17 Down Under:
17 DOWN UNDER. "A celebration of moderate grade climbing in Victoria". 184 pages. 285 images. Father & son team, Steve & John Morris, embark on a journey to climb and photograph 50 of the best rock climbs in Victoria, grade 17 & under. Inc bookmark $50.00
First of all, I've read this whole thread three times and didn't hear anyone say how they thought these bolts are an awesome addition to the crag. I heard varying degrees of people trying to be nice about it and one guy who could care less. Frankly, I wouldn't expect those bolts to remain for long and the honorable thing to do would actually be to clean and patch them yourself and save someone else the time and effort.
"I have no idea who you are, how you were introduced to climbing, who you climb with, and what your experience has been".
I laughed out loud! Like he said, the climbing community is extremely small. I've never met Stu or know how he started climbing either but I still could have predicted exactly what his reaction would be to this thread and I still know his character well enough that I'd sit in a tent with him for a month and expect to have a laugh. I know because we're monkeys in a pack and monkeys have friends and monkeys talk because they're packs of monkeys. That's why it's a bit funny when you have a whinge about avatars and anonymity. We all basically know each other and if we don't we just ask someone else.
For my part, I started climbing somewhere with a strong mountain tradition and where climbing is a mentoring pursuit. We don't even have outdoor education in Utah because everybody actually does stuff in the outdoors. My dad had me crawling up rocks I shouldn't have been carrying fishing gear and guns by the time I was about 10. When you're fifteen and psyched on roped climbing you don't get taken out by ghastly knuckleheads from TAFE, you get taken out by a gruff bearded dude in his 50's called Jack that you met when you walked up to the base of the cliff to have a look around. He teaches you how to not kill yourself, respect the mountains, and then imparts the knowledge you need when you need it. When you have questions or want to know if you should splash bolts across those obvious and classic unclimbed boulders on the approach you call him and he kindly explains that, sure, you are free to do such a thing but it is probably not a good idea and the community might collectively frown. Then he'd take you out, have you set them up as a TR, and climb them with you. As was noted above, rigging safe TRs is the first thing noobs should be doing anyway.
I think it is worth considering that people like Geoff Gledhill have been eagerly scouring Buffalo for new routes for almost fifty years. I've been dragged along so you can trust me that he has been everywhere and looked at just about everything. He and others have looked at those faces hundreds of times and prudently decided not to bolt them if they even consciously considered it. The British figured out a long time ago that if you bolt everything down to your level then there will be no projects left when standards advance in the future. There are loads of classic hard routes in the UK that have been TRed but haven't had a "first ascent" because no one has been willing to drag a rope up it and tape a hook on the only flake. There's also loads of "routes" that have been climbed silently and people walked away because they were just out bouldering or monkeying around. In Yosemite it is said that "If you can't climb it, don't".
"so I hope those who decide something needs removing show logic and restraint, and donít just think out of self interests or personal disdain for bolts."
An ironic statement because, had you asked me beforehand, I would have advised you to use some logic and restraint and don't just think out of self interest or your affection for the ease of clipping bolts. Make sure your additions don't detract; you lose nothing by walking away and leaving the rock exactly as others have. The Horn is actually my favorite scrambling crag in Oz and, if you count down climbing, I would have done the Pintle more than twenty times in an evening and often climb up there by moonlight. I know its features fairly well. I'm also comfortable third classing onsight to around 18 so any feature up there that is attractive enough to climb and on good rock then there is a high probability I've been over it. Harder or marginal stuff I simply drop a rope down it and TR. Throw a 70 off the top and climb wherever you want with a directional or two, it's pretty fun! I climb by myself because I don't like to talk about it but my point to you is simply that just because there are no bolts, anchors, or names in a book doesn't mean a face hasn't been or does not get climbed and enjoyed thoroughly in its current state. The rocks have a lot of stories to tell from before you came and when you're not there and they are going to have a lot more in the future.
Additionally, I agree about the potential ranger/park issue if bolts get sprayed around too much. Ranger Johnny never cares until the monkeys don't police themselves properly and keep it all low key. Then they decide to care and things are never the same again. There is a balance there that the community tries to maintain.
It's clear that you're keen on climbing, Andrew, but you present yourself as being quite unfamiliar with it.
Rock is scarce in Oz, tread lightly.
The Pintle LHV, direct sit start to the body sloper (unrated and doesn't need a bolt)