Corrugated Cracks (The Pillar of Elidir), Cwm Marchlyn Mawr

‘Corrugated Cracks’ on the Pillar of Elidir was our objective. Put simply, it was climbing at its best. To reach the Pillar of Elidir required a three kilometer uphill walk, which gave us access to Cwm Marchlyn Mawr itself. From the foot of the main reservoir a steep ten-minute scramble brought us to the foot of the pillar itself.

[The pillar lies on the steep north-eastern slopes of Elidir Fawr at an altitude of approximately 750m. The top of the pillar itself has its own unique summit, which is cut off from the hillside and requires two abseils to get back down to the ground.]

‘Corrugated Cracks’ is said to be the classic climb of the pillar and so Gustav and I decided to go for that. The first pitch was relatively straightforward, but the second pitch turned into a fight. The offwidth chimney, which gives the main bulk of the climb, was both awkward and strenuous. At one point during the climb, whilst being trapped in the offwidth chimney, I seem to remember performing two consecutive body pumps in order to pull out onto a ledge. Panting on the ledge, I realised that ‘Corrugated Cracks’ is an absolute classic.  I looked up from the ledge and it became further apparent that I had to re-enter the offwidth chimney in order to reach the summit. Venga!

‘Corrugated Cracks’ is a classic climb and should not be missed. 

Gustav, pitch 1, 'Corrugated Cracks'
 (The Pillar of Elidir)