The exciting sea cliffs of Cilan Head have a fearsome reputation, and rightly so as this area includes some of the most adventurous sea cliff climbing around. Some of the cliff top approaches are also tricky and intimidating. The rock itself consists of a challenging mix of shale and grit bands. The shale can be particularly unstable, demanding a very considered and steady approach. Experience and relatively equal ability within the team is vital; the routes are often just as harrowing to second as they are to lead. A large rack, with lots of cams will be found to be essential. All that being said, these cliffs have tremendous atmosphere and character, and host some of the best routes in the area. The nearby Ty’n Tywyn Quarries offer a less serious option for those looking for a more conventional cragging experience.
A number of the cliffs are subject to seasonal nesting restrictions – check the BMC Regional Access Database for details.
Assuming the sun is shining, climbing is possible throughout the year. The crags all have a sunny aspect and thus, despite the odd seepage line, dry relatively quickly. Most of the Cilan Head cliffs are tidal, the exception being Craig Dorys, which is semi-tidal. The Ty’n Tywyn Quarries are non-tidal.
Most of the crags are found around Cilan Head, which is situated just beyond Abersoch. The Ty’n Tywyn Quarries are just up the coast near Llanbedrog.