Many Club members, particularly those who regularly climb on Southern Sandstone, will be aware of the current situation, but for those who are unsure – those new to the sport – and those who usually climb indoors but want to try outdoors, climbing outdoors is now allowed by government guidelines but not all crags are open. The following is the situation for the major Southern Sandstone crags:
Bowles Rocks – open 5:30pm to 10:00pm every day.
Eridge Green Rocks – closed for climbing.
Harrisons Rocks – open (you need to pay for parking here and the campsite remains closed)
High Rocks – closed
Stone Farm Rocks – open
Under Rocks – open
You should only travel with members of your own hoiusehold (but you can friends at the rocks and climb with them), observe social distancing and consider taking cleansing hand gel for use after a climb.
If you have not climbed on Southern Sandstone before, the climbs are protected by the climbers setting up a top rope with the belayer staying at ground level, but you need to protect this fragile rock by setting up your top rope in a way that wherever possible the rope rubbing on the rock is prevented by using a long enough sling or static rope from the expansion bolt or tree at the top. If you are unsure, you are best contacting one of our experienced climbing members, so you can go when one or more of us can meet you at the crag and show you how to set up properly. You will need a climbing harness and climbing boots.
With climbing walls still closed at the time of writing (although it looks like some are reopening at the end of July), there is a lot pressure on the crags that are open – it is important that we protect this special rock for future generations.
If you would like to try Southern Sandstone and want to be put in contact with someone who can help you, ring Nick Warren (07942 880858) or Dick Gasson.