With the much-anticipated arrival of spring, the OAC once again invites supporters to come to its annual Crag Stewardship day held in conjunction with Conservation Halton. On Saturday, May 10th, we will help preserve the environment at one of Ontario’s most popular crags, Rattlesnake Point. As in previous years, climbers of all abilities have a chance to give back to one of our biggest supporters, Conservation Halton, by helping remove the invasive (yet edible) species, garlic mustard. Bring gardening gloves!
Please join us for one of the OAC’s signature outdoor events at 9AM at the Upper Pavilion on May 10, rain or shine. Conservation Halton will provide free entry to Rattlesnake Point for volunteers, and the OAC will provide a BBQ lunch and prize draws as usual. Following the lunch, you may choose to refamiliarize yourself with the cliffs at Rattlesnake Point and Buffalo Crag.
Spring is always closer than you think. It’ll be time to put away the ice tools and get ready for the rock!
In the meantime, the OAC is looking to expand its team of dedicated volunteers working towards improved access to crags. Here are some of the roles that we are looking to fill.
Event Coordinator: Crag Ambassador Day at Conservation Halton
Our annual Crag Ambassador Day is coming up in early May. OAC volunteers will continue our commitment to help fight off the invasion of Garlic Mustard. The OAC will provide a BBQ and the rocks will be there for climbing in the afternoon.
This event, run by the OAC and Conservation Halton, improves climbers’ visibility at some of our most popular crags. The OAC is looking for you, an enthusiastic and dedicated volunteer, to lead the organization of this event. This role is great for anyone looking to build their resume and will require an estimated 24 hours effort prior to and including the event.
We are also looking for someone to coordinate volunteers’ efforts. This person would develop a volunteer recruitment plan, identify and engage potential volunteers, track volunteer contributions, and generally support the efforts of our volunteers.
We’d love to have you on our team by March 7. Write to us with your interests and skills (either for the above two positions, or any other task that you might be interested in) at
email@example.com. Together, we’ll figure out how you can best help.
Also, while we have your attention: Please fill out the 2013 OAC Climbers’ Survey (click here)!
Now that it’s 2014, we would love to hear about your climbing experiences from last year. CLICK HERE to take the 2013 OAC Survey
By completing the survey you are helping climbing access in the province. The information you provide is used in aggregate to assist the OAC in representing climbers when asking Land Managers to consider how to balance preservation and recreation. Survey data collected on this survey will be kept strictly confidential and the entire survey should take you about five minutes to complete. Your participation is greatly appreciated. Climb safe and tread lightly.
The OAC is pleased to share progress on efforts to purchase Old Baldy. We have reached the 150k milestone towards permanently securing access to sustainable climbing.
We are deeply thankful to our generous donors. Thanks to them, we are confident that we will succeed in raising the money needed to acquire land at Old Baldy.
Our corporate donors are:
We are also grateful to our individual donors, who are instrumental in demonstrating broad community support for this acquisition. Gus Alexandropoulos organized an effort to collect money through the ontarioclimbing.com forum and raised $8,000 for us. The following people have demonstrated their support for Old Baldy and the OAC by donating at least $100:
Ken Chase (Heavy Computing)
The following donors contributed directly to the OAC:
Please consider donating to the Old Baldy initiative; you can do so directly at our donations page.
This is a quick reminder to visit your local Mountain Equipment Coop (Barrie, Burlington, Toronto) and buy an OAC “Ontario Crags” 2014 calendar while supplies last. It’s the gift that keeps on giving in monthly doses of inspiration! And your purchase is a great way to support the OAC! Calendars will be available in stores until December 31st, 2013.
The Ontario Access Coalition is proud to host the second installment of our ‘Discussion Series’ on Saturday, November 23 at Grand River Rocks in Kitchener! This all-afternoon event will facilitate open discussions between climbers and land managers, with the goal of providing accurate, up-to-date information regarding climbing outdoors in Ontario.
As well, come witness a historic moment for Ontario climbing access. The OAC and MEC will be signing a contribution agreement confirming MEC’s intention to donate $100,000 towards the acquisition of land permitting access to Old Baldy, one of Ontario’s premier climbing areas!
