Dirty work brings clean climbing to Crag Lough

Posted by Tony Ryan on 26/09/2014
Crag Lough. Photo: Mark Savage.
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On Saturday 13 September a team of dedicated volunteers armed with their climbing gear, trowels and patio knives made their way to Crag Lough, Northumberland for the third annual clean-up event, to continue the sterling work of the previous two years.

Crag Lough sits immediately below Hadrian's Wall, and is one of Northumberland's finest low to mid-grade crags, offering over 100 recorded routes, the majority of which are in the perennially popular HS to HVS range. The efforts of the last two years have brought many routes back into condition but some very worthwhile lines had still not been tended to.

The volunteers worked hard to return another clutch of excellent routes to their former glory and bring back a few overlooked gems from obscurity. The day was rounded off by a well-deserved barbecue courtesy of the BMC followed with plenty of ale in the local Inn.  The fruits of all this effort were enjoyed the following day with many of the volunteers out climbing and some routes seeing ascents for the first time in years.

Crag Lough does not lend itself to climbing in the colder months, however the vegetation will not return before next year and the winter weather will finish off the cleaning nicely.  The routes will be at their best next spring and many North East climbers are already eagerly looking forward to their first visit next year.

The day was organised by Mark Anstiss with the assistance of the BMC, and both he and the BMC would like to thank first and foremost everyone who helped out, as well as the National Trust and Natural England for their permission and support.

With so much achieved at Crag Lough in recent years it is anticipated that the focus will shift to nearby Peel Crag next year.  Keep an eye out for updates in the spring!

WATCH: 2013 Crag Lough Clean-up Festival on BMC TV



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