Tea Garden has been closed to boulderers by the landowner. This is a recent development following the closure of the Black Shadow boulder to climbers after the boulder was the victim of substantial amounts of graffiti, a myriad of unofficial paths sprung up in the area and the farmer’s fence was broken down.
Although the MCSA feels that the graffiti was not the work of climbers, we cannot deny that it is climbers who caused the unofficial pathways and who did damage the fence.
Despite the boulder being closed to the bouldering community, some climbers did not listen and the landowner recently found toilet paper strewn about the boulder and fresh chalk marks on the boulder itself. This has only served to anger her substantially and she has closed all her lands to boulderers.
Anyone caught climbing on her property will be prosecuted for trespassing, will be liable for a fine and may even have their vehicles clamped.
The prominent areas closed to bouldering as of 28th July 2013 are:
1. Black Shadow
2. Tea Garden Roof
3. Tea Arch
The Mountain Club of South Africa (MCSA) is doing all that they can to try to mend the relationship between the bouldering community and the landowner but this may prove futile if climbers continue to ignore the ban and boulder there anyway. This will no doubt prove the complete undoing of bouldering in Tea Garden indefinitely. It was reported to the MCSA that the Sunday following the announcement of the closure of Tea Garden, a known white vehicle was seen parked alongside Tea Garden – evidence that climbers continue to ignore the rules and completely disrespect the wishes of the landowner.
The MCSA urges all boulderers to please obey the rules and the ban on Tea Garden. We cannot help you win this fight if you continue to give climbers a very bad reputation. Continued climbing in Tea Garden may result in it being closed to climbing for good. The landowner can and will put measures in place that will make it impossible for people to access her land such as electric wire fences, armed guards and the like. We do not want to see it come to that. Please don’t climb in Tea Garden? Allow the MCSA to speak on your behalf as we have been doing for many, many years – mostly completely unknown to you. Let us work together to re-open Tea Garden.
- Notice by Delaney Carpenter, Chairperson of the Rock Climbing Committee of the Mountain Club of South Africa, Cape Town Section