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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 10:05 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 91
Real Name: Delaney Carpenter
Hi All

It has come to our attention that Rocklands toilet etiquette is a not up to scratch and some cases of toilet paper littering are being reported. While the MCSA Rock SubCom will be looking into more permanent and effective ways to control the litter and defaecation in Rocklands, please can you all stay vigilant when you are there and report any littering that you do come across? We would also really appreciate it if you could confront people who are not behaving appropriately in this pristine wilderness area and if possible pick up the litter you come across.

If anyone has anything they would like to report, suggest or comment on, please can you reply to this post or email us directly on delaney@rockchicks.co.za?

Thank you all for your co-operation and assistance.

MCSA Rock SubCom


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:35 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 8:22 pm
Posts: 48
Hey Delaney
I am very keen to get more involved when I come back in the new year. I think we should start organising an annual clean up and awareness day/weekend in the middle of the season. Path maintenance, litter clean up, and general etiquette (ie..how to shit in the bush) talks etc... (amongst other things) should be on the cards. I dont think the Rocklands problem lies with the locals but rather the visiting euro's (after my three month trip through europe I have come to realise that Rocklands is actually still 'pristine' in comparison, and that we need to make sure the visitors dont bring their bad habits with them).

Any more thoughts????


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:11 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2008 8:19 pm
Posts: 112
I definitely agree something needs to be done about litter at rocklands - especially toilet paper and finger tape. I know not everyone stays at de Pakhuys but perhaps a sign or two up at the campsite/bar, and other places people stay like Travellers Rest, pleading with people to not leave toilet paper etc in the bush - maybe with the threat of naming and shaming...


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 8:47 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 8:22 pm
Posts: 48
perhaps a leaflet with rocklands guidelines should be compiled and printed off. When you arrive at de pakhuys or any other place to stay in the area you receive one.....primarily intended for the internationals (the locals visit regularly and can politely decline taking a leaflet if they feel they dont want/need one)...still think a clean up day is needed...this way the land owners and the conservationists (Cape Nature) will see that the local climbers and the internationals visiting are dedicated to maintaining the integrity of the second most famous bouldering destination in the world!!


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:20 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 7:07 pm
Posts: 108
Location: Cape Town
Real Name: Gavin Earle
A nice iPhone photo of the culprit caught in the act, shown on this forum, would work wonders!


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 9:22 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 9:50 am
Posts: 67
A Rocklands Clean-up Day is a brilliant idea!

This is will not only make Rocklands cleaner, but will draw attention to the issue, and hopefully make at least some people improve their behaviour.

I think that the lynch-mob mentality of 'name-and-shame' is appalling and not at all likely to help matters. We are not living in the Middle Ages.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 12:23 pm 
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Posts: 48
Naming and shaming is pointless as it has a negative impact. The clean up can have a far reaching positive effect and can be made fun with some basic sponsorship (a raffle with some cool prizes and a braai to finish off the day). I am very keen to get going on this idea and will be keen to try and start organising it. I think its best to start it properly in the new year but some more brainstorming on the forum would help....
anyone got any more ideas
-litter clean up
-path maintenance
-how to shit in the bush
-erosion maintenance at key sites eg. roadside


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 12:45 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:45 pm
Posts: 601
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland
Keith wrote:
A Rocklands Clean-up Day is a brilliant idea!


Do it mid winter, when all the foreigners are about. Also see if you can get something like the BMC's 10 bouldering commandments or something included in all the hundreds of videos that get produced at Rocklands every winter? distribute it as a jpeg which can get put in the start or end of any video.

Image

I know there were similar issues in Bishop when it had a sudden hike in popularity a few years back, and they had cleanup days and path marking.


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 11, 2012 12:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 8:22 pm
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the plan was definetly for peak season...the target is getting the foreign visitors involved and your jpeg idea is brilliant..thanks :)


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:54 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 91
Real Name: Delaney Carpenter
Hi All

Thanks so much for all your input. I am hoping to meet with Thys on the weekend of 9th and 10th February and hopefully will come back with a plan of action.

Niel Margetts has already asked that an MCSA member talk to everyone at the Easter event held at the new climbing area over 30th and 31st March. I am hoping to attend and will give a talk then.

I will keep everyone updated and any additional thoughts or suggestions are always welcome.

In the meantime, I was thinking of the below as a general starting point which will be available on the back of the permit and as a leaflet. Anyone caught not adhering to the rules will be penalised: either fined or suspended from the area - depending on how bad the offence. What does everyone think of this?

General Rules for Rocklands:
•All climbers are to use existing paths.
•Vegetation removal and trampling at the base of climbing areas and boulders must be avoided to prevent loss of biodiversity and erosion. Active removal of larger vegetation such as shrubs and trees from cliffs and / or their bases in order to establish routes or boulder problems is not permitted.
•At staging areas at the bottom of sport climbing routes, climbers must endeavour as far as possible to put their gear and / or packs down on rocks or bare earth to minimise damage to vegetation.
•Pets are not permitted at most climbing areas.
•Nesting and endangered birds must not be disturbed. Seasonal closure of certain areas may be required if nesting birds are likely to be disturbed.
•The MCSA will advertise any closures to climbers.
•Writing or graffiti is not permitted in any form on any rock, cliff face, tree or other natural surface.
•No foreign material of any kind is to be left behind at climbing areas. This includes cigarette stompies, finger tape, litter, waste such as orange peels and toilet paper or tissues.
•Defaecation outside of formal established campsites must be avoided. If the urge cannot be suppressed, bury all excreta and toilet paper in a small hole of at least 15 to 20 centimetres deep.
•Defaection must not take place in paths or near the climbing areas or within 50ms of watercourses.
•Tick marks on routes should be brushed off.
•Smoking is highly discouraged due to the high potential for fires in fynbos vegetation and the severe consequences associated with fires.
•‘Trundling’ of rocks off cliffs or down hillsides is not permitted.

