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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 3 of 6. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 40 | 41 to 60 | 61 to 80 | 81 to 100 | 101 to 114
Author
ACA call for Blood!!!
widewetandslippery
15/09/2009
1:46:00 PM
I mentioned previously the need for effective delegation.

The fellas running the ACA at present do a good job if for no other reason than the data base of routes.

My impression is that as much as the ACA has felt other groups have marked them out of territory they have done the same. These territorial concerns do not have to be actual to have real impact.

Hopefully the incumbant leadership will hang in for a bit longer. Hopefully someone has the drive and energy needed to take up the roles requested and if they do a structure of useful minions would be an asset.

I also think that the ACA should amalgamate and change names to the IRA. Remember Libya is back in business.

Guniea Sauras Rex
15/09/2009
2:39:23 PM
Questions I would ask the ACA before volunteering my time:

1. Do you have a plan of management?
1a. If yes, is this plan being implemented? Where can I get a copy?
2. What projects do you currently have on board that people can help with?
2a. Are these projects organised in any way or are they just general vague ideas of things you would like to do?
3. What happend to your previous volunteers?

gremlin
15/09/2009
4:18:10 PM
On 15/09/2009 wallwombat wrote:
>Print off some TShirts with "I Got Routed on The Australian Route Register"
>or "My Name is on The Australian Route Register. Is Your's?".
>
>They would be a big sellers and you'd be able to raise enough money to
>keep the data base afloat.

The DB and website aren't going to disappear anytime soon. The hosting is provided for free by my employer and when the domain is up for renewal i'll pay for this out of my own pocket if it need be.

I like the tshirt idea, when Adam started up the QLD chapter he raised this idea, however we all thought it was a bit premature at the time and the cash could be better spent on things like PO boxes, bank accounts and registering the org with the government. Maybe it should be revived sometime soon.

nerm
15/09/2009
6:17:01 PM
Have mentioned this before in another thread - the ACA should take advantage of its
route register and create print-on-demand hard copies as an low overhead money
spinner.

Just need a way to make a presentable A5 PDF of the Blue Mountains or Grampians,
then upload the PDF to www.lulu.com which has no upfront cost, provides a built in web
store, and now has an Australian printer (in Melb). Set your own margin on top of the
cost price. Quality isnt even close to the current benchmark full color guides, but cost is
much cheaper too.

Example at:
http://stores.lulu.com/thesarvo
BA
15/09/2009
6:30:33 PM
Being an honorary member of the VCC some of what I'm about to say might be criticised as being parochial, biased or wrong.

My main criticism of web based data bases is that people can get in and edit them so that a climb changes its original name and description. This has happened before the web and is a process that can only accelerate. Don't believe me? Then consider what is now called Missing Link.

Its original name was THE Missing Link and the original write up was:

(1) 60' Climb up on the left hand side of the face in line with a thin vertical crack to a peg at 10'. Move right here (the piton helps) and go diagonally up right to an obvious smooth slabby bulge running up to the left. Get onto this via delicate balance and make a difficult move up which brings in reach easier climbing up to the left and so to the large ledge (piton belay). If this ledge is followed for 25' to near the right hand end and a good BOLT will be found. As this is closer to the finish it is the preferable belay.

(2) 40' From the bolt move left a few feet to the obvious weakness above. Go up via two piton runners tending to the right till the face steepens for the last strenuous moves. The line is obvious but the final pull up is probably the hardest on the climb. A powerful lead.

I printed the above, and the climbs other various write-ups over the years in the May 2003 copy of ARGUS (VCC Newsletter, if you can get hold of a copy of it you can read the evolution and re-routing of the climb) and nobody contradicted what I wrote. However in the first Arapiles Selected Guide it was suggested that the FA team took the finish that Preservative Added took. So even Simey and Glenn got it wrong.

What the VCC is/was trying to set up is a data base where the original write-up stays intact and people can add their own "corrections" or clarifications or additions or warnings but everyone would know what the original write-up said. This means that it is not simply doing a copy and paste of what is in a guidebook (as ACA has done), it is going back to the original source material. And this is in danger of being lost in the web based guidebook approach. If I had more time (maybe something that is affecting ACA) I could probably get the ten years worth of write-ups that came into ARGUS while I was editor up on the web.

