Discussion: Save climbing in Victoria

  • Started: 10 weeks ago on Thu 12th Nov 2020

Public discussion This is a public discussion in Australia.

Conan Piggott started this discussion 10 weeks ago.

Save climbing in Victoria New Management Plan Revealed – Climbing Permits, 2000 routes banned, more uncertainty.

Conan Piggott replied 10 weeks ago.

Any theory's on why PV are allowing coloured chalk?? When white chalk is clearly less intrusive

David Cook replied 10 weeks ago.

I'd imagine it's an attempt to match the colour of the rock so to reduce visual impact. Not sure what happens when someone decides to bring neon green chalk to the cliff though...

Tom Hodges replied 10 weeks ago.

It is a lot more than 2000 routes banned

replied 10 weeks ago.

2,000 MORE routes banned.

Kent Paterson replied 10 weeks ago.

We are all basejumpers now.

Evan Wells replied 10 weeks ago.

Criminalising freedoms is a great revenue raiser.

Evan Wells replied 10 weeks ago.

More tin foil hat stuff of course

Mark Gamble replied 10 weeks ago.

Gvmts, empires & kingdoms have been doing this since the dawn of time Evan.

Tiburonny replied 10 weeks ago.

I don't get the coloured chalk. Why not ban chalk completely? There are plenty of regions in the world where chalk is not allowed and people have been enjoying climbing there as well. I (try to) use chalk sparingly but see plenty of people overusing it, ticking everything and I personally think it's ugly, too. I can understand why non-climber don't like it

Evan Wells replied 10 weeks ago.

So lets regress. Lest we recall.

Evan Wells replied 10 weeks ago.

I think glamping trails and excessive signage is ugly.

Tom Hodges replied 10 weeks ago.

I'm sure nobody will ever go to a lot of these places ever again. So what does it matter.

Little thanks for climbers helping to rediscover these lost places.

replied 10 weeks ago.

That's a good point Tim... One that is hard to make in public.

Ben Dickson replied 10 weeks ago.

> I don't get the coloured chalk. Why not ban chalk completely?

As far as I can find, the reasoning is never explained in any way in the management plan nor any of the supporting documents.

The closest I can find is: > "Installation of new fixed protection (bolts) or use of white chalk is not permitted under any circumstances. Temporary anchor points and coloured chalk will be permissible"

on page 9 of "Rock_Climbing_Decision_Framework_for_the_Gariwerd_landscape_Nov_2020_v3.pdf" which doesn't explain any reasoning, and misses a fairly obvious detail that white chalk is potentially the least visually impactful on some of the brighter sandstone in the area.

The "Archaeological Field Survey of Climbing Areas" does have some (utter garbage) statements about chalk:

> The impact of chalking is in some cases more damaging than graffiti because it is inherently difficult to remove and visually obscures and stains the surface of the cliff face. This is recognised in the Summerday Valley LTO permit, where use of chalk is not permitted. Further, the use of steel brushes to clean chalk from climbing areas poses a considerable risk to Aboriginal places due to its potential to abrade and damage rock art.

Aside from being easily demonstrably false, how this goes with "only use coloured chalk" recommendation does not make sense (unless the authors are trying to.. for example.. incorrectly blame the climbing community for damage to environment to distract from the construction of a large walking trail)

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Leith replied 10 weeks ago.

If a point is good it can often be said in public, however controversial it may be.

If it is poorly received, then it was either poorly justified or it wasn't a good point to begin with.

replied 10 weeks ago.

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Leith replied 10 weeks ago.

"for example.. incorrectly blame the climbing community for damage to environment to distract from the construction of a large walking trail)"

I'd disagree...

This, like "lost places" is a fairly lousy argument outside of a particular kind of climbing audience echo chamber...

The Grampians Peaks Trail is being done, at the very least in part, with the motivation of promoting Aboriginal Cultural Heritage. It's also intended to have long-term benefits to the Aboriginal community.

Contrast this with the climbing community's past attitudes on, essentially, invoking squatters' rights on cliff lines to these "lost places".

It's another one of those arguments that Goshen Watts might lament about being unfit for "public". But, they're just shitty arguments.

Tom Hodges replied 10 weeks ago.

I disagree Leith, I don't think it's an argument. I just think it is worth acknowledging. These places weren't on any register hence not being protected which was why it has taken 2 years to assess all of these places for cultural heritage. And still there are ~120 crags still to assess, if they hadn't been lost they would already know if they were significant and not need to assess them.

I totally understand why aboriginal groups want to protect these areas, it's the same reason climbers love them. They are amazing. It's just disappointing we couldn't come to a better solution than just locking climbers out.

What if we only came in from the top on all these routes and had hanging belays. Never within 5m of the ground...

Leith replied 10 weeks ago.

Ok, sure, climbing could get credit for the rediscoveries in the sense that aboriginal land rights' lobbying has used it as an impetus for large-scale cultural heritage assessments that would ordinarily be the domain of hefty building or infrastructure developments.

They're two common false equivalences for defending climbing. They've been extensively trumpeted by a few people already, but they haven't gone over very well outside of the climbing community.

  • Aboriginal groups aren't protecting / claiming these areas for the same reasons as climbers...

  • Cultural damage caused by the GPT is not equivalent to damage caused by climbing...

In terms of coming to a better solution. Yeah, I agree. Though, I think there's a perceived entitlement within the climbing community that both land managers and TOs are happy to cut down in the short-term.

At this point, a situation that was perceived as a "win" for climbing access would almost certainly be a "loss" for Aboriginal land rights politicking.

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