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 Post subject: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:08 pm 
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Posts: 232
A new route on Yellowwood, Fighting The Dark Side Of Gravity, has had all its bolts removed, except for two that are essential for the leader on Pitch 3. Two non-essential pitons have also been removed.

There has been much debate about Yellowwood and the most active Yellowwood climbers have talked extensively so as to settle the ethos of this high-value cliff.

In a recent meeting Adam Roff, Jeremy Samson and Hilton Davies distilled the following:

Yellowwood is a very special trad climbing venue and there have been some mis-steps in route development at the crag. Newborn was bolted many years ago before locals had given much thought to bolting and ethics. It is a legacy that shall remain, but should not be seen as guidance for route development at Yellowwood. More recently two new routes have been established by visitors who have made extensive use of non-essential bolting. Whilst route development is encouraged, non-essential bolting is not; and these new routes are getting their non-essential bolts removed. They will remain as good adventurous routes.

The prevailing ethic for Yellowwood is tread lightly.

"Tread lightly" means no bolting of belay stances unless all possible alternatives have been completely exhausted. No placing of bolts for running belays that are not absolutely essential. No use of pitons, unless necessary.

Climbers are asked to respect the prevailing ethic which is intended to preserve the aesthetic appeal of Yellowwood as a world-class trad climbing destination.

Further Signatories:
Willem le Roux
Karl Hayden
Stephen Davis
Andy Davies
Andy Wood
Bruce Daniel
Keith James
Douw Steyn
Ross Suter
Rik de Decker
Dirk Versfeld
Paul Fatti
Carl Kritzinger
Rob Zipplies
Scarre Cilliers
Mark Berry
Anthony Hall
Mike Scott
Kevin Smith
Nic Good
Charles Edelstein
David Vallet
Andy de Klerk
Richard Behne
Tienie Versfeld
Alan Ross
Chris Lomax
John Alexander
Evan Wiercx
Ed February
Andre Vercueil
Bryant Roux
Stuart Brown
Dave Shewell
Johnathan Gordon
Stewart Noy
Paul Schlotfeldt
Clinton Martinengo
Bobby Woods
David Mercer
Neels Havenga


Last edited by Hilton on Tue Mar 23, 2010 2:16 pm, edited 12 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 5:42 pm 
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Hilton, I applaud what you guys are doing regards unnecessary bolts, etc. and if I had the energy I would join you! However I would just caution you guys not to go over the top.

I guess my question is: has Yellowwood now been classified as a hardman's venue?
Are we going to be frowned upon if we open a route and deem a bolt or two neccessary to ensure a route's remains consistent. Or are one or two overly run-out sections now going to put an otherwise well protected route out of reach to all but a select few?


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 6:40 pm 
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Location: Port Elizabeth
Real Name: Derek Marshall
Respect to all who were involved in the removing of the bolts. Big up!


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 7:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:38 pm
Posts: 795
Real Name: Greg Hart
Good on you guys! This needed to happen, what should happen next is a letter to Climbing.com pointing out the poor style in which these routes, which were featured on the front page of their site, were opened, then we need to see some additions to our wiki outlining what ethics are applicable where.

I still think we should not rule out sport development in the YW area entirely, but unecessary bolts on trad routes suck


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2010 8:39 pm 
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I never thought I'd congratulate someone for removing bolts, but I can't resist this time. Good on ya, thanks for restoring the integrity of the rock, the routes and the venue!


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 9:59 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 16, 2006 8:53 am
Posts: 868
Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Charles Edelstein
Stu wrote:
I guess my question is: has Yellowwood now been classified as a hardman's venue?
Are we going to be frowned upon if we open a route and deem a bolt or two neccessary to ensure a route's remains consistent. Or are one or two overly run-out sections now going to put an otherwise well protected route out of reach to all but a select few?


Stu I was up there the day before with Margaret my wife and 3 mates Deon Van Zyl, Robert Breyer and Mark Straughan. Mark Straughan has only ever climbed Arrow Final grade 12 or so on top rope. Neither Robert or Deon have any real big wall experience. Our average age was 48+ !!! We topped out on Slack Time and had a huge adventure. http://snort-charlesedelstein.blogspot. ... wwood.html

WIll post the story shortly.

