Second Sister

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Second Sister
First and Second Sister
First and Second Sister
Rock Type Natural Carboniferous Limestone
Climbing Style Trad/Sport
Approach Time 25 minutes
Area Gower
Sub Area Thurba to Overton
Geodata
WGS-84 Location 51.555061, -4.265686
OS Grid Ref. SS 430 864
WGS-84 Parking Location 51.565848, -4.270856
GR Parking Location SS 427 876
Parking Postcode SA3 1PE
Base Elevation 36 metres (SRTM Estimation)
General Info
Faces Direction South West
Aspect Sunny
Wind Sheltered Seldomly
Climbing Type Normal
Seepage Quick drying
Crags Within 400m

Deborah's Overhang, Deborah's Zawn, First Sister, Rams Grove Crag, Rams Grove Seaward Crag, Saddam's Wall, Second Sister, Sister 2 and Half, TV Zawn, The Crag That Time Forgot, The Knave, Third Sister, Tooth Fairy



Second Sister
Trad Grades
<= HVS 8
E1 - E3 4
E4 - E5 1
Second Sister
Sport Grades
<= 6a+ 4
6b - 6c+ 0
7a - 7b 0


ACCESS

Quickest from Great Pitton Farm (Mewslade) but many will wish to walk in (longer walk) from the free parking at Pilton Green.

From the main Rhossili road, turn left in Pitton (south) to Great Pitton Farm (SS 427 876 or 51.556076, -4.267799) where there is a car park. The honesty box no longer exists and a system of seasonal tariffs is now in operation. Payment is made via a machine or paybyphone Ⓡ. See Pitton Parking for information on charges. Currently a maximum of £5.00 is charged for parking from 06.00 to 22.00.

Turn left when coming out of the car park and follow the road, past some houses and farm buildings, until it then becomes an unsurfaced track. At this point, the main track appears to veer off to the right. You should take the left fork (public footpath but marked, "Private Road"). Follow the track uphill for 75m passing through two gates. Then follow the track further (for 350m) until you come to another gate. Go through the gate and either follow the sign-posted footpath directions directing you via the edges of the field or strike out diagonally rightwards across the field for 260m to reach yet another gate.

Pass through this gate to head down a shallow grassy valley towards the sea to reach another gate on the Wales Coast Path after about 50 metres. This is the top end of Rams Grove (SS 430868). 1 km. (15 mins. from parking).

From the gate at the top of the Rams Grove valley, head towards the sea. At the stony beach, a series of vague coast paths head eastwards. Follow them and after 220m First Sister is seen on your left. Ascend the grassy gully between First and Second Sister.

From Pilton Green, follow directions to Third Sister but instead of descending the final slope to Third Sister, head further west along the coast path and through a gate and then walk 130 metres along the clifftop until you see a steep "valley" descending towards the sea. Head down the valley. Second Sister will be on your right.

BOLTING POLICY

Replacement of worn fixed gear on a point for point basis with bolts is permissible.

PREAMBLE

This is the buttress 29 m east of First Sister. It has slabby left-hand section with the routes finishing at a grassy ramp and a steeper south wall with routes going the full height of the crag. Some of the routes would be pretty good if anyone were prepared to do a little trundling, helmets are essential. The most obvious feature is the prominent fin of Finnmark.

THE ROUTES

Above the grassy ramp are a few short routes. Care with rock needed.

topo for Second Sister, Above Holy Sister, Gower, South Wales.
Above Holy Sister
  1. No Name1 - Severe
    Layback crack.

  2. No Name2 - HS
    Diagonal crack

  3. No Name3 - HS
    Another diagonal crack

  4. Above Holy Sister - Fr. 5+
    Direct up from belay on grass terrace.

rock climbing topo for Second Sister, Gower, South Wales
Second Sister left-hand side
  1. Holy Sister - Fr 4+ ***
    An obvious slabby section leads to a slight bulge. Lower off or walk down the grassy ramp. 20m.

  2. Barney Rubble - VD
    Climb LETHALLY loose rock left of the fin of rock at the left side of the crag. 18m.

  3. Finnmark - E2,5b
    From the ledge at the start of Barney Rubble, swing right round the arête to the obvious groove of South Wall. Move up and stretch left to the fin edge. Climb the right side to the top. An obvious, but disappointing route. 18m.

    rock climbing topo of Second Sister, Gower, South Wales showing the line of "South Wall" as depicted in the topo in Talbot (1970)
    Second Sister showing the line of South Wall as in the topo in Talbot (1970)


  4. South Wall Variation - VS,4c *
    Gain the groove of South Wall as for Finnmark, but continue as for South Wall itself. 28m.

