Ratho Quarry

The quarry is being developed for the National Rock Climbing Center. Check their web pages for the latest info.

Ratho Quarry is currently under development by the company which owns it. They have received an obscene Lottery Grant of almost stg 1,000,000 to build National Rock Climbing Centre of Scotland.

It is proposed to build in the currently unusable area of the quarry which is currently buried under several feet of rubble. The complex will site the Climbing Centre and some offices.
Access to the uncovered areas of rock is proposed to be FREE.

Anything currently in print is likely to be inaccurate...

Although they don't appear to have built anything, all the trees, bushes and rubble have been removed. There are no longer any belays for any of the climbs unless you particularly like Mud Bollards or hanging belays from a Raspberry Bush!

Ratho Quarry is situated a few miles outside the City of Edinburgh, just a mile or so from Ingelston Market and is easily reached by car. If you want to cycle from Edinburgh to the quarry, just follow the Union Canal towpath and it will (eventually) take you right into the quarry. Cycling takes around half an hour, but watch for the bumps and, unlike me, you shouldn't fall head first into the rather murky canal!

The quarry itself is on the North side of the canal and is pleasantly wooded. If the weather is fair you are unlikely to have the rock to yourself since the quarry is frequentend by local climbers on most good days. It is never usually too busy, though.

The rock is good when it isn't falling off on largish chunks - it does this on some of the climbs, but most are quite solid - the climbs are good and varied in style and difficulty although the grades they seem to have been given are a little dubious; most are below their grade. Grades range from VS to E4/5 though harder lines are possible and there is rumoured to be a couple of V Diffs.. most are VS 4c or HVS 5a/b.

The SMC Lowland Outcrops Guide provides a comprehensive guide to the quarry and others in the area, but the best way to judge the quarry is just to go and climb what looks climbabale to you!
Then try something that doesn't!

If you would like to submit any information on any aspect of climbing in Scotland, then we would love to here from you.