Approach, Access & Layout


Masson Lees mapThis is relatively straightforward although a tad awkward because of the narrow roads. When travelling down the A6 from Bakewell, turn right at the new roundabout in Matlock and turn right again at the first traffic lights, just before Sainsbury’s. Turn immediately right before the petrol station and up the new road, Matlock Spa Road. Take the first left, Snitterton Road, and go down the hill taking the first right, Salter’s Lane, which is difficult to see. Follow this lane around a sharp right-hand bend for approximately 1 mile. When the road widens park on the right opposite the entrance to the third dirt track on the left, a very broad entrance (53.131472, -1.580614O). DO NOT PARK AT THE HEAD OF THE TRACK BUT ON SALTERS LANE.

The quarry is 10 minutes or 800 metres from the road. Walk up the track and go over a stile on the left side of a gate. Follow the track up the hillside, branching off to the left and keeping left of a set of low level trees. Continue slightly downhill to a gate with a BMC sign in the far left-hand corner of a field. Hop over this and after a short way the quarry will be seen over to the right. Follow the track into the quarry. The White Walls are soon visible on the right.

Masson Lees sign

Quarry Layout

The quarry is striking in profile with a long leaning wall on its right-hand side extending almost to the cave at the far end of the quarry. This wall is divided into three sections by a prominent arĂȘte at the end of a white clacite wall and a slim corner line in the centre of the black face in the distance.

The left-hand side of the quarry is more broken but consists of a good section of rock. The first part` gives slabby climbing with a prominent break at two-thirds height. The second part, clearly red in colour and laced with galena and calcite, lies a little further on.

All the walls here are listed from left to right or clockwise as you would view them from the entrance to the quarry.

Masson Lees Quarry layout


This crag is situated on the hillside high above Matlock. Its secluded nature and isolation gives a tranquil calm not associated with many of the quarries in the area.

The 3 back walls have a variety of good quality routes in the high 6 and low 7 grades. The climbing is less technical than typical Peak limestone and the continuity of Overhanging Wall gives a euro flavour to the routes. The South facing Red Wall and Wake Up Wall, although less impressive, provide a number of easier routes that are very popular.


The main walls face north east and so provide a welcome respite from any summer heat. They can take until May to dry out. The easier climbing on the Red Walls face the opposite direction, south west, so get plenty of sun.