Ask questions, socialize and climb, and learn more about climbing access from the OAC and land managers themselves. Also, learn more about local tri-city University climbing and bouldering clubs, competitions and world class Ontario climbing areas like the Niagara Glen. Discounted day passes, slideshows and fun gear giveaways from the OAC, MEC and Adventure Guide make this a great way to spend a Saturday in late November!
Join the discussion with the OAC this Saturday, November 23 from 2-6pm in Kitchener at Grand River Rocks and spread the word on by sharing the event with your climbing friends: https://www.facebook.com/events/199919373525062
The OAC is pleased to announce that on Nov 8, 2013, Canadian Retail Cooperative – MEC, stepped forward as a major contributor towards the purchase of lands adjacent to Old Baldy Conservation area. MEC has agreed to fund $100,000.00 towards the purchase of a crucial parcel to help solidify sustainable and safe climbing access to the cliff at Old Baldy while promoting tourism in the Beaver Valley region for generations.
Additional funds are still required to make the purchase, and the OAC will continue partnership with the Toronto section of the Alpine Club of Canada, the Grey Sauble Conservation Authority, and the climbing community towards gaining the additional funds. This presents a significant opportunity for the climbing community to step forward and become relevant in large scale conservation efforts in the region.
The cliff at Old Baldy provides sport and traditional climbing opportunities at all grades in a picturesque setting above the Beaver Valley. The OAC has previously partnered with MEC, and the Grey Sauble Conservation Authority to successfully replace the existing climbing hardware at the cliff to enhance the safety of the cliff at Old Baldy.
Please donate via the PayPal option at www.ontarioaccesscoalition.com or email Randy Kielbasiewicz for inquiries.
Contact: Randy Kielbasiewicz
Downloadable Old Baldy Funding Press release
Back by popular demand, the OAC’s ‘Ontario Crags’ calendar for 2014 is now available at Mountain Equipment Coop in Toronto, Barrie, and Burlington! Featuring images of Ontario’s amazing bouldering, rock and ice climbing crags, the calendar makes a great gift for any climber on your list. A big thanks to all of you who submitted photos. And thanks for your support of the OAC through your purchase! Here’s a sneak preview:
The OAC continues to increase its visibility among stakeholders by participating at this year’s Niagara Escarpment Leading Edge Conference, held October 24 at Country Heritage Park in Milton, Ontario. The Niagara Escarpment Commission hosted the conference in partnership with the Ontario Professional Planners Institute and celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Niagara Escarpment Planning and Development Act (NEPDA). The NEPDA aims, in part, to provide for outdoor recreation. Stakeholders at the event included the Niagara Escarpment Commission, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Ontario Parks, the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority and Parks Canada. Presentations and panel discussions ranged from how to revitalize quarry sites to the intangible values of Escarpment lands.
At the conference, the OAC displayed its informational bouldering poster, typically housed at the Niagara Glen Nature Center. The poster generated a lot of interest in the state of climbing in Ontario and the OAC’s role in protecting climbing environments. Overall, the conversations were progressive and positive. The OAC hopes that continued representation at this conference will bolster collaborative efforts between climbers and land managers in Ontario to make climbing a more sustainable and accepted form of outdoor recreation along the Niagara Escarpment.
The first annual Beaver Valley Climbing Festival (BVCF) took place on August 24th at Metcalfe Rock with great support from organizations in the climbing community and local business from the Beaver Valley area. The event was embraced by a great turnout of local climbers and local community who enjoyed outdoor climbing, slacklining and yoga clinics. A friendly outdoor competition format, aerial silk performance, bike demos, and professional massages all were very popular. Once the sun set, the evening featured generous prize draws, live music and catered food and camping at The Rob Roy Dogsled Farm.
The whole event was the brain child of Jennie Elmslie (Free Spirit Tours) and Leslie Timms (On The Rocks Climbing) who pulled it together in only about
two months. The $4500 in funds raised from the event benefited the Ontario Access Coalition whose mission is to preserve and promote sustainable access to Ontario climbing resources. The OAC has already lined the funds up for a special project in partnership with Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources to help ensure the sustainability of climbing in Kolapore Uplands where the festival occurred.
Major sponsorship for the event that made it all possible was provided by Joe Rockheads and Boulderz Climbing Centre, with a long list of other organizations providing needed support. Immediately upon the events conclusion talk turned to not only the great success, but excitement about next year’s festival! For more information about the Beaver Valley Climbing Festival please visit www.beavervalleyclimbingfestival.com