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Partner drector


Jul 10, 2003, 4:27 PM
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Cave Rock Closing
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I just got an email from John Maher about Cave Rock, LT, NV closing to climbing. He sent emails to everyone that sent him an email on the subject and he included the documents describing all of the information relating to the closure. Very complete info but a real pisser that it's closing.

I wonder if anyone is going to get a lawyer to try to stop it? Are lawyers still evil if they are trying to keep a climbing area open?

I guess I'll have to go climb there soon before I never get another chance.

Dave


aimeerose


Jul 10, 2003, 9:32 PM
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I just have to say that it is such bull that they're closing it. I wrote a letter to the Forest Service, but I guess it didn't help. It's such bull that they indians say it's sacred so we can't climb there, but it's okay to blast a 2 lane freeway through it. Guess if you give em enough $$$ you can do whatever you want, and we all know climbers are broke, so we can't pay them off. Otherwise I'm sure we could climb there.


chitlinsconcarne


Jul 11, 2003, 12:22 AM
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What year did the road go through and did the indians give them permission to do it?


aimeerose


Jul 11, 2003, 9:18 AM
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Don't know what year it was, and they didn't just give permission, they got paid A LOT of money for it!


killclimbz


Jul 11, 2003, 9:37 AM
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This one really peeves me off. Cave Rock is hardly a spiritual place with the highway blasted right through the freak'in rock. My only real problem with this is that just (I've said it before) every signal Rock, Mountain, place of interest in the US is a "holy" place for the Indians. Fine, no problem with that, it also happens to be a place of religion for us. The Voluntary Devils Tower program is a fine example of how user groups can get along. I guarantee that they would go for the whole Lake if they felt they could get it.


chitlinsconcarne


Jul 11, 2003, 4:28 PM
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Don't know what year it was, and they didn't just give permission, they got paid A LOT of money for it!

Is it possible that their definition of the "despiritualization" of a sacred area would allow for a road to pass through a formation, but view differently the act of climbing upon it?

On another note, has there ever been a time within the climbing community that the consensus opinion for an area has been.."well, that was just a bad idea, lets clean up our mess and get out of here"..? Or has every area we've ever developed always been the best thing to do? Does our desire to participate in this sport that we love automatically trump other peoples wishes? The "look, somebody already built a road there, so I get to do what I want here" rationalization seems..well, desperate.

I don't have the answers. I have climbed there and I loved it . But maybe , just maybe, in this case of a prominent spiritual landmark for a local tribe- and regardless of how much they or other folks had already messed the area up-establishment of a sport climbing area at Cave Rock was just a bad idea in the first place.

If that ends up being the answer and climbing is permanently banned, then I think that it would serve best to have the Access Fund provide the de-bolting and repair of the rock. Our mess..if its officially deemed that..we should clean it up, no?


roughster


Jul 11, 2003, 4:55 PM
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I agree! If it gets closed, lets return it too it's pre-climber state:

- Piles of trash everywhere
- Old tires
- Human Crap (as in feces)
- No nice flagstone paths (going to have to pull them all up)
- Weeds and thistles. (we'll have to retransplant some of these back into the area)
- Loosely glue on a ton of rubble and death blocks climbers knocked off. Mind you, they need to be precariously perched and ready to fall at any time.

I mean, we climbers are ruining their "spritual" experience! Lets give it back to them. Oh, and everytime a climber is in the Tahoe area, feel free to "drop a load" on by.


chitlinsconcarne


Jul 12, 2003, 11:06 AM
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In reply to:
I agree! If it gets closed, lets return it too it's pre-climber state:

- Piles of trash everywhere
- Old tires
- Human Crap (as in feces)
- No nice flagstone paths (going to have to pull them all up)
- Weeds and thistles. (we'll have to retransplant some of these back into the area)
- Loosely glue on a ton of rubble and death blocks climbers knocked off. Mind you, they need to be precariously perched and ready to fall at any time.

I mean, we climbers are ruining their "spritual" experience! Lets give it back to them. Oh, and everytime a climber is in the Tahoe area, feel free to "drop a load" on by.

I don't fell that any of that will be necessary. Given time, the area will most likely revert to that state without our help.

