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Thorgill Crag

OS Sheet: 94

Map Reference: SE713959

Aspect: North East

Altitude: 260m                    

Approach: 25 minutes

Mini Guide: Thorgill Crag Mini Guide (PDF)


Situation and Character

Thorgill Crag lies on the south-west side of Rosedale. The rocks are in an attractive setting and are about 300m long.



DW Stembridge, I Carr & MF Wilson, J Hickman HL Stembridge and WR Lofthous were known to have climbed here circa 1960. A route called Rowan Tree Wall was climbed by  WR Lofthouse at this timetime, unfortunately no details exists so it has been impossible to include a route description. Vic Tosh climbed Thunder Rock with his brother Mike in 1961. The next reported activity was by Tony and Eric Marr who added a couple of worthwhile climbs during 1969 while route checking for the 1970 guide book. Pete Whillance made a flying visit during 1971, climbing two difficult problems solo, Banjaxed and Roof Route. No further routes were reported until 1979 when Paul Ingham and Tony Marr added two technical climbs, Friends and The Knife. Despite the crag enjoying increased traffic throughout the 1980s to the present day, no new climbs have been reported.


Access and Approaches

The farmer below the crag is opposed to climbers crossing his land and has put up notices to this effect. An alternative approach - less likely to cause problems and suggested to the landowner - would be to take the road from Rosedale Abbey leading to Hutton le Hole up a steep bank. Follow the old railway track along the moor top northwest for about a mile and descend to the top of the crag. However at the time of writing no permission to climb has been given.


It is believed that there may be nesting birds near the crag so the area should be avoided from the beginning of April through to the end of July.


The Climbs

The first climb is on a prominent buttress, split by a crack at the left-hand edge of the crag.


1. Last Crack    5m   HVD

The last buttress on the left of the crag is split by a crack. Climb the wall left of the crack to a ledge, an awkward move into the crack leads to the top.

Variation    Severe

The crack can be gained and climbed from the right.


2. Vee Corner   4m   VD

Start around the corner 3m right of the last crack.


3. Friends   10m   HVS 5b

On the buttress right of Vee Corner lies an obvious open groove. Climb the open groove and go direct too the top of the crag.


3a. The Parochial Dream   E5 6b   **
The red barrel-shaped wall offers a sustained outing that is just about paddable. Start with a height-dependent boulder problem on the right before traversing left on pockets to an airy rockover and more straight-forward finish on pleasant edges. The direct awaits.
Franco Cookson, Dave Warburton, Sam Marks, Sophie Rohrmeier


4. Square Groove   5m   VD

About 25m right of Vee Corner by a square groove above a large boulder. Climb the groove to a tree, step around to the left and gain the top.


5. Jungle Corner   5m   M

The obvious overgrown corner 15m right of Square Groove.


6. Thunder Rock   10m   VS 5a

Start 3m right of Jungle Corner in the middle of the wall. Ascend the wall by an awkward move and a series of mantelshelves.


7. Spinal Crack   8m   E2 5c   *
Climb the arÍte right of Thunder Rock on its right side.
Sam Marks solo 15/Jul/2012

8. Knife    8m   HVS 5b

Climbs the sharp arÍte right of Thunder Rock.


9. Sip   7m   HD

Start 3m right of Thunder Rock. Climb the wall to finish at an oak embedded in the rock.


10. Corn Flake - Left hand   7m   S

The obvious crackline 15m right of Sip. Climb past a holly bush.


11. Corn Flake - Right hand   8m   VS 4c

Climb the flake and crack above, 3m, right of the left-hand crack.


12. Tough Nut   8m   S

Starts at the base of chimney 3m right of the above route. A hard start leads into the chimney which is followed throughout.


13. Rosedale Buttress Ordinary   15m   D

Rosedale Buttress is the large buttress which in profile resembles a nose. The ordinary route starts about 12m left of the lowest rocks. Ascend direct with care.

MF Wilson & DL Stemgridge  Circa 1960


14. Rosedale Buttress Direct   15m   HD

Starts just right of the ordinary route. Climb diagonally right to the nose, follow the crest of the nose to the top. Pleasant.

J Hickman HL Stembridge  Circa 1960


15. Thor's Axe   E3 5c   **
Climb the airy arÍte on mostly good holds to join Rosedale Buttress Direct at its final pleasant moves. A Good technical solution to a prominent line.
Dave Warburton, Franco Cookson 05/Jul/2012


16. Banjaxed   13m   HVS 5b

Start just right of the nose. Scramble up for about 2m to an obvious horizontal crack. Hand traverse this for a few feet to a vertical crack. Ascend this to the arÍte of Rosedale Buttress Direct.


17. Ramblerís Ridge   15m   S

The isolated rib of rock around the corner right of Rosedale Buttress. Climb the groove in the corner for 7m to a stance, belay. Move right to gain the rib which is climbed mainly on its right face to the top.

DW Stembridge, I Carr & MF Wilson Circa 1960


18. Roof Crack   HVS 5a

A prominent overhang to the right of the last route.



More details regarding the recent boom in bouldering at this venue at betaguides.com



Full details in the

North East England Guide



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