No one loves our climbing landscapes and the experiences they offer quite the same way that climbers do. But we must be willing and committed to fight for them. Not just for access, but for the integrity of these amazing places.
As our sport continues to grow in popularity, overcrowding is stressing these outdoor landscapes beyond their ability to recover naturally. This not only threatens access, but it degrades the climbing areas that we hold so dear.
Today, 1 in 5 climbing areas in the United States is threatened by an access issue—whether it’s private land lost to development, public land managers over-regulating climbing, or climber impacts degrading the environment, the list of threats is long and constantly evolving.
But they can be managed. At Access Fund, we are on a mission to protect climbing access and the integrity of America’s outdoor climbing areas.
Threats to climbing access come in many forms—private climbing areas put up for sale, land managers over-regulating climbing, user impacts degrading the climbing environment, landowners fearful of liability, the list goes on. Our approach to protecting climbing areas is as multifaceted as the threats.
CLIMBING POLICY & ADVOCACY
LAND ACQUISITION & PROTECTION
STEWARDSHIP & CONSERVATION
RISK MANAGEMENT & LANDOWNER SUPPORT
LOCAL SUPPORT & MOBILIZATION
THE FIGHT IS ON: STAND WITH BEARS EARS
Access Fund is taking a legal stand against President Trump’s proclamation that orders a drastic reduction of Bears Ears National Monument in southeast Utah, as it would significantly impact world-renowned rock climbing.
This fight is about more than just protecting the incredible climbing at Bears Ears. Nearly 60% of our climbing areas are on federal public lands, and this proclamation threatens the very foundation of our public lands system. Bears Ears is a crucial battle in the greater fight for America’s public lands. Learn the facts.
President Trump does not have the legal authority to revoke or modify a National Monument, and Access Fund will fight this in court.
DON’T LET CONGRESS GUT THE ANTIQUITIES ACT
We need your help! Congress is getting ready to vote on the National Monument Creation and Protection Act, a dangerous bill with a misleading name that seeks to dismantle the Antiquities Act, a law that has been used for over a hundred years to protect our American heritage and exceptional natural features on our public lands.
The Antiquities Act is a fundamental conservation law that allows the President to create national monuments in order to protect federal lands when Congress is unable or unwilling to do so. It has been used by both Republican and Democratic administrations to shape our national system of protected public lands. Several classic climbing areas, including Devils Tower and Joshua Tree (now a national park), were designated as national monuments through this Act.
This bill, sponsored by Utah Congressman Bishop (R-UT), would essentially gut the Antiquities Act by:
1) Giving the President the authority to reduce an existing national monument without an act of Congress, which is currently illegal. Right now, there are 18 National Monuments that contain climbing opportunities―among them are crown jewels like Indian Creek in Utah, the Needles in California, and Devils Tower in Wyoming. If this bill is passed into law, President Trump and future presidents, could shrink or rescind national monuments like Bears Ears. A reduction of Bears Ears National Monument could expose Indian Creek and many other backcountry climbing areas to unmitigated oil and gas development. This bill threatens all 129 national monuments and puts many climbing areas across the country at risk.
2) Prohibiting landscape-scale protections for sensitive landscapes and exceptional natural features like Grand Canyon (now a national park), Black Canyon of the Gunnison (now a national park), and Bears Ears. Instead, it would only allow discrete, small-scale cultural and historic resource sites to be protected. Prohibiting landscape-scale protections without regard for the actual size of the area that needs protection is problematic because ecosystems, geographic features, historic and archaeological resources, and Native American traditional values are all interconnected. And they all contribute to high-quality recreation experiences.
3) Making it more difficult to invoke the Antiquities Act by mandating additional approval processes before the President could designate a national monument.