Aug 30, 2016
The Access Fund is an organization dedicated to keeping climbing areas open for climbers while keeping land owners happy with those climbers. Since 1981, the organization has been helping to end disputes between climbers and landowners and buying climbing land and making it available for us, among many other things. For a full history and overview of the Access Fund, go to this page.
Often unnoticed by us climbers, these passionate people have worked hard to keep places like the Red River Gorge and Hueco Tanks open to us. From their site... "Since 1990, the Access Fund has assisted with 59 acquisitions through the Access Fund Climbing Preservation Grant Program and the Access Fund Climbing Conservation Loan Program, helping to preserve over 16,303 acres of land for climbing."
See a list of their many good deeds here.
They also organize something called the Rock Project, where influential climbers teach other climbers how to responsibly and safely go from climbing in a gym setting to climbing outdoors.
This is mostly what I wanted to talk to them about, since there's a growing influx of new climbers all over the world, some of whom are doing unsafe and/or unsavory things at the cliffs.
In this interview, I talked with Brady Robinson, the Executive Director, and Travis Herbert, the Education Director of the Access Fund. We covered a lot of topics, including:
And lots of other goodies. If you're new-ish to climbing - or even if you think you know everything about etiquette, please listen to this interview.
If we all got on the same page about these things, climbing areas would be much safer and even more of a friendly place than they already are.
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