As for Hard men? Most sport routes at Milner are beyond the ability of most climbers. Newborn and both German routes are beyond the ability of most climbers with or without bolts. Why do you want the soft option. The only way you will ever feel alive is if you go up there and do the routes... Start with Smalblaar ridge.....

I have my eye on at least 10 lines at YW that will go free without bolts at a moderate grade!


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 11:58 am 
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Posts: 565
No worries man, wasn't really a complaint as much as a query on new (easy) routing ethics. 10 lines! Wow, didn't realise there were still so many possibilities up there... Big up to you guys!


Last edited by Stu on Sat Feb 20, 2010 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2010 12:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:38 pm
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Real Name: Greg Hart
The hidden truth of this area is that, even after 80 years of climbing, there are so very many awesome trad lines that have not yet been explored. Some will be tough for sure but most will go at grades that the average experienced climber will handle and many of these will be well protected. With so much potential to be explored, the only thing local climbers should be concerned with now is getting out there and doing them!

Im in favour of some world class sport routes going up but this should never be at the expense of the quality experience trad climbers have on the cliff. A lot more exploration of potenrial trad routes needs to happen before the picture becomes clear where sport routes could happen without this encroachmnet. The YW area is a real gem lets approach developmenr with zeal but also sensitivity and a sense of responsibility. If the huge impending face of YW intimidates you then just have a peek around the corner, there is a wealth of moderate adventure waiting for you. So what r u waiting for? Git up there and check it out!


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 8:50 pm 
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This posting comes with a warning. That being; What I'll be unleashing will be vitriolic. I may swear and do some name calling, but I'll try to keep in on topic and if the moderators (for whom I have great respect) feel it needs censure, then I ask that you merely remove offending unpleasantries as opposed to outright removing my post.

To Adam Roff, Jeremy Samson and Hilton Davies:

Its easy to get consensus on a topic if the only people to give their opinion are those who already share *your* opinion. The whole cluster-fuck that is the Yellow Wood / Trad vs Sport is because there is no moderate middle. I summise that if *EVERY* climber (gym, trad, sports, boulderer) in SA had to weigh in on whether to bolt or not, we'd have gleaming lines of bolts running from the lower buttress to the upper station. I'm not suggesting that that is the way it should be, merely pointing out that just because there are assholes that would bolt every line out there doesn't mean that there isn't an equally opinionated bunch of chops sitting on the other side of the fence wanting to create an elitist clique of trad purists, spouting holier-than-thou retoric. People refering to sports as LCD, smacks of how arrogant and up their own fucking asses some of these people are.

Snort and Xmod: I've had the misfortune at some time or another to be in your company (God, if only you knew who I was...keep your enemies closer,eh?). Frankly you're both Tits (Oh SNORT, let me count the ways). Sure you're solid guys to those who agree with you, but are just plain wankers when someone has an opinion other than yours. You are the Julius Malema's of climbing.

Until we learn to climb together and find a common ground on which to share sports and trad together, we will be polarized and unfortunately that will end badly. The reality is that holding onto one's sense of nostaligia and fighting change without compromise will end how all archaic traditions do; extinction. I guarentee, given the ease with which sports climbing is accessible to a larger number of people, the dinosaurs that sit in the trad arena without listening to what is coming, will die away. Similarly, if hard line bolters don't understand from where this all comes they will lose respect for their heritage and inevitably destroy it. Allowing minority views to rule policies and dogma puppets like SNORT and Xmod be your spokespeople, bodes poorly for the future of the sport. While people like them have the soap box no-one is going to take trad ethics seriously.

For the record I boulder, trad and sports climb. So let no-one say I'm close minded. I bring this all up because if we don't sort this out properly we're all pretty much fucked. For all the preaching that hardline trad dipshits do all I want to do is pick up the a huge fucking drill and bolt something. Not because I think it is the right thing to do, but because the only way you can balance a completely polar view of trad is by having a totaly polar response about sports. This will not work.

This is something we all should be concerned about.

[For those who want an explanation as to my anonymity continue reading, to everyone else...Adieu]

Who? Who is but the form following the function of what and what I am is a man in a mask.

