Coed Ely

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Coed Ely
( Gladys Quarry )
Jess Spate on The Uninvited. Photo courtesy of Mark Salter.
Jess Spate on The Uninvited. Photo courtesy of Mark Salter.
Rock Type Quarried Sandstone
Climbing Style Sport/Trad
Approach Time
Area Sandstone
Sub Area Sandstone Western Valleys
WGS-84 Location 51.561698, -3.412639
OS Grid Ref. ST 021 857
WGS-84 Parking Location
GR Parking Location
Base Elevation 111 metres (SRTM Estimation)
General Info
Faces Direction
Wind Sheltered
Climbing Type
Crags Within 5.0 km

Brittania Quarry, Coed Ely, Coedcaerau-bach, Edmonston Quarry and Edge, Glynfach, Llantrisant Drugs Cliff, Sugardaddy Gasworks, Trebanog

RAD Notice/Restriction Coed Ely@BMC RAD


Quarried Sandstone. New sports routes allowed (but there is no room left), retrobolting permissible with first ascentionists permissions.


From the road this crag looks awful. However, it is a good small crag, the gently leaning main wall being of particular merit and probably the ideal evening crag for passing visitors.

The quarry face seeps very little (even during the winter) and it catches the sun from the mid afternoon onwards. Coed Ely, combined with Trehafod and Trebanog, forms The Winter Circuit containing loads of climbs in condition at all times of the year.


Follow the A4119 to the roundabout on the north side of Tonyrefail. Take the right hand turning if coming from the south and continue into the village, turning right up any of the side streets to gain a parallel road running back right (Gladys Street). Park as near to the right-hand end as possible and follow the gate into the field beyond. Cut uphill to a track and follow this rightwards to the crag.

It appears that this crag is on private property, is not accessible via any public right of way and, although the owners of this property don't wish to allow climbers onto their land, information is recorded here for completeness of the record and for if (and when) the situation changes.. We do not advise that you visit this crag.

The following is also general advice for climbers when approached by landowners and asked to leave at any crag.

"Coedely. The BMC have reported that some climbers have been asked to leave this crag. May I remind you that if asked to leave the property by the land owneror their representative you must do so otherwise this could lead to an action for trespass being taken by the owner or their representative against you in a civil court.
”If approached at all, please try to obtain the persons contact details, explaining that without such details it will be very difficult or indeed impossible to stop climbing taking place. Explain that you are only a few of the hundreds who have access to information about this climbing place. Please be diplomatic."


There are some stakes hidden above the crag and all the sport routes have twin bolt lower offs.


The routes are described from left to right (as normal).

Left Wall

  1. Monkey Business - VS, 4c
    The left hand line on the wall, left of the first BR. 8m

  2. Lager Lout - VS, 4c
    The line just right of the crack of the last route, BR. 8m

  3. The Pure Way - VS, 4c
    The crack line immediately right. 8m

  4. Alements - Fr. 5+
    Follow a direct line past a BR and a suspect PR. Take care with loose earth at the top. 8m

  5. Scandal (in the bin) - Fr. 6c *
    Now climbed direct to B.B. 9m

  6. Bush Wacker’s Crack - HVS, 4c
    Over to the right is the first of two grooves. Climb this - but be warned, it is a little loose. Move right at the top to abseil off a tree. 14m

  7. My JCB’s Exploded - VS, 4c
    Similar stuff up the next groove along. Abseil. 14m

Main Wall

  1. Tall dark and handsome - Fr. 6c+/7a *
    The route is climbed direct (avoiding the arête - that's cheating!) past 5 bolts.

  2. Campaign for see through bikinis - Fr. 6a+ **
    One of the best at the grade on sandstone, the groove and crack passing 5 bolts. 14m

  3. Young free and single - Fr. 7a *
    The next bolted line with a crimpy start and Pumpy finish. 14m

  4. The Uninvited - Fr. 6c+ **
    The central line. Great climbing. 14m

  5. Behind the lines - Fr. 6c *
    Hard for the grade. Start below the bolt line right of The Uninvited and pull directly up to a big pocket. Continue past the second BR, to a hard move right for the last BR. Pull up on a small pocket (crux) and mantel onto the ledge to finish. 14m

    N.B. Combine the finish of the Uninvited with the start of Behind the lines gives a nice steep Fr.6a+

  6. Buffalo Hunter - HS, 4a
    A loose and unremarkable route up the groove on the right of the main wall. 11m

  7. Girdle Traverse - E1, 5c
    From the base of Buffalo Hunter, gain the shelf leading all the way along the main wall, and foot traverse this leftwards to finish up My JCB’s Exploded. The BRs on other routes provide the protection, TB (?). 16m



To find your desired crag, type the name in to the Filter Markers box (top right corner of the map).

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  1. H.Griffiths 00.00.1989
  2. D.Viggers, E.Alsford, P.Donnithorne 15.06.1991
  3. H.Griffiths, J.Harwood, A.Sharp, P.Lewis 04.03.1989
  4. P.Donnithorne, E.Alsford 00.00.1991
  5. A Sharp J Harwood 1989 Direct finish A Sharp P Lewis Oct 2008
  6. G.Lewis, M.Allely 00.00.1989
  7. G.Lewis, D.Hart, S.Blackmore 00.00.1989


  1. A.Sharp 00.00.89
  2. G.Lewis 04.03.89
  3. A.Sharp 00.00.89
  4. A.Sharp 00.00/89
  5. A.Sharp, J.Harwood 21.02.89
  6. J.Harwood 04.03.1989
  7. Unknown Pre-1992