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Chockstone Forum - General Discussion

General Climbing Discussion

 Page 1 of 2. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 33
Author
Impacts-sport vs trad

rocknrich
6/05/2005
2:17:29 PM
I'm hesitant (scared) to post this question, but as a climber I'm curious about the impacts I have on the areas I climb in. I wouldn't call myself a trad or sport climber (though I've only climbed one proper sport route).

Anyway what I'm curious about is that when I first started climbing I thought that by climbing trad I was having less of an impact through not using bolts etc, but observations I've heard from others have made me think otherwise. As far as I know bolting has little impact other than some people not liking the way it looks (ie aesthetic), and maybe some noise pollution when they are put in. On the other hand trad climbing cleans out soil and plants from cracks in order to place gear, and prevents it from returning thereby having an environmental impact on cliff ecology. Further, my understanding is that you are usually lowered of a sport climb which I imagine would reduce tracks and erosion on descents.

Just wondering what others think about this and whether there has been any study on it?

littlejames
6/05/2005
4:24:18 PM
Every style of climbing has an impact on the crag environment in one way or another.

In general, I would say that sport is probably the most destructive. Yes, having loweroffs does reduce erosion at the top of the cliff - but it generally comes with a much heavier traffic at the bottom of the cliff due to the nature of sport climbing. Bouldering is also very destructive - the damage that crash mats do to vegetation is severe and noticeable at popular bouldering spots. There's other things to consider as well - ever seen the amount of toilet paper off to the left of Wave Wall at Centennial Glen in the Blue Mountains?

One-off adventure trad routes are generally non-destructive erosion-wise, but as you've said, there is often an element of vertical gardening. And a crag with a trad ethic isn't necessarily protected from massive erosion and traffic at the base of the cliff - witness Summer Day Valley in the Grampians.

My personal feeling is that, like almost anything else humans do in the wilderness, climbing does have an impact. It's up to each and all of us to minimise the impact, but claiming that we don't change the environment is lying.
earwig
6/05/2005
4:47:42 PM
Sport, trad, whatever, I don't think it really matters - it's the number of bodies passing through that counts. Enough people and the rock will be polished shiny without any lichen or microbiota of any sort, compacted dirt at the base where there was once vegetation and an access track that resembles an erosion gully - while the Peregrines will have packed up and started roosting half way up a skyscraper in Collins St.

rhinckle
8/05/2005
6:39:57 AM
'nature' is now a spectator sport,
and so it needs to be.
we are no longer its inhabitants.
we have become its guests.

every breath we take
every move we make
every shin we scrape
we'll be changing you

every day that passes
all the growing grasses
every storm that passes
will be changing you

etc.

thought 1
cliff faces are a specific ecosystem,
but
surely there is enough mank and choss to support those species that need the vertical?

thought 2
the best climbs are in national parks.
national parks only exist because they can't be farmed.
we, the climbers, are further encroaching on this remnant environment.

trad climbers,
the bearded naturte lovers,
are more likely to bush bash (ouch) to get to a climb
&
they are also more likely to appreciate it's intrinsic qualities.
BUT
they are also more likely to do unspeakable things on mank & choss (see thought 1)

thought 3
the original inhabitants were not expected to be 'ghosts'.
we are.
we ideally 'haunt' natural areas (leaving only footprints, taking only photographs)
looking but not touching
(apart from the footprints)

thought 4
what about scree?
(ie peregrines have to deal with change even in nature)

thought 5
to become entirely ethical, climbers might also have to become an endangered species.

thought 6
we could be the last generation of humans capable of driving to crag..
why not at least enjoy it?








bob
8/05/2005
12:56:10 PM
im aganst bolting because of a bunch of resions but the one that pisses me off the most is when it's un nessaserey like that bolt i found some where right next to a nice number 7or 8 nut placement whiy i will agrey how ever in a bolt being some where where it's just blanke and theres no pro in reach (not just i can find aney place a bolt you do have to look) and i also think that on the topick of re bolting fix all the f...ed bolts just dont bugger it up aney moor and do not place aney bolts on aney climbs that have been climbed before with out them!!

there are peopple around now wanting everything bolted to make it easer fore them, esentualey make it all just like indoor lead wall to that i say poo climbing shouldnt be about showing off but having fun and the sprit of it all.

it's not realey tred climbers going bush bash it's all climberes that dont give a crap (like the scigret buts)

im goint to stop now and saugest that a new forem sechion is started "enviramentle impacts" and mabby every one can have there vues and mabby arfter a year or 2 we can put to gather a coad of cunduct that in cliusd bolting and tred climbing to gather.

bob

Phil Box
9/05/2005
8:27:21 AM
I`m going to go out on a limb here and agree with one aspect of what bob is trying to say and that is that we should have a new forum except it should be for all those people who can`t spell or use grammar to make their posts readable.

