Somewhere above, Trad stated: The access society has done nothing to protect the rights of climbers in Squamish anyhow. And with what goes on in Powell River shows the real angenda of the access society.
I don’t know who Trad is, or his/her perspective. I was formerly very active in the Access Society, but am no longer, and do not speak for it. Still, I believe Trad may be misinformed, and that such a statement cannot go unanswered.
It’s unclear which Access Society Trad is referring to. There are:
1. The Access Fund (U.S. organization, founded 1990).
2. Climbers’ Access Society of B.C. (known as the Access Society, and founded 1995 - the organization I was involved with).
3. Climbers’ Access Society of Alberta (founded 2006).
4. Ontario Access Coalition (founded ~2007).
5. Squamish Access Society (founded ~2006).
At least when it comes to names of climbers’ groups, imitation appears to be the sincerest form of flattery - although it can be confusing. I’ll assume that the reference is to the Access Society - that’s what the context suggests. That organization did first use Access Society, well before any others.
It is absurd to claim that the Access Society has done nothing to protect the rights of climbers in (at ?) Squamish. Trad may disagree with the results, or feel different things should have been done. If so, I hope that Trad has or will put some effort into making the desired change, that being how democracy works. Anonymous vague gripes aren’t very constructive.
A partial list of what the Access Society has done at Squamish:
1. Led the successful opposition to the proposed Stawamus Chief gondola in 2004.
2. Participated in the planning processes that led to creation of Stawamus Chief Provincial Park, established a master plan for it, and a recreational climbing strategy.
3. Attended innumerable meetings with B.C. Parks, Ministry of Forests, and District of Squamish staff relating to issues in the area.
4. Initiated creation of what is now the Little Smoke Bluffs parking lot.
5. Lobbied steadily for creation and then management of the Little Smoke Bluffs park, eventually with success.
6. Organized numerous volunteer stewardship events (Adopt-a-Crags).
7. Was a partner in various events (Kurt Smith’s Kicking Access in 2002, the Petzl Roc Trip in 2005, the Squamish Climbers Festival in 2006, the Squamish Mountain Festival in 2007, and others) to increase the profile of climbing, fundraise, and do projects.
8. Built toilets and trails, and looked after them.
9. Published information about what was being done, and current issues - newsletter, e-mails, website. Media relations, too.
10. Addressed issues as they arose - movies, peregrines, hydro poles, forest fire closures, Malemute, Papoose access trail, highways, etc etc.
11. Supporting and working with local climbers, always a high priority.
The list could be much longer. And there’s been lots of help and support - perhaps it’s something in the water or something.
All that, and also simply being a single, credible organization speaking on behalf of all the climbers of B.C., and all those interested in public access to, and conservation of, the cliffs and mountains of B.C. What happens at Squamish is often much more than local, in terms of the climbing world.
As for agendas at Powell River - well, there are about 30 climbers gathered this weekend in the Eldred Valley, in the name of the Access Society and the climbing community there, for their annual Adopt-a-Crag. They’re doing a bunch of trail work, raising the profile of the area, and having some fun. The established campground is recognized as a recreation site, but is threatened by powerlines from a mini-hydro development.