Dan Cook on the tough finish of Hands, Face, Space
|Rock Type||Quarried Sandstone|
|Approach Time||20 minutes|
|Sub Area||Sandstone Western Valleys|
|WGS-84 Location||51.67966, -3.5707|
|OS Grid Ref.||SS 915990|
|WGS-84 Parking Location||51.67572, -3.566225|
|GR Parking Location||SS 918986|
|Parking Postcode||CF42 5DY|
|Base Elevation||379 metres (SRTM Estimation)|
|Faces Direction||South East|
|Crags Within 5.0 km.|
|RAD Notice/Restriction||Space Mountain@BMC RAD|
|6b - 6c+||14|
|7a - 7b||15|
One of the biggest cliffs in the area, Space Mountain certainly has a mountain feel to it. The views are superb and the ambience is unspoilt, except for the village bingo caller on Sundays.
The main wall contains long, steep routes, supplied with good holds. Some of the steeper routes even stay dry in the rain.
Midges are a pest in the summer, but by late August they disappear.
Gets sun in the morning, until mid afternoon.
Its elevation means it will often be in the cloud on overcast days.
PLEASE RESPECT DEVELOPERS PROJECTS
From the bus turning circle parking spot, follow a level(ish) grassed path from the bus stop into a meadow (75 m). Pass the small-holding buildings on their right as you go uphill to meet a stream in the top right cormer of the open area. Follow a narrow path to meet a wooden bridge (100m). 20 m past the bridge is a steep and very narrow path uphill, follow this until you meet an old tramway. Cross the tramway via a level path leading off to the right. After only 10 m, cut steeply uphill (left) on a poorly defined path, with cairns, through the conifers.
After about 400 m, the left end of the cliff is reached. Take a moment to stand in awe as your eye is drawn to the ever larger walls to the right.
The left wing contains routes more akin to the standard sandstone that locals are accustomed to.
- Will's Open Project - Fr.
Bolt stubs left of crack, BYO hangers. 13 m
- Puny Earthling - Fr. 6c *
Step up the black wall to a roof stack. Layback the blunt arête above (avoid the dirty, loose and dead end groove to its left, which somehow everyone thinks is the line until it is too late) and follow a horizontal line of jugs leading rightwards to a rock-up for the L.O. 13 m
- Bat Country - E3, 5b *
A sustained route. Starts hand, then into into finger crack. Crimpy headwall wall with hard to spot peg up and right. Shares L.O with previous route.
- Absolutely Vabulous - 6a+ *
Red layback to crack and belay in upper bay. 15 m
- Jungle Jizz Formula - Fr. 6a+ *
Crack and continuation of the L side of massive perched triangular block. 15 m
- The Rocketeer - Fr. 6b+ *
Boltline though the big low roof then the big high roof. 15 m
- Super-Dimensional Love Gun - Fr. 6a/6a+
Staples up the black wall immediately left of the offwidth crack. Follow a diagonal right to left line. Starts and finishes further across than the bolt placements suggest. 13 m
- The Beast and the Harlot - Fr. 7a
Steep, sustained and fingery black wall, right of the off-width. Climbs to the right of the staples on the upper wall. 17 m
- Synyster Gates - E1, 5b
The under cut flake is followed rightwards to the roof. Traverse left to finish up another obvious crack in the headwall. 15 m
- Sidewinder - Fr. 6c+/7a *
Stapled black wall with technical difficulties concentrated around the strip roof. 16 m
- Black Thought- Fr. 6a+ *
Last climb on the left wing. Follow a sharp arête to a ledge and the slab above, keeping left of the loose vegetated corner. 12 m
Quality, long, pumpy climbs in general. All are good, if a little fresh, so don't be shy and bring a brush.
- Will's Closed Arête Project - Fr.
Left side of black arête. 15 m
- Cybernetic Sex Samurai - Fr. 6c+/7a **
Right side of the black stepped arête on staples. 15 m
- Operation Moonshot - Fr. 6b+ *
The orange and black vertical wall, starting at an obvious crack. 12 m
- Termight - Fr. 6b *
Steep orange corner crack. Intermediate L.O. at 12 m
- Nemesis the Warlock - Fr. 7a **
Continuation staples of Termight. Big but widely spaced holds lead through the black stained roofs and over onto the headwall. 18 m
- Pumpelstiltskin - Fr. 7a **
A boulder problem start at the undercut nose leads rightwards to a steep groove with a small cave at its apex. 18 m
- Saffron of Mars - Fr. 7a **
A direct and logical link up. Takes in the boulder start of Pumplestiltskin and joins into the roofs of Nemesis the Warlock at its half height ring. Combines the cruxes of both routes. 18 m
- War of the Worlds - Fr. 7a/7a+ **
Start up Pumplestiltskin but traverse right to meet a low crack. Continue up Galactus to a traverse rightwards onto the ledge of Altered Carbon and finish up this. 20 m.
