Fall Bay to Mewslade
¾ hour either side of low water to non-tidal. See individual sections.
A beautiful and popular area, providing the greatest concentration of the best traditional routes on Gower and some of its most spectacular. It is possibly the best area for a first visit to Gower. The area lies between Fall Bay in the west and Mewslade Bay in the east. It contains a variety of gullies and buttresses, with climbing of all grades with both nontidal and very tidal areas which are individually noted. If a little forethought is used, it is not too difficult to visit a couple of crags to prevent an overly tide-determined visit, for example by combining trips to King Wall and Lewes Castle, or Jacky’s Tor and Catacomb Gully.
At low water it is possible to walk all the way round the lower cliffs for about an hour either side of low water, the critical cut off point being Jacky’s Tor. It is possible to walk round the areas either side of Jacky’s Tor for about 2 hours either side of low water. On a first visit it is best to follow the crag familarisation tour set out below. There are three very popular areas, King Wall and Lewes Castle, containing easy and middle grade routes respectively and the very impressive Yellow Wall.
There are two possible approaches depending on which end of the area one wishes to visit:
1. Fall Bay Approach
This is the best approach for cliffs to the west of Jacky’s Tor (King Wall to Jacky’s Tor). Drive to the end of the B4247 at Rhossili and use the (paying) NT car park by the Worms Head Inn (GR415881). Walk down to the end of the first field, cross the fence and turn left. Continue across two fields to a track which leads to a lane, turn right into the lane and take the first opening on the left. Follow a track with a hedge on the left and at its end turn right into another field. Walk a short distance keeping a hedge to the right, cross a stile and turn left. Follow the edge of the field, cross the stile and descend wooden steps. Lewes Castle is immediately in front on the left 10 minutes from the car park. Sea level crags can be gained by contouring round Lewes Castle at this level and walking down the platform above King Wall to reach Giant’s Cave. King Wall is to the west (right when facing out to sea), the other crags to the east. Alternatively from the wooden steps, drop down to the beach and follow the coast round from the west (left) end of King Wall.
2. Mewslade Bay Approach
This is the best approach for the upper cliffs to the east of Jacky’s Tor (as far as Grey Wall) and probably for the Tor itself. Turn left (south) off the B4247 at Pitton to Pitton Farm (GR 427877). Car parking is available (honesty box). Strike left from the entrance to the car park. Walk a short distance down a farm track then bear right past farm buildings to gain the path leading through a narrow valley to the East end of Mewslade Bay (7 mins walk).
To find your desired crag, type the name in to the Filter Markers box (top right corner of the map).
Described by crag.
The following tour may be useful.
Looking east just before descending the wooden ladder/steps described in the Fall Bay approach, some prominent spikes of rock can be seen some distance away. This is on the opposite side of Upper Jacky’s Tor from the recorded routes. The main tour starts on Fall Bay Beach, no more than 1 hour before low water. Start heading eastwards (rightward if looking back to land from the sea). The first sea level crag is the long, 25m high King Wall, above which is the obvious non-tidal crag of Lewes Castle.
Continuing east, where King Wall runs down into the sea, is a very obvious square-cut 25m high cave, Giant’s Cave. To the east the crags become broken and a long spur runs out to sea. Running straight up from this spur is Devils’ Truck.
Carefully traverse down and right across broken rock (behind which is High Chimney Gully) to gain a wide sandy beach, behind which is a cove full of huge boulders. This is Great Boulder Cove and the huge wall on its left (west side) is Yellow Wall. On the other side of this is Eyeball Wall. The small steeply overhung wall south (left) of Yellow Wall is Hairy Dog Wall and between this and Yellow Wall is Little Block.
On the other side of Great Boulder Cove is Jacky’s Tor, a prominent narrow rectangular headland that blocks further vision. Beyond the toe of this is a steep incut gully, containing some steep cracks in its left (west) wall. This is Cathedral Wall, the next buttress is The Pulpit. Just to the east, the way appears to be blocked by a long low tongue of rock running out to sea. This is The Aisle. At the north (landward) end of The Aisle is a narrow chasm which passes behind. A roofless cave behind the chasm contains the route Treasure.
On the far (east) side of The Aisle the beach opens up again and after about 50m there is a high, narrow pillar leading up into the land. This is White Edge, below which is the unimpressive looking Molar Wall. The next headland east, which contains a deep gully on its east is Block Buttress, bounded on its east by Trident Gully. Beyond Trident Gully the rock gradually decreases in height passing by Fourth, Third, Second and First Gully. The recess above these is Catacomb Gully.
Mewslade Bay has now been reached and the rock tails off to the access path. The huge headland to the east is Thurba Head. Walk up from the beach to the higher level crags and strike back west. The first unimpressive wall encountered is Grey Wall. After some time the pinnacles referred to at the start of the tour are encountered, to the east of which is Upper Jacky’s Tor. On the far side of this the immediate way is barred by Great Boulder Cove, from where Yellow Wall can be seen over on the west. The path now skirts back above the crags to the wooden ladder/steps initially encountered.
Now go and climb!
Pages in category ‘Fall Bay to Mewslade’
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