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August 30, 2022

Chris' Top 5 Trad Climbs Within 30 Minutes Drive of Freeklime!

1)     Mangled Digit (E3 6a) @ Running Hill Pits Quarry

Mangled Digit is a fantastic finger crack line at Running Hill Pits quarry. The climb is very aptly named too, expect for some blood to be shed on this one! I climbed Mangled Digit on a perfect late spring day, warm and breezy but the rock was cool to touch. The first 3-4 metres are relatively straight forward. Then you climb up and arrange a cluster of good gear which protects the standout crux. The rest of mangled digit involves excellent sustained English 6a (V4) climbing with a difficult move past a rusty peg, most likely placed on the first ascent!

2)     Ricochet Wall (HVS 5b) @ Shooters Nab

Shooters Nab overlooks the picturesque villages of Marsden and Slaithwaite. What it lacks in volumes it makes up for in quality with routes like Sweatyman (HVS) and Natural Route (HS), but the clear standout is the Yorkshire classic, Ricochet Wall. Ricochet Wall is well protected with camming devices and features excellent face climbing to start with a sustained hand crack section to finish. What’s not to like!?

3)     Flying Buttress (HS 4a) @ Pule Hill Rocks

Pule Hill Rocks has divided opinion of climbers for generations. I absolutely love it though. Flying buttress is the best route on the crag, I must have climbed it over a dozen times over the 3 years I’ve lived in Huddersfield. It’s an absolute joy with big holds, good gear and great views when you top out.  

4)     True Grit (E3 5c) @ Ravenstones Crag

True Grit is a climb of exceptional quality. In my opinion it is one of the finest routes of its grade on gritstone. Located in the picturesque Chew Valley, the climbing is typical gritstone; highly technical and insecure. As you come round onto the arete to contemplate the crux, the ground drops away beneath you which is guaranteed to get the heart pumping and focus your mind. Luckily, the protection is good and the crux somewhat short-lived.

5)     Answer Crack (VD) @ Dovestones Edge

Answer Crack is often referred to as Western Grit’s answer to Heaven Crack. I would disagree. Answer crack is better. Its harder, less secure, more committing and a lot more fun than it’s Stanage counterpart. Get on it, it’s a banger.

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