Jailhouse Unlocked: Community helps Access Fund reach initial fundraising goal

Date: 2/25/2011

The Access Fund is thrilled to announce the completion of the initial fundraising phase for Jailhouse Rock. In just over two months, climbers and conservationists from California and beyond have raised over $49,000—exceeding our initial fundraising goal.

In November of last year, the Access Fund announced that a permanent access easement and conservation easement had been secured to Jailhouse Rock near Sonora, California through the Access Fund Land Conservation Campaign. However more help was needed from the climbing community to raise funds to create a new access point, trailhead, parking facilities, and ensure long-term conservation.

Since the initial fundraising phase, the landowners have requested toilet facilities for Jailhouse Rock, and with input from the climbing community Access Fund is exploring the best option for these facilities. Access Fund has applied for a grant from a conservation foundation to cover a portion of the toilet facility costs. The application is pending. Stay tuned to www.accessfund.org/jailhouse for updates.

The Access Fund would like to extend a heartfelt thanks to everyone who generously opened their wallets to make this victory happen. A special thanks to Tom Addison for his fundraising leadership, Planet Granite and Touchstone Climbing and Fitness, as well as all of our corporate partners who donated raffle items. “We are so impressed by the spirit and generosity of the community coming together to protect a threatened crag,” says Access Director Joe Sambataro. Individual donations for Jailhouse Rock will still be accepted and put toward long-term stewardship of the area.

The existing parking area and access trail will remain open for the immediate future. The Access Fund will be working with local climbers and the landowners this year to install a new gate, parking area, and trailhead, at which point the old access route will be restored to natural conditions and closed. At that time, climbers will need a gate code to access the cliffs, since the area is leased for grazing horses. Stay tuned for updated access information, including the code and important conditions of access, www.accessfund.org/jailhouse.