Updated: 6 days ago
Weaselling. We do it a lot here at The Adventure Service, but what on earth is it?
Really, that’s a tough question to answer. There is not real set definition for weaselling, as it encompasses many different outdoor activities.
Weaselling tends to involve some scrambling, rock climbing and lots of squeezing through tight holes – like caving. It is sometimes compared to caving with the lights on!
It isn’t one of the more popular outdoor sports, but that may be due to lack of access to good weaselling spots.
Fortunately for us, there are some great weaselling spots scattered across the Peak District, which we use frequently.
There seems to be some suggestions that the sport originated when old villagers would head out into the hills to hunt for weasels. This might be where it gets its name from.
There may be some truth in that, but it may simply be that someone decided to give it a go and enjoyed it, so let their friends know, to which it then snowballed from there.
Unlike other outdoor sports, it doesn’t seem to have a definitive history either. There seems to be no iconic moments for weaselling, such as Haskett-Smith’s ascent of Napes Needle for the world of rock climbing. However, we think this make the sport even more interesting and exciting.
Why We Love to Go Weaselling
As we’ve said before, we go weaselling a lot here at The Adventure Service and it tends to be a favourite amongst the Adventurers.
It’s normally a part of one of our short breaks and next year a group will be heading out in July, to take in some of the best weaselling spots in and around Hathersage. 2024 short breaks are now live, and you can book your places here.
We love it because of the challenge, teamwork that’s required and the different levels in which we can stretch our Adventurers, to help them grow and achieve their potential.
Weaselling is an excellent choice for our Adventurers because it introduces them to an activity that might be entirely new to them. While many are familiar with popular outdoor activities like rock climbing, paddle sports and archery, weaselling often remains under the radar, making it an exciting and novel experience.
What makes weaselling even more appealing is that it's a year-round activity. Whether it's under the warm sun of summer, the crisp air of autumn, or the snow-covered landscape of winter, weaselling offers an ever-present opportunity for exploration and excitement.
Where Do We Go?
The Peak District is a one of the best locations for weaselling in the country, offering a rugged and picturesque landscape with natural rock formations. So, we are lucky to have easy access to it, from all our 3 centres.
Though we love them all, we do have some favoured spots. These are:
1. Higgar Tor: Higgar Tor is a gritstone tor that's both accessible and filled with opportunities for weaselling. The rock features are fascinating, and it's a great place for those new to the activity.
2. Stanage Edge: Stanage Edge is a popular spot for weaselling in the Peak District. It's known for its long gritstone escarpment, providing an exciting environment with plenty of nooks, crannies, and rocks to explore. The views from the edge are breathtaking, making it a memorable weaselling experience.
3. Burbage Rocks: The rocks and boulders of Burbage Rocks provide an excellent playground for weaselling. It's an area that offers a mix of challenges, from wide crevices to narrow gaps, making it suitable for various skill levels.
Safety, Safety, Safety
As with all our activities, safety is of the upmost importance. Here’s how you can make sure you stay safe while exploring:
1. Wear a Helmet: Squeezing through rocks can be fun, but you need to make sure you are protecting your head when you move through tight spaces.
2. Find a Certified Guide: It's essential to ensure your safety during a weaselling adventure. Look for a certified guide or instructor with experience in navigating the terrain.
3. Equip Yourself: Dress appropriately for the outdoors, wear sturdy footwear, and bring essentials like water, snacks, and sun protection.
4. Respect the Environment: Leave no trace. Practice responsible outdoor ethics by respecting the natural surroundings and wildlife.
Go Get Out There
Weaselling is one of our favourite activities here at The Adventure Service and we love taking groups out into the hills, to challenge them and help them achieve their potential.
If you’re heading out, make sure your safe, by following the steps above. And if you see us out there, make sure you come and say hello!