A Call to Climbers: Help Shape The Future of Access Fund

Categories: Perspectives , Community

When Access Fund began the work of protecting America’s climbing nearly 30 years ago, nobody could possibly have imagined that climbing would be this popular—that young climbers from around the world would be thrust onto the Olympic stage, or that there would be a climbing gym in every corner of America. But here we are. Our world is changing quickly. And now, we need your input to shape the future of Access Fund.

© Chayce Lanphear

Over the last year, we’ve been talking to climbers all around the country about the future of climbing. What are you excited about? What worries you? What do you want the future of climbing to look like? In asking these questions, we’ve tapped into a well-spring of passion from our community.

We’ve heard concerns that our growing community poses serious threats to some of our most treasured landscapes. We’ve also heard concerns about the political attacks on our public lands, and the potential threats to access looming on the horizon. And we’ve heard questions and excitement around the diversification of our climbing community.

Folks around the country see many shades of grey in how these trends and issues impact the future of climbing, but there is a strongly shared sense that we are at a pivotal moment in time. What comes next?

One thing is certain. Despite all of these changes, Access Fund’s mission is still crystal clear: to protect America’s climbing. We will not waver in that focus.

But how we best achieve that mission will need to evolve. As the organization that represents all climbers across the country—and there are millions of you out there—we must adapt as our community grows and the world around us changes. We will need to think about our work in new ways. We will need to deploy our resources in new and different places. There are sure to be new threats and opportunities we haven’t even thought of yet.

Because we represent you—American climbers—this work begins by listening. We want to hear what you think, what is important to you, and where you see Access Fund going in the years ahead to most effectively protect our treasured climbing areas. We want to take your input and your ideas into our upcoming strategic planning process, in early 2020, as we tackle these important questions and chart our next 5-10 years.

Please take 10-15 minutes to complete our Future of Climbing Survey and help us get a picture of who we are as a climbing community and what challenges lay ahead. And give us your honest feedback on how Access Fund is doing, where we can do better, and what we are doing well.

Credit Photo Courtesy of:
Jerry Dodrill | Sierras, CA

Take the Future of Climbing Survey

Take Survey

After completing the survey, you’ll have the opportunity to enter to win a free sport climbing package from our partners at Petzl, including a harness, GriGri, locking biner, quickdraws, and a helmet!

Thank you for supporting Access Fund and for everything else you do to protect and steward our special places for current and future generations. The challenges are real, but if we come together as a community and lay out a concrete plan of action, we will look back one day and be proud of what we’ve accomplished and what we’ve been able to pass on to the next generation. And we’ll have a good time doing it.

Chris Winter is Executive Director of Access Fund. He provides strategic leadership and manages organizational health, working with the board of directors, staff, and partners to fulfill on Access Fund's mission to keep climbing areas open and conserve the climbing environment.