2015 Recap: These are some of the things that the Washington Climbers Coalition was involved in last year:
Index: WCC Involved in Managing Climbing Area. In late summer the WCC helped educate climbers about a closure after a fire broke out above a cliff called “The Cheeks.” In September, over 100 volunteers worked on trails, removed graffiti, and learned about stewardship as part of the ROCK Project tour and 2nd annual Index Climbers Festival. We continue to work with Snohomish County on wetland and permitting issues for a permanent vault toilet.
Mazama: Forest Service Approved New Access Trail. Earlier this year, the United States Forest Service undertook environmental review and approved the construction of a new climbers’ access trail to serve a new crag called “The Matrix.” In May the WCC joined climbers from the Methow Valley and the National Forest Foundation in a Forest Service trail project. A great new crag is open for climbing.
Darrington: Road and Trails Maintained by Volunteers. The WCC joined The Mountaineers, Friends for Public Use, and Darrington townspeople in trail projects and volunteer road repair efforts here this year. Volunteering helps build good will with local communities and land managers and also helps us get where we want to go.
Beacon Rock: Climbing Plan Update. The climbing management plan at Beacon Rock State Park hasn’t been updated in 18 years. Washington State Parks has re-convened a Technical Rock Climbing Advisory Committee to work with Parks on updating the plan. The WCC is on the committee. Key issues include the seasonal nesting closure, route maintenance, new routes, and a nearby bouldering area.
North Bend: DNR Hosts Trail Project Serving Climbers and Hikers. Washington Department of Natural Resources teamed up with Mountains to Sound Greenway and Washington Trails Association to develop a trail in the area climbers call “the Far Side.” The Washington Climbers Coalition, Access Fund, Vertical World and American Alpine Club volunteered for two days in June. Access to the area is improving.
Goldbar: Working Relationship Continues. DNR is thinning timber at the Goldbar Boulders but they have agreed to leave some trees shading popular boulders and they will allow climbers to maintain staging areas and approach trails. Look forward to volunteer opportunities there in 2016.