30 New Sport Routes Under 7a to be Bolted on Gower

© Mark Glaister

Adrian Berry has set up an initiative to raise £1000 and bolt thirty new routes on the idyllic Rhossili Bay on Gower in South Wales.

There are already a few hard routes here (including Adrian's own 8b Air Show), but the crag has the potential to provide many more quality routes at 7a or under. This is a superb venue, a beautiful beach (one of the finest in the world according to Adrian!), with easy access for families, and hopefully a set of routes to match in the near future.

Jen Stephens climbing at Shipwreck Cove.  © Mark Glaister
Jen Stephens climbing at Shipwreck Cove.
© Mark Glaister

Adrian explained a bit more about the crag on his blog:

"Shipwreck Cove has come a long way from September last year when I abseiled down the face on a cold foggy day to find it soaking wet a littered with loose blocks! It has matured quickly and now there are a number of really good routes. I have been surprised by how friendly and open the atmosphere is there. Climbers down the beach with the families who have brought their harnesses and shoes on the off-chance that they can grab a belay have not been disappointed.

Walking back along with beach with Simon, I mentioned how much better a venue it would be if there were more lower-grade routes. There is plenty of rock, but bolting is a time-consuming, and expensive business and naturally we want to bolt the routes that we want to climb. I suggested that there could be a way of raising money to fund the bolting of low to mid-grade routes and the idea was born to raise £1,000 to bolt 30 routes in 12 months. I have now set up a bank account, and a Paypal account, and if you want to read more about The Rhossili Bay Project just follow that link."

To get the ball rolling, Rockfax donated the initial £100, and now after just a couple of days Adrian has raised £660. The Climbing Academy in Bristol have also now donated £100 to go towards the after bolting party, which is part of Adrian's plan.

Hit this button to donate some cash: is supporting the project with advertising and coverage on the site, and we think this is an excellent way of harnessing the good will of the UK climbing public to create a fantastic resource for South Wales.

Adrian states on his website:

  • Development will be strictly in accordance with local ethics.
  • Route information will be freely available to all.

And he has added these:


Q: There is already a South Wales Bolt Fund, why not just use that rather than establishing a new fund?
A: The South Wales bolt fund was established solely to fund the re-bolting of existing routes and funds raised are for that purpose only.

Q: I'd like to get involved with the bolting - can I?
A: Absolutely. I will put you in contact with one of the local guys and you can take it from there, if you're suitably experiences you can take some bolts and go to work, if you haven't done any or much bolting before, then you can assist.

You can read more information about the project on Adrian's website: The Rhossili Bay Project

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26 Jul, 2013
Given the ogmore thread this could get messy
26 Jul, 2013
hum... Bolting a sea crag doesn't look like a great idea to me, how many years are the bolts going to last? Don't go like Europe, stop bolting, it's not sustainable, and it's worst in the coast.
26 Jul, 2013
So, the inevitable question - what are the local ethics on bolting? Is this a place that could be developed for trad, or are trad protection options/ belays at the top very limited? Good point raised earlier about corrosion, I remember reading a document about bolting on Kalymnos where stainless steel bolts were rotting out due to a peculiar combination of rock, steel and sea chemistry. The solution was very a specific and expensive combination of titanium and resin, as I recall. Not wanting to sound too negatrive about what could be a great venue, just asking the obvious questions which hopefully have already been asked and answered at a local level.
26 Jul, 2013
Long enough, if the tens of thousands of bolts at portland and kalymnos are anything to go by.
26 Jul, 2013
Is it? Some of our best sport crags are by the sea, I'm sure that has crossed Adrian Berry's mind. And the issue you raised about bolts in Kalymnos (Thailand I think you mean) is about rock, not sea air.
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