Jan 20, 2006, 6:48 PM
Post #1 of 1
Registered: Mar 21, 2005
To answer some questions: The crag is in San Luis Obispo, CA (central coast) and is on state owned land that is leased to the National Guard and federally funded for that purpose. What a friend said about precedent being set is right on the mark. Once we lose one, other land managers realize that they too can get the public off their land and it just keeps going. They aren't making more rocks. We lost Hollister 10 years ago. Now Romualdo...
The meeting: Both sides presented powerpoints. The National Guard presented their issues (liability and environmental). I wouldn't call them reasons to kick us off the base, but they have issues that need to be addressed. We (climbers) were being lumped in with all the yahoos who are tresspassing and doing damage on the peak (not a lot of damage, but any is too much). So the idea is now that we need to form a local user group (all other users of the peak are groups... boy scouts, sierra club, etc.) like SLO Climbers or something. However, those other groups carry insurance and we obviously can't afford it. (any ideas?) The access fund has passed on their liablity info but the NG is still hesitant. By being a group we can be properly introduced to the proper procedures. Their protocol for group use is iron clad (?). The individual users make them nervous (No insurance, possibly not aware of proper procedures, etc.). The problem is that the trespassing will probably continue, and the damage (it was from Mt. Bikers I hate to say) will probably continue. But at least they will not blame us for it.
There are also stricter environmental rules so if the NG wants to give us permission, then they have to conduct a bunch of studies. Yes there are plants and animals out there, but we certainly can work around that. Climbers have already worked around condors and falcons. I don't think that will be a future reason to keep us off.
If they Access Fund can convince the NG to not require us to have insurance, then we'll probably be able to climb out there (once a month due to all the training that goes on out there) but 12 times a year is better than no times a year.
Thank you everyone who emailed. The colonel actually commented on the many emails she'd received lately. Excellent.
If you have a crag nearby, cherish it. And DON'T EVER TAKE IT FOR GRANTED. Stick together and we'll be the better for it.
We'll know more in about two months (sigh). Thanks again!