The same tired arguements. People endlessly try to superimpose their own version of what constitutes the spiritual "defilement " of a sacred area over that of the people that hold the site sacred. I've seen the same attitude in many places, from the arctic to South America. We dig up the dead of a tribe for anthropological study, yet would be outraged if someone dug up our own revered dead to measure their bones..just the same, we look at a sacred site and decide that, since there is garbage there, it will be o.k. to clean the old stuff out and replace it with our own..hell, it can't actually be sacred can it? Just look at those beer bottles! Its hard to step away and consider that trash on the ground might not equal steel in the stone, or that a highway through the stone might not be the same as climbers on the rock itself. Hard to consider when we wear our special set of cultural blinders anyway.

Laws aren't necessarily the answer. Respect for other human beings might just be. If a group asks us not to climb at an area of spiritual importance to them, then each climber has to ask themselves if they will honor that request or not. But, whatever you do, at least throw the old, tired rationalizations away. If we choose to climb there, then lets admit to ourselves that its because our own personal desire for recreation outweighs our respect for those peoples spiritual beliefs.

Make as many excuses for our actions as we will, there is no other reason. That reason is no longer good enough for me..I will not support continued access to Cave Rock, or violate that area again myself.


roughster


Jul 12, 2003, 9:42 PM
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The same tired arguements.

The same old tired response.

In reply to:
People endlessly try to superimpose their own version of what constitutes the spiritual "defilement " of a sacred area over that of the people that hold the site sacred.

You said it perfectly right there. In todays society my rights for "spiritual" enlightenment is as strong as theres. Climbing is my means. Why should their outweigh mine? Isn't that in essence what they are saying by trying to get it shut down?

In reply to:
I've seen the same attitude in many places, from the arctic to South America. We dig up the dead of a tribe for anthropological study, yet would be outraged if someone dug up our own revered dead to measure their bones..

I seriously think we should dig up our dead, incinerate them and give their ashes back to their relatives. Cemeteries are a HUGE waste of real estate. I have no problems with it at all.

In reply to:
just the same, we look at a sacred site and decide that, since there is garbage there, it will be o.k. to clean the old stuff out and replace it with our own..

Great comparison there! Chalk marks and draws versus everything listed above. Yes they are of the same "spiritual impact" aren't they? Weak argument and you know it. If the Washawannamakesumoney Tribe thought Cave Rock was so sacred, that place would have never reached the state it did. Tell me, go to your local church, do you see used tires, trash, human shit everywhere? If I went to mine and saw Indians buildering on my church I would ask them what the name of the problem was and how hard it is. :lol:

In reply to:
hell, it can't actually be sacred can it? Just look at those beer bottles! Its hard to step away and consider that trash on the ground might not equal steel in the stone, or that a highway through the stone might not be the same as climbers on the rock itself. Hard to consider when we wear our special set of cultural blinders anyway.

What you call "cultural blinders", I call reality. I'm all for respecting religious beliefs, but the bottom line is we can co-exist as cave Rock has proven every since climbing was first developed there. Now the Indians have a problem (after all the climbers hard work). If they want special "Lets Make Love to the Rock" time then we can come to a agreement acceptable to both groups. If not, then it is greed on their part for not wanting to share it. Should we put up signs out front of all non-indian churches that say, "No REDMAN allowed. This is our spiritual rock"??

In reply to:
Laws aren't necessarily the answer. Respect for other human beings might just be. If a group asks us not to climb at an area of spiritual importance to them, then each climber has to ask themselves if they will honor that request or not. But, whatever you do, at least throw the old, tired rationalizations away. If we choose to climb there, then lets admit to ourselves that its because our own personal desire for recreation outweighs our respect for those peoples spiritual beliefs.

You could also say, "Each Indian has to ask themselves if they will honor the climbers request to climb at Cave Rock. But, whatever you do, at least throw the old, tired rationalizations away. If they choose to worship there, then lets admit to themselves that its because their own personal desire for spiritual beliefs outweighs our respect for those peoples recreational opportunities."

In reply to:
Make as many excuses for our actions as we will, there is no other reason. That reason is no longer good enough for me..I will not support continued access to Cave Rock, or violate that area again myself.

