Access Fund and American Alpine Club Announce First Round of Anchor Replacement Fund Grant Awards

October 14, 2015

October 14, 2015. Boulder, CO – The Access Fund and American Alpine Club are pleased to announce the first-ever grant round for the new Anchor Replacement Fund. During this round, we have awarded a total of $10,000 to seventeen anchor replacement projects across the country. The new grant program was launched earlier this year to address the growing concerns of anchor failure and the access issues that could result from these incidents. Across the United States, bolts installed in the 80s and 90s are aging, and there is an immediate need to address inadequate fixed anchors and increase support for local and national partners leading these efforts. This program is made possible by the generous support of Climb Tech, Petzl, and Trango.  We are pleased to announce funding for the following worthy projects.

AAC Colorado Climbing Posse
We are pleased to award funding to the AAC Colorado Climbing Posse to support fixed anchor replacement in Clear Creek Canyon, one of the most popular Colorado Front Range climbing areas. The project will focus on High Wire, a popular crag that receives a lot of climber traffic. A team of experienced anchor replacement volunteers will lead the effort, and priority will be given to replacing top-anchors then selected protection bolts.

Boise Climber’s Alliance
Boise Climber’s Alliance (BCA) was awarded funding to support their fixed anchor replacement project at Black Cliffs and Short Cliffs in southern Idaho, outside of Boise. BCA will focus their work on worn and outdated top-anchors and protection bolts. BCA is a grassroots local climbing organization working to steward and protect Boise area climbing resources.

Boulder Climbing Community
Boulder Climbing Community (BCC) was awarded funding to support long-term bolt replacement work in Colorado’s Boulder Canyon, an area with more than 2,000 routes. BCC intends to replace bolts in the most sustainable fashion possible by removing and reusing holes, as well as installing hardware that is replaceable for the next generation. 

Clifton Climber’s Alliance
We are pleased to award funding to Clifton Climber’s Alliance (CCA) to support their efforts to replace all non-stainless or inadequate hardware at Eagle Bluff in central Maine. Their work will update more than 70 fixed anchors with ½” stainless steel bolts. Last year CCA and Access Fund worked together to acquire and permanently protect Eagle Bluff.

Climbing Association of Southern Arizona
Climbing Association of Southern Arizona (CASA) was awarded funding to support a long-term anchor replacement project on Mt. Lemmon, a vast climbing area with thousands of routes. CASA will focus its efforts on the mountain’s most popular, high-traffic routes. CASA maintains a successful working partnership with Coronado National Forest, who owns and manages Mt. Lemmon.

Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont
We are pleased to award funding to Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont (CRAG-VT) to support ongoing anchor replacement work at Bolton Valley crags. Volunteers will focus on re-using old bolt holes whenever possible and will replace outdated or inappropriate hardware with sustainable, long-lasting glue-in bolts. CRAG-VT is a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of Vermont’s climbing resources.

East Idaho Climber’s Coalition
East Idaho Climber’s Coalition (EICC) was awarded funding to support ongoing fixed anchor replacement work at Massacre Rocks. Their project will tackle replacement of aging, outdated hardware on 50 of the area’s most popular routes at crags like Le Petite Covette, All American Area, and Red Light District.

East Tennessee Climbers’ Coalition
We are pleased to award funding to East Tennessee Climbers’ Coalition (ETCC) to support their ongoing anchor replacement work in the Obed Wild and Scenic River area of Tennessee. ETCC has already replaced 300 of an estimated 4,000 fixed anchors in the Obed. The grassroots organization maintains a longstanding partnership with Obed’s National Park Service managers, performing a wide variety of stewardship work through their annual Adopt a Crag event.

Friends of Pinnacles
Friends of Pinnacles (FoP) was awarded funding to support ongoing anchor replacement work in California’s Pinnacles National Monument. Founded in 1989, FoP has maintained a successful working partnership with land managers at Pinnacles, working to address climbing access, stewardship, education, and fixed anchors. Since 1991, FoP has replaced more than 500 bolts in the Pinnacles by hand drill, in compliance with land management policy.

