Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Rock climbing on Gola Island

 Went for a two day visit to Gola Island with 20 troopers commonly known as the F.A.S. collective. The 18 trainee instructors have now completed their Mountain Skills Assessments, Single Pitch Award training and a multitude of kayaking qualifications and are now about to be scattered to the distant corners of Ireland to do two months work experience at various outdoor centers.
 And so we went to Gola Island for a wee two day rock climbing session. We set up a tent city campsite at the South East tip of the island and headed to the newly discovered Easter Wall.
 No sooner were the tents pitched, we headed to the crag, I had printed the 40 page Gola Island chapter of the forthcoming Donegal climbers guidebook and this was it's inaugural testing of it's accuracy and ease of use by it's harshest critics, fellow climbers. Success, the troops found the crag and located all the routes, much to my relief, and they set about leading every route possible, with all the sub extremes at Easter Wall getting led in fine style.

Easter Wall, Gola Island

Racking up at Easter Wall

Climbing on Easter Wall

Climbing on Easter Wall

 Early evening came all too soon and the inevitable call was made "Wheres the unclimbed rock?" and so we descended to sea level to climb three new 15m lines at Hard Severe, Very Severe and HVS 4c. An outstanding performance from a team that 6 months previous had never rock climbed before! Watching the troops climb new rock with a massive amount of enthusiasm and enjoyment I kind of felt responsible for assisting in creating a mini 18 strong, rock climbing army who have a definite preference for unclimbed rock!
 The future of rock climbing in Ireland is definitely looking bright!

Unclimbed rock on Gola Island

      New routes in progress

Pulling through the 4b crux

 And so, as the sun began to set in the late evening and with new routes in the bag, we returned to the tent city campsite for a spot of Aprés climbing.

Gola Island. Aprés climbing

 The following day a tour of the island was called for by the new routing monsters and clutching the guide we traveled the coastline finding along the way several lifetimes of unclimbed rock and a world of possibilities to play in the vertical world on this outstanding Donegal Island! 


  1. Best rock climbing place for international climbers are present in Naanga parbat in Pakistan those place are very unique and hidden from the world eyes i invite you to get flights for pakistan to explore those precious places i m sure you gonna loving it.

  2. These mountain are best for rock climbing last time when i got cheap umrah packages i have seen too many places in Makkah's side area are perfect for rock climbing and adventurous tour.