Climbing in Scotland
These pages are concerned about Rock Climbing, both outdoor on natural rock and on artificial climbing walls – mainly situated within indoor climbing centres.
For winter climbing (Ice and ‘Mixed’) see the mountaineering pages.
Rock climbing is an athletic activity which requires the performance skills associated with gymnastics, but also the finesse and movement of dance. Like most physical ‘sports’, to be good involves dedication and training, however, it is a skill that comes natural to us all and it can be enjoyed at any level.
There is a huge range of different rock types in Scotland from granite to sandstone to gabbro and the oldest rock in the world - gneiss; there is every scale of cliff from remote and big mountain cliffs or serious big sea cliffs to roadside outcrops near the big cities; and there is every grade of climb from easy slabs that are just a little more technical than scrambling to overhanging ‘blank’ walls at the highest grades.
Scotland, like the rest of the UK, is possibly unique in the world for mainly ‘adventurous’, ‘traditional’ climbing (without the use of fixed protection such as bolts) being the norm. However, there is also a good selection of developing sport climbing venues.
A Visitors Guide to Rock Climbing in Scotland - everything you need to know to go climbing across Scotland, including where the main areas are, what guidebooks are available, climbing grades and Scottish Climbing Ethics.
Information about the indoor climbing walls in Scotland (including the Walls Database).
The MCofS & Climbing Walls:
MCofS Policy on Climbing Wall Use and Management
MCofS Strategy for Wall Development in Scotland
MCofS Wall Good Practice Advice for Managers
MCofS Support for New Climbing Walls
The Association of British Climbing Walls (ABC)