Keel Buttress

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Keel Buttress
Rock Type Natural Carboniferous Limestone
Climbing Style Trad
Approach Time
Area Gower
Sub Area Rhossili
Local Area Rhossili Sea Level Crags
WGS-84 Location 51.566325, -4.302128
OS Grid Ref. SS 405 877
WGS-84 Parking Location 51.569301, -4.28840
GR Parking Location SS 415 880
Parking Postcode SA3 1PP
Base Elevation 0 metres (Other)
General Info
Faces Direction North
Aspect Rarely Sunny
Wind Sheltered Seldomly
Climbing Type Normal
Before/After Low Tide 0.5 hours (See Note)
Crags Within 400m

Black Buttress, Calcite Bay, Carbon Slab, Evening Wall, Fat Lady Wall, Keel Buttress, Kitchen Corner, Lifebuoy Buttress, Mermaid Wall, Platform Area, Poser Buttress, Retribution Wall, Seamen Wall, Sheepbone Wall, Silent Fright Buttress, Silent Walls, Sinister Sister Zawn, Sinners Walls, Trial Wall, Wedge Wall, Windy Buttress


This is the sea-level buttress directly beneath The Axe which is easily identified by a sharp, keellike arête with a smooth yellow face above a platform to its left.
"(I think this corresponds to ‘the wall with the calcite patch’ with two lines by Phil Thomas - though I couldn’t make sense ofthose descriptions. The first route will have been climbed before since it’s so obvious.)" [1]



  1. ? 9 metres HVS 5b
    Swing right from the platform and enter the obvious deep crack. Follow the crack around left onto the left side of the ‘keel’ and exit steeply. (Not a deep-water solo!)

    The next two routes, on the wall right of the keel, were established as deep-water solos on a neap tide, though high spring tides really are needed to be safe. Gain their starts by soloing down a black slab to their right (about Severe).

  2. Boy’s Wishing 10 metres E4 6a
    (4.9.2003)Move up into an overhung alcove (4 metres right of the right-hand edge of the platform). Use strenuous finger-jams in the crack slightly left above an overhang to reach a break. Swing left, and then make a long reach to an easy flake crack right of the keel, which leads to the top.

  3. Necktar 9 metres E4, 6b
    Unusual for a solo and a Gower route; this takes the smooth black corner right of the keel. Pullover a bulge on jugs and then traverse left along a break to a bridged position at the base of thecorner. Balancy, technical moves up the corner will gain better holds eventually or the watery landing beneath. Fortunately it looks very protectable to lead (same grade?).

First Ascents

  1. ? - Martin Crocker 4th September 2003 (Onsight solo).
  2. Boy's Wishing - Martin Crocker 4th September 2003 (deep-water solo after top-roping crux).
  3. Necktar - Martin Crocker 4th September 2003 (deep-water solo after top-roping crux).



  1. John Harwood in an email to Tim Hoddy