Crass Crag is a cliff on Bensaro, overlooking the Blue Ocean.
Crass Crag stands 1,408 meters high from the low tide mark to the summit. It faces southeast, away from the mainland, where it receives the brunt of the bitter storms that tend to hit the island between Wind Month and Sea Month most years. The face of the cliff is fairly sheer, providing a very challenging climb for rock climbing enthusiasts. (See below.) The top of the cliff is the highest point on Bensaro, with the rest of the land sloping down from this point.
While the cliffs extend for roughly 7 klicks along the southeast coast of Bensaro, before petering off into beaches on each end, the section that is officially known as Crass Crag is exactly 148 meters long, with a sign post marking each end, at the top and bottom. The signs at the bottom, however, are only visible at low tide. Cables run from the sign at the top to the sign at the bottom, at each end of the cliff, marking the limits of the cliff.
This section of the southeast cliffs obtained its name at the height of the struggle resulting in the creation of the Four Factions. Captain Craig "Crass" Cragganmore, (who was also known as Crass Craig, due to his inveterate pottymouth) led 148 men and women, gathered from nearby villages and rudely armed with farm implements, who attacked several homes of wealthy land owners and fishmongers, along the top of the southeast cliffs. They ransacked and burned a number of these homes. In the excess of their fervor, a handful of these makeshift soldiers, who were very drunk, threw two of the home owners from the cliff, into the sea below - none other than Griffin Herbert Turveygold and his wife Alicia Judith Turveygold.
When Cragganmore realized what was being done in his name, he called for a stop to the attack, running from skirmish to skirmish and throwing himself in front of the attackers to get them to stop what they were doing, in several instances receiving serious wounds for his troubles. When he was finally able to stop them, the mob was struck by the full import of their crimes, and the identity of those cast into the sea. They all pledged full restitution for what they had done, coming back to the cliff each day until the homes had been restored.
At the end of this period, the 148 combatants marked off one meter each on the top of the cliff, and named it Crass Crag in honor of their leader.
Cragganmore, for his part, never forgive himself, and eventually died by throwing himself from the center of the cliff in 1374.
Sporting (Climbing) Events
As far back as anyone can remember, Crass Crag has been a popular climbing spot. Both its notoriety and the difficulty of the climb unite to make scaling Crass Crag a significant coup for rock climbers.
While, officially, it is illegal to climb Crass Crag, many people travel to Bensaro each year to climb it, and the local officials turn a blind eye due to the tourist revenue that this draws. Although only 100 visitors are permitted to Bensaro each year, "in order to protect its beauty", it is estimated that 75 to 90 of these, in any given year, come to climb the Crag, or, at least, to have staged photos of them appearing to climb it.
The one exception to the official prohibition on climbing the cliff comes during the annual Einwimz Games, when the climbing event, mostly held on the mainland, has the finals at Crass Crag. The competitors in this event (usually 12 or fewer finalists who have made it through the earlier rounds) and their crews, camera people, and so on, anchor slightly off shore. The competitors swim to the cliff, climb up, climb down, and swim back to their boats. Thus, they are not counted in the 100 allowed visitors. This allows Bensaro to benefit from this hugely popular event without sacrificing any of their tourism quota.
In 1504, tragedy struck the climbing event when a storm swept in unexpectedly midway through the climb, and two of the climbers were blown off of the cliff, and died from their injuries when they struck the rocks below.
In Popular Culture
The Ballroom of Mirrors is said to have been in a mansion near Crass Crag. While there are several prominent homes in the vicinity of the top of the cliff, the Ballroom has never been found in any of them. It is speculated by some scholars that the home containing the Ballroom may in fact have been one of those burned during the Crass Crag attack.