/ NEWS: Foredale Access Problems
Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/news/item.php?id=62335
Sport climbing in the Dales has expolded in recent years and I don't think Fordale will be the only place to be affected by the increasing popularity of our activity.
The shear number of climbers perched on the catwalk at Malham in recent weeks cannot be ignored, not to mention the effect on the 'unoffical' climbers car park at the Cove Center that must really antagonize the locals.
The parking situation for Kilnsey crag is probably going to cause problems for climbers in the near future, with some stupidly parked cars recently causing traffic problems. Even the large car park near this crag has become overcrowded, causing people to park (sometimes badly) on the narrow road.
It is bitter-sweet for me as I know I am part of the problem and I am not sure that there is an easy answer to resolve the issue before it becomes terminal.
Maybe sport climbing is just fashionable at the moment, what with Yorkshire's mega crags being in the news so much recenlty with England's hardest routes and Ondras visit. Maybe things will quieten down again soon and we will breath a sight of relief and once again enjoy the ability to arrive at the crag and climb without having to que.
But I do worry that if the recent popularity of sport climbing in the Dales is a just passing fad, then I hope it does no lasting damage to access for our future generations.
I think this is a great loss to the quarrying world. Thankfully, there are still many active quarries in the Peak district.
We've had similar experiance in the Red. In the last few years we have had several of the best sport crags in the world closed at the RRG, as recently as Roadside yesterday, I saddly just updated the UKC page, for the same reason: Climbers forgeting that its a privilage and not a right. Unfortunantly our experiance is that the people reading these forums arn't the problem.
The way forward will be gates, online reservations, and fees to limit the numbers/pay for parking, etc. Maybe not yet, but it will happen. Has already happend in the Gunks and LRC and Torrent Falls operate a free first come first serve permit system. Bolts+free/easy access=crowds. And that farmer was well within his right to be pissed at people commodifying his land w/o permission. Again, climbers thinking its a right and not a privilage.
Solution here could be BMC negotiating a daily limit then implementing an online ballot that goes live at midnight each day for parking passes. Then tow the assholes who cheat.
> Solution here could be BMC negotiating a daily limit then implementing an online ballot that goes live at midnight each day for parking passes. Then tow the assholes who cheat.
It'll be a very sad day if that sort of system ever reaches the UK. Our access issues are usually resolved less bureaucratically.
What's the limit at Peterís Kill.... 60 boulderers a day or something. Got there once and the quota was full!!!!!!!
In the not too distant future...
Husband: "Hey, Honey guess what?"
Husband: "I've managed to land two tickets to climb at Kilnsey"
Wife: "Fantastic! How did you manage that? I thought it was booked up for a year or so"
Husband: "Somebody canceled and I managed to snipe them on ebay"
or Mr. Smithers....
Crawdad Canyon Rock Climbing Park
One of the largest privately owned outdoor climbing parks in the USA. Over 180 bolted sport climbing routes ranging from 5.6 to 5.13. Solid basalt walls up to 80 feet high dominate this canyon. Brass plaques at the base of each climb with the name and rating. There are benches in some places to belay from and paths to the climbs. It's like an indoor gym, only better, it's outside.
$8.00 per person per day - Must have pictured I.D. and sign waver upon entering. Anyone under 18 must have parent present to sign waver. No exceptions! ALL climbers MUST sign in!
A map of climbing locations and a list of climbs can be found on site.
Eco-tourism... which includes climbing. Probably more profitable than sheep farming!
A map of climbing locations and a list of climbs can be found on site.
For a fee...
A local guide book is available on site.
For a fee...
I might explore ownership of routes. I think I could perhaps charge 10 quid for working 'Let them eat jelly beans' and £5 a red point. What do you reckon?
yep. I once had a friend miss out on LRC boulder passes for something like 2 months, though I think they have eased up. The sad part in the Gorge is that the owners of both Roadside and Torrent falls, two of arguably the greatest single sport climbing cliffs in the world for climbers 6a-8a, are both climbers themselve and bought the property to preserve access and still visiting climbers disrespected them so much it has brought on blanket closures. Or in the case of Torrent you can rent one of two guest cottages and have a private crag for the duration of your stay :-).
perhaps, but given the dramatic increase of popularity issues will only get worse and the community will grow too large to self-police.
Hmm - some of my posts from the other Foredale thread have been deleted, including at least one which directly addressed the issue of access at Foredale.
I presume that this is censorship - my views not fitting with the official line?
> perhaps, but given the dramatic increase of popularity issues will only get worse and the community will grow too large to self-police.
Any suggestions? BMC or UKC to become the Rock Gestapo?
