Giant's Cave

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Giant's Cave
Giant's Cave
Giant's Cave
Rock Type Natural Carboniferous Limestone
Climbing Style Trad
Approach Time 25 minutes
Area Gower
Sub Area Rhossili
Local Area Fall Bay to Mewslade
Geodata
WGS-84 Location 51.561734, -4.288136
OS Grid Ref. SS 414 872
WGS-84 Parking Location 51.565848, -4.270856
GR Parking Location SS 427 876
Parking Postcode SA3 1PJ
Base Elevation 0 metres (Other)
General Info
Faces Direction South
Aspect Partially Sunny
Wind Sheltered Seldomly
Climbing Type Normal
Seepage Quick drying
Tidal
Before/After Low Tide 2.5 hours (See Note)
Crags Within 400m

Cathedral Wall, Conglomerate Cliff, Devil's Truck, Eyeball Wall, Giant's Cave, Hairy Dog Wall, Jacky's Tor, King Wall, Lewes Castle, Little Block, Molar Wall and White Edge, Rolly Bottom Buttress, The Aisle, The Prows, The Pulpit, Upper Jacky's Tor, Yellow Wall



TIDAL STATUS

2½ hours either side of low water.

BOLTING POLICY

No bolting.

PREAMBLE

The enormous square-cut cave east of Lewes Castle and round the (east) corner from King Wall. It contains a high concentration of Gower’s harder testpieces, along with some of its most spectacular.

DESCENTS

Descent is to the left (west) at the top, passing down the path running down and east of Lewes Castle to the Great Terrace.

THE ROUTES

rock climbing topo for Giant's Cave, Rhossili, Gower
Giants Cave

The first feature is a pile of blocks, the remains of Flake Route (J.Talbot 1963).

  1. Flake Corner - VD
    The first corner right of the remains of Flake Route. 9m.

  2. Wall Climb - VD
    The wall right of Flake Corner. 9m.

  3. Slight - HVS,4c
    Just to the right is a shallow corner with a hairline crack. 9m.

  4. Killing Time - E2,6a
    To the right of Slight is a vague hanging arête. 10m.

  5. Red Admiral - E3,6a *
    The more defined arête to the right. 13m.

  6. Wierdo - E5,6a
    The cracks in the slight wall right of Red Admiral and left of Errant. 12m.

  7. Errant - E2,5c *
    A good technical pitch up the clean corner just right. Scramble off left at the top. 14m.

  8. Super Rock - E6,6b **
    The line of old bolt holes up the wall between Errant and Masterpiece. A good nut at three-fifths height and a crucial Super-rock 5 in one of the pockets high up are required. 30m.

  9. Masterpiece - E6,6b ***
    A fierce route based on the left arête of the cave. Start at the base of the arête and either swing in from the left, or more logically climb thin cracks on its right side to gain a thin, pocketed crack on the arête itself. Move up and use some pockets on the left to gain flat holds higher on the arête, above which more hard moves lead to the horizontal break. Climb the groove and continue straight up to finish. 31m.

  10. Napalm In The Morning - E7,6c ***
    An impressive route. Start up Masterpiece, but then follow the hairline cracks in the wall to its right on crimps and tinies, to join the traverse of Thriller, up which the route finishes. A Friend ½ may prove useful. 31m.

  11. Thriller - E4,6a **
    An excellent adventure up the left side of the cave. Start at the wide crack at the seaward end of the left wall of the cave that leads to the roof. Climb the crack to the cave roof, traverse strenuously left to gain a hanging groove and follow this to the top. 31m.

  12. A Rush Of Blood To The Head - E6,6b **
    As for Thriller to the roof then launch out along the roof, move 1m right to a crack and hole and finish up a groove. 31m.

  13. Can't Buy A Thrill - E5,6b **
    A strenuous exposed pitch requiring good footwork. As for Thriller to the roof then launch out along the roof, TR, on buckets and jams, pull over the lip and finish rightwards. 31m.

  14. The Divine Guiding Light - E6,6b ***
    Follow thin cracks 5m right of Thriller and an overhanging flake, PR, to the horizontal break TR. Follow this, then pull up the crack to the roof, cross it on superb jams, TR, to a chimney. Squirm across into the blowhole and follow the light. 36m.

  15. Lost Souls - A2
    An aid route. Start up the offwidth 12m right of The Divine Guiding Light, then move left to gain the traverse of that route. Finish as for Divine Guiding light. 60m.

  16. The Sistine Ceiling - E6,6c ***
    Up the wall to the right of The Divine Guiding Light to the traverse. Continue straight up to the roof and work leftwards to gain the blowhole. 5BRs, subsequently removed and not repeated without. 35m.

