Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

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Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Sat Nov 02, 2013 7:41 am

Trail maintenance and route cleaning going on today, no one will be permited to climb, if climbers show up they will be offered a shovel to help out or turned back.

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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Shawn B » Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:14 am

I hope you were joking about this. Last time I checked the only one who could stop people from climbing at Cochrane Lane was the base. Pretty flowery and authoritative first post as Ascent NB president. Fine to advise people what is going on but perhaps a more welcoming approach would get more onboard. I couldn't make it Sat but will hopefully spend a day before the snow flies on cleaning up Simpson wall. Anyone is welcome to climb that day (I'll hang a sign advising of cleaning in progress) and if you would like to help that would also be appreciated.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby austinconrad » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:11 am

I think it's an awesome idea to mark a particular day for cleaning and get a bunch of people together to do some much needed work. I would have been there but I work on Saturdays and couldn't make it out. It just seems a little ridiculous that people should alter their plans to climb on that day just because a group of people decided it was a "cleaning day". I hope it was meant as a joke!
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby sam » Mon Nov 04, 2013 2:30 pm

I also hope this was a joke ;)
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:05 pm

I appreciate everyone’s feedback on the community-designated trail cleaning day. While I understand everyone’s concerns, I would like to reiterate a few points.

1. Ascent NB is a volunteer-driven, community-based group. The routes in Welsford are maintained and kept safe by volunteers from the climbing community. The success of Ascent NB and the quality of the routes at Welsford are dependent on all members of the climbing community pitching in and helping out where they can. A lot of the amazing climbing everyone enjoys in that area is the result of a lot of effort from people in our group. It’s really important that if you’re going to take advantage of the routes, that you try and give back to the community in some way. One excellent way to do this is to come out on clean day and lend a hand where needed.

2. The best way to clean up the routes/maintain trails is to organize one day where everyone works as a team to get the job done quickly and effectively. It’s most effective and least disruptive for those who want to climb to just have one day, and it’s safest.

3. Closing down the area for climbing means we don’t have to worry about trying to do the work around people trying to climb. It’s safest and fastest for those volunteering their time. There have been issues in the past that have reaffirmed that this is the best approach.

I hope everyone keeps in perspective that this is the one and only day of the year that we’re asking that those who take full advantage of these climbs either stay off the routes or volunteer to help out. I really can’t stress enough that Ascent NB and the caliber of our climbing area is dependent on volunteers from the climbing community.

Thank you.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Adam » Mon Nov 04, 2013 4:32 pm

Shawn B wrote:I hope you were joking about this. Last time I checked the only one who could stop people from climbing at Cochrane Lane was the base. Pretty flowery and authoritative first post as Ascent NB president. Fine to advise people what is going on but perhaps a more welcoming approach would get more onboard. I couldn't make it Sat but will hopefully spend a day before the snow flies on cleaning up Simpson wall. Anyone is welcome to climb that day (I'll hang a sign advising of cleaning in progress) and if you would like to help that would also be appreciated.


perhaps it could have been phrased differently, yeah.

as a bit of back story, last year on our trail maintenance day, several people showed up and would have hiked right past us to go climbing while we were all working hard on the trail. i forced those people to help us out for just 10 minutes, but otherwise i'm sure they would not have lent a hand. these are people who regularly go to CL to climb. we found it a kinda insulting but in the end they helped briefly and moved on to climb.

so i think Marty just wanted to prevent this from happening again and to make sure people knew that if they go to CL, they are going to be expected to help out. a reasonable expectation IMHO. but it was phrased a little hard i would agree :) Marty's a hard ass!! ha crack that whip!
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Dom » Mon Nov 04, 2013 5:14 pm

austinconrad wrote:It just seems a little ridiculous that people should alter their plans to climb on that day just because a group of people decided it was a "cleaning day".


Without realizing the implication of what you're saying, this is the essence of what you said
"I have been freeloading off the hard work of a select crew AND I believe that by not contributing at all, I am entitled to bash them if they dare to prevent me from freeloading for a single day because they decided they were going to consolidate their effort to to that single day a year for manpower availability and safety reasons."

Shawn B wrote:I hope you were joking about this. Last time I checked the only one who could stop people from climbing at Cochrane Lane was the base.


