Touchstone's Climbing Partner: the Access Fund
You know you can count on a great indoor climbing experience at Touchstone gyms. To help you have good outdoor climbing experiences, Touchstone supports a national advocacy group in Boulder, Colo., called the Access Fund.
Since 1991, the Access Fund
has worked to keep climbing areas open and conserve the climbing environment. Today it supports and represents over 1.6 million climbers nationwide in all forms of climbing. Touchstone has been its corporate partner since 1998.
Some of Access Fund’s work is behind the scenes, such as lobbying the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Forest Service for climber-friendly policies. But there also are plenty of ways that individual members get directly involved.
“We help people all the time on a one-on-one basis,” says Touchstone member Zack Chandler, who also serves as California regional coordinator for the Access Fund. In past years that has included organizing clean-up trips to places such as the Castle Rock bouldering area in Saratoga. “We brought a bunch of people down there and picked up tons of trash all day long. We did it in co-operation with the rangers,” Chandler says.
Co-operation with landowners and managers is the key to keeping climbing areas open and maintaining a positive image for climbers, says the Access Fund. It offers plenty of advice on its Web site
for climbers wishing to use private land, plus more resources for conservation and activism.
Chandler goes most often to Touchstone Concord. “It tends to be a younger crowd compared to Mission Cliffs and some don’t climb outdoors yet. But a lot of people there do know what the Access Fund is and they contribute,” he says.
Labels: Access Fund, climbing, touchstone