Sounds like you know YOUR answer to the above self-imposed question. Now maybe you should "respect" the rest of our wishes and accept that its not some evil demonic white man plot to hold the indians down. Seperation of church and state is the law of the land. If Cave Rock gets closed, there will be a lawsuit and it will be reopened just like Devil's Tower was.

One group's religious beliefs do not take precendent over anothers. Bleeding hearts may have a hard time swallowing it, but thats just the way it goes :)


rockvoyager


Jul 12, 2003, 11:43 PM
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Me and my buds used to go to Lovers Leap in the sixties and smoke pot, drink beer and do a little acid. It was all incredibly spiritual. I am now claiming the Leap as the official spiritual center of our hippie movement and all you chalky fingered climbing bums need to keep your butts off our rock. We will however allow you to climb if you pay us for parking, camping and you buy a few hippie trinkets from our booth at the gate.

Freedom of religion also means freedom from religion. The framers of the constitution knew the dangers of organized religion (which is historically well documented) and separated church and state. This was a very, very smart thing to do.

Public lands are for every person, not for select groups. My use of public land is as valid as anyone elses, but apparently not at cave rock.

With this door open what will happen to Devils Tower??

Respect is a two sided coin, don't expect it if you aren't willing to give it.

Brad


chitlinsconcarne


Jul 13, 2003, 7:34 AM
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Thank you roughster for your response.

As I read through it, your words serve as a perfect example of exactly the type of thinking that changed my own opinion from supporting access to the Cave Rock site to one of opposition.

My own words couldn't have illuminated the situation any better.

Enjoy your day.


dingus


Jul 13, 2003, 9:48 AM
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One group's religious beliefs do not take precendent over anothers. Bleeding hearts may have a hard time swallowing it, but thats just the way it goes :)

Problem is, climbing isn't a religion. Yet.

However, I am thinking of forming a church, Milktoast Nation and installing myself as the spirtual and financial leader, the Reverend Dingus.

Our founding belief will be in God's wish that we climb unfettered of government interference and environmental extremism. EQUAL ACCESS FOR ALL!

Our religion will be practiced at cliffs, instantly rendering every crag in the country a site of spiritual significance, a church.

Hey, I think I'm on to something here. Non tax status. Long flowing robes. A HALO!

Sorry, but quick draw theft is grounds for excommunication. I have a panel of religious scholars looking into the whole bolt chopping thing. We have to be careful we don't repeat Salem you know.

DMT


roughster


Jul 13, 2003, 6:49 PM
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In reply to:
Thank you roughster for your response.

As I read through it, your words serve as a perfect example of exactly the type of thinking that changed my own opinion from supporting access to the Cave Rock site to one of opposition.

My own words couldn't have illuminated the situation any better.

Enjoy your day.

No problem! Look me up anytime your in need of a verbal lashing :lol:


gthornberg


Jul 13, 2003, 8:18 PM
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I don't think "Separation of the Church from State" is the right wording for this argument. The phrase "Separation of the Church from State" doesn't exist in the constitution or declaration of independence. The actual amendment reads,

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press..." (Emphasis mine)

The point is that the government must not show preference towards a religion or impose upon the people any legally required religion. In fact, any such hint of imposition is prohibited. If Cave Rock is under the possession of the United States or of any state within the Union, it would be illegal for a single religion to dictate the policy or use of Cave Rock. If the reason is ecological, “safety concerns” etc., the government would be acting within the Constitution. If the reason for Cave Rock’s closing is out of “respect” for a single religion, we have a problem.

GT


rockvoyager


Jul 13, 2003, 9:27 PM
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In reply to:
I don't think "Separation of the Church from State" is the right wording for this argument. The phrase "Separation of the Church from State" doesn't exist in the constitution or declaration of independence. The actual amendment reads,

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press..." (Emphasis mine)

You're right mate. However, the supreme court has ruled on what the press calls "separation of church and state". That's good enough for me because the end result is still the same.

I'm a little uncomfortable with my initial response. My core belief remains the same but I could probably have found a more tactfull, less confrontational way to express it.

