Southern Sandstone and the Sea Cliffs of South-East England: Climbers' Club Guides (BOK)
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The visual impact is impressive from the start with a new wrap-around cover photo, the inside uses the Lower Wye Valley concept of a double-page spread for the title page and, amongst many others, there are a couple of superb (and frightening?) images of the chalk sea cliffs. Where tree cover has allowed photo-diagrams have been used to supplement the maps and plans, as well as the usual written descriptions.A large selection of action photographs have been obtained for the guidebook, including a number of historical photographs from the 1930's to 1970's. The guidebook is 463 pages and well over half of these will have either action photos or photo-diagrams on all or part of the page.As well as the significant photographic increase upon the previous guidebook, the new one has a major addition in the form of a first ascents list painstakingly compiled by Paul Highams. Previous CC guidebooks to the area have not included a first ascents list and many of the new routes books have been lost over the years, so there are many routes for which details are unknown (and a few where the authors have received conflicting information).Along with many areas, there has been a considerable increase in bouldering activity on Southern Sandstone since the introduction of the bouldering mat, this guidebook has attempted to document all known activity. In common with some other bouldering areas it was decided not to give stars to boulder problems, although routes have been starred.Again the guide contains the Sea Cliffs of South-East England, a significant change here since the last CC guidebook has been the development of 'Sport Chalk' on the crags in the Saltdean and Newhaven areas by a small group of activists.The Sandstone Code again takes a prominent spot to assist climbers protect the rocks from preventable erosion. The five most important points are listed on the back cover, the full code is listed inside and a copy of the code on a postcard will be included with the guidebook. There is the usual graded list to provoke pub discussion over a pint of the local Harveys; and the addition of various 'text boxes' offering snippets of information or suggestions of routes such as slabs or cracks to try.