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adamgardner


Mar 4, 2011, 8:13 AM
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NPS Climbing Regulations
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I am curious on when Climbing became legal in National Parks?

I know there are alot of access issues all across the country in and out of NP's...so was it always legal in NPS lands? or did a guy/girl or a group get the NPS to let us climb?

Are there any documents anywhere, or was their a congressman that have helped fight the good fight?

I am interested in the fight for legal access, and I would love to get my hands on any documents that could help fuel the fire for more walls.

thanks in advance,
adam


vegastradguy


Mar 4, 2011, 4:03 PM
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Re: [adamgardner] NPS Climbing Regulations [In reply to]
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hmmm, not sure it was ever illegal per se, although there has been plenty of controversy and trouble between climbers and the NPS on how climbing impacts the parks.

i do know that the NPS just released its latest wilderness plans that said that climbing is an acceptable use of wilderness, which is kind of a big deal since I believe its the first time this has been put down in writing in NPS policy.


moose_droppings


Mar 4, 2011, 4:24 PM
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adamgardner wrote:
I am curious on when Climbing became legal in National Parks?

I know there are alot of access issues all across the country in and out of NP's...so was it always legal in NPS lands? or did a guy/girl or a group get the NPS to let us climb?

Are there any documents anywhere, or was their a congressman that have helped fight the good fight?

I am interested in the fight for legal access, and I would love to get my hands on any documents that could help fuel the fire for more walls.

thanks in advance,
adam


Don't know that the underlined words would be my choice for championing more climbing areas.

I can't remember a time when it wasn't legal to climb in a National Park and I'm ancient.


marc801


Mar 4, 2011, 4:43 PM
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adamgardner wrote:
I...and I would love to get my hands on any documents that could help fuel the fire for more walls.
WTF does that mean?


phang_nga


Mar 4, 2011, 4:59 PM
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If you were a rich oil baron wanting to drill in a national park, you'd probably have an easy road ahead of you. Mad

Seriously, good luck with your battle.


tetons


Mar 4, 2011, 5:12 PM
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In many cases, climbing predates the creation of the specific park. Therefore, the NPS accepted it as a viable visitor use of public lands. It's become a little more complicated at this point, hasn't it?


socalclimber


Mar 4, 2011, 6:47 PM
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Re: [vegastradguy] NPS Climbing Regulations [In reply to]
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vegastradguy wrote:
hmmm, not sure it was ever illegal per se, although there has been plenty of controversy and trouble between climbers and the NPS on how climbing impacts the parks.

i do know that the NPS just released its latest wilderness plans that said that climbing is an acceptable use of wilderness, which is kind of a big deal since I believe its the first time this has been put down in writing in NPS policy.

That's been my understanding as well.

If you want to deal with the "legal" issues regarding climbing, contact the Access Fund. Please find another fire for your "fuel".


skiclimb


Mar 4, 2011, 6:50 PM
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My understanding is that in Denali and Yosemite at least climbing is considered a historical use. Climbing in both these parks pre-dated the parks themselves.


KeitaroHoshi


Mar 5, 2011, 2:54 AM
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VERTICAL FRONTIER
A History of the Art, Sport and Philosophy of
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(This post was edited by KeitaroHoshi on Mar 5, 2011, 3:07 AM)


Partner camhead


Mar 5, 2011, 7:22 AM
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Like everyone has said, legal climbing was the default in national parks at the time of their creation. This is not surprising in the early days of the NPS era (before WWII), when climbing was largely more of a Muir-styled extension of hiking then anything else, and the numbers of climbers really were not enough to cause concern for overuse of resources or anything like that.

The major factor in restricting access to climbing in National Parks (as well as BLM lands and National Forest) was the Wilderness Act of 1964. Its language did not prohibit climbing per se, but hindered the use of permanent anchors (which in many cases, such as with desert towers, basically made new route development impossible), and, with the advent of sport climbing, power drills.

I don't know a lot more on this. The NPS has just released a new policy on the use of permanent anchors in its wilderness areas, and may wind up really hindering new route development.


billl7


Mar 5, 2011, 8:06 AM
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I think it is important to keep in mind two effects of bolts in the wilderness.

One is more obvious and is the potential for intensely bolted wilderness routes leading to a gym-like environment - increasing the sheer numbers and frequency of folks in the wilderness. The other concerns climber trails.

Most of us who climb in wilderness settings realize that the majority of climbs in those areas do not begin and end on an official trail. What better way to generate more unofficial trails than to have new bolt-enabled popular climbs increasing foot traffic and so trails that converge on the beginnings of these routes.

Consider supporting local climber groups collectively volunteering time to work with the park / forest services as joint advocates of preserving our wilderness areas.

Bill L


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