Live and learn........even for old dogs like me

Brad


chitlinsconcarne


Jul 18, 2003, 5:26 PM
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At this point, my hope is that the Access Fund will do the right thing and offer to act as an agency of mitigation in regards to this mess and tender an offer to provide skilled labor to remove and erase all traces of what the climbing community has done at the Cave Rock site.

The Cave Rock sport climbing area was a bad idea, poorly executed. Part of supporting access is taking responsibility for when things were not done right to start with.

No lawsuits. No b.s. Lets just clean up our mess and go away.


bertman


Jul 18, 2003, 7:27 PM
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well, chitlins, your arguments, weak as they are, only apply if these indians really do regard the site as sacred. For all we know, they always thought the place was a cool veiw, sat there at sunsets, drank a few beers, relieved themselves by a rock, and went home. Then, after climbers came and made it a pleasant place, they decided they wanted to hang out there and drink beer by themselves, so they used the age-old "i'm an abused indian who's sacred ground has been trampled by the white man" approach. gimme a break, its gettin old.


roughster


Jul 22, 2003, 9:03 PM
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Screw that, lets bust out the rabid lawyers!! CaughtInside...I have a mission for you should you choose to accept....This post will self destruct in 20 seconds...

Judging by the way he attacks his projects with unrelenting vigor, I would hate to be on the defending side of his litigation!


cracksniffer


Jul 27, 2003, 1:00 PM
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When I first heard about the effort to close Cave Rock to climbing, even though the road traveling through the formation will remain unchanged, I was disappointed. I've climbed there, and despite the noise and the strange sensation of swinging over traffic on your rope, I enjoyed the experience.

I know saying this will likely result in a lot of juvenile bashing by Roughster, but has anyone concerned with this issue wondered why, if the place has no value apart from climbing, the Washoe even bothered to gain it back? I mean, it's highly unlikely a casino will ever fit there (not that they could build one; they are only asking for access to it without unnecessary infringements). And I truly doubt they are just being "greedy"; although it's pretty obvious we climbers can be that way--even though we go to great lengths to build justifications for our actions. I COULD be wrong, and maybe the Washoe DO have some secret agenda for the use of Cave Rock. But I'm not a skilled investigator, and I think I'm willing to accept the Washoe's claim for the spot, even risk being a pushover. Better that than risk giving climbers a worse name than they already have.

I once listened to a climber tell his story of being "scalped" (actually just had his hair cut off) in a violent confrontation with a Native American. He had been seen, at some earlier time, climbing in a canyon on Indian land. His attacker very obviously had problems with his climbing in a place believed to be sacred, and took his trespassing very personally. The men who built this country up also pushed this land's original inhabitants into some of the least hospitable places, forcing them to make a life for themselves with few resources. I think I might take it personally too if, as a Native American, the ancestors of these men felt justified in trespassing on the land of my people. I don't care for WHAT reason.

For some it might be easy to justify climbing at Cave Rock because of the already present road and because of the way the place has been trashed in the past. It does seem kind of crazy to ban climbing while the road remains so near a supposedly sacred site. Maybe the Washoe have simply decided to take what they can get, knowing that any attempts to remove the road will be futile (there aren't really any other ways to route the road, from what I understand and have seen). If that's the case (and it seems the most likely possibility), I'm more than willing, as a climber, to let the place go without resentment.


roughster


Jul 27, 2003, 1:32 PM
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In reply to:
I know saying this will likely result in a lot of juvenile bashing by Roughster...

Or you could say, I think Roughster may not agree with me, so I'll take a cheap shot up front since he made me look like a fool in a different thread..

In reply to:
but has anyone concerned with this issue wondered why, if the place has no value apart from climbing, the Washoe even bothered to gain it back? I mean, it's highly unlikely a casino will ever fit there (not that they could build one; they are only asking for access to it without unnecessary infringements). And I truly doubt they are just being "greedy"; although it's pretty obvious we climbers can be that way--even though we go to great lengths to build justifications for our actions. I COULD be wrong, and maybe the Washoe DO have some secret agenda for the use of Cave Rock. But I'm not a skilled investigator, and I think I'm willing to accept the Washoe's claim for the spot, even risk being a pushover. Better that than risk giving climbers a worse name than they already have.

