Queen Bee E7 6C – An eye-catching addition to Scimitar Ridge from Mike Goldthorp

Mike Goldthorp has added a stunning new line to Scimitar Ridge, found to the right of Xerxes (E1). Queen Bee is sure to attract plenty of attention this year due to its impressive overhanging arete.

Mikey had a few words to say about his ascent.


Queen Bee E7 6C – Photo: Mike Goldthorp

“I noticed it years ago and I drive past it all the time on my way to work, just calling out to be climbed. I’d assumed it must be desperate for it to have remained unclimbed all this time, but was keen to have a look, so I nipped up after work yesterday evening. Light was fading fast so had a quick look at the gear, did some pruning of an intrusive holly bush and had a few rushed minutes working out the moves on ab and it seemed like it could go so I went for it but with clumsy numb feet I pinged off the crux on the arete, took a decent whipper onto the two brass offsets by my feet and had to retreat in the dark empty handed.”

“Was eager to get it done ASAP so persuaded Helen to come and give me belay today (nice soft catch if I took the lob again). This time I warmed up properly at Cromlech boulders, razzed up in the warm sun and as I approached the bottom of the route the atmosphere felt much less foreboding than the gloom of last night. Everything came together and I found myself on the final moves, eyeing up the finishing jug and then it was all over and I topped out in the warm sun and buffeting wind all giddy with excitement to have climbed what is for me one of the best unclimbed lines in North Wales!”

“ A slighty tricky start to a no-hands rest below the arete, much like King Wad (E6). Then the amazing overhanging arete. Technical 7A/+ish boulder problem with delicate heels and snatchy barn door moves between little crimps, with two decent brass offsets, a good cam and a nice clear fall-zone. Pretty perfect really! Definitely worth at least 2 stars, maybe 3 for the top arete, although first half could do with a bit more cleaning, it’s good rock and nice climbing up the grey pillar and pulling round the right side of the obvious triangle roof.”

Mikey has named the route Queen Bee, partner to the Scimitar Ridge classic, King Wad (E6).


Mikey on the final arete of Queen Bee – Photo: Will Hardy

Queen bee fall

Mikey taking the fall off Queen Bee hoping to avoid the holly bush lurking below – Photo: Will Hardy


More proof that the areas of North Wales are far from done when it come to new classic lines. I’m sure there will be plenty more to come from Mikey in 2016.

All the information you need about to have a great day out on Scimitar Ridge can be found in the North Wales Rock or the Llanberis guide books. You can get your hands on a copy from http://www.v12outdoor.com

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