Via Ferrata(s) Tetons, WY?

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dave

climber
Earth
Topic Author's Original Post - May 11, 2008 - 03:28pm PT
I just read in the local paper that the forest service is reviewing the proposal on equiping routes in the Tetons with via ferratas (sp)in order to have, as the article stated, "Rock Climbing without the Risks".

Anyone know about this crrrrap!?
tooth

Mountain climber
B.C.
May 11, 2008 - 04:43pm PT
Yeah, the new forest director, Issac, from Europe. Good guy! He will be making some Euro changes...
Next up, 'climbers forum' beaches...
jstan

climber
May 11, 2008 - 05:01pm PT
After a little search:

http://www.mtexpress.com/story_printer.php?ID=2005120645

Rock climbing without risks coming to Tetons

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. (MTN)—For summer visitors this year, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort hopes to offer a new feature described as rock climbing without the risk.

Called "via ferrata," the system features a steel cable that runs the length of each rock-climbing route. Participants wear a helmet and a harness with two safety lines, which are clipped into the cable. By clipping and unclipping as they ascend the face, climbers at all times remain attached to the cable by at least one safety line.

The Jackson Hole News&Guide stated that networks of via ferrata, Italian for "iron way," were installed in the Italian Dolomites and Austrian Tyrol during World War I, as soldiers for both sides of that horrific conflict affixed cables, ladders and bridges to the rock, eliminating the need for full climbing equipment.

This system allows people who haven't climbed before to "get the experience without risk," explained Jessica Milligan, chief of product, sales and service for Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. The routes are being reviewed by the U.S. Forest Service, which administers the property.

Whistler-Blackcomb also has via ferrata routes, as do Waterfall Canyon in Ogden, Utah, and three resorts in the East. Such systems are common in Europe, especially the Dolomites.


Then I found a map showing Bridger Teton national Forest.

http://gorp.away.com/gorp/location/wy/wy_nw.htm

From here on what I have to say is speculation, so regard it as such.

The newspapers have carried many reports of efforts leading to the rewriting of NFS rules guiding that agency’s management of public lands. This has come most visibly as regards oil drilling and the building of roads. In certain cases even the mere presence of a road materially affects whether Wilderness status can exist in an area. Past NFS rules have been changed and this change can presumably show up in a number of ways, apart from oil drilling.

So far I have not located the appropriate NFS office for receiving public input on this proposal. If input is being sought, that site will have much more information.

Once someone finds a source of real information on this proposal, they should, ASAP, make it available here so those with concerns can decide whether they need to write their members of Congress.

I have used via ferrata on and around the Tofana above Cortina d'Ampezzo. Most of it was on terrain I thought steep but sometimes exposed sidewalks. I have to say it allowed groups of thirty or forty people ready access to an area they would not otherwise see. That area is part of a WW I battlefield managed as a park. On it one can see the defenses contructed by Italy, in some places just as they existed at the end of the war. Communication lines still lay underfoot.

If we could once finish the bolt discussion, our climbers's thoughtful input to land use decisions like this could be very useful IMO.
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
May 11, 2008 - 08:51pm PT
This is just the beginning - commercial interests and 'enthusiasts' will be pushing hard for the expansion of via ferratas in the U.S. We are now exactly where we were at the end of the '70s with sport climbing - and via ferratas are nothing but an extension of the entitlement and desire for risk-free entertainment which lie at the heart of it.

Maybe it's time for 'sport climbing' to become 'trad climbing' to make room for the new sport climbing...
dave

climber
Earth
Topic Author's Reply - May 11, 2008 - 09:46pm PT
And people here give more of a shite about some feckin rap bolts than this.
steelmnkey

climber
Vision man...ya gotta have vision...
May 11, 2008 - 09:51pm PT
This is bull*hit of the highest order.

They'll be all like "oh, we just want to do this one route"... then once they get away with that and then it'll be "I'm tired of that one...lets put up another, and another..."

They put 'em up, I say we chop em. Blow torch and hacksaws. This is SO wrong.

Someone please find an address or something where we can send comments on this.
ralph_teh_klimber

climber
ralph town
May 11, 2008 - 09:52pm PT
I am excited about this, as we put in a bid for the fabrication and install of the ropeway!
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
May 11, 2008 - 10:09pm PT
The Via Ferrata was an outgrowth of a seminal historic event in Italy. Totaly appropriate to keep them up and even improve them given the context.


they have no provenance in an American wilderness and should be totaly unaceptable other than the few with historical roots.

