Adventure Projects is hiring an Android engineer to join us in Boulder, CO
Mountain Project Logo

Access Threatened!

Original Post
Clifton Santiago · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Apr 2010 · Points: 0

So access to my local crag has been threatened. It's not a particularly spectacular climbing spot, but it is close to home and there is a crack at the southern end that I just can't get enough of, and two medium size peaks to the north.

I met with the land manager the other day, and her complaint was that I have been making quick after work or early morning runs to my favorite crack, and wearing a bit of a trail. She insisted I spend more time at the north end of the formation and not only come in and out at the south, or access to my favorite crack would be denied.

I could do this, spend more time around the peaks, but they're unremarkable and not all that big. They don't do much for me, and aren't even really good for conditioning. I really just like to hit that crack. Should I be a good steward of the land and go through the motions of fulfilling her request even though it does nothing for me other than ensure future access to the crack line? There are plenty of other cracks out there, for sure, maybe I'm wasting my time fixating on this particular one?. Or should I just continue to hit the crack whenever I want and risk losing all access, not just for me, but for future climbers? The land manager has also stated that if I don't comply to her wishes, she will have trouble trusting other climbers in the future.

What would you do?

Tom-onator · · trollfreesociety · Joined Feb 2010 · Points: 790

Tweek those peaks every chance you get or risk losing your cherished splitter

Glenn Schuler · · Monument, Co. · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 1,320

To give you solid advice, we need to see a picture of this....."land manager"

Scott M. McNamara · · Tucson, Arizona · Joined Aug 2006 · Points: 55
Dave Bn · · Fort Collins, CO · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 10

Perhaps you should wear in some trail at another crack with bigger peaks, she may change her mind, you may grow to like the other crack.

Who nose?

Sendstown · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 0

sampling other crack in the area is a good idea, as long as you can find it fast. You don't want to wait too long in between hits of those cracks. Unless of course the crack you have now is more potent and cheaper than all the other cracks. Maybe you should just switch to sport climbing.

highaltitudeflatulentexpulsion · · Colorado · Joined Oct 2012 · Points: 35

It's possible that you've been on that crack enough that you feel comfortable trying it without protection.

While I certainly enjoy that freedom on occasion, you need to be aware of the consequences.

aSteel · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 240

Landowner's wishes win, every time. It's important to respect their wishes, and through conversation come to an agreement they are comfortable with that you and the climbing community will uphold. Sometimes that means taking the longer way around. Sometimes that means losing access, which makes the longer way around look much more attractive. The Access Fund has great resources for this if you wish, to expand on Scott McNamara's link:…

I've found that making suggestions can be okay, if they're well presented, but that ultimately landowners are the most generous when they feel we are fighting to support their concerns. Good luck.

Greg Halliday · · Spanish Fork, UT · Joined Jun 2011 · Points: 5

Man, you guys are good.

Dan 60D5H411 · · Colorado Springs, CO · Joined Mar 2006 · Points: 2,077

Sometimes mountains aren't for everyone. In this day and age, it's OK to admit that you prefer bulbous desert towers. No one's going to judge you for that. And I hear there's some dude stranded out in that area, looking to make a few bucks any way possible...

Toni Stey · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Mar 2013 · Points: 40

Have you considered inviting other climbers to enjoy your crag? If one party was working the northern areas while you were hitting the crack line, that would even out the wear, would it not?

Also allows you some valuable simulclimbing practice, which is always a useful skill if you're looking to move fast on easy terrain.

Keithb00ne Boone · · Las Vegas, NV · Joined Jul 2013 · Points: 45

This thread would be a lot more useful with pictures.

DrApnea · · Wenatchee, WA · Joined May 2011 · Points: 250

If you are going to go do it, try bringing a bunch of friends to run quick laps in the crack (maybe even simul it) but save enough energy to finish on the face. Then send a few people over to enjoy the mountains. The owner will appreciate the diversity, not focusing wear on one site, and may even like face action better than the crack. At least this way everywhere gets abused the same, albeit by a train of people when it does go. Just make sure to protect it properly so no one gets hurt and clean up before you leave.

Austin Baird · · SLC, Utah · Joined Apr 2009 · Points: 95

If you follow any of the advice in this thread - I'm pretty sure you'll be finding yourself having to solo it.

Phil Lauffen · · The Bubble · Joined Jun 2008 · Points: 2,370

It is too hard to judge without any pictures. Upload a couple and use the topo tool on this site to show us your favorite lines, including the peaks and crack of course.

You can trust the MP community to judge whether its worth all of this communication with the manager.

Monty · · Golden, CO · Joined Mar 2006 · Points: 3,178

Just sneak in while the landowner is sleeping...

Hank Caylor · · Glenwood Springs, CO · Joined Dec 2003 · Points: 615
Dan G0D5H411 wrote:In this day and age, it's OK to admit that you prefer bulbous desert towers. No one's going to judge you for that.
Oh I can't wait to judge someone for admitting that!
Jcastleberry · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 60

I would follow her wishes. If access is denied you will be stuck at home conditioning on your woody.

Aturboford · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2013 · Points: 40

Not to be harsh but it seems like an obvious choice to listen to the land manager. She is threatening to restrict access based on your actions and you have to ask whether you should listen to her?

D B · · Denver · Joined Apr 2011 · Points: 205

go barefoot and leave no trace

Matt Roberts · · Columbus, OH · Joined Mar 2010 · Points: 85

My wife and I discussed this over breakfast this morning, and she had some suggestions you might consider:

1) have you thought about teaching the land manager to climb? She could maybe climb at the north end while you project the south.

2) while the ethics are debatable, if you are willing to make a long term commitment to working at the crag and maintaining access, you might look into enhancing the lines at the north end to make them more interesting.

Good luck.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Post a Reply to "Access Threatened!"
in the Colorado

Log In to Reply