Articles & Features
North East Action
Lost and Found
New Routes
Training Tips
Climbing Walls
About Us




Lake District Rock


Lake District Rock (FRCC 2015)

ISBN: 978-0-85028-057-9

Edited by: Steve Scott

Jointly Published by: The Fell and Rock Cllimbing Club of the English Lake District with Wired Guides.

Reviewed by: Steve Crowe


I started climbing in 1973 and my first real rock climb was Kern Knotts Crack up on Great Gable in the Lake District. The first climbing guide I ever owned was the controversial Rock Climbing in the Lake District by Geoff Cram, Chris Eilbeck and Ian Roper which was first published by Constable in 1975. Despite the controversy it proved extremely popular and went on to sell more than 15000 copies over four editions. When the Fell And Rock published their award winning selected guide in 2003 it was well received. Edited by Stephen Reid, it contained over 500 pages and yet it was still small enough to go in your pocket on multi pitch routes. It also sold well but it is now over 10 years out of date.

Lake District Rock 2015
The Fell and Rock have been publishing rock climbing guides for almost 100 years but this stunning 2015 edition of Lake District Rock by the FRCC is a significantly different beast. Itís 480 full colour A5 pages are crammed with more than 1500 routes spread over 85 crags across the Lake District. The guide is divided into sections that reflect the definitive series Langdale (red); Dow, Coppermines & Slate(orange); Duddon & Eskdale (silver); Scafell & Wasdale (purple); Gable & Pillar (yellow); Buttermere & St Bees (blue); Borrowdale (cyan); Eastern Crags (green); and Eden Valley & South Lakes Limestone (pink). There is a wide range of rock types; volcanic, granite, limestone, sandstone and slate. Many new sport climbing venues and traditional mountain routes are well described but for bouldering you are directed to Greg Chapmanís excellent www.Lakesbloc.com.

There are some certainly some stunning action photos and excellent landscape pictures showing the access paths but there are also plenty of white spaces littered through the guide that I feel could have included a few more route descriptions or action photos. I also feel that a slightly smaller font size and tighter layout would have allowed for even more route descriptions per page. There is no doubt that the many full page photo-diagrams are both informative and inspirational but the clear cross referencing falls a little flat when too many pages just donít have pages numbers. However that small point was easily remedied in my copy with the patient use of a biro!

The extracts of OS maps used throughout the guide are clear but I would have liked to seen QR codes included for smartphone users. I would recommend that the guide is used in conjunction with an OS map and compass or the more modern equivalent.

Classic, Hard, Extreme Rock
The trouble with selective climbing guides is agreeing which routes should you select and what gets left out. Some people think that all the Classic, Hard, Extreme Rock routes should have made the cut. Once again the FRCC have left Fine Time out of a guide, the first time it was omitted because it had been pre inspected. This time there just wasnít enough space yet there is a lot of white space on the three preceding pages. Enough room to include Trilogy, R n S Special and Fine Time on Raven Crag. Personally I would have liked to see Dawes Rides a Shovelhead in there too. That said I would have happily left out Extol up on Dove Crag. I do appreciate that Footless Horse is considered the modern equivalent of Footless Crow but I am disappointed that Pete Liveseyís famous route didnít at least get a mention beyond the passing comment in Ron Kenyonís excellent History of Climbing in the Lakes. You wonít find the magnificent Lord of the Rings in the index or in the East Buttress section either. It is there though hidden away on page 470.

Wired Guides
Wired Guides (wired-guides.com) are published by a co-operative of definitive guidebook publishers including: the British Mountaineering Council, The Climbersí Club, the Fell & Rock Climbing Club of the English Lake District, the Scottish Mountaineering Club, and the Yorkshire Mountaineering Club. Wired guidebooks aim to publish a series of selected climbing guides to the whole of the UK.

This is a well produced and inspirational climbing guide to some of the best rock climbs in The Lake District. There are so many fantastic Lakeland Adventures included within these 480 pages that I estimate it would take over 300 days to climb all the routes in this guide. Excellent value at £29.95.

Other Useful Information
Fell and Rock Climbing Club
Wired Guides

Kendal Wall's Best 100 climbs in Britain

Lakeland Classic Rock
Little Chamonix VD, Shepherd's Crag (p354)
Gillercombe Buttress S, Gillercombe (p391)
Troutdale Pinnacle S, Black Crag (p364)
Bracket & Slab S, Gimmer Crag (p79)
Ash Tree Slabs VD, Gimmer Crag (p86)
'C' Route S, Gimmer Crag (p82)
Bowfell Buttress HD, Bowfell (p100)
Murray's Route S, Dow (p124)
Jones's Route S, Scafell (p200)
Moss Ghyll Grooves HS, Scafell (p194)
Napes Needle HS, Gable (p354)
Needle Ridge VD, Gable (p246)
Tophet Wall S, Gable (p238-241)
New West D, Pillar (p284)
Rib & Slab S, Pillar (p283)

Lakeland Hard Rock
Central Buttress HVS, Scafell (p194) (Chockstone has fallen out - now E3 or alternative line E1)
Ichabod E2, Scafell, (p211)
Central Pillar E2, Esk Buttress (p164)
Gormenghast HVS, Heron Crag (p152) (now E1)
Engineers' Slabs VS, Gable, (p250)
Praying Mantis HVS, Goat Crag (p394) (now E1)
The Crack VS, Gimmer, (p88)
Kipling Groove HVS, Gimmer (p84)
Totalitarian E1, Raven Crag Thirlmere (p419) (This will replace Deer Bield Buttress which collapsed)
North Crag Eliminate E1, Castle Rock (p410) (Unclimbable as it is about to collapse!)
Extol E2 , Dove Crag (p427)

Lakeland Extreme Rock

Grand Alliance E3, Black Crag (p362) (Now up to E4)
Bitter Oasis E3, Goat Crag (p395) (Now E4 due to loss of peg)
Footless Crow E5, Goat Crag (Now E6) for an alternative see Footless Horse E6 (p394)
Saxon E2, Scafell (p194)
The Nazgul E3, Scafell (p194)
Lord of the Rings E2, Scafell (p470)
Lost Horizons E4, Scafell (p209)
Shere Khan E5, Scafell (p209)
Equus E2 , Gimmer (p84)
Eastern Hammer E3, Gimmer (p84)
Fine Time E3, Raven Crag (now up to E5)
R'níS Special E5, Raven Crag (see diagram on p68)
Triology E5, Raven Crag (see diagram on p68)
Cruel Sister E3, Pavey Ark (p50)
Fallen Angel E4, Pavey Ark (p58)
Side Walk E2, Dow (p123)
Holocaust E4, Dow (p124)
The Cumbrian E4, Esk (p164) (now up to E5)