This is not an isolated case. A lot of the Tempest/Smith write-ups in the original South East Vic guide for Sugarloaf and the Jawbones were also re-written and re-aligned. The same thing has been done at Arapiles on various climbs, "we'll take the best bit of this climb and combine it with the best bit of the climb next door and write it up as if it was the way the route was originally done", it wasn't. History has been altered by these actions, but I doubt if anyone out in Chockstone-land cares.

I do. Am I wrong to care?
rolsen1
15/09/2009
7:37:47 PM
On 15/09/2009 BA wrote:
>I do. Am I wrong to care?

I don't think you're wrong to care, sounds like you're describing a wiki to me. Surely by handing route data over to the people rather than the VCC, ACA, the crag or whoever else can be bother producing a guidebook then the origins of routes are more likely to be preserved?

As stated earlier, this is a good cjance to develop a standard to recording climb data, open sourcing some code and developing a system by which various sites and users can exchange route information.

jkane
15/09/2009
8:14:18 PM
Haven't had a chance to read this whole thread yet but I just wanted to answer this point by Kyle

>>* Attempted to have a dialogue with the VCC - they rejected our affiliation proposal and refused to give any explanation.

I was Secraetary at the time. I'm not on the committee any more. We didn't "refuse" to give you a reason, we (I) just never got around to it. Sorry if that's how you saw it. It was a bit tricky to give you a reason, basically the committee decided not to go with the affiliation thing, those who had an opinion had their own different reasons.

Speaking personally, I'm not keen on the way you set yourselves up as a "National Body". It's nothing like the way the BMC evolved. I think that it would be good to see the regional clubs working together but it should be up to the clubs to approach eachother and form an affiliation.

I'm also not that convinced about the need for a national body on access issues. Our major landowner in Vic is Parks Victoria. If a federal issue ever came up, that would be the time to band together and all that.

Post Edit:
Have now had a pretty good read through. Nothing really to add except that I only ever received a couple of emails from Kyle. Maybe ACA did pick up the phone and speak personally to some of the other Committee members but I was not aware of this. I know not everyone has good interpersonal skills (e.g. me) especially with today's technology driven communications etc, but I think that would go a lot further than an email. So I guess I'm saying just beacuse you got one knock back doesn't necessarily mean you should chuck the towel in. The VCC committee changes from year to year and the new committee may feel differently (not a hint, I really couldn't say).
cogsy
15/09/2009
9:38:24 PM
If someone were to nominate to take on one of the roles, what exactly (in concrete terms) would they be required to do? (apart from maintaining the website).
And secondly, why would this be done better through the ACA than through the allready established clubs (such as VCC and SRC)?

romfrantic
15/09/2009
11:30:51 PM
On 14/09/2009 MrKyle wrote:

>* Spoke at the inaugural meeting of the NZAC in Sydney and presented the
>case that an NZAC affiliated ACA was a better long-term option than an
>Australian NZAC chapter. They voted against it.

Well, for starters the NZAC Australian Section is an extension of the NZAC in NZ !! It never made any sense for us to fall under the banner of an Australian organization such as ACA - which was very much in its infancy back in those days, and we were yet to be convinced that the ACA was really going to do all it set out to do in its charter (someone already made a comment about that). We simply didn't see the case made that this would be a better option for us in the long-term. We didn't just vote against it blindly.

Also, the mountaineering community here tends to go to NZ (and further abroad) for their chosen outdoor activity, not here in Oz. So we are much better served by the resources offered to us by long-established organisations in NZ and abroad (like the UIAA, which the NZAC is a member of and therefore we receive reciprocal benefits).

We felt we already received adequate representation at a national level - in NZ...that is why your proposal fell through with our members here, there was no perceived benefit for us.

IdratherbeclimbingM9
16/09/2009
8:54:48 AM
On 15/09/2009 BA wrote:
>History has been altered by these actions, but I doubt if anyone out in Chockstone-land cares.
>
>I do. Am I wrong to care?

You are right to care.

I care too.

Variations on original routes may be better climbs sometimes, but it is within the nuances of history that the colour and intrigue are to be found.

Historical data must have integrity. Variations can be written up as such.

The new age of electronic technology contains more than a few teething problems for archival and retrieval of data in the long term*, and I suspect that the rate of change is only going to increase, rather than back off.
(*I note the demise of punch tape, later 6 inch floppies, etc!)

