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Photo Tour

Saddle Tor (SX 750764)

This venue is better suited to the harder climber - the majority of the problems on the bulging front face (overlooking the carpark and resembling a large pair of buttocks!) being at least V3 and a tad on the high side (a mat wouldn't be a bad idea). Potential exists for several different link-ups and variations as well as a few "proper hard" problems. There is also one of the best stamina problems on The Moor, The Hidden Traverse V4 6a which is good for getting pumped on.

Haytor Area Map

Approach: Leave the A38 at Drumbridges Roundabout, signed for Bovey Tracey. Take the Bovey exit then drive for 1 mile ish to another roundabout. Take the 2nd exit (signed Lustleigh) and carry on to another roundabout (1km). Turn left here and take the left fork, signed Widecombe/Haytor. Coninue up this road for several miles, passing Haytor. The next one on the right is Saddle Tor.

It is best to park in the second car park so you can see your car (and hopefully any car theives!). A 5 minute walk leads to the obvious Bulging Wall at the top of the hill.

BULGING WALL - this is obvious steep face overlooking the second car park.

1  Chicken Tikka E5 6a/b The wall at the left hand end of the tor, to the right of the easy chimney. A bit on the gnarly side to be called a boulder problem, hence the E grade. However, with a couple of mats you might be alright...
2  Mezzotinter V1 5b The left hand groove and good flakes through the roof above, starting on the left and moving right into the groove. There's also a direct start and some eliminate variants on the direct start.
3  Bjorn Again V3 6a To the R is a reasonably good slot at about 6 ft. From here move up and right to big holds then funny moves gain the sloping break above. Finish direct. The finish is high but not too hard.
4  Bjorn Again Extended Start V4 6a With an extended start from the low shelf

5  V4 6a It is also possible to extend 4 with a low traverse from the left.
6  V? from the low shelf reach up to obvious crimp with L hand, match then lunge up R for an edge. Reach up left for a sloper then lunge up right to good jug. A bit eliminate but excellent... Originally V7 but the crimp got bigger (the move passing this was pretty hard English 6c or 7a), reducing the grade to V6. The key hold then broke off completely.. NOT RECLIMBED SINCE THE CRUCIAL HOLD BROKE but it will make a good challange for strong fingered youths!
7  Saddle Tor Traverse V10 6c Starting on far left beneath Mezzotiner. Traverse right to the shelf on the start of 6, do the lunge up right then continue traversing right along line of slopers to a jug left of The Funnel (a slightly easier version starts up the low start to Bjorn Again). NOT RECLIMBED SINCE THE CRUCIAL HOLD ON PROBLEM 6 BROKE. Start along the higher traverse of Abba Gold at the same grade.
8  6bish Footless problem off the good edge up left to sloper then straight up to better hold.
9  Foal's Chopper V7 6c The line left of 10 starting with a long reach from holds in the vague break to a flat crystal with right hand (sneaky thumb), then a hard move to gain a crystal on the sloping shelf above. Finish through the bulge above on better holds. (Although this got slightly harder since part of the starting hold broke it didn't change the grade) 9b Foal's Chopper Low Start V9 A hard low start goes, coming in from down and right.
10  V2 5c The left arete of The Funnel. Starting from the jug on the left wall of The Funnel (11).
11  The Funnel (severe) 4c The central offwidth has an exceptionally fine start.
12  V2 5c The right arete of The Funnel, sharing the start but moving right to gain blobby hold then finish above. The start without using The Funnel's left wall remains a project.
13  Super Trouper V8+ 6c A long move from holds in the bottom break gains a sloper above the small roof, followed by hard moves to gain the finish of Dancing Queen. Also goes with a jump off ground - easier if you can jump! No jumping for the full tick!! A classic problem of The Moor. A sit start goes at V11 Super Dooper Trouper
14  Dancing Queen V8 6b/c Start below small sidepull (beneath a bulge) at 8ft. Direct to and past this, then up and left. The finish is easier but quite high. Another classic problem.
14b Super Dancing Trouper V9 6c A link up of Super Trouper with Dancing Queen. Start on same holds as Super Trooper. Move right to start of Dancing Queen. Up DQ for 2 moves then stretch out left into ST - finish up this. Photo sequence.
15  V7 6c Right hand variation finish to 14. From obvious edge at 10 ft (above small bulge) match then make long move up R to gain small flake. Finish direct. A little reachy.
16  Chiquitita V8 6b/c A good traverse of the slopey shelf. From the side-pull on Dancing Queen traverse slopers left through Super Trooper, then finish direct where it eases at a big knobble (up 12).
16b Benny V8+ The left to right version of 16, finishing up Dancing Queen.

