and soaking up the wild aura at the remote, rugged sea cliffs of Eshaness, on Scotland’s magical Shetland Islands.
The featured route, Mary ( VS 4c; 5.8), is just one of many that weave up through the seemingly blank walls of pyroclastic breccia. Andestic tuffs and lava bombs created this rather fragile-looking material. The exploding gases have resulted in an endless array of pockets that take the odd cam. This route and others like it may not be physically hard, but they are mentally demanding considering the remoteness. The rock architecture also lends itself to well-protected cracks and groove lines. To date, there are more than 1,000 routes in the Shetlands, many in the VS (5.8) to E1 (5.10) category and often exceeding 150 feet in length.