MrKyle wrote;
>2) Climbing festival: We worked with Adam and Claire to help with the Australian Climbing Festival, at which we ran the access forum with reps from each state. The ACA now owns the climbing festival (and some debt). A venue is booked for 2010, but the festival is unlikely to happen.

This is sad news.
I know that these sorts of events are hard to organise and keep momentum, but it used to run under another name before the ACA existed, so I still hold hope for the future.
Winston Smith
16/09/2009
9:26:48 AM
It's interesting to note that those advocating that the SRC pick up aspects of the ACA are not members of the SRC ...

And there's the point. The climbing community is full of lots of talkers but less do-ers.

The SRC is run by a very small number of active committee members. Some of us have multiple roles. Speaking personally, there is nothing that I can see would be gained by us becoming involved in the ACA.

Rod Smith
SRC Trip Convenor
SRC Thrutch Editor
SRC Membership Secretary

Richard
16/09/2009
1:24:33 PM
On 15/09/2009 BA wrote:
> History has been altered by
>these actions, but I doubt if anyone out in Chockstone-land cares.
>
>I do. Am I wrong to care?

I think the crux of the "problem" here, is that you're effectivel trying to use guidebooks as a historical record - where as users want a route description that correct ambiguities in the original write up, maybe offers a better finish that the original, takes into accout changes in fixed pro, etc. I find Simey's descriptions brilliant - they adequately descirbe the route, protection and anythin else needed, in a few number of words. And where there's relevant history on a climb, it will often be mentioned. I did find it intersting to read the history of the missing link descriptions, but I don't see that as the role of the current edition of a guidebook. So these two cross purposes at play here.

Re Jim Kane's post: Unless Kyle made an approach to the VCC at another time - I was probably the VP when this happened. I don't recall a direct request from the ACA to the VCC - there was some verbal request made via a second person, which is probably why the committee didn't really know what the ACA was, and what they were proposing. Hence, the reason we probably never replied. As you may have read between the lines, I am a supporter of the ACA's on line data base, though two kids curtail the chance I get to use it. But most of this is water under the bridge now.

To a large extent, I am much more concerned about retaining general access to such info, than the specific wording within the route description. So long as we don't loose the incremental advances that motoviated individuals make, we can debate wording down the track. IMHO

Wendy
16/09/2009
4:53:03 PM
I'd almost put this in the discombobulated thread - there are a few offers of help here and requests for more detail about what help is need and no answers forthcoming by the people requesting help! Small offers and people seeking info about what they might be able to do are common in volunteering. They are after all volunteers and have a right only to offer what they can and want to. Maybe the one and only superperson who can save the ACA hasn't offered but if any offers are ignored, no wonder there's a problem. Use what you have available!!!! Clarify what will help!!! Answer people's questions about why it's needed and why their personal contribution will be useful/valued.

On the topic of guides - I agree, the problem is how you see the role of guides. I personally think they have a history section for history. They have a route section for how the route is commonly done these days, equipment that currently exists in it etc etc. It actually drives me insane that things like Where Angels Fear to Tread are still written in as they originally were done and to follow the route as it actually is done these days, you have to search through multiple descriptions. If you want to read the routes history, find a history book, or the old guides. If you want to do do what consensus has concluded is the best/safest version of the climb, read the current guide. Changing a route description doesn't belittle the first persons effort, it' just acknowledge with modern gear, cleaning, reequipping, different conditions, multiple visits to explore, a preferred version was found. Anyway, have we hijacked the thread enough?

BTW, I like the ACA database. I use it heaps for gramps stuff post the guidebooks. I quite like it being a cooperative effort because as anyone who has gone out to do a whole guide bythemselves knows, it's a lot of time/work and not a lot of money. The open database enables multiple people to contribute, share the work around and big things actually get done. Good on everyone who's been working on it.

Sarah Gara
16/09/2009
6:04:41 PM
What Wendy said. -she put things so well don't you think?

I'm getting confused with initials - what is SRC and VRC? x


nmonteith
16/09/2009
6:34:17 PM
SRC - Sydney Rockclimbing Club
VCC - Victorian Climbing Club
BRC - Brisbane Rockclimbing Club
SPC - Fruit in a tin
simey
16/09/2009
7:23:40 PM
You forgot one...
C--T - Climbers Union of Northern Tasmania

Wendy
16/09/2009
7:30:34 PM
CŪNT, Simey

Who would have though 4 years of French study could be so useful?

