Tag Archives: Penberth


25th January 2019

They do at that age – E1 5b – T/R (pretend HVS)
Thirty Something – E1 5b – T/R
WKD! – E3 5b – T/R (More like E2 at most)
Head Rush – E1 5a – T/R

Toblerone – Diff – Solo
Iron Filings – V Diff – Solo
Rubble Trouble -Severe – Solo
Duck Soup – V Diff – Solo
Horse Feathers – Dif – Solo
D Tain – Diff – Solo
D Tour – V Diff – Solo

Time to test the dodgy shoulder I thought on Thursday, so a trip to a well know and familiar hunting ground was in order. I love Penberth. Not because its the mecca of Cornish climbing because it certainly isnt. But because its easy to access, beautiful and has a good vibe about it.

Tom on the bold arete of Head-Rush

Add to this that it brings back great memories of climbing with Bart (RIP) and it was a good choice for a day when I wanted to climb as much as possible. Also it has a plethora of potential solo’s to keep you occupied between routes. We Top Rope mostly, but the quality of climb meant that it was just a joy to be on the rock. We did most of the E1’s twice so by the end of the day I was confident my shoulder was back in shape.

Dave on TDATA

Its hard to find a bad climb at Penberth. The soloing is straight forward and fun and the harder routes are just quality providing a bit of everything. ‘They do At That Age’ is the show stopper, a 3 star route if I’ve ever seen one. Delicate traverse leads to a crack which requires thought to exit which in turn leads to a hairy, gritty chimney. What more could you ask for.

Me on Thirty Something (where it starts to get interesting)

Tom, Dave and I had a full on day and I think that every so often this is the way to do a day. Get on a top rope and get some mileage in. Great for the confidence.

Jet Wash

3rd July 2015

Penberth Cove

Nicks Niche – Severe – 4a Second

Horney – VS 4c – Second

Penberth was of course the original venue at which Iwas introduced to climbing by Bart. It therefore holds very fond memories for me and returning there is never a chore.


A new member of our group came along. For Harrison it was his first experience of outdoor climbing and my thought was that Penberth provided a good venue where we could tackle a few reasonably graded routes while at the same time introducing him to the safety routines and climbing protocols that he’ll need when we go to the more serious venues like Bosi or Chair Ladder (no I wouldnt… not yet anyway).

Harrison  warming up on Excalibur

Harrison warming up on Excalibur

So during the course of the day we visited some Penberth classics such as Nicks Niche and The Hornet, as well as spending some time in Area 5 which needs a low tide. It was good practice for Chris and I as well as we went though some of the basics, which we always need refreshers on.


Harrison on Bionicle HS 4b

Harrison on Bionicle HS 4b

The rising tide, which almost caught us on Nicks Niche ( a wave actually spat just past me soaking the whole climb but miraculaously missing me!!) eventually pushed us to the Hornet where Chris and Harrison on his first attempt, made short work of of what I had always found a difficult climb. Must have been me then…

Chris, pre wash

Chris, pre wash

Harrison on the face left of Nicks Niche

Harrison on the face left of Nicks Niche


Meanwhile Joe and Tom had mooched over to Porthguarnon  to something very hard (around E3 I believe), but did return for a quick run on Groucho.

Tom on Groucho

Tom on Groucho

There are two E1’s here at Penberth which I would like to try, so I might pay a mornings vist on the way through on one of our outings and try and get on them.

How Old?

17th June 2012

They do at that age – HVS 5a – Lead

I’m not sure what age this climb refers to, but its one I’ve wanted to lead right from when I first started climbing. Penberth was a regular destination back in the mid 00’ies. Lots of top roping and soloing, but I avoided the main problems. Probably because I didn’t feel confident to tackle them.

Gearing up for They Do At That Age

My recollection of TDATA was that I  fell off it on a Top Rope way back and that it was hard. It lived up to my memories. A great but balanced and airy traverse leads to an awkward crack.

Dave on the traverse into the crack

There are plenty of protection opportunities but as you go higher the crack runs out resulting in a transfer across to another crack on the right. This is the crux imo, and takes a bit of working out. The thank God flake tops it off.

Pre crux on They Do At That Age

There is an offwidth to finish on, but it is very hairy with lichen and gritty. Also there is no pro and a fall off the top here would result in a 30-40ft wipper. So I balked and escaped sideways, content I’d done what was a fantastic face climb. 3 stars.

Both Dave and Tom finished the wide top crack, which is great for laybacking. It just needs more traffic.

Hornet looking deceptively easy angled....

We moved across to Hornet and short but great VS. As with many climbs it looks easier than it is. Dave and Tom practised on gear placement, which on Hornet is not easy.

The flared cracks of Hornet

The direct finish is committing. The pro for it is low and in a flared crack so probably not reliable. Take the niche and there are more options. Personally I prefer the groove finish. More technical and rounds off the climb nicely.

Tom topping out on Hornet