Things are really cooking in our efforts to increase climbing access in SC--I apologize for not being more persistent with getting the word out. In the past few months we’ve met with executive staff of SC’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Parks, Recreation, and Tourism (PRT) about bouldering and climbing potential on lands they manage. They are really interested in opening up some areas and are excited about partnering with the CCC.
DNR has essentially given permission to allow bouldering in the Jocassee Gorges wilderness area. We are treating this as “hiking on rocks” and will be permitted to do so as long as climbers’ impact doesn’t draw too much time and effort away from their mandated responsibilities (i.e., hunting and fishing management). We are pulling together some information regarding areas and access and hope to have it posted soon. They too are interested in piloting some roped climbing and we’re in the process of identifying and analyzing a particular cliff.
Though many state parks managed by PRT have climbing potential our initial focus will be Keowee-Toxaway and Table Rock. This week we hiked and bushwhacked around identifying areas that would be of interest to climbers and boulderers. There are many (http://www.flickr.com/photos/bradscott/ ) and we need to work out access, impact and management issues.
In the meantime I promise to do better with updates. These agencies know that climbers tend to be smarter, better organized, and more ecologically conscious than the average user group; we need to uphold this perspective as we begin using these resources and contributing to their maintenance.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments and please (PLEASE!) no trespassing/poaching until we get things legit.
PS—When I’ve been stating “we”, Brad Caldwell (AKA Phoenix Fire) has been the primary “other” whose local knowledge and personable style have been invaluable. Thank you dude!