Duration: 1 day
Client to Instructor Ratio: 2:1 Max
The Dubh Slabs stand out as one of the premier scrambles on the Isle of Skye and, perhaps, across the entire United Kingdom. Encapsulating more than 900 meters of virtually uninterrupted scrambling, this adventure begins with a boat ride and concludes with an exhilarating overhanging abseil.
Before Your Course
Your EverydayClimbing mountain guide will be in touch one to two days before your course commences. This pre-course contact serves to introduce your guide, confirm meeting details, and provide insight into the expected weather conditions. Our guides are readily available to address any queries you may have, ensuring you're well-prepared for your upcoming adventure.
On the Day
The Dubh Slabs are undeniably unique in the UK, and even if they were merely a continuous 900-meter stretch of rock with a less impressive view, they would undoubtedly be a sought-after attraction. Fortunately, this route is situated high above the captivating shores of Loch Coruisk, a wellspring of inspiration for artists, poets, and adventurers throughout centuries. Encircled by gabbro mountains gracefully descending into the sea, the impeccable quality of the rock is compelling in itself. Yet, it's the remarkable journey, rich with quality experiences, that truly elevates this route to its esteemed status in the world of mountaineering.
Our adventure commences in traditional fashion as we step aboard the 'Misty Isle' in Elgol. This boat transports us across the picturesque sea inlet of Loch Scavaig, where it's not uncommon to encounter impressive marine life along the way. Minke whales, seals, and basking sharks have graced us with their presence on numerous occasions during this journey.
Upon disembarking from the boat and setting foot on the shore, you'll find yourself surrounded by a landscape that demands contemplation. The uniquely sculpted slabs beneath your feet and the seemingly insurmountable peaks in every direction make it evident that you're standing in an extraordinary place. After a few kilometers of walking along the lakeshore, we reach our gearing-up point and the beginning of our route: the Dubh Slabs. This 920-meter ascent, rated as grade three scrambling, culminates in the most fitting manner for a mountaineering route—on the summit high above.
The route typically avoids extreme difficulty, with rough and pristine rock underfoot. In places, once your confidence is established, it becomes almost like a casual hike, often requiring no handholds. The broad slabs provide ample room for exploration and variation. More challenging sections can be embraced or bypassed as per your comfort. Natural platforms and substantial breaks along the route provide ideal opportunities for photos and rejuvenation. However, it's important to note that this is a substantial undertaking, and if we intend to catch the return boat, we must keep a brisk pace. Finally, we reach the summit, an expansive vantage point to admire all that you've accomplished thus far and contemplate which of these magnificent peaks might beckon you next.
Descending from the summit's far side presents a somewhat inconvenient obstacle—a 20-meter abseil. Though it's not an extensive descent, the fact that it's suspended 700 meters up a mountain might make it seem more intimidating. But rest assured, your guide will be by your side, providing thorough instructions and reassurance to ensure your safety.
Once we've completed the abseil, we face a choice. We can opt to conquer another peak, Sgurr Dubh Mor, which involves a few more hours of mountain scrambling. Alternatively, we may decide to initiate our descent here, following a wide, boulder-strewn gully all the way back to our gearing up point point. The final easy return over the whaleback-carved bedrock during our exit is quite impressive and adds another enjoyable dimension to the day. As the day draws to a close, we'll board our boat, bid farewell to Coriusk and the vigilant seals that watch over it, and commence our voyage back home.
Not quite what you're seeking? No problem! We specialise in organising climbing, scrambling, or mountaineering guides for any route in the Scottish Highlands or islands. From the dramatic sea-stacks to the legendary Skye Cuillin, we've got your adventure covered. Feel free to drop us a line with your specific requirements, and we'll promptly respond to your inquiry.
This course is available year-round and can be scheduled on any day that suits your plans.
Feel free to reach out with your specific requirements or contact us using the form below, and we'll promptly respond to your inquiry.
Our prices are comprehensive and cover the following:
One person - £260
Two people - £310 (£155 per person)
The Dubh serves as an outstanding entry point to the more challenging Cuillin scrambling routes. It offers a well-rounded experience, featuring optional technical and exposed movements, an abseil, intricate route-finding, and, of course, a rewarding finish on a Munro summit. Whether you're aiming to conquer top-tier scrambles or refine your mountaineering skills, there are few options better than this.
With your capable instructor leading the way, you'll have the unique opportunity to tackle the finest and most exposed sections of this mountaineering route head-on. Dive into the exploration, immerse yourself in the adventure, and experiment with the many exposed segments that this remarkable route has to offer.
It's sustained and exposed in parts, offering several changes of style during ascent and descent. The route occasionally transitions into mild rock-climbing terrain, necessitating a diverse skill set typically commanded by well-rounded mountaineers and rock climbers. Thankfully, your guide will take charge of all route-finding, rope work, and provide instruction and guidance throughout. This makes the day accessible to confident hillwalkers and novice scramblers.
While no technical climbing experience is required, a strong foundation in summer hillwalking, good hill fitness and a confident approach are essential. This journey promises a full day of exploration and challenge.
• 25-35l backpack
• Mountain walking boots
• Walking poles
• Water bottle or hot drink flask (1 litre)
• lunch (around 1000cals.)
• Head torch + spare batteries
• Thick socks
• Waterproof jacket and trousers
• Thin fleece or light insulated jacket
• Thick fleece or mid insulated jacket
• Warm hat
• Hiking trousers
• Synthetic/merino base layers
• Personal medication
• Sun lotion & midge repellent/head net
• Waterproof stuff sacks for everything
• OS map
• Waterproof map case
• Compass (Silva type 4 recommended)
• Climbing helmet
• Belay device and karabiner
• Emergency shelter (Orange bag)
To guarantee your comfort and security throughout our activities, we strongly advise all participants to come prepared with the complete equipment listed. While our activities may proceed even if participants do not have the entire kit list, please be aware that EverydayClimbing and our instructors retain the right to modify the itinerary or conclude the activity early should the absence of essential equipment pose an elevated risk to the group, exceeding acceptable safety standards.
As part of our unwavering commitment to eliminating barriers to outdoor adventures, we offer a selection of equipment available for use by anyone, with no questions asked. Your safety and enjoyment are our top priorities. Just drop us a line to let us know what you require.