The Bethesda Circuit
The Wave, Super Boulder and The Caseg Boulders provide a great
circuit albeit with a few locational shifts in and around the
Bethesda area. Although all the venues have worth while problems
and beautiful locations, it seems that the Super Boulder and the
Caseg Boulders are the real deal.
The Super Boulder near Gerlan is a cartoon perfect version of
what some might deem to be a crimpers nirvana and although limited
in that it has few problems the tranquil nature of the venue,
quality of rock and perfect soft landings make this a magic place
Crimpers should cut their teeth on the traditional lines of The
Ramp V4, The Arete V2/3 and The Traverse V8.
Incontrast in style however are The Caseg Boulders situated above
Gerlan both boulders are immaculate pieces of rock very much in
the Fontainebleau mould.
The style of climbing is powerful and technical utilising definite
crimps, slopers and pinches providing engrossing moves in a very
Try the Caseg Groove V5 which is the definitive classic and one
of the best in North Wales: close your eyes and you could be thirty
miles south of Paris, also Don't Think, Feel V9/10, and Dyers
Moving over into the Llanberis Pass, the Barrel Boulder is well
worth a visit. This obvious cigar shaped face right of the path
up to Dinas Mot provides a series of steep powerful up problems
and culminates in the classic Barrel traverse.
A lower boulder does provide some worth while warm ups but don't
get too wasted, try The Minimum V7, Barrel Groove V9 and the classic
Barrel Traverse V9.
The Ynys Ettws Hillside (aka Wavelength)
The rediscovery of this hillside in 1997 kick started the modern
development of bouldering in North Wales and it seems that it
is still a constant source of inspiration, as it retains its secret
new problems, classic circuits, and desperate test pieces.
For all of the areas scattered around this hillside
approach by parking in a lay by 100 yards beyond the entrance
to Ynys Ettws (CC Hut). Then walk out the back of Ynys Ettws and
bear right up the hillside to the obvious house sized block known
as Utopia. Thereafter Wavelength and the Meadow can be gained
by walking up past the right-hand side of the large roof (Pieshop).
The extent of this area is too big and too much
of a main event for concise description, as rock type, landings,
and quality of areas vary.
However, as a taster I've put together what I think
are the best problems of each venue:
The Crook Zone: Fear of A Slopey Planet V6, Utopia: The Groove
V2, Wavelength: King of Drunks V6, The Grooves Boulder: Boysens
Groove V4, The Meadow: Lotus V11, The Dome: The Ramp V5, Beyond
the Dome: The Wolf V6.
The Cromlech Boulders
The Cromlech will always be a popular venue, as the ease of access;
sheer density of problems and beautiful aspect ensures regular attendance
for visitors and locals alike.
Situated below Dinas Cromlech at the heart of the Llanberis Pass
these boulders provide a full range of problems at all grades and
along with the sociable nature of the venue, makes this an ideal
location in which to start and finish an introduction to bouldering
in North Wales.
However in between chatting to other climbers and gleaning beta
on other areas why not try: Browns Crack V5, Pantonesque V5/6, Wirebrush
Crack V5, Jerry's Roof V9, The Pool of Bethesda V11, Diesel Power
V11, and get to grips with the Roadside Face area including The
Ramp V1, Elementary Traverse V7, and The Edge Problem V5 where the
apprenticeship it seems really starts.