Thanks again for all your feedback and I will chat to Thys about a Rocklands Clean Up Day - maybe held at the start of the season and again at the end of the season.

Delaney


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:41 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 9:50 am
Posts: 67
These are all good things, but I suspect people tend to gloss over or ignore long lists of rules.

Perhaps people also respond better to a plea for help than to threats.

I suggest that only the major issues be mentioned. Minor issues detract attention from those that really count.

IMHO, the major problem is litter (toilet paper, finger tape, &c, &c)

Here is an attempt:

Rocklands is being destroyed: Please help keep it beautiful
1. Pick up litter
2. Bury toilet paper in a deep hole


(Appeals for people to smoke less, not go to the toilet, or not spray graffiti, and so on are unlikely to have impact.)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 8:22 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:26 pm
Posts: 8
Real Name: Glenn Moncrieff
I agree litter and toilet paper are the main issue. Getting all climbers to bury their TP is a must, but if any of you have tried digging a 15cm hole in the hard, rocky cederberg soil, you will know it can be near impossible. I would recommend all climbers get a small trowel as a standard piece of climbing gear. You can get them for around R20. It would be good maybe if Thys sold them to climbers also.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:31 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 91
Real Name: Delaney Carpenter
Thanks for the suggestions and I like the idea of the trowel.

I'll mention this all to Thys and will keep the rules down to 3 max. I would like to include no graffiti on that list as access to Black Shadow has been denied due to graffiti.

Thanks, guys. I'll keep you posted after my meeting with Thys on 9th and 10th February :-)

Tx
D


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:38 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 9:50 am
Posts: 67
I find it hard to believe that climbers are responsible for the graffiti.

Are they?

What does it say?


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 12:49 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2009 10:48 am
Posts: 614
Real Name: Warren Gans
Keith wrote:
I find it hard to believe that climbers are responsible for the graffiti.

Are they?

What does it say?


I remember reading the graffiti on the toilet door of Camp 4, reading things like "Walked to lower Yosemite falls in 45mins" you have to be a bit of a tool to graffiti in a place like Cederberg though

_________________
Sandbagging is a dirty game


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:46 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:43 am
Posts: 11
Real Name: BrianG
Hi All.

As a former Cape Town resident who has lived in the Eastern Cape since '98 i returned to my favourite mountains last year - the Cedarberg - after a too long absence. We spent New Years night a year ago sleeping at Wolfberg Arch having got all the requisite permits (both from Dwarsrivier and Algeria). I was shocked however to see the amount of TP and sh1te lying all over the place.

clearly the cederberg has seen a huge increase in visitors over the years and it's sad to see these pristine areas get soiled like they do. sadly, imho i believe that with increased numbers it is inevitable that this will happen if these issues aren't managed properly and i think the initiative at Rocklands is awesome. i do think tho that given the numbers that appear to be visiting Rocklands and some of the prime gaper spots like the Arch, managers/owners need to come to the party and consider building eco-loos of some kind in strategic places. Another alternative is to take some kind of poop collector (a la wilderness areas in the States - please no!). It goes against all that i love about wilderness areas but sadly with the types of numbers that appear to be visiting, one or the other may be a necessity.

btw does anyone have any idea who i could contact at Cape Nature re. the mess at the Arch? I think that given the fees to enter these areas one can expect a better degree of management.

cheers,
brian


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 91
Real Name: Delaney Carpenter
Hi Brian

Thank you so much for the feedback and the information.

I'm saddened to hear that Wolfberg Arch is also looking a mess but I wonder if this could only be attributed to climbers and not also hiking groups...

A contact at Cape Nature who has assisted me in the past is Nolitha Kontsiwe and you can reach her on nkontsiwe@capenature.co.za.

I hope this helps and please let me know if you need any assistance from the MCSA?

I will be meeting with Thys regarding the Rocklands situation so am happy to assist you with Cape Nature regarding Wolfberg.

Please keep me posted and feel free to email me on delaney@rockchicks.co.za if you'd prefer.

Thanks
Delaney


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2013 2:02 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:43 am
Posts: 11
Real Name: BrianG
hi Delaney.

thanks for contact details. i'll see how i go.

i'm sure that the mess at the Arch was left by hikers. it's easily accessible by day-walkers and seems to be getting a lot of traffic.

as an aside: was in West Oz recently and was interested to see that even at some of the climbing (& other) areas in wilderness areas there were eco-loos. admittedly the crag in question was being used for commercial abseiling.

cheers, Brian


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 2:36 pm
Posts: 91
Real Name: Delaney Carpenter
Hi All

Just to let you know that Thys and I are sorting out littering, defaecating, etc. taking place in Rocklands. We are also looking into an online permit system. If all goes well this season then we will be able to approach Cape Nature and ask them to come on board with our program.

Thank you to everyone for your feedback.
Delaney


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