Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Dallens Boulder Topo

Some of us have mucked about on small local rocks for a bit of fun since starting climbing and not recorded them. This rock isn't one of them, although driven past for years until buried in the vegetation just recently cleared. A lot of folk have asked if the boulder is any good so Fiona and I looked and did something about it. She cleared tons of debris with a garden hoe and cleared as high as possible from a ladder which included a lot of loose rock.

Some easy routes and scope for 3 or 4 harder ones if someone wants to clean them up. It's a far cry from Torridon quality, but a bit of fun before tea and cake along the road so don't have high expectations except from the tea and cake. Having said that with traffic it will improve, and with a rope over the top might be quite good for an intro to beginners rock climbing on the slabby routes.

700 meters before Stalker View Cafe when coming from from Fort William/Glencoe. The boulder has 4 aspects. West  facing the road, North facing the road and the obvious overhanging prow between N/NE. The NE aspect has a fairly blank steep wall of quartzite, and the easier slabby SW aspect has most of the easy routes and the way down. The North aspect is highest at maybe 4/5 meters so the more matts the better for unplanned landings. 

Be aware that due to the nature of the rock some holds may creak a little, but we have tried as best as possible to take off the worst, and the recorded routes should be ok. Some sharp flaky/crimpy holds and jugs. The top is peat and dead vegetation making the finish of The Prow and Fast Blood require a pull on some dead stumps which seem to hold fine - so far. This peat soaks the finishing holds when wet so be aware. The route grades are a starting point as its been hard to grade them as I am not a regular boulderer and found them technically easy but on the two harder routes the finish is quite high and its a stiff pull hence the grades, so any comments welcome or grade them on UKC for a consensus.

Scope with cleaning to the left
The easy side

Scope with cleaning for harder routes to the right
Feet up and slap out left

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