Three Pebble Slab

3 Stars
 HVS 5a

Adjacent Routes
<< Soft Option < Two-sided Triangle  |  Four Pebble Slab > Grey Slab >>

One of the classic Froggatt slabs which is always good fodder in the great grade debate. Climb to a hole (cam and small wire) rock up and right to a rest then pad to safety. Scary but mild.
FA. Joe Brown 1948


Top roped it years ago, then I broke my leg leading it. Next time!
JohnB - 02/Jul/02

Benchmark E0!
Fiend - 19/Aug/02

Give it a break fiend...
North East Nick - 20/Aug/02

Another great route by Joe. The gear protects the crux very adaquately, and the final slab is relatively quite easy. It'd be climbed with hands in pockets if it was 2 metres up! Saying thatgetting my hand into the flake at the top was a great relief!
RobS - 27/Aug/02

The mind game is completely different soloing, well worth while.
Paz - 30/Sep/02

Probably worth avoiding spending quarter of an hour faffing around with a Friend in a pocket above the wire like I did. The end result would have just about held a dropped crisp-wrapper - just get on with it!
Will Judge - 06/Nov/02

Definitely not woth the faff with a friend as this would also have the added bonus of removing a very usefull foot-hold! As with others my first E1. I found a towel a very useful psychological boost to wipe the chalk off the smears on the upper slab- I certainly thought I got better friction because of it. One of the best delicate routes I have led on Grit and certainly easier than CMC slab.
D Berry - 24/Mar/03

did this yesterday and still thinking about it. My first E1 lead. My mate lead it b4 me and he slipped on the crux and the #2 friend in the pocket popped! You can get a #4 nut in the pocket on the left as well which made me feel so much better! well worth doing though. Andy
Andy Townsend - 24/Apr/03

I did this about 5 minutes before Andy T (above). The extra nut made me feel safer, but I was the guy who caught the one who fell! Belayer, and spotter!!! Good first E1. If you like exposure, it's wicked!
Andy Withey - 25/Apr/03

My first "E1" lead and was rather disappointed - expected more from what I'd read. Now Sunset Slab (which I led just beforehand) is another matter...
Marvin Royce - 27/Apr/03

Wish I'd read these comments b4 trying to lead it. Spent ages trying to wedge a friend into the pocket and promptly lost balance and fell off when pulling on it. Still it seem to amuse the on lookers but me foot is not too good.
Parick S - 28/Apr/03

Having only led V.Diff before, I seconded it, and found it pretty easy. The only hard move is right above good gear when leading, and the final runout is on pretty easy ground. Having said that though, I like slabs and don't mind runouts too much. I should probably try leading it to get a better feeling, but it's the sort of thing I love on the lead - delicate footwork (and relatively high above gear too).
Alex - 29/Apr/03

Led it last year, and didn't think the Friend in the Hole would hold, but saw someone fall from the top slab recently, and gear did stay in, and he didn't quite hit the deck through good belaying..!
Brian Mead - 05/Jul/03

First E1 lead! 22/08/03 Enjoyed it very much, protection went in easy, nut & friend, bit shakey on rock over but it was good!
Mike Lee - 25/Aug/03

My first E1 too. Given that I'm only just venturing into VS grades, I'm not sure that it really is an E1
Muz - 01/Sep/03

My first E1 too. I found it quite reasonable although my second said he would have dropped his load leading it!! Tip: don't use the pocket for a foot hold - its miles easier mantling the little slopey ledge.
Dave - 02/Sep/03

this was my second e1 (two sided triangle was my first) and i decided to solo it (thinking that there probably wouldn't be much protection anyway). the friction move near the stop had me well scared & i was buzzing after making it. a great introduction to e1!
leon skeldon - 10/Sep/03

One of my earliest HVS leads (you can tell how old my guidebook is!), 5a crux is protected, top slab is easy.
Robin - 18/Sep/03

Don't know much about this friend and a nut stuff! A 1.5 friend sits deeper in the hole, is bomber and once extended leaves you the foot hold as well. It is a relief to get that flake.
Mike Bryan - 01/Mar/04