Shawn, your contribution to the climbing community is unparalleled.
That being said, I think whether or not Marty has the mandate to stop people, he or anyone that was there Saturday has the legitimacy to warn people that climbing will be closed to prevent a conflict and, especially to prevent an accident from happening as cleaning day = trundling. If we had to worry about trundling when there might be a climber here or a belayer there, the day would've been highly inefficient.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby austinconrad » Mon Nov 04, 2013 7:57 pm

Without realizing the implication of what you're saying, this is the essence of what you said
"I have been freeloading off the hard work of a select crew AND I believe that by not contributing at all, I am entitled to bash them if they dare to prevent me from freeloading for a single day because they decided they were going to consolidate their effort to to that single day a year for manpower availability and safety reasons."


I didn't want to turn this into a pissing match so please let me explain what I meant by what I said. First of all I can understand that people climbing on trail maintenance day would be insulting to those who where putting in time and effort to make CL a better place. It would be the same thing as someone showing up at rock school and wanting to jump on Snakepeel the only day when the club was using the cliffs. When you posted about the Rock School weekend you made it quite clear that the club would be using the cliffs and although you didn't own the cliffs you would like it if people stayed off them. I think if the post about trail maintenance day was worded a bit more like that and included the safety concerns a lot more people would have understood the reasoning and gotten less upset about it (including me and to be honest I wasn't even all that upset). I admit that I do use the CL cliffs often and so far I have never put in a full day to cleaning new routes or performing trail maintenance. This is mostly because I have had maybe four opportunities to get out to CL this summer. I hope to contribute more in the future. While I wasn't able to make the time commitment to contribute this year I did make a financial contribution and have some hardware in my basement if anyone needs some bolts to replace old ones or for new routes.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:47 pm

austinconrad wrote: It would be the same thing as someone showing up at rock school and wanting to jump on Snakepeel the only day when the club was using the cliffs..


NO
Benefits of Rock School is to UNB Rock and Ice members or paying participants....
Benefits Trail day is for EVERYONE!
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby austinconrad » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:09 pm

NO
Benefits of Rock School is to UNB Rock and Ice members or paying participants....
Benefits Trail day is for EVERYONE!


I think you missed the point I was trying to make. I was actually agreeing with you that a closure to climbing was justified in certain circumstances. Rock school was an example of when it is justified.That has nothing to do with who benefits from it.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Greg » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:32 pm

Marty: You don't have the authority to close the cliff to climbing.

theriault wrote:I appreciate everyone’s feedback on the community-designated trail cleaning day. While I understand everyone’s concerns, I would like to reiterate a few points.
1. Ascent NB is a volunteer-driven, community-based group. The routes in Welsford are maintained and kept safe by volunteers from the climbing community. The success of Ascent NB and the quality of the routes at Welsford are dependent on all members of the climbing community pitching in and helping out where they can. A lot of the amazing climbing everyone enjoys in that area is the result of a lot of effort from people in our group. It’s really important that if you’re going to take advantage of the routes, that you try and give back to the community in some way. One excellent way to do this is to come out on clean day and lend a hand where needed.

What you are insinuating here is that people are obligated to do something to “pay back” the sweat equity put in by some people volunteering their time to work at Cochrane Lane. This is ridiculous. The keyword is volunteer. If others want to put in time scrubbing routes and building trails that's fine. It doesn't make them owners of the property with the right to dictate terms of use to others. No one is required to participate in a trail maintenance day in return for climbing privileges.
3. Closing down the area for climbing means we don’t have to worry about trying to do the work around people trying to climb. It’s safest and fastest for those volunteering their time. There have been issues in the past that have reaffirmed that this is the best approach.

Huh? Weren’t you just cutting a new trail to Exfoliated (a good distance away from the cliff) and working on the approach to Upper Dawn Wall. I can see stopping traffic to that area but why would you have to shut down the entire cliff for safety reasons?
I hope everyone keeps in perspective that this is the one and only day of the year that we’re asking that those who take full advantage of these climbs either stay off the routes or volunteer to help out. I really can’t stress enough that Ascent NB and the caliber of our climbing area is dependent on volunteers from the climbing community.

The success of a fledgling organization such as Ascent NB would likely benefit more from a diplomatic approach by its president. You’re not exactly drumming up support with this kind of action.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby sam » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:49 pm

Greg wrote:The success of a fledgling organization such as Ascent NB would likely benefit more from a diplomatic approach by its president.


