Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

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raphaeltube
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Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:36 pm

Hi

I did find some info when searching the forum, but nothing recent.
I read in Western Cape Rock that MCSA members do NOT need the permit (My Activity Permit, Level 2) for sport climbing in Table Mountain National Park (Silvermine).
Is that still the case?

-I'm trying to avoid communicating with SANParks :silent:

R
Last edited by raphaeltube on Wed Feb 27, 2019 8:14 am, edited 2 times in total.

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Mon Feb 18, 2019 9:45 pm

I found this from 2013:

"
A ‘My Activity Permit (Level 2)’ is required for sport climbing (ie, climbing at bolted crags). See the SANParks website for details.

However, card-carrying MCSA members are exempt from this requirement, in consideration of MCSA’s management of sport climbing in terms of SANParks’ Environmental Management Programme for Climbing on the Peninsula Mountain Chain
"
from here: http://www.climbing.co.za/2013/05/activ ... onal-park/

but it goes on to say:
SANParks have indicated that they propose changing this arrangement and MCSA is engaging with them on this.

-R

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Mon Feb 18, 2019 10:41 pm

I also found this, relating specifically to Sport Climbing:
"
An Activity permit is required but when Activity Permits were introduced it was agreed that, in view of the work done by the MCSA, card-carrying members of MCSA would be exempt from this requirement.
"
on page 33 of this 2015 SANParks community engagement document with a 2015 response letter from MCSA relating to the TMNP draft management plan:
https://www.sanparks.org/assets/docs/co ... gement.pdf

But no reference is made to MCSA in the final approved plan (also 2015):
https://www.sanparks.org/assets/docs/co ... d_plan.pdf

Oh well... lets see what they say...

R

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Thermophage
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by Thermophage » Tue Feb 19, 2019 8:13 am

The simple answer officially is No.
However, not all the rangers know this. So basically it's touch and go.

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MIKESCOTT
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by MIKESCOTT » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:43 am

In 2018 Rob Breyer of the MCSA and Saskia Marlowe of San parks issued a clarification to the statement about needing permission for climbing or abseiling in a protected area (which includes Table Mt National Park).

No one needs an activity permit for Traditional climbing on TM, 12 Apostles, Lion's Head, Muizenberg, Elsies Pk.
Sport's climbers need a Level 2 Activity permit except MCSA members do not need an Activity permit but have to show a valid MCSA membership card.
Boulderers currently do not need an Activity permit or an MCSA card BUT this is under review and not yet finalised.

If you are a member you can obtain a copy of the agreement from the Club office and it is advisable to carry a copy with you because as Cuan mentioned some Rangers are not properly informed.
Mike Scott

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Wed Feb 20, 2019 8:54 am

MIKESCOTT wrote:
Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:43 am
In 2018 Rob Breyer of the MCSA and Saskia Marlowe of San parks issued a clarification
Sport's climbers need a Level 2 Activity permit except MCSA members do not need an Activity permit but have to show a valid MCSA membership card.
If you are a member you can obtain a copy of the agreement from the Club office
Great news!
Thanks for your input Mike. I will persue getting a coppy of the agreement.

Unfortunately it's not only the rangers that are not informed. I did end up emailing TMNP, and got a response from Ashrell Oliphant (Ms), Administration Officer (Sales), with Menisha Jehoma CC'd, saying I would need a permit, regardless.
-I was actually about to get the permit.

R

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Mon Feb 25, 2019 1:52 pm

An update (of non-progress) :scratch: :

I mailed Robert Breyer (MCSA-CT Rock Clinbing) to ask for clarification of the situation on 2019-02-19. -no response yet.
I then mailed Martin Hutton-Squire (MCSA-CT Chairman) on 2019-02-20. -no response yet.
I then mailed MCSA-CT general enquiries (admin@mcsacapetown.co.za) on 2019-02-22. -no response yet.

That evening (Friday) I called MCSA-CT hoping to get something sorted before the weekend. The lady in the office had no info on the issue, and said it was the first she'd heard of it. She suggested I call again on Monday (Today), which I did. She still had no info, but said she'd mailed the committee about it.

On Friday evening (2019-02-22), I also took a chance and mailed Saskia Marlowe (SANParks). Guess what... -no response yet.

So my next step is to call some of these people directly, but I'll wait another day or 2 for that.

@ Mike Scott: it's not proving too easy to just "obtain a copy of the agreement from the club office". If you have any more leads, or a copy of your own that you could forward to me, I'd appreciate it.

-R

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MIKESCOTT
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by MIKESCOTT » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:32 pm

Please send your eMail address to me at scottmj@telkomsa.net
Regards,
Mike
Mike Scott

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:57 pm

Sorted! :thumright

Thanks again Mike.
I now have the document.