Now what the hell did bob say. Anyone wanna have a go at interpreting this bunch of drivel.

new2thegame
9/05/2005
8:51:16 AM
Regardless ,Trad, Sport, Boulder if every one just did their bit crags would be cleaner places.Who doesn't love Araps? Who loves The coloured bits of electrical tape, ciggy butts on belay ledges, chopa chupa wrappers on walk outs? The sh*t is everywhere and I keep asking myself why??? I am partial to sour squirms but not too lightening my load by leaving the bag behind . If everyone just picked up these little bits and pieces wherever they are ,its giving back to a place that gives us sooooo much and just maybe horsham city council would need to employ another worker to empty the bins in the campground they'd be so full of the stuff people carried out and we've created employment for someone.Win, win man and nature.Obviously my pet bitch.You'll recognise me with the pockets full of crap.

Rich
9/05/2005
10:40:25 AM
Ease up Phil, he's already copped it ages ago for not spelling correctly. How would you like it being in his position? Anyway I've translated for easier reading anyway. Perhaps Bob consider copying and pasting your posts into word and right-clicking all the red underlined words and selecting the correct word.. then copying and pasting it back into here.

On 8/05/2005 bob wrote:
>im aganst bolting because of a bunch of resions but the one that pisses
>me off the most is when it's un nessaserey like that bolt i found some
>where right next to a nice number 7or 8 nut placement whiy i will agrey
>how ever in a bolt being some where where it's just blanke and theres no
>pro in reach (not just i can find aney place a bolt you do have to look)
>and i also think that on the topick of re bolting fix all the f...ed bolts
>just dont bugger it up aney moor and do not place aney bolts on aney climbs
>that have been climbed before with out them!!

I'm against bolting because of a number of reasons but the one that pisses me off the most is when it's unnecessary (like that bolt I found somewhere - right next to a number 7 or 8 nut placement). Why I will agree however in a bolt being somewhere where its just blank and there's no pro in reach (not just place a bolt anywhere, you should find somewhere appropriate?) and I also think that on the topic of rebolting, fix all the f---ed bolts, just don't bugger it up any more and do not place on any climbs that have been climbed before without them!!
>
>there are peopple around now wanting everything bolted to make it easer
>fore them, esentualey make it all just like indoor lead wall to that i
>say poo climbing shouldnt be about showing off but having fun and the sprit
>of it all.

There are people around now wanting everything bolted to make it easier for them, essentially making it all just like an indoor lead wall. To that I say pooh! climbing shouldn't be about showing off but having fun and the spirit of it all.
>
>it's not realey tred climbers going bush bash it's all climberes that
>dont give a crap (like the scigret buts)
>
It's not really trad climbers going bush bashing, it's all climbers that don't give a crap. (like the cig butts).

>im goint to stop now and saugest that a new forem sechion is started "enviramentle
>impacts" and mabby every one can have there vues and mabby arfter a year
>or 2 we can put to gather a coad of cunduct that in cliusd bolting and
>tred climbing to gather.

I'm going to stop now and suggest that a new forum section is started "environmental impacts" and maybe everyone can have their views and amybe after a year or two we can put together a code of conduct that includes bolting and trad climbing together.
>
>bob

LittleJames
9/05/2005
1:38:55 PM
Hahah well translated, Rich. :)

With all respect Bob, you can't have your cake and eat it too. You can't say "I'm against bolting for a number of reasons" and then go on to add x and y qualifying arguments - "I'm totally against bolting unless there's no pro and it's not next to a crack, or I just get scared and want a rivet." Well you can, it just makes your argument look a little worse.

It seems that your ideas boil down to: stop all further bolting except blank face bolting, however any bolt that DOES exist should be refitted where necessary. Frankly you come across as uninformed and slightly arrogant - these are all issues that have been debated ad nauseum in climbing circles both local and international.

Now I'm not saying that your opinions are wrong, I happen to agree with them to a certain degree, but you might want to look into the issue a bit more. Then if you've got something useful to add to the debate, I'm sure everyone'd be happy to listen to it. Have good one. :)
kcwat
9/05/2005
3:48:14 PM
Lucky you guys did such a good job of scaring off the new person. Wouldn't want to be the new kid in school with you lot showing me around.

I agree with your points guys, but can't we have a softer approach than a brick.


"but you might want to look into the issue a bit more. Then if you've got something useful to add to the debate, I'm sure everyone'd be happy to listen to it"


The issue here is not bob's literacy skills. Its about enviromental impacts of climbers. If you have something more useful to add to the debate, I'm sure everyone would be happy to hear it.

Kris

anthonyk
9/05/2005
4:36:03 PM
i was out on a bushwalk recently and came across some really impressive cliffs out in the middle of nowhere and have been tempted to go climb them, but the very thought of putting bolts in or even chalking all over it seems like such a drastic step & i'd hate to do it. trad climbing or clean aid would be fine but i don't think i could bring myself to put in bolts, it just doesn't seem right.

if you go to a "climbing area" of course people know that hanging off a rope witha power drill is just the way it goes, its climbing space and thats what you do, but approaching new areas in the same way seems really intrusive to me.

maybe this is something along the lines of what adam was saying, about treating a place as utilitarian for climbing purposes or something you appreciate in its own right, but i think the act of drilling a bolt in a wall is a drastic step not to be taken lightly. but i guess its a bigger deal in a remote area compared to a more accessible hunk of rock, where it isn't as big an issue, but still something to consider i think.

climbers eyeing new walls with greedy eyes and power drills makes me think of frontier traders eyeing a new heard of buffalo.

