OS Sheet: 94
Map Reference: NZ632011
Approach Time: 20 minutes
View from Middle Head Crag
Situation and Character
This crag is in a pleasant situation at the head of Farndale and gives a number of short routes, some of which are worthwhile. The crag is best visited in the spring before the bracken takes over at the base of the routes.
Developed by Dave Paul and Steve Brown during the 1970s. Franco Cookson and David Warburton added more routes at the right end of the crag in 2007.
Access and Approaches
Take the Farndale East road from Church Houses towards Dale Head and park on the right just before Elm House at the head of Farndale (NGR643004). Continue along Daleside Road (green track) on foot. Shortly after crossing a bridge over a small stream, the track leads through another gate way. Continue on the main track until directly below the crag where a gate on the right gives easy access the boulders below the crag.
Composed of natural, weathered sandstone the crag can be divided into four buttresses. The rock is generally solid; however Holly Tree Buttress is well named!
This buttress is severely undercut with a prominent roof crack at the left hand end. No climbs have been reported although there is some potential for routes.
Situated roughly in the centre of the crag, it is characterised by a large roof.
1. Do or Fly 8m HVS 5c
Climb a wall and overhang direct 7m left of a perched block.
2. Taboo 8m HS 4b
The pleasant corner just left of the perched block.
3. P.B. left-hand 7m M
The obvious crack/flake on the left-hand side of the perched block.
4. P.B. right-hand 7m M
A line of ledges, which is a useful descent.
5. Beowulf 10m E3 5c
The obvious roof-crack.
6. Rowen 8m VD
The wall and crack 5m right of the roof.
Just across the grassy gully is…
The Holly dominates the right hand side of this buttress.
7. Para 7m VS 5b
The delicate little scoop on the left edge of the buttress.
8. Woodstock 7m S
The obvious crack up the dark wall; pleasant.
9. Rock Pipit 10m E1 5b
The groove and black overhang via the cleft.
The next buttress is about 40m further right.
10. Assegal 8m HVS 5b
The left wall of the obvious aręte.
11. Zulu 12m S
The large, rounded aręte. A nice climb.
12. La Fuente del Ritmo 12m VS 4c
The right wall of the aręte.
13. Snowflake 8m HVS 5b
The aręte and corner 10m right of Zulu.
14. Good old Mutt 8m HVS 5a
The chossy corner and crack in the overhang left of The Prow.
15. One Man and his Dog 8m HVS 5a
The attractive cleft right of The Prow without the aid of the tree.
16. Choc-a block 8m VD
Start up One Man and his Dog. Traverse right around the big block. Finish up a wide crack.
17. Aiguille de la Franco HVS 5b
The aręte right of 'One Man and his Dog'. Hard moves lead to the second break which provides a Jug. An interesting move then leads to easier climbing.
Franco Cookson, Solo, 29th October 2007
The next buttress about 20 metres to the right of 'Aiguille de la Franco' provides two climbs.
18. Crazy Horse E1 5c
This is the left rib/aręte. A stretchy leg comes in handy when pinching the aręte, or teeter up on tiny holds.
Franco Cookson, solo, 29th October 2007.
19. A Mans Best Friend HVS 5a
Thin and fingery up the face to the right of Crazy Horse.
David Warburton, Solo, 29th October 2007
Another 20 metres along a buttress with no routes on can be found. To the right of this is a prominent ridge.
20. Talking Bull HVS 5a
Climb the line (left of a holy tree), to a heathery finish.
Franco Cookson, solo, 29th October 2007
About 15m to the right lies:
Only two climbs have been recorded to date.
21. Iron Men 7m HVS 5a
The steep, red wall on small holds.
22. Iron Clad HVS 5a
Climb the 'not-so-steep' wall to the left of Iron Men. Using the left aręte if you must.
David Warburton, solo, 29th October 2007