SUBLUMINAL


The low white line of sea cliff ‘under the light’ is the enchanting area of Subluminal. Subluminal is the place most folks head to for a first taste of Swanage steepness. The main reason for its popularity is the good selection of solid, short and amenably graded routes. Access is quick and there is a good ledge system running beneath the climbs that is well clear of the waves, giving the place a friendly atmosphere. Subluminal lies just west of the lighthouse and the Black Zawn, beneath open grass slopes. There is a clean-cut ledge above the climbs for gearing up and socialising, along with plentiful stakes for belays. Many of the climbs offer technical and fingery exercises as well as some bulging test-pieces in the Avernus Area. The Black Zawn is a place for the experienced only and has some of the best traditional pitches at Swanage in its confines. To its east are more routes worth searching out once the main classics have been ticked.

Routes

83 trad routes (D...E5)
8 dws routes (5a...6c+)
Graded List of Routes
List of First Ascents
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Buttress (click for routes) No. of Routes Route Type Sunshine
or shade
Approach walk Other
Bird's Nest Bay
Bird's Nest Bay is a small but inherently safe DWS zone, found in two small bays under the route...
8
DWS
Lots of sun!
Up and down

10 mins

Tidal
Stroof Area
One of Swanage's busiest trad areas. The climbs are all steep but mostly have reasonable protection...
29
Trad
Lots of sun!
Up and down

10 mins

Abseil
Freda Area
A popular and easily-accessed section of Subluminal that has some strong lines and sound rock.
19
Trad
Lots of sun!
Up and down

10 mins

Abseil
Avernus Area
A more serious section of cliff than those to its west with a collection of hard, steep pitches...
14
Trad
Lots of sun!
Up and down

10 mins

Abseil
Black Zawn
Black Zawn is an enclosed and highly atmospheric zawn with big, long routes that require abseil...
9
Trad
Sun and shade
Up and down

10 mins

Abseil
Lighthouse Cliff
The wall that lies directly beneath the lighthouse is hard to see from the land, but has some good...
12
Trad
Lots of sun!
Up and down

10 mins

Abseil
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