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Zed on GCSE ArÍte 6C Photos: Dafydd Davis


Sam on Chemical Brothers 6C


Sam on The Swarm 6A+

Young Blaenau lads, Sam Davis (aged 15) and Zed Jones (aged 14) have developed an exciting new area below the dam road at Tan y Grisiau.

So far they have climbed nearly twenty new lines up to 6C, but there is potential for much more. The rock is essentially perfect, clean and very rough and it dries out very quickly. It takes less than 10 minutes walking to reach even the furthest away problems and lines such as GCSE ArÍte and Chemical Crack can be reached in about five minutes.

The problems are best approached as follows: turn into Tanygrisiau off the main road and then turn immediately left on to the road leading to the power station. Follow this road past the lakeside cafe round to the right and over the railway crossing. Go up the hill about 200m and park at the first lay-by on the right opposite a five bar gate.

Go through the gate and head left to a little stream, at the stream head uphill and a bit to the left and the first problems are at the right hand end of the complex of crags.

GCSE ArÍte is an obvious jutting block left of a little stone enclosure.

Chemical Crack and the Chemical Brothers are just a few metres up and to the left on an obvious recessed wall with some ivy to the left.

Sboncen, One Arm Bandit and Squelch are all located in an area of tiered outcrops above and to the right of Chemical Crack and are quite obvious.

To get to the Minecraft area head up for the highest tier of crags on the right keeping to the right of a little stream.

The other problems are reached by heading over to the obvious mine incline and crossing it and the fence level with the bottom of the big crag to the right of the incline. Once over the incline The Swarm slab is the obvious pale slab poking out of the bracken about 150m left of it.

GCSE ArÍte 6C ** - a lovely short but intense problem up the steep side of an obvious leaning block a few metres left of the stone enclosure. From a sds on the left hand side and feet on the little ledge power up on crimps to juggy top out.(NB. it can be done at about 6A with feet on adjacent blocks from a sds)

Chemical Crack 5+ * - an excellent steep crack above a perfect landing just up and left of the previous problem.

Chemical Brothers 6C * - from a sds on the obvious flake left of Chemical Crack, climb the crimpy wall left of Chemical Crack with a powerful slap near the top.

Sboncen 5+ - about 40m up and left of Chemical Crack is an obvious short steep and juggy wall above a wide mossy terrace.

Sboncen right hand 5 - the big juggy flake 2m right of Sboncen.

One Arm Bandit 5+ - 20m left of Sboncen is a white wall with a steep undercut arÍte on the right and a willow tree on the left. This problem climbs the arÍte from a sds under the roof and then climbs the arÍte on the left.

Not so great corner 5 - the obvious leaning corner let of One Armed Bandit from a sds.

Squelch 6B * - The crimpy white wall 2m right of NSGA with a very boggy landing.

Squelch 2 5+ - crimpy cracky thing 2m right of Squelch.

From Squelch go up and right to a little stream at the right hand end of the big crag. From the stream follow the sloping terrace for 50m to a wide grassy terrace under a series of clean just off vertical walls.

Minecraft ArÍte 5! * - the obvious highball slabby right arÍte on the furthest right wall. Perfect rock

Minecraft Wall 6C * - Superb technical slabby wall just left of the arÍte on perfect rock - finish up the arÍte.

Minecraft Crack 6A ** - superb thin crack just right of Minecraft Wall.

Sam's Slab 5 - fun slab left of the Minecraft Wall.

The series of 5 to 6 slabs and walls left of the Minecraft area are currently unclimbed but offer potential for very high quality highball problems (up to 10 in number).

At the far left hand end of the big crag is a big quarry incline; the next problems are over the other side of this. About 150m the other side of the incline is a pale slabby wall with a thin crack up the middle.

The Swarm 6A+ ** - climbs the central crack on perfect rock to a rounded top out.

The Swarm Left hand 6A - the short slab just left of the crack.

The Swarm Right hand 5+ - slab right of the crack with a slightly gripping top out

We like Trains 6B - the funky arÍte just up and right of The Swarm on its right had site from a sds.

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