I post this anonymously for several reasons. While idiots control the airwaves (XMod, Snort). I felt my point is for everyone to hear and would be side-tracked by them in dragging me down personally instead of listening to what I have to say.

While people are happy to stand up and make complete dicks of themselves (XMod, SNORT, Julius Malema....) and would appear, on some level, proud of it; I, take no pleasure in writing this. So in summary rather a dick in anonymity than a dick who revels being one..


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:48 pm 
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Posts: 565
Let me understand you correctly - are you f***** at the fact that Snort and co. are the only ones voicing their opinions on the side of the traddies; or the level at which they are expressing them?

This is an internet forum - not the best medium for these debates - this has been raised several times :!:
Also, you do realise that this is a single trad venue to which you refer? One to which it seems alot of traddies have, for whatever reason, taken a specific interest in.

Besides, I really think that you've had one heckofa overreaction. You do know that there are currently plans (some underway) to open some multi-pitch sport routes within the wider Du Toits kloof area? Yes, initially there were some protests, but I think an understanding of sorts has been reached that if approached correctly sport routes can exist in these areas. Was this the compromise you are refering to?

Look, I'm not saying I agree with everything that has been said (see my above posts) but man I think there are better ways than this to go about it.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 7:59 am 
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Posts: 1164
Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Willem Boshoff
@stfu

i could not believe my eyes when i read your post. hands down the most gutter-worthy of all posts. i still do not get what your trying to say dude? just puking up a ball of bile and bitterness here on the forum....?????

on many issues you will never get concensus, and the majority is not always right or righteous - actually rarely. the world is shaped by men & women who believe strongly enough in something to actually get up and go and do something about it. thumbs up to you guys! :thumleft:


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:21 am 
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Posts: 868
Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Charles Edelstein
My only comment to you STFU is that you have characterized the wrong people as the Julius Malema's of climbing. I think you singularly have won that accolade. Valois! At least Malema has the balls to show his identity.

Other than that I have to admit it was mildly entertaining.

I cannot be bothered to comment on the content as I would not be bothered to comment on Malema's lunatic "utterances" either.

But go on, happy for some light entertainment. More please.....


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:33 am 
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Please delete the stfu post!!!!!
It is a absolute waste of time and carries no benifit whatsoever to the climbing forum.
It is also full of profanities.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:37 am 
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Don't delete Dom's (aka Dominic Riordan) post. If you post stuff like that ,answer to it.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 12:02 pm 
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Example 1: TAAAAAALK, let's talk, talk, maybe discuss, spray, TAAAALK.

stfu wrote:
This posting comes with a warning. That being; What I'll be unleashing will be vitriolic. I may swear and do some name calling, but I'll try to keep in on topic and if the moderators (for whom I have great respect) feel it needs censure, then I ask that you merely remove offending unpleasantries as opposed to outright removing my post. blah blah

To Adam Roff, Jeremy Samson and Hilton Davies:

Its easy to get consensus on a topic if the only people to give their opinion are those who already share *your* opinion. The whole cluster-fuck that is the Yellow Wood / Trad vs Sport is because there is no moderate mld bolt blah blah

While people are happy to stand up and make complete dicks of themselves (XMod, SNORT, Julius Malema....) and would appear, on some level, proud of it; I, ta blah..


Example 2: Box and chop

Hilton wrote:
A new route on Yellowwood, Fighting The Dark Side Of Gravity, has had all its bolts removed, except for two that are essential for the leader on Pitch 3. Two non-essential pitons have also been removed.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 3:56 pm 
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Posts: 706
Location: Port Elizabeth
Real Name: Derek Marshall
Stfu...keep it anonymous, the baalies have chopped, I recon they will box.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 6:13 pm 
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Location: Cape Town
Thanks Hilton for going to the all the trouble of removing unnecessary bolts and pegs on new routes on Yellowwood Amphitheatre. I appreciate the effort you (and Bruce) put in to achieve this. I offered to help Adam chop such bolts up there, but you guys have save me/ us the hassle. :-)

I'm very against the introduction into South Africa of (what I believe is the) the Euro ethic of bolting all belay stances on multi-pitch trad routes, whether the bolts are needed or not. I'm also very wary about placing bolts as runners on new trad routes, thereby making them mixed routes, where these bolts are not absolutely necessary .. and even then, if it's going to be a trad route then, ultimately, it probably shouldn't be bolted at all, in that there is a very real chance that someone will come along someday and be able to climb the line without any bolt protection. Or, maybe if bolts do get drilled and put in to open up the routes then they can be chopped by future ascensionists who manage to climb them without clipping the bolts, if they want to? The debate can go on ...