So with regards to the title of this thread:
Confirmed!
MCSA members are indeed exempt from the "Level 2 My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in Table Mountain National Park, as long as they carry a valid MCSA membership card (and probably also the document).

I'm surprised this wasn't known more widely. It seems pertinent to a lot of people.

-R

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Wed Feb 27, 2019 8:27 am

Hmmm... it seems my previous post may have been premature. What a can of worms!

An update:
I got a respponse from Saskia (SANParks), confirming the exemption for MCSA members for Muizenberg.
When I asked for some clarification for the rest of TMNP, and brought up the agreement/guidline document, she said the document only applies to the "North of the Park", though the document itself says "Central".
After a few back & forth mails, she said "the ducument is not correct".
-I'm still waiting for further clarification.

Still no official word from Robert or the MCSA office...

So, we wait and see.
I'm trying not to hassle anyone too much. The last thing I want to do is sour any relationships.

-R

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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by robertbreyer » Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am

Hello Raphael,

This is an exact copy of an email that resides in your inbox.
I suggest you check it some time. I am posting it here again since this may be of value to other armchair climbers.

-Robert
MCSA Cape Town


Hello Raphael,

Thank you for your many emails. All received.

The info you want is commonly available on climb.co.za, all active sport climbers in Cape Town know the story.
And it’s complicated, and getting murkier by the day.
Your question has also been ambiguous. You wrote about sport climbing in Muizenberg.
There’s no sport in Muizenberg, only trad.

Trad doesn’t require anything. Most rangers are OK with that, although sometimes you find one that doesn’t know what it means. Then you start debating.
From the Club’s perspective, the MCSA membership card serves as a substitute for the Activity Permit for sport climbing. But we don’t see eye-eye on this with all TMNP sections or employees.
From the TMNP perspective, the MCSA card is acceptable in non-permit open access areas, such as Higgovale/Glencoe quarry. By that definition, Lakeside too.
But people have been asked to pay at Silvermine where most sport is located, rangers arguing that this is not an open access area and that the MCSA card allws you to practice the activity, but not get entrance for free. Go figure out that contradiction.

So it’s a bit murky and the rules change depending on who you talk to, and when.
Most climbers going to Silvermine pretend they are hikers, show their Green Card or pay the day fee, and then just climb.

You have a Green Card?

I created the attached document with the Northern section of TMNP. It includes the main central section sport areas. Bring it, see what happens, let me know.

- Robert Breyer
Rock Subcom
download/file.php?mode=view&id=6211
Attachments
MCSA TMNP Activity Permit.jpg
MCSA TMNP Activity Permit.jpg (183.71 KiB) Viewed 5358 times

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raphaeltube
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Re: Do Mountain Club members need a "My Activity Permit" for Sport Climbing in TMNP?

Post by raphaeltube » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:19 am

robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
This is an exact copy of an email that resides in your inbox.
I have not received this mail, please double check my address: raphaeltube@gmail.com
But thank you anyway for your response.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
The info you want is commonly available on climb.co.za, all active sport climbers in Cape Town know the story.
I did search the forum, and did not find anything recent or definitive.
All the climbers I spoke to either did not know the story, or had heard something, but were not sure.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
Your question has also been ambiguous. You wrote about sport climbing in Muizenberg.
There’s no sport in Muizenberg, only trad.
I was referring to 'Foreign Policy' and 'The Hole' which are Sport crags in Muizenberg.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
But people have been asked to pay at Silvermine where most sport is located, rangers arguing that this is not an open access area and that the MCSA card allws you to practice the activity, but not get entrance for free. Go figure out that contradiction.
That makes sense to me. I'd be happy to pay the normal entrance, as long as I don't need the Activity Permit. -seems fair.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
So it’s a bit murky and the rules change depending on who you talk to, and when.
This is exactly why I posed the question. I see now what a can of worms this is. But still: Maybe we can figure out what exactly what we can and can't do with or without a Permit.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
Most climbers going to Silvermine pretend they are hikers, show their Green Card or pay the day fee, and then just climb.
That is exactly what I want to avoid.
If it turns out that we need a permit regardless, I'd rather get the permit or climb somewhere else.
I believe it is precisely because of that attitude that the SANParks people are not seeing eye to eye with us.

I don't mean to be quite as defensive as this post is comming accross.
robertbreyer wrote:
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:03 am
I created the attached document with the Northern section of TMNP. It includes the main central section sport areas.
Thank you very much for posting it here.
I see it is slightly different from the one Mike sent me. Was there another version?
Maybe that is what put Saskia off, saying it was "not correct".

-Raphael

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