Northern Colorado Climbers Coalition
We are pleased to award funding to Northern Colorado Climbers Coalition (NCCC) to support replacement of high-use top-rope anchors at Cat’s Eye and Bolt Wall at Horsetooth Reservoir in Colorado. Funding will also support NCCC’s ongoing replacement work at other Ft. Collins-area crags. NCCC is a leading grassroots local climbing organization, protecting and stewarding the many climbing resources of Colorado’s northern Front Range.

North Idaho Climbers Alliance
North Idaho Climbers Alliance (NICA) was awarded funding to support anchor replacement at Laclede, a popular crag especially suited to beginning climbers. Work will focus specifically on the Red Wall, Upper Main Wall, Lower Main Wall, and West End Cliff. NICA is a grassroots local climbing organization focusing on climbing stewardship in Idaho’s panhandle.

Red River Gorge Fixed Gear Initiative
We are pleased to award funding to the Red River Gorge Fixed Gear Initiative (RRG FGI) to support their ongoing work to replace rusty, aging fixed anchors throughout the Red River Gorge. RRG FGI is a grassroots organization that partners with the climbing industry, local community, and route equippers to ensure fixed anchors in Red River Gorge are of the highest standard.

Rumney Climbers Association
Rumney Climbers Association (RCA) was awarded funding to support replacement of worn top-anchors on Rumney’s extremely popular routes. RCA will utilize stainless steel pig-tail systems as a more sustainable solution for high-use top-anchors that are wearing far too quickly. Rumney is owned and managed by White Mountain National Forest, and RCA maintains a strong and successful partnership with them.

Salt Lake Climbers Alliance
Salt Lake Climbers Alliance (SLCA) was awarded funding to support anchor replacement in Big Cottonwood Canyon. The project builds off of SLCA’s recent success in American Fork, where they upgraded anchors on 28 popular routes. The work in Big Cottonwood will be coordinated by SLCA’s new Wasatch Anchor Replacement Initiative, which is also working on a Wasatch Best Practices Handbook to address important considerations for anchor replacement and route development in their area.

Southern Utah Climber’s Association
We are pleased to award funding to the Southern Utah Climber’s Association (SUCA) for ongoing anchor replacement work in Utah Hills climbing areas. SUCA’s work will cover crags such as Black and Tan, Kelly’s Rock, Gorilla, Simean Complex, and Soul Asylum. SUCA is a local climbing organization that leads regular stewardship and partnership projects with the BLM. The group has already helped replace over 800 anchors in the St. George region.

Telluride Mountain Club
Telluride Mountain Club (TMC) in Colorado was awarded funding to support anchor replacement projects at Ophir Wall and Cracked Canyon, some of Telluride’s most historic climbing areas. Replacement work will be coordinated through TMC’s Anchor Replacement Committee. TMC works to preserve and enhance public access to human-powered recreation including hiking, backcountry skiing and boarding, mountaineering, climbing, and other mountain-related recreation.

Washington State Anchor Replacement Project
We are pleased to award funding to Washington State Anchor Replacement Project (WARP) to support ongoing anchor replacement work across Washington State. WARP presently focuses their efforts in the Seattle metro region at areas like Little Si, Exit 38, and Index, as well as in the Cascades at areas such as Leavenworth, Washington Pass, and Stuart Range.

About Access Fund
The Access Fund is the national advocacy organization that keeps climbing areas open and conserves the climbing environment. Founded in 1991, the Access Fund supports and represents millions of climbers nationwide in all forms of climbing: rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering, and bouldering. Six core programs support the mission on national and local levels: climbing policy and advocacy, stewardship and conservation, local support and mobilization, land acquisition and protection, risk management and landowner support, and education. For more information, visit www.accessfund.org.

About The American Alpine Club
The American Alpine Club is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization whose vision is a united community of competent climbers and healthy climbing landscapes. Together with our members, the AAC advocates for American climbers domestically and around the world; provides grants and volunteer opportunities to protect and conserve the places we climb; hosts local and national climbing festivals and events; publishes two of the world’s most sought-after climbing annuals, the American Alpine Journal and Accidents in North American Mountaineering; cares for the world’s leading climbing library and country’s leading mountaineering museum; manages the Hueco Rock Ranch, New River Gorge Campground, and Grand Teton Climbers’ Ranch as part of a larger lodging network for climbers; and annually gives $80,000+ toward climbing, conservation, and research grants that fund adventurers who travel the world. Learn about additional programs and become a member at www.americanalpineclub.org.