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A Dream of White Horses T 
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A Dream of White Horses 

YDS: 5.9+ French: 5c Ewbanks: 17 UIAA: VI ZA: 17 British: E1 5a

   
Type:  Trad, 4 pitches, 300'
Consensus:  YDS: 5.8 French: 5b Ewbanks: 16 UIAA: VI- ZA: 15 British: HVS 4c [details]
FA: Ed Drummond & Dave Pearce
Page Views: 2,502
Submitted By: Camilla on Aug 13, 2008

You & This Route  |  Other Opinions (10)
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Marc Chrysanthou, early 80's

Seasonal closure for bird nesting.

Description 

Beautifully named and a true North Welsh classic - and not even in the mountains of Snowdonia. Made famous by a spectacular picture in one of the Royal Robbins Rockcraft books. If you're in Wales, do this route. Although if the waves are big the climb may be wet.

It takes a traversing line leftwards across the huge and exposed Wen Slab for a few pitches on good holds with the odd tricky bit here and there, then makes a spectacular traverse across the arch (or Zawn) and up onto the grass.

When I did way back when I used all nuts, but I'm sure cams will work too - the rock is good.

Location 

Rap down the sea level, climb a steep groove to the horizontal line.

Protection 

trad rack


Photos of A Dream of White Horses Slideshow Add Photo
Looking across to Wen Slab from the finish of the ...
Looking across to Wen Slab from the finish of the ...
Looking down from DOWH
Looking down from DOWH
Starting the last pitch traverse, yes the camera i...
Starting the last pitch traverse, yes the camera i...
Halfway across DOWH
Halfway across DOWH
The climb finishes by traversing leftwards across ...
The climb finishes by traversing leftwards across ...
Leo Dickinson's classic shot of the first ascent.
Leo Dickinson's classic shot of the first ascent.

Comments on A Dream of White Horses Add Comment
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By Chris Owen
Administrator
From: La Crescenta and Big Bear Lake
Sep 19, 2008
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

IMHO there's no way this route is harder than 5.8 or HVS 4C, but it's been a looooong time since I've climbed it.
By john strand
From: southern colo
Jan 7, 2009

Technically 5.8/9 but really cool situation, especially if the Horses are in. F/A Ed Drummond.
By Brad Warne
From: Calgary, Alberta
Oct 10, 2010
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13

Before doing the route I thought it was getting more credit than it deserved. After doing it I think it cant get enough. The climbing isnt spectacular, but is interesting enough. You do this route for the atmosphere! Also, I would say this route isnt much harder than 5.7, but the positions are intimidating and incredable
By Rob Davies UK
From: Cheshire, UK
Oct 19, 2011
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

The usual warning is to carry prussik loops in case of a fall on the last pitch, as the rock below is undercut and the rock above overhanging.
By Nick Russell
Administrator
From: Bristol, UK
Oct 31, 2013

I haven't done this route, but I know its status and I think I can comment on the description here. It's a must-do, super-classic, adventurous sea cliff route, picking an intricate and very committing line through some very intimidating ground... and all people see on here is "traverse route"? I've written more about 4-bolt sport routes than that! Please can somebody who has done it write something more evocative? This page just doesn't do it justice
By Brad Warne
From: Calgary, Alberta
Nov 4, 2013
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c PG13

Nick, what exactly are you looking for? Its been a couple years now but Im sure I could scrape together a description. Pitch length, # of pitches, gear and route description? IMHO, the climbing is good but not that good, you do this route for the enviroment that you are in and the naure of it, not for the technical climbing.
By Nick Russell
Administrator
From: Bristol, UK
Nov 5, 2013

Brad, I haven't done the route so I can't say exactly what I'm looking for (if I could say exactly, I'd just write it!)... number of pitches and total length are already on there, but that's just objective details. I guess for a route with a reputation like this, I expect a description to inspire. A bit of evocative prose about the situation, some of the history perhaps? From what I've heard the climbing itself (as you say) isn't spectacular, but it does break through some very unlikely terrain. Maybe when I get round to climbing it I'll suggest something.
By Jim Bowers
Nov 10, 2013

When I did this I thought the climb was about the slab traverse. The last pitch was a shock and terrifying to look at because I just couldn't believe the climb went through that overhanging finish. Amazing jugs make it casual though.
By Chris Owen
Administrator
From: La Crescenta and Big Bear Lake
Jun 27, 2014
rating: 5.8 5b 16 VI- 15 HVS 4c

Ok Nick I've changed the description - I didn't realize it was so sparse.