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 6:42 pm 
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Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Charles Edelstein
There is no debate anymore. The bolts are chopped. Anyone wants to bolt Yellowwood is wasting their time and money. Or rather their sponsors' money. They will get chopped but my first priority is to do all the lines without them. I sent the essay about this to Climbing mag and this is the reply from Majka Burhardt:

Quote:

Thanks so much for sending this, Snort-- I have perused it a bit, and keep having a note to get back to you but wanted to spend more time with it. It might be an interesting longer article for the access section of Climbing magazine here. I'd love to wrap my head around potentially creating that? I like the opener that sponsored climbers are no longer welcome at your house...


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 7:15 pm 
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SNORT wrote:
There is no debate anymore. The bolts are chopped. Anyone wants to bolt Yellowwood is wasting their time and money. Or rather their sponsors' money. They will get chopped but my first priority is to do all the lines without them. I sent the essay about this to Climbing mag and this is the reply from Majka Burhardt:

When you say bolt, do you mean a sports route? Or have you guys now condemned mixed routes as well? I appreciate what you guys are doing, but you are sounding a little like you own that part of the mountain...


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 7:20 pm 
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vanderClip wrote:
Don't delete Dom's (aka Dominic Riordan) post. If you post stuff like that ,answer to it.


Excuse me? Do I know you?

If you're referring to STFUs post, that was not me.

As far as I know, I've never met Snort and I'd appreciate you leave me out of this. If I'm going to post, I'll post as myself, thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:42 pm 
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Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Charles Edelstein
There is one bolted route at YW Newborn. There are no other sport routes. So no sure what you are talking about.

A mixed route implies that there is fixed gear where ever there is a minor difficulty in placing trad gear very easily. Fixed gear if placed is then not essential.

The occasional fixed piece has been standard practise for 40 years since removable gear was invented. For now I/we consider that acceptable and nuts are better than pitons and pitons are better than bolts. And bolts are very much the last - the very last! resort.

Bolts invariably take away the commitment of doing moves like nothing else does and can be placed off the natural line which is not true for nuts or pitons.

No one ever stops at one bolt if power drilled - ever. And exceptions prove the rule... Bolts beget more bolts and this is exactly what Newborn has done to Yellowwood.

If you are an attorney and understand that all litigation is based on "precedents" then you know what I am talking about.

If you do not have kids you will understand one day you can never reverse the rot of giving them that first sweet, that first coke and that first computer game. And if you get it wrong you will end up with children that are lazy, fat, inactive and unhealthy and disinterested in anything else other than Playstation, cell phones and I-pods.

They certainly won't be passionate about anything like this and you will have monsters on your hands....


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:43 pm 
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I don't think stfu's post was all that bad or inflaming... read it again without feeling personally attacked, he does say a few things worth saying imo...

I reckon that if someone does take the time to dare tread on the HOLY GROUND called Yellowwood and have an opinion other than what a few has to say, then that proves a certain amount of passion for the sport, a willingness to take the beating/lashing that is to follow...

The summary of this whole debate, a knowledge that I picked up since the first posting a long time ago, is: 1. Don't bolt trad-able lines. Duh...!
Jis, that was easy. Its the countless post after that that I don't get. Makes me think of a quote I once heard: 'Its better letting people think you are a fool, than to open your mount and remove all the doubt'.

But in my humblest opinion, I personally can't understand why one can't add one or three bolts on a possible 10/12 pitch masterpiece where natural pro is not possible, on any climb anywhere.

