A Close Call on Gillercombe Buttress

At this time of year, Terry likes to climb Gillercombe Buttress as a warm up from the winter season.

So Terry and John Hollands set off from the Grange Hut for the easy approach from Honister slate quarry. The promised glorious day did not happen, however, and John set off with threatening rain.

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Others clearly had similar ideas and we were told by the threesome in front that there were two in front of them and six more higher still.

However, it was all very jolly and we passed without hindrance and soon reached the little crux bit.

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I belayed, with five more besides me on the ledge, as John led the little crux…. then carried on up the run-out scrambley slabs following.

There was a distant shout… I looked up and saw something big and white falling… straight towards John (like that sack on Zero, Pete). It missed him but was heading straight to we six on the ledge. It was a massive rock, the size of a TV set. Well, it missed us but not by far, and smashed into pieces below us. You could smell the ozone.

We never found the cause or culprit(s) – just as well!!!

3 thoughts on “A Close Call on Gillercombe Buttress”

  1. Yeah, we thought of that too :geek: which makes it all the more alarming ❗ where else are the loose boulders lurking ❗ There was a very similar incident on Dow Crag C Buttress ordinary few years ago when this big block came down and just missed four of us soloing 😯 and that route sees mega traffic 🙄

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