17  Foul Bite V3 6a The right arete has an horrendous finish and is also a bit high...! (Originally given E2 5c- quite hard for that unless you're tall)
18  Abba Gold V11 All the best of Saddle Tor in one long traverse! Very fine. Must be completed in one go for the full tick (ie. if you fall off the end section, beyond The Funnel, you must start from the very beginning!). Finishes by moving all the way to Dancing Queen (i.e. including the move off the small edge leftwards for good edge).

More problems can be found on rocks to the left of the main bulging front face and also around the corner to the right.

About 80 yards to the North Westish (i.e. wander down and left from the bulging face) is a small overhanging section of rock, about 30 foot wide, which provides some fine traversing and countless other "up" possibilities.

19  The Hidden Traverse V4 6a The most obvious traverse line. Right to left with a sitting start is best. Crux move at end. A good problem for doing reps on if you want to get fit (or wear all of teh skin of your hands and forearms). Classic
20  V7ish The Hidden Traverse footless right to left. V6ish if done left to right as the crux is at the start.
21  The Hidden Low V8 6c a lower level traverse. Bum start on low holds on right as for The Hidden Traverse but stay low to eventually move up to The Hidden Traverse near its end (off undercut/sidepull to gain shelf just before slopers on the original).

A left to right version goes at V8 but the ultimate Dartmoor stamina plod is the There and Back V11 6c version. (Start on far left beneath roof; move right to hanging wall with edges under roof; carry along at low level (no sneaking up to jugs!) to tricky move to gain jug at right end; go back left again but instead of dropping down to the where you start move up from sidepull/undercut after crimps under roof to gain and finish leftwards as for the original Hidden Traverse...phew).

Up and right of the Hidden Traverse is an obvious roof:

22  5c The R hand side of the roof - a long stretch through the roof gains jugs on the lip and then a funny top out.
23  Rich's Tick V6 6c A line through the centre of the roof to the left, using tiny crimp undercuts, gains holds on the lip left of 22. A long slap up right to a hidden edge is followed by a fine grovel to finish. Harder (and extremely nipple grating) if you don't have long arms to reach the good edge.
24  6c ?? (Project) Traverse along obvious line of holds above roof from right to left.

The rocks to the North are also worth a look (a further 5 minute walk). A long wall, capped in many places by overhangs, as well as numerous other boulderable features litter the area. These are left for your discovery... to the right (i.e. towards Haytor) of the main mass of rock is an isolated block, which is home to:

25  Lonely Traverse V4 6b a left to right traverse of the low break, beneath the prominent nose.

Walking towards Haytor those of you with your eyes open will find an overhanging bluff of rock with an awesomely rounded top:

Emsworthy Rock - The Hanging Foot Boulder

26  V1 5a The wall just left of the arete.
27  Hanging Foot V3 6a The left hand side line has an fine top-out.
28  Fear of a Flat Planet V4 6a From the top jug of Hanging Foot traverse the line of slopers rightwards to finish up 30.
29  Viaduct V5 6b A fine problem throught the middle of the roof via a crimp and two fine grained slopers. Hard mantle to finish.
30  V3 6a Throught the right side of the roof. Start on low jug then up via undercut in the roof, flat crimp on the face and a small flake.
31  V3 6a The right to left traverse is slopey, green and full of character- jammable for Yorkshire types.

32  V2 5c The wall right of the right arete, starting from the jugs of 31.


The nearest bouldering crags are:

Bonehill Rocks | Holwell Tor | Top Tor/Tunhill Rocks Area | Smallacombe

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Haytor Area Map

Photo Tour



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