The cables are the only one that comes to mind that meets that test.

There may be a few other obscure ones that have passed into disintegration. How about restoring the steps on Babo? Or the cowboy route on Devils Tower? Let's rebuild the Lowe cog railway complete with resort on top?

Bet that would go over big.
ralph_teh_klimber

climber
ralph town
May 11, 2008 - 10:14pm PT
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is not the wilderness and this installation is well within their usage rights on public land.
Mimi

climber
May 11, 2008 - 10:18pm PT
Which peak(s) would be impacted? Got link showing the layout?
TGT

Social climber
So Cal
May 11, 2008 - 10:28pm PT
So let me see if ii'nm get'in this right.

A private entity is within its "usage rights" to turn public lands into an amusement ride as a profit making enterprise, but thousands of miles of roads, some in use for 50 years or more should be removed from public non profit use?

(See Bacahar bolders thread.)


What's wrong with this picture?

ontheedgeandscaredtodeath

Trad climber
San Francisco, Ca
May 11, 2008 - 10:44pm PT
Most ski areas are on public lands. Via Ferratas are no big deal when you compare them to the average lift network.
Mimi

climber
May 11, 2008 - 10:48pm PT
Looks like their tram goes up to the base of Teewinot. The resort is down below so the cables and steps would be used in conjunction with the tram ride? There's no mention of the cable project anywhere.

http://www.jacksonhole.com/info/jh.gondola.index.asp

Take it away Ralph. Seriously!
ralph_teh_klimber

climber
ralph town
May 11, 2008 - 10:52pm PT
You are correct TGT, it all comes down to money, the ski resorts pay a permit fee, some grandfathered in at unbelievable rates and some pay out the nose. This install will be minimum impact and overseen by a third party as well as the USFS. Go to the Palm Springs Tram, when we did that upgrade spent weeks on the cliff side drilling and hammering away quite a bit of stone as the new Trams could clear the cliff into the top terminal. It's hard but awesome work.
Jaybro

Social climber
The West
May 11, 2008 - 10:55pm PT
We ARE Devo! think I hear my new tail calling for love...I love my implants, grafts,'n' sh#t.... closest I can think of to really doing sh#t.
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
May 11, 2008 - 11:07pm PT
Oh, so you're serious about doing the install. Bummer, can't believe a climber would take money to do such a thing - but then anything is for sale I suppose.
hagerty

Social climber
SLC
May 11, 2008 - 11:23pm PT
> Looks like their tram goes up to the base of Teewinot.
<
No. We're talking about Jackson Hole Mountain Resort - a ski area with multiple lifs, a gondola or two and a tram - well south of Grand Teton National Park. The proposed developments indeed are on public land (held under long term lease by the resort operators), but it's no where near Teewinot, the Grand, etc. It's probably a good idea to look at some real maps first before everyone gets their panties in a bunch.
Mimi

climber
May 11, 2008 - 11:28pm PT
The link I posted came up from a search for the resort. They must also run the tram for the ski area near the Village. This link says they're north of the park.

http://www.jacksonhole.net/mountain-resort.htm
healyje

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
May 11, 2008 - 11:32pm PT
Public or private lands are pretty much irrelevant - it's like saying you don't have to worry about a virus because it's on in a private home instead of a public building. Via ferratas are coming - first on private land, now leased public land, and next there will be the inevitable legal battles for regular BLM, FS, and National Park lands.
alpinerockfiend

Trad climber
Jackson, WY
May 11, 2008 - 11:45pm PT
Mimi, the resort is not north of the Park. The article says it's located "12 miles north of Jackson Hole" or something to that effect. They're referring to the town of Jackson. The north side of the resort BORDERS the south boundary of Grand Teton National Park. Also, to whoever posted that the tram runs up Teewinot... you're wrong. There are no ski lifts in the Park. You guys should try to inform yourselves a little more before jumping into this fight.

There is a very minuscule amount of rock climbing developed on the Forest Service land inside the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort lease. There's even less potential for more. More than likely, the little "via ferrata" will be on some of the small limestone and granite choss that appears at various locations in the resort.

I'm not trying to defend this at all. I'm just trying to give a more accurate picture of these faulty characterizations of JHMR.
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