This is a great way to start the New Year: For the second year in a row, Friends of Pinnacles has been awarded a rebolting grant from the Access Fund. This year we received $444, which will keep us in bolts, hangers and drill bits for a while. Not to mention allowing us to purchase some of the newer technologies for more effective bolt removal.
This is the second year that the Access Fund has conducted the program, which includes dividing $10,000 between qualified rebolting projects. This year 15 projects were approved.
Friends of Pinnacles would like to express its sincere gratitude to the Access Fund for supporting our ongoing rebolting efforts in such a direct fashion.
Okay. Enough talk. We need to get out to the crags and replace some bolts!
For more information see the Access Fund's Web site.
If you climb regularly at the Pinnacles, you have no doubt heard about, and maybe even seen, the rare and amazing Condor. When you are half way up a climb and one of these birds comes anywhere near you, you are suddenly acutely aware of their incredible size. In the presence of these giants I start to feel like a Condor "snack"!
But I digress, this announcement is really about the lifting of the "special" Machete condor closure. The fledgling Condor that was residing there has grown big enough to no longer need the additional protections. While this is great news for climbers, it's really incredible news for all of us: this is the first successful, wild fledging of a condor in over 100 years.
A special shout out to Gavin Emmons, our own Raptor Biologist for his ongoing efforts; the effect of which cannot be overstated.
Let me be so bold as to speak for the entire Pinnacles climbing community and say "Best Of Luck" to our new condor pal... where ever he may be flying.
The National Park Service is about to issue a new Director's Order (DO) that could threaten climbing on National Park land.
According to an article on the Access Fund Web site:
A series of events at the National Park Service has resulted in a DO (Director Order) that could lay the groundwork for restrictions or prohibitions of climbing within the National Parks.
The Access Fund is working with its partners to submit comments on DO #100. The 30-day window for public comment ends on November 18th. You can also make comments on your own.
Once you've read the DO you can go here to leave your comment.
Remember to keep comments courteous, and offer suggestions and alternatives. The public comment period is not the place for complaints. It is FOP's goal to maintain excellent relations with the NPS by keeping the dialog open and productive. In this way we will continue to keep climbing available at Pinnacles National Park.
Heads up climbers,
For the first time, that we can remember, we have a mandatory climbing closure outside of the normal closures season.
The south end of Machete is still under mandatory closure, and will remain so until further notice. This is not just a climbing advisory - this applies to all human activities.
Turns out this is actually GREAT news. Why? Well, there is a condor nest near Old Original and the condor crew folks are maintaining the closure until the condor young has a chance to fly more confidently in the area. This is a HUGE deal - the first successful condor nest at Pinnacles in over a hundred years, and on the centennial year of the National Park Service.
Gavin Emmons (Park Biologist and Raptor Expert) estimates the closure will be lifted by December, but check in with the Park or with us before making any plans to climb Machete. Things can change quickly.
The actual closure applies to the south end of Machete (from just past Corona / Destiny and wrapping around to include Derringer, Old Original, and Hideout). Signs are posted.
If you get a chance you might send a congratulatory note to Gavin and share in the excitement of this monumental event.