"We've decided to take a new look at our climbing policies, "commented Laura Joss, superintendent of the park. "We're asking for suggestions from the public about options regarding climbing activities in the park, as well as issues to be addressed."
Issues identified to date include effects on natural and cultural resources, use of fixed hardware, designating climbing routes, development of approach trails, rock alteration, vegetation alteration, visual impacts and the effects of climbing on visitor safety and experiences.
A climbing management planning effort will consider a full range of alternatives to protect resources, visitors and visitor experience. This plan will comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), and will seek to involve as many individuals as possible who have an interest in or concerns about climbing activities at Arches.
The scoping phase of the process will continue until May 4, 2007. After that an environmental assessment will be developed, which will be available for public review and comment.
Scoping comments may be submitted over the internet at http://parkplanning.nps.gov
or by mail to Superintendent, Arches National Park, PO Box 907, Moab, UT 84532.
Dave Wood 435-719-2133
Arches National Park is soliciting public comments regarding the development of a Climbing Management Plan. In 2006, unusual climbing activities raised public interest and concern about issues associated with technical rock climbing.