay.

63 The Bloody Thirteenth E1 5b «

1973

22m Climb the right-hand arête following flakes on

the left to a thin crack. Continue direct via a crack and arête to the Dovecote Cave, then finish up the short crack.

64 Shotgun Grooves E1 5b «

1976

22m The shallow grooves to the Dovecote Cave then

finish as for The Bloody Thirteenth. Strangely awkward climbing that never really gives you a break.

65 The Gamekeeper E5 6b «

1999

20m The steep wall right of Shotgun

Grooves. Fine

climbing using increasingly smaller holds and with a sense of urgency most of the way up. Possibly high in the grade, depending on your reach.

52

Over The Moors

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66 67

68

69

66 Poachers Crack HVS 5a «

1976

18m Solid and reliable climbing that punches a way

up the crag in style.

67 Downfall Groove HVS 5a 68 Independence Crack E2 5c ««

pre-1957 1976/87

16m Excellent technical climbing that has all the

right amount of everything: fab! Photo on page 39.

69 Hard Times E3 6a «

1979

14m Move rightwards along easy ledges to a groove

composed of two steps. A few stiff pulls will get you into a photogenic position in no time, although getting to the top might be a different matter: photo on page 30.

70 Downfall North Corner Climb VD

1900s

15m Sadly for the ticker of historically significant

Downfall routes, this now lies in the scree below.

71 The Downfall Climb M «

traditional

35m A fine ramble. Ascend good ledges in the right-

hand corner of the waterfall, then traverse leftwards across the very obvious line of weakness via enormous flake blocks to an easy finishing corner: photo opposite.

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xxxxx – Kinder Downfall

Bryan Clary and Sue Fulbrook get the full Kinder experience on The Downfall Climb, M (opposite page). Despite the summer sun, the ice cold water drenching Sue made her very first rock climb all the more memorable. Photo: Martin Kocsis.

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Over The Moors

53


Over The Moors sample chapter