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Supertramp Fr.7a - Photograph by Mark Salter
Supertramp Fr.7a - Photograph by Mark Salter
Rock Type Quarried Sandstone
Climbing Style Sport
Approach Time 15 minutes
Area Sandstone
Sub Area Sandstone Eastern Valleys
WGS-84 Location 51.693790, -3.090722
OS Grid Ref. SO 247 000
WGS-84 Parking Location 51.696359, -3.079332
GR Parking Location SO 254002
Parking Postcode NP4
Base Elevation 314 metres (SRTM Estimation)
General Info
Faces Direction South
Aspect Sunny
Wind Sheltered Mostly
Climbing Type Family
Midge Problem Moderate
Seepage Quick drying
Crags Within 5.0 km

Blaen Bran Quarry, Crymlyn Quarries, Glyn Quarry, Siocled Seren Pysgod Quarry, Swffryd Wood Quarry, Tirpentwys, Tyle y Coch

Sport Grades
<= 6a+ 18
6b - 6c+ 10
7a - 7b 1
>= 7b+ 1


Retro-bolting permissible with first ascensionist’s permission. Replacement of worn fixed gear on a point for point basis with bolts is permissible. New sports routes allowed.


Formerly, a gloriously well trodden crag. However, since the advent of Rockfax, this place has become a zoo. It's the closest thing in SE Wales (including Shipwreck Cove) to a busy indoor climbing wall. Come on guys and gals, where has the spirit of adventure gone? Seriously, try somewhere else!

The face is south south west oriented, so gets sun for most of the day it is also very sheltered from any wind.

There is a flat grassy base which helps when taking children to the crag.

The rock dries quickly but there are a few seepage lines and wet pockets after inclement weather.

Midges can be a little annoying come dusk. Some long sleeved garments and anti-pest cream should be adopted.


There are 2 ways to approach this crag:

1. If coming from Pontypool/Blaenavon. Turn off the A4043 into Pontnewynydd Industrial Estate follow this road to a T junction just past the Post office sorting depot. Turn left up the hill along the road passing the Plas-y-Coed pub on your left, continue and the road will become lined with ancient beech trees. About 150m further along, on the right hand side, is a car park signposted as a Local Nature Reserve. This is the old entrance to what was Tirpentwys Tip.

2.If coming from Crumlin. In Hafodyrynys turn left (by the shops) off the A472, then take the road towards 'Pont Bren' that runs down the side of the Chinese takeaway. After about 70m turn right (signposted towards Star Inn) up the steep hill, round the hairpin bend, and pass the Star Inn on your left. Cross over a cattle grid and then the road levels out. Continue straight ahead towards the next junction and turn right, crossing a second cattle grid, to pass the houses of Pantygasseg on your left. Follow the road down the steep hill to quickly find a car park on the left signposted as a Local Nature Reserve.

~To the Crag. From the green metal barrier located above the 'Local Nature Reserve' walk along the obvious tarmac road for about 200m until it bends to the right, at this point go straight on following the gravel road you will pass a footbridge on your left after 150m, 50m after this cross the small drainage ditch on the right, the crag will now be visible approx' 100m on the right. There is a style fixed to the fence to allow easy access.


All the routes have individual bolt belays.


Bruce Danby leading "Diamond Sog", FR.6b at Tirpentwys
Bruce Danby leading up Diamond Dog Fr. 6b


Short, shady, green, and often damp. Still the most popular section at the crag by virtue of its low grades.

  1. Shrew - Fr. 5

  2. Yank my Chain - Fr. 4
    The most impressive part of this climb is the rusty quarry chain.

  3. Paw Me - Fr. 4+

  4. By deFault line - Fr. 5
    The fault line is an interesting geological feature.


The left side of the main wall hosts some filler type routes which are now succumbing to vegetation.

  1. The Brown Dirt Cowboy - Fr. 6a+
    A little dirty even after the marching of an army across it. Don't fall onto the metal thing.

  2. Where There's Muck There's Brass - Fr. 6a
    The obvious pillar. A prize for the first person to find brass.

  3. Mucky Ducky - Fr. 6a+
    Trickier than it looks.

  4. Let's Get down and Dirty - Fr. 6b+
    Much trickier than it used to be.

  5. Dirty Deeds Done dirt Cheap - Fr. 6b
    Good name. Reachy.

  6. Choosey Suzie - Fr. 6b+
    Low in the grade but steep at the top.

    The crag becomes much cleaner from this point rightwards.

