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Climbing at Gordale Scar, Malhamdale Copyright Paul Harris


Gritstone outcrops

Gritstone outcrops are scattered throughout the Dales with some the best known being those in the southern Dales, such as Crookrise, Rylstone and Eastby. The main gritstone edges mostly have short traditional routes and boulder problems on a variety of buttresses. The grade range is wide with climbs suited to beginner and expert often located side by side. 

Limestone cliffs and bolted routes

The dominant rock type of the Yorkshire Dales is limestone. There are many climbable cliffs here include the intimidating ‘big three’ of Kilnsey, Malham Cove and Gordale Scar. The limestone cliffs have both traditional and modern sport climbing on crags which include some of the hardest climbs in the country. In recent years the addition of new bolted routes have increased the popularity of a number of venues including Trow Gill, Robin Proctor’s Scar and Giggleswick.

Bird protection

During the bird nesting season there are also a number of effective voluntary restrictions to protect breeding raven and peregrines. These are advertised on the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) website and some have on-site notices.

Indoor climbing walls

On a wet day the nearest indoor climbing walls are at Ingleton and Harrogate.