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Huntsman's Leap

By: Nicholas Hobley, photo Maurizio Oviglia
Country: Wales, Region: Pembroke, Town: Bosherston

Huntsman's Leap in South Wales is, alongside St. Govan's Head, one of the most popular sea cliffs in Pembroke and quite rightly so. The steep gorge offers superb climbing in highly atmospheric surroundings; it is tidal and the fact that the sea, invariably, returns to the base of the routes renders the outings all the more drammatic and with a sense of urgency. Although the first routes were climbed in 1978, the main development of the East and West walls took place in the mid '80's, spearheaded by none other than Pat Littlejohn, who established classics such as Witch Hunt E4 6b and Darkness at Noon E5 6a, and Gary Gibson, who left his mark with the likes of Quiet Waters E3 5c and Souls E6 6b. The majority of the routes are in the mid to upper E grades and the climbing is strenuous, technical and serious and should never be underestimated, especially since the narrow zawn is accessed by abseil only and the easiet way out is up an E1. Put simply, British sea cliff climbing at its best!

GETTING THERE

Huntsman's Leap is located on the SW tip of Wales, just west of the St. Govan's Head. From Pembroke drive south to Bosherston, then continue south to the parking lot at trevalleh Downs. Continue on foot west to the Leap, which is in fact not the first but the second cove you get to.

THE CLIMBING

The climbing at Huntsman's Leap is serious and should not be underestimated. All routes require excellent gear placing skills and although there is some in-situ pro, much of this is in poor condition.

FOOD AND ACCOMODATION

The best base is around Bosherston where there is a very basic campsite and an excellent pub and cafe, but little else! More luxurious camping facilities are available at St Petrox, a short distance away. Although highly regarded, this area is very rarely crowded apart from during the English Bank holidays. The first weekend in May is particularly popular when there is a great community atmosphere around the crags, campsite and St Govan's Country Inn.

NOTES

All routes require excellent gear placing skills and although there is some in-situ pro, most of this is in poor condition. An abseil rope will be necessay to abseil down in the Leap.


BIBLIOGRAPHY



Pembroke by Alan James and Mike Robertson, Rockfax Publishing

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SECTORS AND ROUTES
BEAUTY

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BEST TIME OF YEAR

Summer

HEIGHT

35m

ROPE

Double 50m x 9mm ropes

GRADES

E1 - E8

ORIENTATION

W, E

NUMBER OF ROUTES

57

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