Erm, I think it best I don't pollute this thread with them. (See the other thread)
I'm not a great lover of Foredale but have climbed there (and at Moughton) several times as it has a unique character and made a welcome change from other Dales venues. My visits have always been midweek when the crag was fairly quiet but, as one who lives by a popular public footpath, I can understand why the locals would get brassed off, especially if people were abusing access. I hope that the farmer and residents can be persuaded that it would be unfair to punish us all for the sins of the few, especially as the Harrogate Wall has dropped its plans for courses. I hope too that the gormless minority may get a wake up call and realise the trouble they have caused all round.
I really, really like Foredale and have enjoyed all of my visits there, bar one when I was massively hungover.
It's a shame as there are some genuinely good routes there. Dark Secrets, Alpine Memories, and Ace of Spades being amongst the best of there grade I have climbed.
It's not as even as if the access rules are hard to follow to be honest.
Could we not just drop down from the path to Clapham from Horton? This would avoid the cottages completely.
> Could we not just drop down from the path to Clapham from Horton? This would avoid the cottages completely.
Parking at the entrance to Dry Rigg and walking up the Nab would be the quickest way to the quarry avoiding the cottages. The field immediately to the west of the field that the quarry is part of is CROW access land. I can't recall there being a style or gate between the two fields, though I have vaguish memory of walking along the edge from Moughton Nab a while back.
If the weather's not too bad I'll have look tomorrow.
because finding a new way to access a crag the owner has obviously closed will make things so much better for those trying to negotiate access....
as for regulation, you don't have to have a rock gestapo, but we do have to figure out what to do with the increasing hoards of climbers who have no outdoors experiance/ethics. Bolting gets all the press, but the overwhelming issue is simply a whole generation of climbers who treat crags as outdoor gyms regardless trad/sport/bouldering. We can address each crisis as it arrises, but there needs to be some effort to develop a sustainable solution. These issues will only multiply as climbing increases in popularity and rock resources are squeezed. It will become especially accute in England given the limited resources. That solution is either regulation or a systemic change in climber behavior. Acting as if its just our right to climb where ever gets everyone nowhere fast.
Ah, but supposedly one of the big problems is the disturbance caused by people passing close to the farm and cottages. Finding an access route that completely avoids them might just help.
Anyway, most of the plateau above Moughton is access land, I live close by and I fancy having a look...
Just had a walk up onto Moughton. I followed the path up from the entrance to Dry Rigg to the Nab and then onto the plateau.
CROW access area up there is pretty extensive. It covers almost the whole of the plateau between Horton and the head of Crummackdale (and then on up to Simon Fell and Ingleborough). It also covers the large triangular field in which Foredale Quarry is situated. The quarry itself is not included - the boundary of the access land is the top edge of the quarry.
I walked the length of the wall that separates that field from the rest of the access land and could not find a single point of access.
As there are no rights of way or access land to the east it is effectively impossible to access this land - land to which the public has a legal right of access! And seeing as the good sized wall has a recently erected strip of fencing on top of it (taking the total height of the boundary to over 6 feet), I very much get the feeling that the land owner is deliberately attempting to keep people out!
Anyway, aside from the problem of getting into the field, the route up from Dry Rigg is perfectly viable and avoids the farm and cottages, maybe a15 minute walk tops. I had a good walk around the top of the quarry. Didn't see a soul. I doubt anyone saw me.
I can't speak for what anyone else might do, but I was very careful to stay within the boundaries of the access land.
> I walked the length of the wall that separates that field from the rest of the access land and could not find a single point of access.
> As there are no rights of way or access land to the east it is effectively impossible to access this land - land to which the public has a legal right of access! And seeing as the good sized wall has a recently erected strip of fencing on top of it (taking the total height of the boundary to over 6 feet), I very much get the feeling that the land owner is deliberately attempting to keep people out!
>I don't think the farmer, or whoever built that wall was deliberately trying to keep climbers out. It is an unusually high wall and I supect it was built originally by the quarry owners to keep people away when it was a working quarry. I suspect the farmer is happy to maintain it that way simple to keep his sheep in.
As it now divides Access Land I am pretty sure that the YDNPA would be willing to erect a stile to enable the public to cross it. The Access status of the quarry itself is still the main issue but I am hopeful that some new agreement can eventually be negotiated to the satisfaction of all parties.
The wall itself is not, IMO, unusually high. It's just a good height, dry stone wall like many others that enclose fields up here and perfectly adequate in itself for preventing stock from straying. Nothing remarkable about it except for the additional strip of fencing on top of the wall, that looks to be a recent addition (I would guess it's post CROW Act), and which takes the total height to over 6 feet - unlike most of the other dry stone walls up here.
Sorry, I never meant to suggest that it was aimed specifically at keeping climbers out.
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