Welcome to SP!  -
Sheer Delight

Sheer Delight

Sheer Delight

Page Type: Route

Location: Pembroke, Wales, Europe

Lat/Lon: 51.60410°N / 4.95972°W

Object Title: Sheer Delight

Route Type: Trad Climbing

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Time Required: Less than two hours

Difficulty: Hard Severe 4b (5.6 - 5.7 YDS)

Number of Pitches: 2

Route Quality: 
 - 1 Votes


Page By: Nanuls

Created/Edited: Nov 2, 2009 / Apr 15, 2011

Object ID: 569864

Hits: 885 

Page Score: 79.78%  - 11 Votes 

Vote: Log in to vote



Blockhouse Buttress might not be on top of everyone's Pembroke hit list, but that doesn't mean it's not worth describing, after all, pretty much everything in Pembroke is worth climbing at some point. Of the Buttress' routes, the aptly named Sheer Delight (Hard Severe 4b) is probably the best, taking the steep south face at a remarkably amenable grade.

The best climbing is on the first pitch, which although never overly challenging, is exposed and in places, poorly protected. The second pitch is more of an escape, but is still exposed enough to require the use of a rope and careful protection. So if you are looking for somewhere a bit quieter to spend a few hours, this route, coupled with ascents of some of the crags other interesting mid grade lines, such as Truckers Delight (VS 4b) and Mother Truckers (HVS 5a), is more than enough to conjure up a highly entertaining morning of climbing.

FA: M. Harber and A. Moore, April 20th 1980.

Getting There

Blockhouse Buttress
Abseiling in
(Photo by Nanuls)
Blockhouse Buttress
Blockhouse Buttress
(Photo by Nanuls)
Sheer Delight
On the belay ledge
(Photo by Nanuls)

Sheer Delight

When approaching from Carmarthen (SN 405 196) take the A40 Truck Road signposted for Saint Clears (SN 274 160). At the Saint Clears roundabout, take the A477 Trunk Road towards Pembroke Dock (SM 969 036). Before reaching Pembroke Dock, turn left onto the A4075 (SN 019 027) to Pembroke (SM 989 012). In Pembroke, drive straight over the first small roundabout you reach, drive along the A4139 a few hundred metres and turn left and take the B4319 south towards Castlemartin (SR 915 983). Around 2.5km after Saint Petrox (SR 971 975), take a left hand turn (SR 965 964) signposting Bosherston (SR 965 9470). Drive through Bosherston (or stop for a cup of tea at Mrs Weston's Olde Worlde Café) to the Saint Govan's Car Park (SR 966 930).

From the car park, walk south to a small guard house and turn right (west), cross the stile at the guard house, and walk along a gravel road passing Stennis Ford and Huntsman's Leap and the Devil’s Barn. Follow the track and cross a fence at a cattle grid. Soon the buildings and masts near The Castle will come into view (SR 955 933), keep these to your left and carry on towards a second fence. Blockhouse Buttress is the cliff where this fence meets coastline above a large landward slanting slab (SR 951 936). Abseil from a nut and hex anchor to the base of landward slanting slab – the start of the route is just to the left.

Route Description

Pitch 1 (4a, 20m): Climb the left hand side of the slab to an obvious flake and climb this too. Protection is quite poor. After this the protection improves and one can enjoy the moment. Move upwards to a break and belay off a good ledge.

Pitch 2 (4b, 20m): Step up above the belay and immediately swing right. Continue upwards more easily on broken rock. An alternate finish is to simply climb straight on; the climbing is better but it pushes the overall grade of the climb down to Severe.

Essential Gear

The route is two pitches long and takes a variety of gear from small to large wires as well as a variety of cams, Double ropes are essential for avoiding rope drag. You should also carry an abseil rope to safely access to the base of the crag, along with a set of prussiks (or equivalent) to allow for self rescue should the need arise.

The Castle (Photo by Nanuls)


Open Space Web-Map builder Code
Navigation Maps

OS 1:25k Explorer Series OL 36 South Pembrokeshire/De Sir Benfro

OS 1:50k Landranger Series 158 Tenby & Pembroke / Dinbych-y-pysgod & Penfro

Road Maps

OS Road Map 6 Wales/Cymru & West Midlands


Pembrokeshire Coast: The Official National Park Guide Pembrokeshire Coast: The Official National Park Guide by Alf Alderson, John Cleare and Ian Mercer.

A handy book full of useful information and interesting facts about the National Park.
Climbers Guides to Wales: Pembroke Climbers Club Guides to Wales: Pembroke by John Harwood, Dave Viggers et al.

An extremely comprehensive two volume guidebook to the area which describes most of the routes at Blockhouse Buttress.
Climbers Club Pembroke Supplement Climbers Club Pembroke Supplement by Dave Viggers

A little book containing updates to the Climbers Club Guide and costs around a fiver.
Rock Fax Guide: Pembroke Rock Fax Guide: Pembroke by Alan James and Mike Robertson

Not quite as comprehensive as the Climbers Club guides, but lavishly illustrated with tons of large photo diagrams and topos.

External Links

Blockhouse Buttress
Checking out the start of the route (Photo by Nanuls)

Government Bodies and Other Organisations

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority
Council for National Parks
Association of National Park Authorities
Pembrokeshire County Council
Carmarthenshire County Council
Ceredigion County Council
Countryside Council for Wales
Forestry Commission Wales
Environment Agency
Royal Commission on Ancient & Historical Monuments in Wales
Dyfed Archaeological Trust
The National Trust
Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Outdoor Organisations and Companies

British Mountaineering Council
Pembrokeshire Climbing Club
Pembrokeshire Outdoor Charter Group
South Wales Mountaineering Club
The Climbers Club


Weather from the Met Office
BBC Weather
Weather Channel UK

Tide Tables

BBC Tide Tables
UK Hydrographic Office

Tourist Information

Visit Wales
Visit Pembrokeshire
South West Wales Tourism Partnership
Local Information from Pembrokeshire Pages
Local Information from Pembrokeshire Online

Travel Information

Welsh Public Transport Information
Uk Train Timetable


Youth Hostel Association in Wales
Independent Hostel Guide
Campsites in Pembrokeshire

Maps and Guidebooks

Ordnance Survey
Cicerone Guidebooks
Climbers Club Guidebooks
Rockfax Guidebooks
Mid Wales Climbing
Cordee Travel and Adventure Sports Bookshop

Wildlife and Conservation

Joint Nature Conservation Committee
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds
Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre
South West Wales Wildlife Trust
Sea Trust
Pembrokeshire Bird Group

Welsh Language

Welsh Language Board
Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg Welsh language pressure group
Cymuned Welsh language pressure group
Yr Urdd (Welsh Youth Association)
Welsh-English / English-Welsh online translator
Welsh-English / English-Welsh Online Dictionary
Welsh-English / English-Welsh Online Lexicon


Blockhouse ButtressSheer DelightSheer Delight