#1 the Washoe NEVER gained it back. It is still federal land. They are a User Group just as climbers are a User group. Most people don't have a problem with respecting their wishes to have "sacred" time w/o interuptions. I think everyone would agree that a voluntary closure for specific periods of time would be a great solution to this problem. However, this is not what the Washoe are advocating. They want complete closure, to which the USFS said "no" however, climbers were the SINGLE user group to be singled out. To everyone else, access to Cave Rock goes on 365 days/year with no effect. Climbers on the other hand are not only singled out, but the reason is completely SEXIST. One of the Washoes main contentions is FEMALE climbers. Male climbed are considered a "nuiscance" while female climbers are "particularly offensive". What a load of crap is that?

If the reason is religious it is illegal because of our constitution. If the reason is SEXISM then it is also illegal.

In reply to:
I once listened to a climber tell his story of being "scalped" (actually just had his hair cut off) in a violent confrontation with a Native American. He had been seen, at some earlier time, climbing in a canyon on Indian land. His attacker very obviously had problems with his climbing in a place believed to be sacred, and took his trespassing very personally.

Or the guy just didn't like him / him being there??? There is not any indication that it has anything to do with it being "sacred". If anything it shows that the Indians prescribe to the "Might makes right" just as did this countries forefathers did. If thats the case, Cave Rock has been "rightfully" taken is ours (Federal Governments) to do as we please with.

In reply to:
The men who built this country up also pushed this land's original inhabitants into some of the least hospitable places, forcing them to make a life for themselves with few resources. I think I might take it personally too if, as a Native American, the ancestors of these men felt justified in trespassing on the land of my people. I don't care for WHAT reason.

This whole line of argument has been used and effectively countered in the Indian Rights thread:

http://www.rockclimbing.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=35063

In reply to:
For some it might be easy to justify climbing at Cave Rock because of the already present road and because of the way the place has been trashed in the past. It does seem kind of crazy to ban climbing while the road remains so near a supposedly sacred site. Maybe the Washoe have simply decided to take what they can get, knowing that any attempts to remove the road will be futile (there aren't really any other ways to route the road, from what I understand and have seen). If that's the case (and it seems the most likely possibility), I'm more than willing, as a climber, to let the place go without resentment.

Trash and the road passing through are auxillary reasons, the bottom line is Cave Rock is on Federally owned land. That means I own it just as much as the Washoe do. Well in actuality, I own it more than they do since their tribe has claimed themselves a soveirgn governemnt not subject to the Federal Laws. They are trying to eliminate recreational use from a public land by the soul means of religious use. That is illegal per our constitution. You can try to argue it from other angles as much as you want, the bottom lines boils down to the religion vs state argument and the constitution is clear.


cracksniffer


Jul 27, 2003, 2:42 PM
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Roughster,

I KNOW it is federal land, that is why I added the note in parentheses next to my casino comment which clarified that they are asking for "access without infringements"

Considering the very small size of Cave Rock, I'm guessing it would be pretty difficult to have any kind of religious experience there with climbers above and around you. Even the Access Fund understands this to SOME extent, which is why their preferred alternative would not have allowed new routes, and I think it would have even erased a few.

You seem to look at this as being a very black and white issue. This isn't the first time climbers have been excluded from supposedly public lands. I strongly believe climbers should stand up for themselves when it seems they are being unfairly discriminated against. But I think we should also be ready and willing to compromise. As climbers, most of us accept the fact that climbing on or near pictographs isn't fair to those who hold these things sacred, or historically important. WE COMPROMISE, both to respect other users and to help ensure our own continued access to climbing areas. Mountain bikers must accept the fact that their presence on certain trails is not appropriate, even on public land; hunters must limit their sport to designated areas; and I've yet to see someone with a jet ski on Tenaya lake. If an activity can only be practiced in an area while greatly undermining that area's availability for some other use, then logic says that activity should stop. Fortunately, there are few instances where rock climbing becomes an overwhelming presence.