- Galactus - Fr. 7a+ ***
The wall left of the leaning boulder is brilliant and sustained. Follows a series of coal pockets through the steepest section of the cliff. 19 m
- Four-oh-Four - Fr. 7a+ **
The left hand variant on Galactus. At the big coal pocket at half height, follow the vague arete right of Pumplestiltskin's upper groove. At the cave break out right onto the headwall to finish at the L.O. of Galactus. 19 m.
- Altered Carbon - Fr. 7a+ *
From the top of the leaning boulder, immediately move right to the rib, then back left across the wall using a good crack to the underside of the roof. The meat of the route is tackling the two steep bulges. Always dry. 17 m
The next route starts about 10 m to the right at a lower level.
- One Small Step - Fr. 6b
Extremely technical groove with a bit of a stopper step up. Half height L.O. 9 m
- One Giant Leap - Fr. 7a+/7b **
Great fun, leaping around on the wildly overhanging arête. Direct continuation of One Small Step. Use the intermediate L.O. to strip q-draws as there is a boulder at ground level. 18 m
- Asthmanaut - Fr. 6b+/6c ***
The arête and grooves above are pumpy. Mount the nose (au cheval) to finish. 18 m.
- Celestial Annihilation - Fr. 7a+
Square corners to right side of nose. Awkward moves lead to a layback crack and then a delicate sequence through overhanging nose. Follow groove over easier ground until tricky section to L.O. 17 m.
- Hands, Face...Space! - Fr. 6c+/7a **
Enjoyably pumpy. Follow the orange corner leading to black roofs and finishing up the arête on the left. Knee-bar helps clipping L.O. 19 m
- Guided by the Science - Fr. 7a
Undercut orange wall. Once the first strip roof is surmounted, thin technical moves lead left to the arête. The upper wall has easier face climbing. 16 m
- James' Closed Project
Ropes and one bolt.
Next are a few shorter offerings.
- Nuns and Soldiers - Fr. 6b
Start left of chimney formed by slab of Pearls of Lutra. Climb the wall on good holds to a fingery bulging section. Pull to a good hold and enter a small groove leading to a slab finish. 11 m
- Pearls of Lutra - Fr. 4b
Diagonal (L to R) steps on the pinnacle flake. 8 m
- Unwind the Chainsaw - Fr. 6b
Fingery bulge on the pinnacle flake. Shared L.O. with Pearls of Lutra. 8 m
The shorter right wing of the crag is a beautiful orange colour. The climbs are shorter and punchier than the main wall stamina fests.
- Doom-Stack - Fr. 6a *
Corner chimney and fist crack above. Traditional style. 12 m
- Closed Project (Jet Black Heart) - Fr.
Arête and roofs right of Doom-Stack
- Biological Jiu-Jitsu - Fr. 6c **
Corner to roof. Step left across slab to finish. 13 m
- Beyond the Black Rainbow (A.K.A. Dusty Anus) - Fr. 7a **
Start on the backwall of the cave. Follow the crack to an easier finish. 13 m.
- Closed Project (All Muscle No Hustle) - Fr.
Hangers meet Dusty Anus.
- Achilles Last Stand - Fr. 6c *
Stiff start on the right side of the arête accesses easier ground. An airy traverse rightwards on the hanging slab accesses the arête finish. Shared L.O. easily reached around to the right. 13m
- Slayers Gate - Fr. 7a **
Start a couple of metres right of the arête. Climb the overhanging groove to meet the right side of the arête proper. Mantle out. 12 m
- The Dunning-Kruger Effect - Fr. 6b+/6c *
Steep, but supplied with good holds. Break out of the groove to meet the bulging wall and steps. A tricky final cross-through move leftwards gains the L.O. 12 m
The very tall slab above the bloc. As there are currently concerns over a nearby peregrine's nest, so keep off the upper tier until the end of August.
- Asylum of Glass - E2, 5b
Bravely climbs the wide angular groove on left hand side of the slab, above The Bloc. Scramble left across pinnacle/flake ledge to step into the base of the hanging groove. Climb the left side of groove, up a wedged flake. Step right, then up to a flake on the left, surmount this, climb right and up into a crystal covered crack on right. Move left to a flake and climb up and right to below a steep cracked wall, which leads to good earthy holds and a spike. A couple of pulls on heather finishes the job. Tree abseil. 20m
- Luna Dust - Fr. 6a+
Left hand bolt line to the terrace. 15 m
- Luna Dust Extension - Fr. 6b
Continuation bolts above the terrace and left of the crack. 28 m.
- Dark Side of the Moon - E1
The crack, starting at the half height terrace and Luna Dust Lower off. 15 m.
