Water Crag

Yorkshire Gritstone

Water Crag is a north west facing series of large boulders located high on Arkengarthdale Moor. Often visited by walkers who climb the nearby Rogan’s Seat, the crag gives some interest to a remote moorland setting. The rock is a fine quality gritstone and similar to that of Healaugh further south. The boulders themselves reach a height of 5 metres with good landings throughout and include pocketed walls with easy angled slabs and some steeper additions. 

Crag information
Climbing Area: Yorkshire Rock Type: Gritstone
Importance: Regional CRoW Land: Yes
Ownership: Estate No. of Routes: 110
Within National Park: No Year Developed:
Grid Reference: NY922044

As it is over 600 metres above sea level it is best visited on a calm day and ideally a sunny one as the surrounding hills can keep hold of any low cloud and any significant snow is slow to melt. With this and the limited daylight hours throughout the winter months it is best visited from March through to October. Although known about for some time, which is evident by the amount of graffiti on top of the buttresses, there were no known details of climbing until October 2016 when the first problems were cleaned and recorded. A brush is advised to clean some scrittle. The venue enjoys fantastic views, on a good day the Cumbrian fells and even the Galloway Mountains are clearly visible.

Parking and Approach

Parking can be found at William Gill about 2.5 miles east of The Tan Hill Inn or 5.5 miles west of the village of Langthwaite, there’s space for one car just left of the track entering the gill but there’s more parking either side of the road just east. Follow the track south west, you’ll need to negotiate 3 fords as you move up through the valley, though in summer the river is low. After about 30 minutes the track turns into a small path, cross the stream near the top which brings you out at abandoned mine works, the crag can be seen to the south. Head off across the moor for about 20 minutes following several
white shooting posts which seem to take a fairly dry route towards the crag, these may or may not be in place.

CRoW Information

The moor is subject to closures throughout the year.

Open access land, designated under the Countryside & Rights of Way Act (2000) give area access rather than linear access as provided by public rights of way. It also gives a legal right of access specifically for climbing, as well as walking and other quiet recreation on foot.

Please bear in mind however that the landowner still has the right to restrict access for up to 28 days per year (often used on public safety grounds for shooting in moorland areas), and can also apply for longer term restrictions with Natural England (such as bans on dogs, or regular restrictions during particular times of year). It is important to check for these restrictions regularly as they can be added at short notice – all details for open access land in England can be found on Natural England’s website.  

Area information

Weather Information

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