Pretty much this. You could have worded it a bit better is all ;)
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Greg » Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:19 pm

Dom wrote:
austinconrad wrote:It just seems a little ridiculous that people should alter their plans to climb on that day just because a group of people decided it was a "cleaning day".


Without realizing the implication of what you're saying, this is the essence of what you said
"I have been freeloading off the hard work of a select crew AND I believe that by not contributing at all, I am entitled to bash them if they dare to prevent me from freeloading for a single day because they decided they were going to consolidate their effort to to that single day a year for manpower availability and safety reasons."

Shawn B wrote:I hope you were joking about this. Last time I checked the only one who could stop people from climbing at Cochrane Lane was the base.


Shawn, your contribution to the climbing community is unparalleled.
That being said, I think whether or not Marty has the mandate to stop people, he or anyone that was there Saturday has the legitimacy to warn people that climbing will be closed to prevent a conflict and, especially to prevent an accident from happening as cleaning day = trundling. If we had to worry about trundling when there might be a climber here or a belayer there, the day would've been highly inefficient.

Dom: Anyone who is aware of your work at CL respects your efforts and commitment, however, keep in mind a couple of points. One, not everyone who climbs there is aware of what you, Marty and Luc have done to improve the cliff therefore you can't call them freeloaders. Two, volunteering is offering your time and efforts for free. No one told you to volunteer at CL. You saw a problem and you decided that you would try and fix it. That's awesome but it doesn't obligate others to join you or pay for what you have done. If someone wants to help out that's great but if they don't want to that is their choice and it should not be perceived as a slap in the face to the people who do volunteer their time.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Shawn B » Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:33 pm

Well said Greg. Marty why didn't you make your second post your first? A more diplomatic approach with rationale and background. Much more suiting of an elected official rather than the "drop the hammer" approach. When you sign something as president remember you are representing the organization and the members regardless of your own personal views.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Dom » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:14 pm

Greg wrote: If someone wants to help out that's great but if they don't want to that is their choice and it should not be perceived as a slap in the face to the people who do volunteer their time.


This will simply become a rhetorical battle.
I agree with you that it's your choice to volunteer or not. Some spend all their free time at food banks, food drive, etc. while others play video games and have never donated an hour in their life.
I'm not insinuating that everyone who uses the cliffs are freeloaders. The context I used the word for is nuanced, e.g.

I use mountain bike trails in Fredericton and have not spent time doing work on any of them. lots of people do and I am really grateful. If trail builders decided to close a trail one day to work on it, the last thing I would tell them is that this ridiculous because it might create an inconvenience for my ride. If I did say that, I would expect to be called a freeloader. Otherwise, I'm just a mountain biker


Now, I realize that Austin wasn't trying to create a big fuss and I usually really appreciate his or anyone's input to CEC threads but again I wouldn't criticize if I hadn't participated.

Finally, a action-packed thread on CEC :D
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby austinconrad » Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:26 pm

Finally, a action-packed thread on CEC :D


It was getting pretty dead for awhile and I need entertainment when things get slow at work :wink:
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:39 am

Dom wrote: I use mountain bike trails in Fredericton and have not spent time doing work on any of them. lots of people do and I am really grateful. If trail builders decided to close a trail one day to work on it, the last thing I would tell them is that this ridiculous because it might create an inconvenience for my ride. If I did say that, I would expect to be called a freeloader. Otherwise, I'm just a mountain biker


You just hit the point right on Dom!
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Ken P » Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:59 am

Isn't CL crown property?
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:01 am

Greg wrote:Marty: You don't have the authority to close the cliff to climbing. .


Next year I will ask Range Control to close it under "trail day", this way It wont be myself closing the area and my conscience will be clear that we wont injure a climber during the work process. This will solve this fiasco! simple and easy with my connections ... I guess a REAL form of authority will make the call
this is not a treat but an answer to the call of the community voiced here....
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:02 am

Ken P wrote:Isn't CL crown property?


No, its CFB Gagetown land
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby austinconrad » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:25 am

Now, I realize that Austin wasn't trying to create a big fuss and I usually really appreciate his or anyone's input to CEC threads but again I wouldn't criticize if I hadn't participated.