PS, thanks Sarah (and even despite my recent entertainment from offensive language)
simey
16/09/2009
7:35:39 PM
Thanks Wendy. I knew I needed some help with that.

MrKyle
16/09/2009
11:25:03 PM
First of all, thanks to all the people who have indicated they would or are willing to help - and in particular the individual that has already contacted us directly. Second, I apologise for the delay - I can't reply to every question or point, and I can't do it every day.

> Cogsy: If someone were to nominate to take on one of the roles, what exactly (in concrete terms) would they be required to do? (apart from maintaining the website).

In regards to the specific roles that need filling, these are the roles of the central committee:
President: Responsible for organising and chairing committee meetings (1 meeting every 3 months), and also providing general leadership.
Vice President: Attend the meetings and support the president.
Treasurer: Attend the meetings, responsible for administering funds and accounts, and compiling the annual report.
Secretary: Attend the meetings, responsible for submitting paper work and keeping records of members etc.
Webmaster: Not part of the committee but a key role these days. Currently preformed by Dan Roe - who seems happy to continue it.

Beyond these, any other roles are at the discretion of the committee and reflect the strategy of the organisation. And at this point in time, the strategy is pretty much a blank slate. Exactly how the new committee wants to take the ACA forward will be up to them. However, I am inclined to think that at least 1 person should be focused on pushing the climbing festival along. Representatives from each state would be good too - to focus on working with individual clubs.

So, 5 motivated people at a minimum and preferably more. Importantly, those who join up must be committed to participate.

> Cogsey: And secondly, why would this be done better through the ACA than through the allready established clubs (such as VCC and SRC)?
There are many things that make sense to tackle at a state level through existing clubs. But I think some things don't make sense at a state level. For example: even if they could, it isn't logical for the SRC or the VCC to run the Australian Climbing Festival. Another example: Federal sports funding requires a national body of a certain size (which we might be able to achieve with an affiliation programme). Also, some things, like magazines and insurance, require numbers to make it work.

On the subject of the festival: The reality is that running the festival is very difficult and draining. The problem with the festival in the past was that it was privately owned - and hinged on the motivations and availability of the owner. This made it hard to transfer the running of the festival from one party to the next - largely because of difficulties around invested IP, assets, and brand. What we wanted to do was make the festival publicly owned and managed (through a public association). Adam and Claire appreciated this, which is why they came to us. The festival is by no means dead - it is simply parked and waiting for a suitably keen person (or group) to take it on. Indeed, Adam and Claire are free to do so again if they want.

>Sara: Where do the ACA meet?
Sydney at the moment. But there is no reason why it couldn't be done virtually, using online meeting tools.

> $500 It's a waste of bloody money and could be spent in much better ways.
The fact of the matter was that Garth asked for a $500 grant via another organisation. Two members of the ACA decided to make a special donation to make it happen. In return, the ACA planned to run a publicity event with Garth (such as a slide-show) . This event never happened but I'm sure the goodwill still exists with Garth.

In regard to Richard's question on the approach to the VCC, it was by way of a direct email to the secretary (Jim) on 05/03/2008. My aim is not to be critical of the VCC, which does great stuff, but just to shed some light on what's been happening with us.


wallwombat
17/09/2009
12:21:43 AM
On 16/09/2009 MrKyle wrote:

> I am inclined to think that at least 1 person should be focused on pushing the >climbing festival along.

Why not have everyone focused on the festival? To be honest, what else do you have to do? What other pressing issues are pressing the ACA?

All that national representative body stuff isn't going to happen anytime soon, if the states wont play ball. I can't see the ACA, in it's current position, "Reinvigorat[ing] Cliffcare and Rebolting initiatives" or "provid[ing] expedition planning supprt and funding."
Basically most of that stuff in the ACA Charter needs to be put aside, because it all takes money and it sounds like the ACA has bugger all of that.

So, why not concentrate on the festival?

Even if it is just to get out of the red and work towards having one in 2011, it seems like a concrete and positive goal. It will give you something to talk at those commitee meetings, and it is something that almost all climbers in Australia, whether they are members of the SRC, VCC, CCA, KKK or whatever, want to see happen. It is unique and if the ACA 'own' it, they should bloody well flaunt it.

Get it going. I'll help. I'm sure heaps of people will help. If we can't feasibly have one next year, lets have a fantastic one the year after. It wont happen by itself, though.






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