On another old note: Newborn won't ever be the cause of attracting the so called LCD, because there's probably only 10 guys/gals in the country ABLE to climb - as I am learning through the grapevine - the possible sandbag grade 29 it turned out to be. I would be honoured and greatly chuffed if I can one day climb that, and other 'off the chain' routes like that - pity there are not more multy pitch routes like that around...
:!:
j


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:35 am 
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Real Name: Charles Edelstein
DACaveman
Quote:
Newborn won't ever be the cause of attracting the so called LCD, because there's probably only 10 guys/gals in the country ABLE to climb - as I am learning through the grapevine - the possible sandbag grade 29 it turned out to be.


This is really the crux of the matter. It already has attracted the LCD. And hence the outrage! It has attracted two lots of foreign climbers who did not bother to climb it or any other route at YW. They brought drills and brought the climbing to a mediocre level that they were satisfied with. And they left shit and toilet paper within 5 m of the base. You have not read this:

http://snort-charlesedelstein.blogspot. ... rship.html


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:24 am 
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SNORT, does it mean that the bolts you placed are also to be chopped if deemed unnecessary by anyone?


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 8:52 am 
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SNORT wrote:
No one ever stops at one bolt if power drilled - ever. And exceptions prove the rule... Bolts beget more bolts and this is exactly what Newborn has done to Yellowwood.


Does this mean we can start bolting at Blouberg?

<Edited to add> I also don't think STFU's post was that bad - perhaps he/she was a touch personal in places. STFU has a point in that a meeting was held between 4 or 5 individuals to make a decision for the climbing community in general... I think the last fourum topic regarding local climbing numbers pegged the number at around 4000, if I'm correct?

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Last edited by MarkM on Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:05 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 8:56 am 
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Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Willem Boshoff
round and round we go :roll:

DAcaveman wrote:
I don't think stfu's post was all that bad or inflaming... read it again without feeling personally attacked, he does say a few things worth saying imo...


yeah, after re-reading i realised he (she?) actually had something to say. pity it was drowned in the vicious personal attacks. just left a bad taste in the mouth.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:25 am 
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@ Snort: Yeah, they should have at least tried climbing NB, true. Even though they sounded like top end, capable climbers, they kind of f(*&( up that one...

Still, too many words makes us all lose focus and the result is causing a diluted, weak argument.

j


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:42 pm 
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Posts: 693
There are better ways to state your point. Trying harder to make sense is a good start. Saying it in a constructive way will also help. You can figure the rest out as you go, I'm not a kindergarten teacher, but keep in mind that a foul mouth makes people negative towards you from the get go.

Snort has already answered the question about the bolts he put in. I don't see why we need to look for a hypocrite, if I'm not mistaken he had to take the Hippocratic Oath :mrgreen:. What difference does it make in any case? It's not about the people, it's about the mountains, they are far more precious than our squabbles. I don't get the personal attacks and I also don't get why some people feel offended about something not even aimed at them. The whole LCD thing is getting overused too - it is fast becoming the new racist. Didn't Snort and Hilton and co just mean that we need to stop messing the mountains up? It goes for everyone, doesn't it? It all comes down to thinking, think before you say something and think before you do something. Everyone knew the bolts were going to get chopped, there was plenty warning and time to discuss it.

I also agree with Mok that you can't trust the majority to keep it secret and safe. Look around you, does it look like the majority of people know how to look after something as simple as keeping streets clean? How can the average Joe be trusted with the mountains? He doesn't even think about preservation, he only thinks about himself and his own immediate future. Don't try to stop people who do think about preservation, rather encourage them and help them.

Every single human being needs to crap every now and then, but for crying out load, don't leave it where it will be seen, smelled or even stepped in. Bury it and put a rock on top of it. Don't do it in or near a river and don't do it on the forum either.

Ok last thing, what's with all the fighting between our locals when it was arrogant foreigners that messed up? If no-one messed up none of this would have been necessary. I support the chopping, but I would prefer it if there was nothing to chop.


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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 5:35 pm 
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what is deja vu for deja vu. :?

Great stuff Hilton

Good post Shorti

stfu - how are you going to stick to the rules of a "ethics handbook/consenses" if you can't even stick to the rules of this forum.

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 Post subject: Re: Yellowwood Ethics
PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:08 pm 
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Posts: 164
Well put Shorti - biiiieeee maaaai freeeend


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