Climbing Opportunities Expanded at Mission Trails Regional Park San Diego, CA

Date: 11/19/2008

By Tom Donnelly, Access Fund Regional Coordinator and Allied Climbers of San Diego member

In September the Allied Climbers of San Diego (ACSD) attended a Mission Trails Regional Park (MTRP) Task Force meeting to voice concerns over recent changes to the Park Master Plan draft. Proposed language included text that specifically limited rock climbing to only one areathe Mission Gorge area of the park to the west-facing side of Kwaay Paayand officially banned climbing elsewhere within the park limits. ACSD felt this language too restrictive and should be removed to allow consideration of climbing in various areas throughout MTRP.

The MTRP voted to incorporate ACSDs request to remove the restrictive language that limited climbing; additional language was included that should benefit the climbing community in the future. A programmatic EIR (Environmental Impact Report) is being prepared in conjunction with the MTRP Master Plan which will evaluate other climbing opportunities within Mission Trails Regional Park. This is wonderful news, to say the least, and is the first step in building positive relationships with the MTRP Citizens Advisory Committee and park staff as we look to the future to create additional "responsible" climbing opportunities within the park. Don't plan on any of these additional climbing opportunities becoming available immediately, but do plan on rolling up our collective sleeves as there will be plenty of work ahead as we move forward and assist the park with the planning and operational logistics. Climbers and the park staff will need to work together to make these "opportunities" a reality! Thank you to everyone who signed the petition. Your signatures-your voices-were heard! For more information, see http://alliedclimbers.org/mtrp.php