Access Fund Awards Over $31,000 in Climbing Conservation Grants

Access Fund is pleased to announce that it has just awarded more than $31,000 in Climbing Conservation Grants to support 12 worthy projects across the country—including parking lot build-outs, kiosks, land acquisition costs, LCO start-up fees, trail erosion mitigation, and graffiti removal. Access Fund has awarded over $60,000 in total this year to support local climbing communities with projects that preserve or enhance climbing in the United States. Since 1991, Access Fund has awarded more than $1.3 million for 423 local projects in 42 states.

Lone Peak Cirque, Utah. Ancestral lands of the Ute, Goshute, Eastern Shoshone © Andrew Burr

Carolina Climbers Coalition: Bald Mountain Creek Preserve Parking Lot & Signage
Carolina Climbers Coalition (CCC) was awarded funds to build out a parking lot and install educational signage at Bald Mountain Creek Preserve outside Burnsville, North Carolina. The area is home to 45+ boulders, with approximately 250 problems spread across three different boulder fields. However, these boulders are currently inaccessible due to a lack of public parking.

Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont: Bolton Dome Final Capital Campaign
Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont (CRAG-VT) was awarded funding to help complete its loan payments on the Bolton Dome property in Bolton, Vermont. Since opening in 2019, the area has become the most popular climbing resource in northwestern Vermont, featuring routes ranging from 5.3 to 5.13.

Durango Climbers Coalition: LCO Start-Up and Stewardship of Dalla Mountain Park
Durango Climbers Coalition (DCC) was awarded grant funding for nonprofit filing fees and website development to formalize itself as a nonprofit local climbing organization. A multitude of land management agencies in the region have been searching for a central point of contact in the local climbing community, and this funding will allow DCC to solidify its leadership in the region.

Kānaka Climbers: Opening New Climbing in Hawaii
Kānaka Climbers was awarded funding to help conduct an archaeological inventory to determine the location of cultural resources and maintain and mitigate damages to those cultural sites near climbing areas. The hope is to create a better relationship with the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), state land managers, and the local community.

Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition: Coal Bank Road Repair
The Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition was awarded funding to make essential access-road repairs to the popular Coal Bank Hollow crag. The access road currently prevents passage for some climber vehicles due to its rough nature. This project aims to fix these problems through the installation of culverts, digging of drainage ditches, the addition of gravel substrate, and overall grading of the roadbed.

Rocky Mountain Field Institute: Conservation and Stewardship of Indian Creek Canyon
Rocky Mountain Field Institute (RMFI) was awarded funding to address the proliferation of visitor-created trails, which are causing significant erosion and other natural resource damage at this world-class climbing destination. They will also conduct trail maintenance and construct belay platforms at Supercrack and Donnelly. RMFI is also working closely with Texas Tech University to invite students to spend their spring break completing stewardship work alongside RMFI staff at Indian Creek.

Rumney Climbers Association: Orange Crush Trail Work
Rumney Climbers Association (RCA) was awarded funding to reroute the trail at the base of the popular Orange Crush wall to a more sustainable and less dangerous path. Orange Crush is home to one of Rumney’s most iconic climbs, Predator, along with a host of other high-quality routes. The steep base at Orange Crush has led to high amounts of erosion, including an exposed 4th class scramble on tree roots, which will be rerouted.

Salt Lake Climbers Alliance: Jacob’s Ladder Reroute to Lone Peak Cirque
The Salt Lake Climbers Alliance (SLCA) was awarded funding to help construct a three-mile trail reroute to improve access to Lone Peak Cirque, a prominent feature that can be seen from north Salt Lake City to Provo and attracts both climbers and hikers. The proximity to a major urban area and the growth of climbing in the last decade have greatly accelerated use of this multiuse approach trail. Currently, hikers and climbers ascend a steep trail as they approach Lone Peak Cirque. This project will address the worst part of this approach, where a 1.3-mile section known as Jacob’s Ladder currently gains 2,200 feet, with an average grade of 32 percent.

Southeast Wyoming Climbers Coalition: Formalize Southeast Wyoming Climbers Coalition
The Southeast Wyoming Climbers Coalition (SWCC) was awarded funding to cover the cost of filing as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and for website development to formally establish itself as a nonprofit local climbing organization. Despite a storied climbing history at Vedauwoo, the region has never had a local climbing organization, and the need was made urgent when Medicine Bow-Routt National Forest began a recreation planning process that will impact climbing at Vedauwoo. As an established organization, SWCC will be able to secure a seat at the table to help plan for sustainable climbing at Vedauwoo.

Southeastern Climbers Coalition: Woodcock Cove Access Ladders
Southeastern Climbers Coalition (SCC) was awarded funding to create a more sustainable access system for the recently acquired Woodcock Cove in Tennessee. The approach to one of the prime cliff lines, featuring an aesthetic 75-foot sandstone pillar, descends through a steep corridor covered in loose soil with a high risk of erosion. In order to minimize environmental impact, SCC will replace the existing hand-lines with two fabricated aluminum ladders before the anticipated opening of the crag to the public.

The Teton Climbers’ Coalition: LCO & Adopt a Crag Support
The newly launched Teton Climbers’ Coalition (TCC) was awarded funding to formalize its operations and enhance communication with local climbers through a new website, signage, and stewardship funds. TCC will host two Adopt a Crag events at Rodeo Wall to build a new access trail.

Tunnel Springs Project Team and Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico: Graffiti Removal
The Tunnel Springs Project team was awarded funding for graffiti removal at the Tunnel Springs area of New Mexico, which is home to several recreational opportunities, including a climbing and rappelling area. The area is currently plagued with graffiti and trash, and the Tunnel Springs Project Team will use funds to clean up the area.

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