This season�s hottest news for climbers in the north-west is the release of the latest BMC definitive guidebook, Lancashire Rock. This new volume to all the routes in the Red Rose county shines its light into the deepest quarries, most esoteric edges and highest moors to give local climbers a galaxy of stars and a lifetime of pump. Prepare to be amazed.
The crags, unknown to many, scoffed at by a few, and ardently adored by a loyal and devoted band of local lovers, offer many of the best outcrop routes on grit. They are set conveniently smack in the heart of the urbanised north, and climbers from Lancaster, Preston, Bolton, Manchester and Liverpool could be deep within their muscular arms within forty minutes of leaving work on a spring evening.
The new guidebook is the result of years of effort by the most committed of local climbers and is set to do for climbing in the county what Howard Carter did for King Tutankhamun. It will reveal the mythical crags, spoken of in hushed tones by the cognoscenti, to a waiting population of many. These waiting climbers will be amazed at the treasures that have lay hidden from them for so long, and will be dazzled at the beauty that awaits them.
But maybe beauty is the wrong word. The thousands of routes that are covered in the new guide have character, brutality, charm, charisma, technical joy and a full-frontal fierceness all their own. These are not the delicate jewels found on the Eastern Edges. These are tough, hardworking climbs; nine-to-five and two weeks off in the summer. In short, they are brilliant routes on great crags.