Phil Box
9/05/2005
4:37:24 PM
Sorry bob, I was a bit harsh there mate. Please don`t feel put off by my abrupt manner or ahem, flames. I`ve just hung up my flame thrower never to get it out to you again bob.
bob
9/05/2005
6:50:57 PM
What I meant is bolts in blank walls are ok or it’s un safe, bolts next to nice natural placements are stupid ideas, and with all the s**t bolts that people have started replacing should be replaced because people will still use them, we shouldn’t put any bolts on climbs that don’t already have them aka bard, and I don’t think it’s necessary to turn the cliffs in to climbing gym’s for gym junkies to go gun hoo on (not that they all do)

Some one said something about all the rubbish and crap at crags possibly a good idea maybe for the vcc to organize but may a national clean up the crags day and everyone can go and clean up their favorite crag on a sat day and climb on the Sunday. “many hands make light work” and we need to do some sort of advertising and education to build people awareness/ knowledge/ respect fore the environment. So thay understand that it all amounts up and the little bit they drop (paper, buts, etc) all add up to a big s**t storm.

Bob

Thanks for the spelling rich

LittleJames
9/05/2005
6:55:57 PM
On 9/05/2005 kcwat wrote:
>I agree with your points guys, but can't we have a softer approach than
>a brick.

Sorry all - subtlety has never been one of my strong points. *Embarassed*
maxdacat
10/05/2005
1:47:54 AM
Good of somebody to bring up a discussion like this seeing as the bolting forum isn't open to general discussion. As someone who likes to do both trad and sport I wouldn't fret too much about the relative impacts of the two disciplines - just enjoy yourself and clean up afterwards. I's much rather see a nice shiny line of ring bolts and chalk marks up an otherwise unprotectable chunk of rock than a single sweet wrapper on the ground. At least with the former you know that people are taking part in a worthwhile endeavour.

Maybe I've been in Europe too long!

Rich
10/05/2005
8:01:26 PM
On 10/05/2005 maxdacat wrote:
I's much
>rather see a nice shiny line of ring bolts and chalk marks up an otherwise
>unprotectable chunk of rock than a single sweet wrapper on the ground.
> At least with the former you know that people are taking part in a worthwhile
>endeavour.
>
>Maybe I've been in Europe too long!

ditto. except europe :(

steph
11/05/2005
9:48:10 AM
>On 10/05/2005 maxdacat wrote:
>> I'd much
>>rather see a nice shiny line of ring bolts and chalk marks up an otherwise
>>unprotectable chunk of rock than a single sweet wrapper on the ground.
>> At least with the former you know that people are taking part in a worthwhile
>>endeavour.

sorry to state the obvious but i'd much rather see neither. all of the above are abuse of the cliffs we love to climb. Back to the topic, both sport and trad climbing will have an impact on crags and both involve very different outlooks to climbing. It doesn't bother me which ppl choose to practise as long as there's some care shown and not a blatant disregard to the state of the crags and their surroundings. Overall, I think climbers do a fairly good job by getting the most out of their sport without ruining all cliff faces which would b pretty easy to do.
Fish Boy
11/05/2005
10:04:00 AM
sorry steph, but i dissagree.....cliffs are trashed by no one else but climbers. Look at Araps and imagine no one had ever climbed there. Would Tannin be a chalkstained mess? Have you seen the mass of fixed garbage on a lot of the harder trad climbs....checked that funky cam on Mari? Hardley what I would call a low impact. Ever got to the top of the Organ Pipes and looked down at the mess of tracks that climbers have made? That track that looks like a car wheel track is from people walking side by side.....

I love climbing but lets not pretend we dont affect the environment in a negative manner when we choose to climb.

steph
11/05/2005
10:19:19 AM
OK i think you misunderstood my stance. (see the chalk use, bolting, litter threads)

But I reckon if you climb outdoors there's bound to be an environmental effect nomatter what and we're not doing that badly to be honest. (well those of us who LIMIT our chalk use). I was merely saying that the difference between sport and trad impacts aren't huge. Sport climbers use bolts and chalk more and trad climbers clear out choss and dirt to place gear. The impact's certainly there but I wouldn't blame one type of climbers more than another.

nmonteith
11/05/2005
10:22:30 AM
Here is a generalization for you!

Sportsters cause more damage - but usually in areas that have already felt the hand of man as they are close to civilization with short walk-ins.

Tradsters cause smaller amounts of damage - but do so in remoter and more pristine enviroments.

 Page 1 of 2. Messages 1 to 20 | 21 to 33
There are 33 messages in this topic.

 

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