I wouldn't want to see dirt bikers screaming up Lyell Canyon in Yosemite. I think that would be a use of a public land that undermines the canyon's value to other users. I can't see Cave Rock through the eyes of a Washoe Indian, but I'm guessing the chains, bolts and dozens of quickdraws they see hanging about the cliff along with the chalk stains (not to mention the crowds and frequently blaring stereos) at Cave Rock are pretty hard to ignore. Just like jet skis on Tenaya Lake would be pretty hard for US to ignore while climbing nearby. Maybe if we had been more discrete in OUR use of the place our presence wouldn't have been deemed so incompatible with other users.


roughster


Jul 27, 2003, 2:56 PM
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Roughster,

I KNOW it is federal land, that is why I added the note in parentheses next to my casino comment which clarified that they are asking for "access without infringements"

OK you had me fooled then when you said this:

In reply to:
why, if the place has no value apart from climbing, the Washoe even bothered to gain it back?

Seems pretty clear to me you think they "gained it back" by some means... But of course it would just being juvenile to point out your inconsistancies wouldn't it?

In reply to:
Considering the very small size of Cave Rock, I'm guessing it would be pretty difficult to have any kind of religious experience there with climbers above and around you. Even the Access Fund understands this to SOME extent, which is why their preferred alternative would not have allowed new routes, and I think it would have even erased a few.

You seem to look at this as being a very black and white issue. This isn't the first time climbers have been excluded from supposedly public lands. I strongly believe climbers should stand up for themselves when it seems they are being unfairly discriminated against. But I think we should also be ready and willing to compromise. As climbers, most of us accept the fact that climbing on or near pictographs isn't fair to those who hold these things sacred, or historically important. WE COMPROMISE, both to respect other users and to help ensure our own continued access to climbing areas. Mountain bikers must accept the fact that their presence on certain trails is not appropriate, even on public land; hunters must limit their sport to designated areas; and I've yet to see someone with a jet ski on Tenaya lake. If an activity can only be practiced in an area while greatly undermining that area's availability for some other use, then logic says that activity should stop. Fortunately, there are few instances where rock climbing becomes an overwhelming presence.

I wouldn't want to see dirt bikers screaming up Lyell Canyon in Yosemite. I think that would be a use of a public land that undermines the canyon's value to other users. I can't see Cave Rock through the eyes of a Washoe Indian, but I'm guessing the chains, bolts and dozens of quickdraws they see hanging about the cliff along with the chalk stains (not to mention the crowds and frequently blaring stereos) at Cave Rock are pretty hard to ignore. Just like jet skis on Tenaya Lake would be pretty hard for US to ignore while climbing nearby. Maybe if we had been more discrete in OUR use of the place our presence wouldn't have been deemed so incompatible with other users.

Everything you said could be accomidated w/o the complete banning of climbing.

- Remove fixed draws
- Voluntary closure for specific time periods for historical (not religous) Native American use.
- Annually cordinated chalk clean-up

Furthermore, I have climbed Cave Rock many times and have yet to see a "crowd" (I think max I've seen is 5 climbers), and I have NEVER seen a boom box?!?!? Why considering the traffic noise would make it pointless unless you were closer than 5 feet.

Your analogy of motorbikes in Yosemite is not approriate IMO. Dirt Bikes make huge visible impacts which take years to repair, ecological impact on a large scale, as well as every second they are runnig there is audio impact. Climbing impact @ Cave Rock could be effectivley removed within a week or so. Chalk stains actually are not that obvious with that color of rock @ C.R. and also lets not discount the fact there is bat and bird shit on a lot of the cliff face which also tends to make chalk marks look like part of the natural state.

You seem to think that comprise is having climbers say "OK we give up, not allowing climbing is fine." That doesn't look like a comprise to me at all. That is giving one user exclusive determination of which use of Federal Land is approriate.

Compromise is finding a medium ground where the outcome is acceptable to both user groups. In this case, banning climbing, I hardly find acceptable for climbers.


cracksniffer


Jul 27, 2003, 10:32 PM
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Re: Cave Rock Closing [In reply to]
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Roughster,

Here, again, are my own words exactly as I first posted them:

"I know saying this will likely result in a lot of juvenile bashing by Roughster, but has anyone concerned with this issue wondered why, if the place has no value apart from climbing, the Washoe even bothered to gain it back? I mean, it's highly unlikely a casino will ever fit there (not that they could build one; they are only asking for access to it without unnecessary infringements)."