  5. South Wall - VS,4c[1]
    Might be worth a star if it was trundled at the start. Start at the right edge of the ledge running across the start of the wall proper. Make a leftward-rising traverse to reach the corner crack and follow this to a ledge. Finish through the small overlap above the groove. [2] [3] 33m.

  6. ’arrow - HVS,5a[4]
    Supersedes an earlier indirect route, Harrow (P.Kokelaar, G.Williams 1969) Climb the lower slabs just right of the start of South Wall, via a slanting crack line to gain the overhangs. Overcome these to gain the top. 33m.

  7. Sisters of Pain - Fr. 6a **
    Start 2 m left of Jubilee. Follow the line of through bolts to gain and surmount a short initial roof. Finish with a burly pull over the final roof, triple bolt belay.

  8. Jubilee Step Sister - Fr. 6a+ **
    Start just L of the diagonal break on the rightside of the ledge. Follow the glue in bolts to the upper phreatic tube then over the top roof. 50m rope does the job.

  9. Scissor Sisters - Fr. 6a+ ***
    Start just right of "Jubilee..", gain the roof and layback the crack to the spectacular chain lower off. A 50m rope will suffice.

  10. Topless Admirers - HVS,5a
    This takes a line of slabs and grooves 2m[5] right of South Wall. ? Your guess is as good as mine. 33m.

  11. Sister Sledge - E1,5a
    Start as for Topless Admirers, then finish up the obvious grooves further right. 33m

    The crag has an eastern side wall.

    Topo of Second Sister RHS - Needs checking
    Second Sister RHS - Use with caution. Needs checking.


  12. Sister Bliss - E5,6b
    Start at the left end of the broken ledge running beneath the wall. Take the obvious leftward-rising overlap to gain a shallow hanging groove, TR. Finish directly on flakes up the leaning wall. 13m.

  13. Bloodbond - E1,5b
    Start as for Sister Bliss, then follow an intermittent crack on honeycombed rock right of a grey flake. Proceed directly on flakes up the unlikely wall above to the top, avoiding premature escapes into the groove on the right. 12m.

  14. Sleuth - E3,5c
    Take the concave slab (sic) above the middle of the ledge beneath the wall. Follow a very slight, overhanging flake a little leftwards onto the slab. Go directly up from an undercut onto the easier angled slab, keeping just left of the groove on the right. Exit with care. 12m.

Additional Photos

First Ascents

  1. No Name1 -
  2. No Name2 -
  3. No Name3 -
  4. Above Holy Sister -


  1. Holy Sister - Tess Tickle February 2020
  2. Barney Rubble - C.Allen solo 1987
  3. Finnmark - M.Crocker & J.Harwood 7th March 1998
  4. South Wall Variation - A.Richardson & J.Beynon 1989
  5. South Wall - E.Pardoe & J.Talbot 1969
  6. arrow - G.Evans & P.Clay 18th October 1981
  7. Sisters of Pain -
  8. Jubilee Step Sister - Tess Tickle 2022
  9. Scissor Sisters - Ben Dover & Phil Mc'Avity 2023 October
  10. Topless Admirers - L.Davies & P.Thomas April 1987
  11. Sister Sledge - G.Lewis & P.Thomas, A.Richardson 1988
  12. Sister Bliss - M.Crocker & J.Harwood 7th March 1998
  13. Bloodbond - M.Crocker & J.Harwood 7th March 1998
  14. Sleuth - M.Crocker & J.Harwood 7th March 1998

Notes

  1. Given HVS,4c in Gower and South East Wales (1983), p. 43.
  2. Talbot (1970), p.85 says, "A splendid free route on excellent rock" Perhaps someone could carry out the necessary trundle and clean up this very good and under-used crag.
  3. The route description here for South Wall is somewhat different to the description in Talbot (1970) pp. 85-86.
    "Start at the centre-foot of the wall, from a narrow terrace, easily reached from the R or L. Climb a smooth black wall direct, extremely delicate, to a very steep slightly overhanging rock. Continue up bearing L to the L corner of the lower wall. Cross an awkward steep slab and reach a smooth corner crack above, right of the great projecting flake. Follow this, progressively more difficult, to a ledge on the L above the flake. Go R. for a few ft., then climb the upper overhang (nut). Traverse R on a tiny ledge to below a smooth slab with a white quartz vein. Climb this delicately to the top."
  4. The original indirect route is described in Gower Peninsula Supplement (1973), p.19.
    "Harrow 100ft V. Start 5 ft. R. of route 31 [South Wall]. Climb a loose shallow groove to a roof; move L for 15 ft. and go over an overhang onto the slab above. Traverse R below the final overhang and climb this at its weakest point (1 peg). P.Kokelaar & G. Williams 1969"
  5. "4m right" in Gower and South East Wales (1983), p. 62.