Thanks Dom I had no intention of creating a big fuss.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Ken P » Tue Nov 05, 2013 7:31 am

[quote="theriault"][quote="Ken P"]Isn't CL crown property?[/quote]

No, its CFB Gagetown land[/quote]

right
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Shawn B » Tue Nov 05, 2013 9:49 am

theriault wrote:
Dom wrote: I use mountain bike trails in Fredericton and have not spent time doing work on any of them. lots of people do and I am really grateful. If trail builders decided to close a trail one day to work on it, the last thing I would tell them is that this ridiculous because it might create an inconvenience for my ride. If I did say that, I would expect to be called a freeloader. Otherwise, I'm just a mountain biker


You just hit the point right on Dom!


Yes Dom you did hit the point right on. In your own words..."Closed "A" trail". If they said we are working on xyz trail but they closed the whole park and said you couldn't ride on any trail wouldn't you think that is encroaching on your right to enjoy a public park as you choose? You were working on Dawn Wall. Close the Dawn Wall area. When I am working on Simpson I intend to rope off the trail and put up a sign as to what is going on but someone climbing at Joe's won't affect me at all.

I would have a different view if CFB Gagetown closed it. They did this earlier this summer when they had a big training weekend and everyone gladly complied with the closure.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Shawn B » Tue Nov 05, 2013 9:56 am

theriault wrote:
Greg wrote:Marty: You don't have the authority to close the cliff to climbing. .


Next year I will ask Range Control to close it under "trail day", this way It wont be myself closing the area and my conscience will be clear that we wont injure a climber during the work process. This will solve this fiasco! simple and easy with my connections ... I guess a REAL form of authority will make the call
this is not a treat but an answer to the call of the community voiced here....


Looks to me like you are still skinning the same cat...just in a different way. If you try to rule with an iron fist I caution you may quickly lose community support going forward as an organization.

Its really not a fiasco Marty. It is just all in the approach. You will catch many more bears with honey than you will with a gun.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby *Chris* » Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:18 am

I work on trails, pick up litter at the crag, replace old anchors and fixed rope, and I volunteer my time to organizations. I do it because it makes me happy to know that my leisure time adding value to the community. I realize that time is precious and I'm sure there are people who have less of it at their disposal than I do. Volunteering time and effort isn't for everyone... and I don't begrudge those who can't do it. While it would be nice to see more climbers pitching in on the dirty work I don't let it bother me too much. So long as they appreciate the improvements we make to the crag that's good enough for me to continue. I think most volunteers see it that way.

Here's where I stand where the rubber hits the road...

1) Ascent NB is an access organization. My vote on the exec will never be in favor of any shutdown of any size or duration that isn't required by the landowner. Climbing comes first... that's the point.

2) If there is a true safety conflict with this sort of activity (trundling would be a good case), than it should be scheduled to minimize burden on the community. Midnight on a rainy weekday. If trail work is not compatible with climbing, than next year we shouldn't go ahead on a weekend afternoon. For the record, I don't think there was any safety conflict here.

3) Perhaps next year we can get more people excited about this in positive ways. I'm thinking a keg of Picaroons, dirty cheeseburgers, and swag. Maybe we use the thing as an Ascent NB fundraiser?

A lot of good discussion is happening here. Let's not loose sight of the much needed work that was completed last weekend by a solid crew. Cheers.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:33 am

Greg, I’m not insinuating that anyone is ‘obligated’ to come out during trail cleaning day. I’m pointing out that, like any volunteer organization or community-driven project, the success of maintaining the climbing area is dependent on the efforts of those who utilize it. Basically, we’d appreciate your help (although we certainly don’t expect or require it as an exchange for using CL on other days).

However, like I said, I think Dom hit the nail on the head. If you’re busy that day, fair enough. If you want to contribute some other way, that’s awesome. But if you’re going to show up on the cliffs the one day that we’ve organized a clean-up day (towards the end of the season I might add, we specifically chose a time when the area is in less in demand), then yeah, we’d expect that you give a little back to the community.

I’m certainly always open to suggestions and feedback and I apologize if the first post came off as abrupt, that certainly wasn’t my intention. However, while I will totally apologize for the presentation of the message, I’m not convinced that the content should change. We’ve designated one day of the year to clean. Regardless of your personal feeling on what is and isn’t safe, it is difficult to predict the exact timing and locations of all the work teams prior to the start of the event.

