Northumbrian Climbing Guide

 
 
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Goatscrag What the symbols
& colours mean
Grid Ref: NT976371   Aspect: S   Routes: 43Warning Ask for permission 
Altitude: 155 mtrs   Walk in: 5 mins   Route quality: **   Bouldering quality: ** 
 
17
Click here for StreetMap Right of access under CRoW  
Turn of the A697 kilometre south east of Millfield. Follow the unclassified road towards Lowick and park at Roughting Linn. Follow the track to the farm at the foot of the crag. It is essential that you ask the farmer for permission to climb.
 
General:
The crag consists of a natural outcrop a few hundred metres long and two small quarries. Much of the natural outcrop us severely undercut with good landings, making for excellent bouldering. The routes are not to be underestimated, with some bold undertakings. The rock above the overhangs tends to be a bit snappy and gear placements are not always reliable.
Rock:  
Fell Sandstone Carboniferous, Dinantian
Mostly good hard sandstone, but with some friable flakes
Access issues:
The landowner does not allow you to drive up the private road to the foot of the crag.
Routes/Bouldering:  

No recorded routes.

Problems:
The Bouldering Guide has 51 problems listed. It's worth a visit during wet weather as it can stay dry under the roofs.
Other interesting stuff:
There is evidence that human use of the crag dates 3,000 years, as the site was used as an ancient burial ground. Excavations by archaeologists in 1967-8 yielded two burial pots with cremation remains in the area beneath the Guano Buttress. Extremely rare carvings of animals, possibly goats, are to be found on the smooth wall beneath Guano Groove. These are similar to examples found in Scotland and Scandinavia and are thought to be from around 100BC-400AD. This would make Goats the only crag in the county with a prehistoric picture of its name on it and also suggest that Raiders got to the routes first! Please take extreme care to preserve these rare carvings by not climbing on this small section of rock.
History:
Evidence of human use of the crag dates back 4,000 years when the site was used as a burial ground. Excavations by archaeologists have yielded burial pots with cremation remains in the area beneath the Guano Buttress. Primitive carvings of animals, probably either deer or goats are to be found on the smooth wall beneath Guano Groove. Please take extreme care to preserve these by not climbing on this small section of rock. It is tempting to speculate that the true first ascents were by our Bronze Age ancestors. During the last century the crag was probably explored on and off, many times. However, no records have come to light of ascents previous to a visit by Bob Hutchinson, John Earl, Dennis Lee and Ian Cranston in November 1972, which resulted in thirty-two routes up to HVS standard. Earl and Hutchinson made another visit in January 1973 to climb The Dagger with Earl adding a direct start four years later. During October 1977 Hutchinson returned yet again producing Overdrive, probably the crag classic. A selection of climbs was included in the 1979 guidebook but unfortunately records of remaining climbs were lost. Following publication of the 1979 guide, Bob Smith, Paul Stewart and Earl added more routes. These included Undercarriage, Convoy and Juggernaut. Steve Blake climbed the strenuous Underpass and Smith, found Lost Arete and Hard Shoulder in the quarry. In 1987 Andy Moss climbing with Colin Murley added Imminent Break Crisis and while working on the 1989 guide re-climbed and named many of the obvious unnamed lines. A few lines remained to be climbed, in particular the steep wall left of Hard Shoulder, which had been well cleaned and attempted by several teams. It finally succumbed to the persistent efforts of Karl Telfer late in November 1988. The 1990s saw the crag's bouldering potential develop but no more significant lines have ensued.