South East Wales Sandstone

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Will 'Crusher' Calvert on Western Power at Cilfrew.

Far Western Valleys

Western Valleys

Central Valleys

Eastern Valleys

If you are not familiar with the sandstone quarries of the South Wales Coalfield the following should be noted:

The sandstone rock texture ranges from moderately soft and sandy (Llanbradach & Sirhowy) to hard and crystalline (Cwmaman, Mountain Ash) with some natural edges similar to gritstone (Cilfrew Edge and Penallta). Whichever type you encounter there is a chance that small flakes and edges will snap off, even on well travelled routes, fortunately most of the routes are sensibly bolted for this unlikely eventuality.

The typical sandstone season extends from Easter to October, during the winter there are limited chances to find dry rock (exceptions can include Cwmcarn, Navigation Quarry, Ferndale, the slabs at the Darren, left wall of lower quarry of The Gap, Cilfrew Edge, Trehafod and Trebanog). After periods of prolonged heavy rain most of the crags require a drying off period, even during the summer.

As with other inland areas midges are problematic during late spring and summer. The worst affected crags have standing water nearby or are located in dense woodland and should generally be avoided after 7.00pm (i.e. Llanbradach, The Darren, Cwm Dimbath).

Download KML of Sandstone crags ...

The Best The Rest Je Déteste

Chris Shorrock On Jupiter and Mars. Photo courtesy of Mark Salter.

The best crags for a first visit are:

The Gap - A good spread of fingery vertical routes between Fr.5+ and Fr.7c.

The Darren - Steep routes between Fr.6c+ and Fr.7b+ with a few good warm ups on the slabs.

Trebanog - Predominantly short traditional climbs on solid rock with reasonable protection.

Navigation - A mix of trad and sport on slabs, a nice location.

Tirpentwys - Grades between Fr.4 and Fr.7b+ (mainly in the lower end of the spectrum).

Undeveloped crags in Sandstone area:

 Is located in sub areaIs located in local areaLat/Long
Blaen Bran QuarrySandstone Eastern Valleys51.666830, -3.0645365
Brittania QuarrySandstone Western Valleys51.602786, -3.394512
Coedcaerau-bachSandstone Western Valleys51.53926, -3.354268
Craig Trebanos - PontardaweSandstone Far Western Valleys
CwmSandstone Eastern Valleys51.736364, -3.1840762
Darren Fawr (Garw Valley)Sandstone Western Valleys51.622706, -3.5956836
Maerdy - Rhondda FachSandstone Western Valleys51.674531,-3.4909782
Mountain Ash WestSandstone Western Valleys51.674997,-3.3853287
PontrhydyfenSandstone Far Western Valleys51.63187, -3.742444
Pontygwaith QuarrySandstone Western Valleys51.635361, -3.435046
Swffryd Wood QuarrySandstone Eastern Valleys51.68403,-3.12314
Turberville Road QuarrySandstone Central Valleys51.621459, -3.417624
Tylorstown QuarrySandstone Western Valleys51.652320, -3.425395
Tyn-y-coedSandstone Western Valleys51.539026, -3.322476
Ynyshir QuarrySandstone Western Valleys51.620446,-3.405830
Ynyshir WestSandstone Western Valleys51.624112, -3.4166952


This category has the following 4 subcategories, out of 4 total.


Pages in category ‘South East Wales Sandstone’

The following 132 pages are in this category, out of 132 total.