Rock climbing on the steep outcrops of volcanic rock is fast becoming one of the most popular outdoor activities on offer in the area. This is an exciting activity that is accessible to people of all levels, even those who want to try it for the first time, there is a crag to suit everyone in Ardnamurchan! Scotland has an amazing selection of rock climbing and many expert guides who can help novices get started safely as well as advice experienced climbers on where they can find a real challenge.
The climbing in Ardnamurchan is uniquely situated on the remnants of a volcanic crater that was created by thousands of years of erosion. This unique experience of climbing up the inside of a faint volcanic crater is complements by the quality of the rock in Ardnamurchan. Not only is it totally safe, the volcano is dormant and isn’t likely to erupt, but the surface is surprisingly navigable because it’s formed by the most friction-full rock type in the UK, which is called Gabbro. Not only is the friction great, the rock quality is absolutely brilliant as well.
When you visit Ardnamurchan and decide to spend the afternoon rock climbing, you are spoilt with options. There are a cluster of buttresses in single and multi-pitch height, with some of the best slab climbing in the UK and as well as equally good crack climbing, if you dare to test your skin against Gabbro’s unforgiving texture.
Ardnamurchan not only boasts some of the best climbing in the UK, it also has some of the most breath-taking views. Wherever you stand, you’ll get vast panoramic views of the North Atlantic Ocean, interrupted only by the isolated Western Isles scattered along the horizon. As the Ardnamurchan peninsula is the most westerly point of mainland Britain, it also produces some of the best sunsets. Sitting atop a mountain or rocky outcrop is the perfect spot to watch the show.
Climbing in Ardnamurchan feels like a real adventure. Whether you’re bouldering on the beach, or high up on the crater’s slabs, the wildness of the Scottish Highlands makes you feel alive. It really is a must-visit spot for any British climber – experienced or novice.
Stay on the shores on Loch Sunart
If you’re keen on taking an activity break in Ardnamurchan, we can offer luxury self-catering accommodation right on the shoreline. Our cottages are nestled in a secluded spot and each cottage has been designed for convenience and comfort. We offer all the home comforts, plus a few extra special touches, to make your experience of Loch Sunart personal.
Top tips for rock climbing
- Wear proper footwear - choose softer climbing shoes to get a good grip on the rock.
- Pick the right route - Routes labeled 5.5 or 5.6 are beginner routes, and the higher the number after the decimal point, the harder the climb. Bouldering routes are rated by the V-scale, starting with V0.
- Keep your arms straight - it’s more tiring and less efficient climbing with bent arms.
- Always warm up - don’t start climbing without stretching and warming up first.
- Be safe - don’t try rock climbing or bouldering without an expert close-by.