Our Magical Mystery Tour: Two Days Down South

On our two most recent days off Aiden and I were dying to get to Pembroke. Unfortunately the forecast was against us and the only predicted dry spot in the whole of the UK was Torbay. So down south we went!

Day 1 we were at Berry Head where classic’s such as Dreadnought, Moonraker and The Yardarm were ticked before setting off on the brilliant Magical Mystery Tour which is considered one of the best DWS traverses in the UK. With nearly 400m of high quality climbing it’s easy to see why. However despite the great climbing not everything went to plan. At one point Aiden’s arms suffered meltdown and he had a splash down! It was funny for me but not so much for him as he had no spare boots or chalk bag. Aiden had to climb the rest of the day in soggy wet boots! It was an awesome day out with nearly 600m of rock climbed (though much of it was climbed sideways).

Day 2 had a pretty poor forecast so we headed to Ansteys Cove as there are lots of wet weather options. The day started well so we climbed the great slab of Black Ice before heading to the daunting Sanctuary Wall. This wall is known for its steep, testing and sometimes fragile routes. We started carefully with the exposed Sacrosanct before moving onto the mega steep and very well named Call to Arms. Boxed out of my mind, I was just about to arrive at the belay ledge to bag this route when suddenly a big jug ripped off in my hand and I was off - all good fun!

Later that day, though the rain arrived, we still had some energy so we reversed the excellent long traverse under the crags in DWS fashion, but in big boots, rucksacks and rain; it felt adventurous. This took us back to the more sheltered walls and allowed us to finish with Cocytus and Might and Main before the long journey back to Sheffield. Good times down south!

James Turnbull works in the Rock Room at the Outside Store in Hathersage. 

By James Turnbull

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