Freeborn Man Top 50

3 Stars
 E4 6a

Adjacent Routes
<< Halcyon Days < Herman Borg's Basic Pulley Slippage  |  Troubled Waters > Helix Direct >>

6c, S1. A classic, with a soft landing. From halfway along the approach traverse, climb the slab and then the steep pocketed wall above to a big hole. Swing left and make some final tricky moves onto the top slab. Linking from just below the crux to Herman Borg's Basic Pulley Slippage is Freeborn Borg, 7a+, S1, and continuing direct onto the slab is Freeborn Direct, 7a, S1.
FA. Nick Buckley, Kevin Turner 8.1979,FA. (Borg) Pete Oxley (solo) 19.3.1999,FA. (Direct )Mike Ford (solo) 1990s


Probably F6c+/7a, but OK if you keep moving quickly. Watch out for the pull over the lip where the holds suddenly get smaller, WICKED!
A.smith - 16/Mar/00

Never 6c+/7a- there's only one hard/english 6a move on it. This route is as 6c as it gets!
Has to be one of the best DWS around though.
Ben Stokes - 24/Mar/00

Fabulous but E4 is taking the piss. The Conger is just as hard if not harder. (A little) reach dependent going up for the break.
John Cox - 20/Jun/00

As 'Out of the blue' puts it, soloing Freeborn Man for the first time is an major life event comparable to driving your first car or burning down your first public building.
I wrote a small page about the route at
Tim Monks - 23/Apr/01

6c?! 6b is cloer to the mark.
Adam Lincoln - 17/May/04

F6b+! If you have fairly strong fingers there will only be one move that feels at all insecure. The E grade: who cares ...
tobyfk - 31/Jul/04

Remember this route was first climbed when E4 was a top grade and before sticky rubber and DWS was even a twinkle in anyones eye. On the first ascent nick was unable to top rope it, so reasoned that a lead might give him the incentive to hang on. I made an early repeat of this route a long time ago as a roped lead and it was quite epic to fix the gear. I have also soloed it and it is far easier that way. Try leading it and you will find out why its E4.
Chris Flewitt - 16/Dec/04

I'm sure leading it would be harder. Good route 6b+ sport grade. Not sure if its worth the hype, but good nonetheless.
Sam Ring - 02/Jun/06

An excellent route, but admittedly i didn't have the minerals to get over onto the top slab - gutted! instead, a controlled fall saw me flying into the drink, much to the joy the cheering crowd of spectators! will be back next week for another pop at it though. 3 star fun!
SC - 24/Jul/06

If this line was a sport's route it would get 6b+ especially in Yorkshire. Or maybe HVS I don't know ;-), but what people need to take into account with DWS is the head factor, which for most people places the grade a bit higher. So if its 6b+ sport I think with the added grip factor it goes at 6c.
Daimon Beail - 22/Sep/07

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