Thanks to everyone for sharing your thoughts and opinions so far. As always, everyone’s ideas and contributions are what make the New Brunswick climbing community so awesome!
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby F Côté » Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:56 am

I agree with a lot of points brought up by Norfolk and Greg.
If there is trundling happening, close off the area, not the entire cliffs.
I agree that participation should be encouraged but not forced.
There was also an incident last year where new people were going to climb at CL cliffs for the first time and some people wanted them to spend the day working on trails when they had never even seen the cliffs. Unreasonable IMO.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Stacey » Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:06 pm

*Chris* wrote:I work on trails, pick up litter at the crag, replace old anchors and fixed rope, and I volunteer my time to organizations. I do it because it makes me happy to know that my leisure time adding value to the community. I realize that time is precious and I'm sure there are people who have less of it at their disposal than I do. Volunteering time and effort isn't for everyone... and I don't begrudge those who can't do it. While it would be nice to see more climbers pitching in on the dirty work I don't let it bother me too much. So long as they appreciate the improvements we make to the crag that's good enough for me to continue. I think most volunteers see it that way.

Here's where I stand where the rubber hits the road...

1) Ascent NB is an access organization. My vote on the exec will never be in favor of any shutdown of any size or duration that isn't required by the landowner. Climbing comes first... that's the point.

2) If there is a true safety conflict with this sort of activity (trundling would be a good case), than it should be scheduled to minimize burden on the community. Midnight on a rainy weekday. If trail work is not compatible with climbing, than next year we shouldn't go ahead on a weekend afternoon. For the record, I don't think there was any safety conflict here.

3) Perhaps next year we can get more people excited about this in positive ways. I'm thinking a keg of Picaroons, dirty cheeseburgers, and swag. Maybe we use the thing as an Ascent NB fundraiser?

A lot of good discussion is happening here. Let's not loose sight of the much needed work that was completed last weekend by a solid crew. Cheers.


Great points Chris - and you are right - most who develop, clean or maintain do so because they like it...that is what is important...and as you mention - it's about the climbing, and as importantly - APPRECIATION, I feel that most climbers DO appreciate all the work that goes into maintaining a cliff, and perhaps contribute in different ways (ie. hardware, financially, etc), not everyone has the time availability to contribute as even perhaps they'd like to...


Closing an entire crag (one as large as CL) because of trail maintenance is a bit excessive. I like the idea of having an alternate day if necessary 'closure' is needed... as oppposed to a prime 'saturday' so to speak (though at least we've bumped it to November).

And an apres party is always welcomed & a a good incentive :lol:
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby theriault » Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:27 pm

Stacey wrote: I like the idea of having an alternate day if necessary 'closure' is needed... as oppposed to a prime 'saturday' so to speak (though at least we've bumped it to November).


Prime Saturday?? We always do it in November to try to NOT do it when the climbing is good...that's the point. Where you out climbing on that said day? there a LOT of other crags in NB. Not trying to do a personal attack (sorry Stacey :mrgreen: ) here but I don't think the day that was picked was the issue on this debate.
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Re: Cochrane Lane cliffs CLOSED today for Maintenance

Postby Dom » Tue Nov 05, 2013 1:10 pm

This is one day of year where the crag is reserved for Cleaning routes and doing trail maintenance.
The idea is if you want to come and clean a route, you can do so without worrying about people below you. Sure, we all ended up at Lower Dawn but if someone wanted to clean Granite Planet for instance, then this would've been the day to do it. Go up and trundle away without worrying that you might kill someone below you.

I have been a witness of trundling on a beautiful Saturday or Sunday at CL where there was no warning that this trundling was going to occur. Dogs were running below the cliffs and near-misses happened. IMO this is the stupidest thing a climber can do while at the cliff. The idea behind "closing" CL for a day is to avoid these near-misses and potential fatal accidents.

Some say there was no safety hazard on Saturday. Sure, maybe -(although if someone sneaked up below Dawn wall, things could've been bad) but the idea is to reserve that time slot for once a year where people can legitimately trundle and therefore minimize the risks of a fatal trundling accident.

What's more, for the 3rd year in a row we selected a day in November because: 1. The season is pretty much over and 2. It's warm enough that people will show up to help.

That is the idea.

Sure some here will question our decision to close down the cliff for a single day in November, but unfortunately some of them are the very same climbers who will not hesitate to trundle on a beautiful Saturday.
If I have the choice between having the dangers of someone trundling on me on a beautiful Saturday or being inconvenienced by a one day closure of CL, I am picking the second option.
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