Just for a bit of balance - it wasn't my first E1 lead and I thought the friend was good. Very easy for E1 though. Great route.
Monk - 01/Mar/04

i've met my nemesis - so no more comments about ropes being thrown down please munir
hans - 20/Apr/04

My first E1 as well, seconded it without thinking too much then lead it afterwards, spent 10 minutes faffing around near the top of the slab, trust your feet!
rich t - 13/Jun/04

My first HVS onsight solo many years ago. Never in a million years should this be given E1.
andy farnell - 13/Jun/04

i'd been climbing 3 months when i led this.not e1 its a safe route at the crux.
mark smith - 13/Jun/04

It's E1! Oh no it isn't! Oh, yes it is! Etc.

Who cares? Just enjoy the route.

Lovely sense of being a bit runout at the top but not too worrying if you just concentrate on the moves and put any thoughts of falling off from your mind (no point in worrying about it by the time you are on the slab).

You probably don't want to climb it in the rain (as person after me found out after spending an age at bottom of slab).
MeMeMe - 31/Aug/04

Soloed it onsight just a couple of months after arriving in Britain back in '89 and thought it to be about Oz grade 17/18. With a good runner by the crux it is definitely HVS.
Dave C - 11/Jan/05

Australian grades for TPS: marvellous! This could run for another decade yet.
Jon Read - 12/Jan/05

VO- perhaps with an R rating (PS more than one mat is unethical)
sloper - 18/Jan/05

It's straightforward HVS. Good gear (if you're halfway to being competent) for the crux, and a boldish 4b slab above. It would be a boulder problem in Yorkshire.
Andyhob - 22/Feb/05

If this was in Yorkshire, it'd be given VS! Nice route though.
Sean_J - 14/Mar/05

Soloed it and shat my pants!
Adam Moroz - 03/May/05

I got suckered in to leading this as it 'looked' so easy from down below [I'm a VS / HVS leader by trade].
Got the crux no problem but the higher i got the less bottle i had. Close but no cigar - thanks again to Joe and Steve for the rescue.
Albie - 31/May/05

All in the mind is a VS in some ways but it still feels exposed im scared of heights so felt E1 to me But equally i felt the gear(friend and nut) was bomber!
kermit - 15/Jun/05

My mate John D took a big fall from the final move on 27 June: luckily the mid size rock in the upper pocket held beautifully and his second John W jumped: he reckoned he had his wallet out on the bar of the Chequers when the rope came tight! Leader missed a decking and injury by six inches after a high-speed face-out slide... a bit too spectacular for comfort
Derek Morton - 28/Jun/05

What grade did Joe Brown give it? Apparently they threw a cheeky top rope down some last great problems before the first ascent in those days, but nonetheless this must have been a brilliant effort wearing 1948 climbing shoes (pumps? socks?) and with 1948 gear (any at all?) in the pocket.
Paz - 07/Jul/05

Probably hobnail boots and a briar pipe for protection
severestu - 04/Aug/05

You have to tread on your cam placement, bombproof friend 1.5 in pocket, to climb it. Excellent route, I was sweating buckets as i crwaled up the slab above. Who cares whether it's E1?
severestu - 11/Aug/05

on-sight soloed it and its bloomin' scary, especially in the sticky heat of july!
dodfoster - 09/Sep/05

At Swanage it'd be given Mod! Maybe Diff if you put a bed of nails at the bottom.
bendoniumayebendonium - 30/Sep/05

at swanage (down in softie land) it'd be given e3 you cretin.
boizee - 01/Oct/05

I think you will find that most swanage routes are high in the grade. They make peak grades look soft.
Oli - 02/Oct/05

Ha ha. Boizee, you should see what the E1s (or E3s for that matter) are like in the Ruckle!
3PS is soft HVS btw and a pleasant solo.
Owen W-G - 03/Oct/05

At Swanage it'd be top roped and polished to buggery.Nice route, simple enough but a real mind game, much enjoyed
irish paul - 03/Nov/05

Great route, even better onsight solo. Upper slab feels worrying but you could take so many different foot sequences up it.
Andrew Barker - 06/Nov/05