- Luna Shadow - Fr. 6a
Right hand bolt line to half height terrace lower off. 15 m.
The obvious huge boulder at the right side of the crag, with a sweet lawn and shade from a big fir tree. When you have finished, lower off and collect your top quick-draw by scuttling around the bloc and reaching down from above.
- Donut Patrol - Mod
The arête / narrow groove on the left side of The Bloc.
- Voyager 2 - Fr. 5
Left hand bolt-line up The Bloc. 8 m
- Crack for Carers - Sev
The diagonal crack on the left side of The Bloc.
- Church of the Cosmic Skull - Fr. 5+
Central bolt-line of The Bloc. 8 m
- General Sherman and the Pink Cougar - Fr. 5
Right hand bolt-line up The Bloc, past the bonsai fir tree. 8 m
- Granny's Growler - Sev
The orange inset corner/slab. 6 m
- Outta Space - Fr. 6b+
Right side of the arête, a boulder problem with bolts. 6 m
- Puny Earthling - A.Rosier, W.Calvert, R.McAllister - 15 June 2020
- Bat Country - W.Calvert, A.Rosier - 07 July 2020
- Absolutely Vabulous - Roy Thomas - 2022
- Jungle Jizz Formula - Roy Thomas - 2022
- The Rocketeer - R.McAllister, A.Rosier - 12 July 2020
- Super-Dimensional Love Gun - A.Rosier, W.Calvert - 07 July 2020
- The Beast and the Harlot - W.Calvert, A.Rosier - 01 September 2020
- Synyster Gates - W.Calvert, A.Rosier- 18 July 2020
- Sidewinder - W.Calvert, R.McAllister - 15 August 2020
- Black Thought - W.Calvert, A.Rosier- 30 July 2020
- Will's Proj
- Cybernetic Sex Samurai - A.Rosier, W.Calvert - 15 July 2020
- Operation Moonshot - A.Rosier, N.Goile - 12 September 2020
- Termight - A.Rosier, C.Wyatt - 16 September 2020
- Nemesis the Warlock - A.Rosier, C.Wyatt - 16 September 2020
- Pumplestiltskin - R.McAllister, A.Rosier- 01 August 2020
- Saffron of Mars - A.Rosier, C.Wyatt - 15 July 2021
- War of the Worlds - A.Rosier, D.Howard - 12 June 2022
- Galactus - A.Rosier, W.Calvert- 01 September 2020
- Four-oh-Four - A.Rosier, C.Watkins - 01 September 2022
- Altered Carbon - A.Rosier, R.McAllister - 18 July 2020
- One Small Step - A.Rosier, R.McAllister - 01 August 2020
- One Giant Leap - A.Rosier, N.Goile - 12 September 2020
- Asthmanaut - R.McAllister, W. Calvert - 20 March 2021
- Celestial Annihilation - R.McAllister - 16 September 2021
- Hands, Face...Space! - R.McAllister, W.Gregory, A.Rosier - 04 September 2020
- Guided by the Science - R.McAllister, C.Wyatt - 31 August 2020
- James' Project
- Nuns and Soldiers - W.Calvert, R.McAllister - 11 April 2021
- Pearls of Lutra - W.Calvert - 27 March 2021
- Unwind the Chainsaw - W.Calvert, R.McAllister, A.Rosier - 05 April 2021
- Doom-Stack - A.Rosier, W.Calvert, L.Fleur - 08 April 2021
- Closed Project
- Biological Jiu-Jitsu - R.McAllister, W.Calvert - 05 April 2021
- Beyond the Black Rainbow - R.McAllister, A.Rosier- 25 April 2021
- Closed Projet
- Achillies Last Stand - A.Rosier, R.McAllister - 17 April 2021
- Slayers Gate - A.Rosier, D.Howard - 08 June 2021
- The Dunning-Kruger Effect - A.Rosier, W.Calvert, L.Fleur - 08 April 2021
- Asylum of Glass - W.Calvert, R.McAllister - 06 March 2021
- Luna Dust - C.Wyatt, A.Rosier - 20 March 2021
- Luna Dust Extension - C.Wyatt, A.Rosier - 15 April 2021
- Dark Side of the Moon - C.Wyatt, A.Rosier - 15 April 2021
- Luna Shadow - C.Wyatt, J.Westwood - 03 April 2021
- Donut Patrol R.McAllister - 06 March 2021
- Voyager 2 - A.Rosier, J.Westwood - 27 March 2021
- Crack for Carers - R.McAllister, A.Rosier - 26.10.2020
- Church of the Cosmic Skull - A.Rosier, R.McAllister - 18 August 2020
- General Sherman and the Pink Cougar - A.Rosier, R.McAllister - 18 August 2020
- Granny's Growler - A.Rosier - 06 March 2021
- Outta Space - A.Rosier, J.Westwood - 06 March 2021