RealRock Inspiration

MARCH 2021 UPDATE - We have some interim RealRock sessions available running from the 2nd of April to the 26th of April. The sessions are open to young people from out with the local authority in which the session is being run, however, for these interim sessions, we would ask that participants keep travel reasonable (for example coming from a neighbouring local authority, rather than travelling through several local authorities to get to the session) - see here for more details.

Many of the venues we use for our RealRock sessions have been a big part of our climbing lives long before ClimbScotland. Below, Calum and Robert go over a few favourites and how these venues have inspired them in the past and continue to do so even now.


Glen Lednock

I wasn’t a fan of Lednock on my first few visits, a long 40 minute trudge to the dam and boulders in a style that damaged my precious ego. How things change, in the past 6 months I’ve probably spent upwards of 20 days bouldering at Lednock. 40 minutes that now provides the gift of isolation away from the busy world below the Glen, whilst the lung heaving trudge with two pads gives some necessary suffering. The schist problems are typified by small to non-existent foot holds, a previous frustration that has given way to the microscopic study of schist ripples, looking for opportunities that never existed before.


Similar to the bell for Pavlov’s dog, driving past Moy on the A853 always rings the start of excitement for me, most likely high tailing it towards the North West with a glorious forecast on the horizon. Moy is the gate keeper to the highlands, a quick afternoon to get blood pumping on fresh arms at the start of a trip or a last taste of the highlands before the journey back home. Really, these short forays don’t do Moy justice, as a sport climbing venue in the highlands it can hold its own, the conglomerate rock offers voyages between 6a and 7a often up to 20m. Not the typical Scottish bolt clipping experience either, you won’t find gnarly cruxes on small holds just long dreamy sequences on golden rock.

Kirrie Hill

The epitome of the crag that just keeps on giving. I enjoyed taking my first steps into sport leading on the sun kissed walls of this old sandstone quarry. If you close your eyes on a sunny spring day, you would be forgiven for thinking you were enjoying a slither of sunny Euro bolt clipping. Over the next few years as a Dundee local I enjoyed ticking my way through some of the harder routes here, interspersed with lazing in the sun on the grassy meadow below. More recently trips here have been with my two daughters, picking brambles, finding worms and the occasional blast up an old route, synchronising the old and the new.

Torridon Celtic Jumble

The firm favourite RealRock destination. Strong lines on perfectly sculpted Torridonian sandstone, a short throw away from the village of Torridon. It’s difficult to not be inspired by the Celtic Jumble, whether you’re a seasoned Scottish boulderer or have never touched outdoor stone before. A RealRock participant a few years ago had never climbed at all, indoors or outdoors. His first taste of climbing was at Torridon, his eyes were like dinner plates once aquainted to the opportunities provided by the Torridonian giants. I think we did him a disservice by taking him to Torridon first, nothing will ever quite compare.



My standard weekend at the beach seems different to everyone elses. Mine consisted of a run down to the stoney beaches that lined the base of the Cummingston cliffs. Climbing the relatively short but exciting walls of soft sandstone, smooth and sea washed at the base and all convex and concave, like climbing through a bowl of cornflakes higher up. The rock here providing a huge variety of climbing across the grades with juggy routes, crimpy routes, corners, slabs, overhangs, makes for the perfect learning environment. The most spectacular of features, the Sea Stack roof line over the sea that is The Prow is a must see.


Nowhere on earth will you find such a variety of climbing on such perfect storm blasted solid sandstone, in such a beautiful location; and all single pitch which provides the opportunity for vast amounts of climbing in a day. Every weekend as a kid my first suggestion for something to do was “Reiff?”. Some of my best climbing moments are on these walls, and possibly my worst too, that 10m ground fall. But still Reiff stands above everywhere else as the best in Scotland for serious quality single pitch sea cliff climbing. Which by default puts it up there with the best in the world.


My old stomping ground, where a very young Robert came to prove himself. The rock is among the best in world for climbing. The mica schist creating wavey fluid formations and patterns, littered with hidden holds amongst the chaos, but at the same time fractured and cracked by millions of years of pressure creating huge geometric shapes. The most notable of which would be The Dracula Roof, my first big victory. So many days of my childhood have been spent hanging around in that steep roof crack. My first clean lead at the age of 9 opened my account for hard trad.


Remember the film “Honey I shrunk the kids”? Well Rhue is the real life sequel, “Honey I shrunk Reiff”. The specular 2.5 mile stretch of world class sandstone climbing at Reiff compacted in a single 300m long strip. For a such a small spot, the easily overlooked crags hold some of the best short sea cliff climbing you’ll find. From my first visit here as a youngster I longed to climb the overhang of Rhue Rhapsody. Like climbing over an Golden Eagles beak suspended above the Atlantic is possibly the most adventurous and mind blowing route you can get on an 12m cliff.

Scottish Government announcements as of 17th March 2021 have provided some key dates for the return of outdoor climbing sessions. We have some interim session available between the 2nd of April and 26th of April and hope to resue Despite the continuing Covid-19 restrictions we have been busy in the back ground preparing for RealRock 2021, looking at format, venues and dates. We have a provisional set of dates available over on our RealRock page. Check it out and get booked on.

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