  17. Jesus Wept - E6,6b ***
    Gain the back right-hand corner of the cave and a good rest on conglomerate. Pull out rightwards, TR, to gain a jam crack. Follow the crack to a handrail leading out right to the blowhole. 36m.

  18. Charlie Don't Surf - E4,6a *
    Low in the grade. Start below the hanging corner on the right side of the cave below where the roof ends. A boulder problem start leads to a corner and a steep exit leftwards. 18m.

  19. Toejam Football - E4,6b *
    The roof to the right of Charlie Don't Surf. 18m.

  20. Madame Butterfly - E5,6b *
    Climb an awkward narrow crack that widens to a large fissure. Climb the overhanging wall direct to a block overhang. Climb this at its centre and take the steep wall above, old PRs.

    Pat Littlejohn & Dave Turnbull enjoying an outing on 'Nick'd'; whilst Neil Foster gets to grips with the fiddly gear on 'Charlie Don't Surf' at Giants Cave, 18m.Gower.
  21. Giant's Cave Traverse - A3
    Follow Madame Butterfly to the cave roof. Traverse the underside of the lip and finish as for Errant. 50m.

  22. Nick'd - E2,5b *
    A good, airy climb traversing right to left across the lip of the Giant's Cave. Start on the obvious ledges above the corner on the right side of the cave lip (Charlie Don't Surf). Climb down to the lip where easy climbing leftwards leads to a blank-looking section. Cross this and step down to a large foothold, continue leftwards past the final groove of Thriller to belay at the top of Errant.

    On the buttress to the right of the cave are a number of easier routes. 50m.

  23. Shannara - HS,4a
    Start below and right of the arête. Climb steeply left to reach a groove in the arête. Gain the top via the left edge. 15m.

  24. Betst - D
    Start right of Shannara to the right of the centre of the pillar, but step left and climb the wall. 15m.

  25. Sham - D *
    Start as for Betst, but climb the groove to the right. 12m.

  26. Ease - M
    The corner fissure to the right of Sham. 12m.

The Mushroom

Immediately east of Giant's Cave is a large spike block.

  1. Flake - HS
    On the east side of the block is an obvious traverse line. Follow it to the end, pull up and finish up the -scoops. 12m.

Additional Photos

FIRST ASCENTS

  1. Flake Corner - J.Talbot 00.00.1963
  2. Wall Climb - J.Talbot 00.00.1963
  3. Slight - J.Talbot, D.Lewis 00.00.1963
  4. Killing Time - A.Berry. G.Morris 00.00.1997
  5. Red Admiral - A.Sharp, P.Lewis 00.00.1984
  6. Wierdo - C.Savage, B.Heason 00.00.2000
  7. Errant - FFA Unknown Pre-1978
  8. Super Rock - J.Talbot etc - Peter Smart’s Route Pre-1977, FFA A.Berry 00.09.1997
  9. Masterpiece - P.Littlejohn, M.Campbell 13.05.1984
  10. Napalm In The Morning - A.Berry 00.02.1998
  11. Thriller - J.Talbot, B.Talbot - Twm-Schon-Catti 00.00.1966, FFA P.Littlejohn, C.Hurley 02.05.1984
  12. A Rush Of Blood To The Head - M.Richards, A.Sharp 00.00.2001
  13. Can't Buy A Thrill - A.Sharp, P.Lewis 00.00.1986
  14. The Divine Guiding Light - M.Crocker, M.Ward 16.08.1987
  15. Lost Souls - M.Heason, S.Hodges 00.10.1997
  16. The Sistine Ceiling - P.Oxley 00.00.1993
  17. Jesus Wept - P.Oxley 00.00.1989
  18. Charlie Don't Surf - A.Sharp, O.Jones 00.00.1986
  19. Toejam Football - A.Sharp, P.Lewis 28.03.2002
  20. Madame Butterfly - J.Talbot, R.Corbett - Tablette 00.00.1962, FFA A.Sharp, P.Lewis 00.00.1984
  21. Giant's Cave Traverse - E.Pardoe, M.Hogge, F.Roberts 00.00.1968
  22. Nick'd - A Wilson, E.Kellar 00.00.1990
  23. Shannara - P.Hornsby, S.Hornsby 00.00.1978
  24. Betst - J.Talbot, D.Lewis 00.00.1963
  25. Sham - J.Talbot 00.00.1960
  26. Ease - J.Talbot 00.00.1960

The Mushroom

  1. Flake - J.Talbot, B.Talbot 00.00.1965

Notes