  7. Lundy Boy - Fr. 6b *
    Steep juggy section towards the top, feels rewarding.

  8. Supertramp - Fr. 6c+ **
    A popular route which will feel Fr. 7a if there is any wetness at the half height break.

  9. Strawberry Jam - Fr. 7b+ *
    Another popular line which is made much easier if holds on the face, left of the crack, are used. There is a link up joining Cragmeister after doing the cheeky left hand crimp move.

  10. The Cragmeister - Fr. 6b **
    A nice steep juggy route with a cheeky finger lock move near the top.

  11. Rocky - Fr. 6a *
    Nice juggy warm up with a tricky belay clip.

  12. The Tactless Teacher - Fr. 6b *
    Easy at the bottom, boulder at the top.

  13. Hail Mary - Fr. 7a *
    Crimpy and sequency on the upper wall.

  14. Twisted logic - Fr. 6b+ *
    Nice pockets lead to a cruxy upper wall.

  15. Leading Edge - Fr. 6a *
    Shares the start of Mental Mantles but breaks left to climb the short arête. L.O. shared with Twisted logic.

    The final routes on the main wall are slabby.

  16. Mental Mantles - Fr. 6a *
    Mantle.! Are you Mental.?

  17. Diamond Dog - Fr. 6b *
    An indistinct line which can be made harder with blinkers on.

  18. The Chimney Finish - Fr. 6a+
    Tricky start, chimney at the top.

  19. Flakes and Chips - Fr. 6b+ *
    An interesting and technical route.

  20. Ledge and Braces - Fr. 5
    Better to stay on the face and avoid the easy line to the right. The mighty bramble has evaded all attempts at removal thus far.

rock climbing topo for Tirpentwys
Tirpentwys Topo.


  1. Fledgeling - Fr. 6a+
    Short and stiff.

  2. The Yolks On You - Fr. 5+
    The arête.

  3. You've had your Chicks - Fr. 5+
    Left side of face.

  4. Crumlin Towards England - Fr. 5
    Not received rave reviews, links start of Crumlin at the Seams to the lower off of You've Had Your Chicks.
    N.B. It has been reported that the third bolt on this route is now loose.

  5. Crumlin at the Seams - Fr. 6a
    Avoid the iron death-spike.

  6. Crumlin at the Edges - Fr. 6a
    The right arête of the buttress.

climbing on the right-hand side of Tirpentwys

First Acents

Left Hand Walls

  1. Shrew - Julian Steer, Dai Williams 24.03.2008
  2. Yank my Chain - Dai Williams, Julian Steer 24.03.2008
  3. Paw Me - John James, Paul Bowen 24.03.2008
  4. By deFault line - Paul Bowen, John James 24.03.2008

Main Wall

  1. The Brown Dirt Cowboy -
  2. Where There's Muck There's Brass -
  3. Mucky Ducky -
  4. Let's Get down and Dirty -
  5. Dirty Deeds Done dirt Cheap -
  6. Choosey Suzie -
  7. Lundy Boy - John James, Paul Bowen 5.04.2008
  8. Supertramp - Laura Jones 6.04.2008
  9. Strawberry Jam - Bill Gregory 14.04.2008
  10. The Cragmeister - Bill Gregory 24.03.2008
  11. Rocky - Rebecca Hayes, John James 4.04.2008
  12. The Tactless Teacher - Laura Jones, Rebecca Hayes 5.04.2008
  13. Hail Mary - Bill Gregory 24.03.2008
  14. Twisted logic - Laura Jones, Becky Hayes 6.04.2008
  15. Leading Edge - Paul Bowen, Becky Hayes 5.04.2008
  16. Mental Mantles - Paul Bowen, Julian Steer 24.03.2008
  17. Diamond Dog - Roy Thomas, Gary Gibson 05.2010
  18. The Chimney Finish - Paul Bowen, Julian Steer 24.03.2008
  19. Flakes and Chips - Paul Bowen, John James 4.04.2008
  20. Ledge and Braces - Paul Bowen, John James, Rebecca Hayes 4.04.2008

Right Hand Buttress

  1. Fledgeling - Roy Thomas, Gary Gibson 05.2010
  2. The Yolks On You - Roy Thomas, Gary Gibson 05.2010
  3. You've had your Chicks - Gary Gibson, Roy Thomas 02.2010
  4. Crumlin Towards England - Gary Gibson, Roy Thomas 05.2010
  5. Crumlin at the Seams - Gary Gibson, Roy Thomas 05.2010
  6. Crumlin at the Edges - Gary Gibson, Roy Thomas 05.2010


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

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"The Shrew" at Tirpentwys
Shrew Fr.5+
Sandstone pioneer John James of Nifelheim Club fame on "Mental Mantles" Fr. 6a at Tirpentwys
Sandstone pioneer John James of Nifelheim Club fame on Mental Mantles Fr. 6a