|Grid Ref: NT888203 Aspect: S Routes: 37 Max Length: 30 Average Length: 1||Warning |
|Altitude: 610 mtrs Walk in: 60 mins Route quality: ** Bouldering quality: poor|| |
The Henhole Crags are situated on both sides of the College Bum high on the west side of Cheviot which is the highest mountain area in Northumberland, rising to 815 metres and consisting of a vast stretch of wild moorland uncrossed by road. The Henhole is composed of igneous rock which in general is sound. It is a most impressive situation, the crags looming high above the bum. The approach is long and the situation exposed to the elements, however, the crag dries quickly after rain and if the weather is good the rewards are great, providing good climbing in the lower grades with a definite mountaineering flavour.
Andesite Cheviot Volcano, Lower Devonian
Do not allow anyone to deter you outside of the nesting season. There are NO restrictions at this crag other than the usual nesting season ones - there are Ravens and Peregrines here.
To drive up the College Valley, a permit must be obtained from:
Sale and Partners, 18-20 Glendale Road, Wooler. 01668 281611
The permit can be collected on Sundays.
The Cheviot massif shares with Great Wanney the claim to be the birthplace of climbing in Northumberland. The crags were only really popular however from the end of the Second World War through the fifties into the early sixties. In the first wave of development Basil Butcher and Keith Gregory climbed Zig Zag, Black Adams Corner and the excellent Cannon Hole Direct. Whilst Phillip McGill and Harry Warmington produced Long John, Tombstone and the classic College Grooves. Sadly McGill was killed and Warmington injured shortly afterwards in a rockfall on Dunsdale Crag. Towards the end of the sixties Malcolm Lowerson and (fingery) Jim Patchett virtually exhausted the possibilities for new routes with their series of routes the best of which is Fingery Jim. The latter route is still one of the hardest on the crag. The major remaining line, the "Cannon Hole Superdirect named Zeus the Mighty Bull, fell to Calum Henderson and Lee Clegg at the surprisingly reasonable grade of E2 in 1987.