I SHOULD have worded this better, but I still think the words in parentheses clarify the issue to the careful reader. My main purpose in my casino comment was to quell the notion that this whole thing is some greedy plot on the part of the Washoe and that they are bullying us out of the way in order to profit in some evil, shifty way.

Considering the fact that we, as climbers, generally are allowed access to just about every cliff we can find (albeit sometimes only after a fight), I think refraining from climbing completely at Cave Rock could be seen as a compromise in light of its small size. In my opinion, only paranoia could allow one to see this small "letting go" as possibly resulting in us losing our right to climb at other areas. If anything, it will have the opposite effect. Lots of people--non-climbers--are watching how we react, and if anything their opinion of us will improve if we accept our loss without resentment. And a better image of climbers always results in better access.

The proposal of having periods which are closed to climbing was a good one, but if our reason for doing so is to allow for religious practices, wouldn’t that be unconstitutional as well? Sounds like if we get at least part of what we want, we, as climbers, are willing to stop blowing THAT horn. And what about the bolts and chains? Camouflaging would have lessened their visual impact, but with so many bolts there is still a degradation of the rock’s integrity, even if it doesn’t bother US. Our culture (non NA Western) does not normally deem natural objects as historically or culturally important (although it’s a different story if we’ve carved and blasted a natural cliff to look like the faces of our leaders), so it takes an open mind to look at a rock in the same light I suppose. It should also be noted that there are plenty of buildings, structures and sculptures on the registry of historic places and on federal land that we are not free to use as we please, including much (if not all, I’m not sure) of Mt. Rushmore.

If Plymouth Rock were a desirable climbing cliff (instead of a small boulder), we probably wouldn’t be climbing on it, not even with invisible bolt hangers. Evidently Cave Rock’s significance has a much longer history than that of Plymouth Rock, even if it hasn’t seen the kind of recognition or protection it deserves as of late. And I don’t buy the argument that it’s just about religion, or sexism. The Washoe may have concerns that are easy to criticize based on our value system, but the decision made was most likely based on the difficulty (if not impossibility) of dealing with the visual impact climbers (in general) create in such a small place.


cracksniffer


Jul 28, 2003, 9:53 AM
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And a note on the crowds and boomboxes:

I haven't climbed at Cave Rock "many" times like you, but I did visit three times between '95 and '96. At that time, boomboxes were commonplace (and if I'm not mistaken also commonly used by at least one of the early developers). I brought mine on one of my visits, on a weekday, for the purpose of combatting the traffic noise. It actually echoed throughout the cave quite well.

I'm sure weekdays still rarely see more than five people, if they see any at all. But I doubt it's fair to say weekends never see more than that on at least a semi-regular basis. Perhaps you were lucky on your numerous visits.

One other thing...

This has nothing to do with the argument, but it is kind of interesting. On one of my visits, my friends and I noticed a conspicuous arrangement of what looked like bird bones, sticks and I think feathers towards the back of the "cave" (in the sooty area). Not knowing anything about the rock's importance to anyone other than climbers, we figured this was the work of some local kids who were perhaps toying with voodoo or witchcraft (or maybe climbers who obtained their power from the "dark side"? LOL). I wonder if any of the early developers had been aware of the fact that the Washoe had ceremonies there?


cthcrockclimber


Jul 28, 2003, 10:13 AM
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However, I am thinking of forming a church, Milktoast Nation and installing myself as the spirtual and financial leader, the Reverend Dingus.

Our founding belief will be in God's wish that we climb unfettered of government interference and environmental extremism. EQUAL ACCESS FOR ALL!

Our religion will be practiced at cliffs, instantly rendering every crag in the country a site of spiritual significance, a church.

Hey, I think I'm on to something here. Non tax status. Long flowing robes. A HALO!

Sorry, but quick draw theft is grounds for excommunication. I have a panel of religious scholars looking into the whole bolt chopping thing. We have to be careful we don't repeat Salem you know.

I'm with ya! I'm already ordained (no joke)

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