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Date: 30th August 2008
Submitted by: PJ Monaghan

Pete and myself our way up to Fairhead on Saturday morning to meet up with George and Michael. We arrived around lunch time and met up with the two lads at the top of a two pitch HVS called November/December.

 As time was getting on we were anxious to get climbing, so we made our way to the nearby Small Crag area. To gain access to the climbs an abseil is required into the jungle below. Our first climb was a Severe by the name of Fuschia 18 metres; it had been recommended by George along with a warning that the grade of Severe was an understatement. Pete and myself would agree wholeheartedly. We found that it had a very committing finish and would be more worthy of HS as a grade.

 We then made our way to the far end of the crag and had a go at an HVS 5a/b called The Sting 14 metres. The guidebook describes it as having a difficult start and finish; Pete lead and it is fair to say that he would concur with the route description. Gear was not plentiful and I think he was glad to top out.

We followed this up with a VS called Bullrush, this was my favourite climb of the day. A 14 metre climb of delicate holds which did not cause us many problems.

Our final climb of the day was was another Severe called Pitchfork 16 metres. This takes the line under the overhang which is overcome easily by moving right and following the line to the left. Gear was non existing on the first third of the climb but a bomber friend at the overhang gives confidence. Instead of following the easier line to the left (Severe) Pete took the right hand thin crack up past the overhang. This variation upped the grade to VS 4c; very enjoyable and worth doing.

Due to some confusion and the fact that Anthony had lost his mobile we misplaced him at Fairhead. However, we had not progressed far on our homeward journey when we received an invite to sample the delights of Derry. Needless to say after a night on the town with the Feeneys we were somewhat worse for wear though Pete did get one more climb in which involved a lamp post and some daring acrobatics. Just don't ask!!!


Photo of Route