An HVS 4b/c slab with one awkward 5a move below it. Never E1 although I have done even softer ones!
Si dH - 29/Jan/06

This climb always generates controversy! Look at how many comments there are!
So, to add my tupence worth: Probably HVS, although good climbers have come to grief on it in the past....
Glen - 17/Mar/06

as with the majority it was my first E1 lead, although the crux is well protected (had friend + nut in pocket and 2.5 friend in low crack too) there is serious deckout potential at the top.Id be lying if i said i wasnt freaked on the slab. not ideal to do in the heat of the midday june sun!chalk-a-plenty!!!!
graeme - 12/Jun/06

please dont say the new eastern grit has down graded it to HVS?? what about the people just coming from VS? thats going to be a bit of a shock!
john - 21/Jun/06

Led this as the first climb of the day yesterday - and it is definitely not worht E1 (sorry folks)! HVS at a push - the crux rockover is just above the protection and provided that you have reasonable shoes/confidence the upper slab shouldn't be a problem.
Gareth Chapman - 10/Jul/06

The biggest Dmm 3CU (1 3/4?) or an orange alien (i think) fit the pocket quite well.
Oli - 21/Jul/06

Graeme, between 15 and 20 years ago I was belaying a friend on this, he fell off the top slab and he didn't hit the deck, he stopped at the first break, admittedly I had to run away from the rock and when he came onto the rope I was back at the bottom of the route in a split second, but we both escaped with only a few bruises.
Peter Bradwell - 24/Jul/06

this route is a doddle!
friend 2 is easy to place.
nice head game
martin cleaver - 18/Aug/06

Great route! I managed to blindly place my largest wired tricam (black) in the hole after I'd used it as a handhold to get up. I didn't dare tug it but it seemed OK, and I still had a foothold (it did however pop when pulling the rope through, but tricams often do). Maybe the grade depends on whether your belayer is prepared to jump off the ledge at the bottom if you fall?
munky - 31/Aug/06

for some reason i was under the impresion that this was a vs 4b (beer and guidebooks the night befor )im still under that impresion
Neil O'Brien - 23/Oct/06

Tricam was the best placement for the pocket, can't remember if it was blue or brown
Dom Clarke - 29/Oct/06

Is this the most discussed grade on grit? E1 5a for me - and don't think you've finished one you're on the top slab. I know at least 2 people who've needed a top rope for the last move.
Iain Thow - 17/Mar/07

Crux move was harder than I thought it would be and the top slab was a lot scarier than I expected for 4b slab padding. I seriously considered asking for a TR to be thrown down when I got my feet the wrong way round after the crux but perseverence (and fear of embarrassment) kept me going to the top.
Julie Mair - 17/May/07

The protection isn't the best, but this isn't an E1. Needed to sort my feet out on the crux there's a nice ledge above the hole for your left, the footswap I had to do to get it wasn't fun though! The slab run-in is easy, but a frightner. Truely awesome route.
David Berry - 16/Jul/07

Excellent route, who cares about the grade its an amazin route. Size four nut in the left hand side of the pocket then a size 3 cam in the centre to hold everything in place, led this an motorcade in the wind, must have felt brave that day. did anyone else find the top slab hard.
robert bridges - 27/Feb/08

I placed what I thought was a bomber wire in the pocket and then I slipped off and it popped right out. However, the friend below caught me, and I went on to finish the route. My first E1 and I loved it.
David Hewitt - 20/Mar/08

This route is probably really HVS as the 5a crux is well protected; however, the top slab is quite scary even if it is easy!
Matt1000 - 30/Oct/08

The protection for the crux is great, fits a size 3 (i think) 4CU like a glove. The run-out is a bit daunting, but is fine if you trust your boots!
Clovehitch131 - 29/Jan/12

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  • Route Grade Votings

    Total votes cast 307
    hard E1 0 of 64
    E1 0 of 64
    easy E1 32 of 64
    hard HVS 7 of 64
    HVS 16 of 64
    easy HVS 3 of 64
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    3 Stars 144 of 181
    2 Stars 23 of 181
    1 Star 7 of 181
    0 Stars 1 of 181
    Bag of ..... 6 of 181

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