Art Messier and his San Diego "BOLT WAR"

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SandyLedges

climber
ca
Topic Author's Original Post - Aug 6, 2006 - 03:36pm PT
After receiving comments regarding my previous post on Art Messiers misdeeds I now realize that the "bent hanger" incident I mentioned could be misinterpreted by others. (see: http://www.supertopo.com/climbing/thread.html?topic_id=222742 - "Edge of Time Arete" Trip Report)

The bent hanger was the result of cleaning occuring on a new route and was in no way intentional. A dislodged block came near one of Messiers bolts and Randy (ever the diplomat) offered to replace it to appease a raging and irrational Messier. I was not present during the incident but was relayed the story by a number of people that were there. My bad for publishing second-hand (yet factual) info.

To my knowledge, Randy Leavitt has refrained from taking part in Art Messiers stupid unilateral "bolt war." Despite Messiers bolt chopping, continued theft and verbal threats, life goes in sunny SD.

-shannon scott
San Diego climber

p.s. Art Messier - we're still waiting to hear your side of the story. Care to comment?
ikellen

Trad climber
Mammoth Lakes, CA
Aug 6, 2006 - 05:34pm PT
I stand by you bro. Art literally single-handedly ruined San Diego's best chance at a really good crag. I still seeth thinking about the sh!t that guy has done. I'm with you - Art, care to fess up or are you just going to go back and remove any trace of your existance as if to make it seemed like nothing happened?

EDIT: Looks like Art did it again, deleting his original trip report. This guy is a true and honest coward, I don't care how many big routes he did in the backcountry. The s#& this guy did is unforgivable.
SandyLedges

climber
ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 7, 2006 - 08:16am PT
correction to the correction - I guess the term bolt war is also misleading since only one person is at war.

I think I can understand why this topic has no merit to the supertopo crowd. It's comic when viewed from an outsiders perspective: "crazed ex-rap-bolter turned trad-ethic zealot unleashes his wrath on San Diego sport crags" - who cares???

Unfortunately, for the people that climb in SoCal we have to live with it. Bolt chopping... in this instance it really is pretty silly.

Whats your take on this Art? Hello.......???? Hmmmm, probably out chopping the Harding bolts on Conness as we speak. Oh well, those things are pretty toast and Harding probably woulda been a rap-bolter if he was still around :') Be sure and send us a trip report!
-s
landcruiserbob

Trad climber
the ville, colorado
Aug 7, 2006 - 08:39am PT
Can your stuff go free w/o bolts???? I doubt Randy would put up a bolt if he could place a nut.

Confront the dude & have a come to Jesus talk with him. Hand him a rack & tell him to lead it..... Bolt wars can get dangerous;like the stuff that went on in boulder canyon.If all else fails whip his ass.rg
Dingus Milktoast

climber
NorCal
Aug 7, 2006 - 10:26am PT
I think you should pile up Art Messier at the base of his latest chop fest and take a big sh#t on him.

It'll f*#k with his head for 25 years by god.

DMT
SandyLedges

climber
ca
Topic Author's Reply - Aug 7, 2006 - 11:18am PT
Thanks for the suggestions guys.
Incidentally, a number of fun activities are planned for when he decides to make his public debut.
Suffice to say we can't wait to see him! (Apparently he is quite shy these days.)
The Alpine

Big Wall climber
Tampa, FL
Dec 19, 2008 - 08:46pm PT
What ever happened with this? Have routes been re-established?
Mike.

climber
Dec 19, 2008 - 08:58pm PT
Two weeks ago, unnamed route #15 had vandalized bolts. As in studs hammered over 90, bolts/hangers pulled halfway out. Whoever did it was clearly bent on vandalism and impact. (Or they have no idea how to remove expansion bolts.)

Thanks to all who take care of the place.
Sir loin of leisure...

Trad climber
X
Dec 19, 2008 - 09:02pm PT
I'm glad I'm not that guy...poor bastard..
jbar

Ice climber
Russia with love.
Dec 19, 2008 - 10:36pm PT
I don't like indiscriminate bolting but this bothers me. Most f'd up to me is the method. A bolt is a safety feature. If it's not there then you have to decide if you want to lead the climb or not. If it's just rendered unsafe then you create an unsafe situation for climbers who may not know better or choose to use it anyway. Cave divers have line arrows that point the way out in case of silt up. We started putting permanent ones on perm lines in popular caves. BITD there was a group of purist who decided they shouldn't exist. Vandalizing a bolt seems tantamount to pulling a line arrow. You're messing with peoples safety.
apogee

climber
Dec 21, 2008 - 12:01am PT
Just returned from a trip to El Cajon Mtn, where the subject of Art Messier came up repeatedly. The signs of a bolt war are quite evident- a few routes with smashed hangers, half-pulled bolts- it gives the area a spooky vibe, as though someone is watching you.

This kind of violence to the rock is pretty disturbing, and assuming that this is Art's work, it's hard to understand why he chooses such extreme tactics. While these tactics are completely unacceptable, I still have a desire to hear Art's side of the story. Too bad that his actions have created such a strong reaction against him that he is staying way below the radar- we may never know.
chossyslab

climber
Dec 21, 2008 - 12:35am PT
when i first started hearing about the issues with art - and, being a regular of El Cajon, experiencing them - i was so against him and everything he stood for and really just despised the guy for what he was doing (normally i wouldnt let myself feel this way about someone i had never even met but when you chop and mutilate routes the way he has you are seriously putting peoples safety at risk, and that is unacceptable). but as time has passed i have heard some other sides to the story and, though i still disagree with what he is doing and how he is choosing to go about it, i have definately noticed that there is 2 sides to every story and maybe things arent as cut and dry as most climbers in SD are led to believe...

...it would be interesting to hear both sides from the men themselves
GDavis

Trad climber
Dec 21, 2008 - 02:32am PT
Nice, apogee, how was it? Some of the most featured rock anywhere up there, if you dont mind the hike ><

If your in San Diego and want to get away from the drama, there are a myriad of great places that are being developed by badass, hard working dudes. Places like Eagle Peak and Corte Madera are a shining example. I felt bad when this whole debacle was coming down, the guys that put those routes in spent a CRAP load of time (and money) equipping those routes, and they still are up there re-equipping 'em.


If you haven't already, check out the ACSD website
http://www.alliedclimbers.org/

always a great resource.


Stay classy San Diego.



Sean Shannon on Prime Rib, 5.12b


I think we know this guy! out at Eagle Peak

(not my photos, from the ACSD website ;D)
chossyslab

climber
Dec 21, 2008 - 09:51am PT
Eagle peak is the area I frequent most these days...

...But, it sucks, dont go there!



.


.


.


.


Truthfully though, if any of you SD locals who havent been out there want to check it out send me an e-mail and you can hitch a ride with me next time i head out. I just dont want to plaster directions and info for the place all over the internet.
apogee

climber
Dec 21, 2008 - 11:48am PT
GDavis- It is a really beautiful area, and I immensely enjoyed the relatively wild feeling of it, spectacular views, and the 'big wall' feel that you get from being up so high. Very rare experiences for San Diego climbing. Our goals for the day were more social and casual, with tick lists being a low priority. I had a great day getting the feel for a new area, and doing it with good friends.

As mentioned, the evidence of the bolt wars going on here is very distressing, and I'd love to see this resolved. It's a great loss to everyone to see this crag physically desecrated with chopped/partially pulled bolts and destroyed hangers- no matter what side you are on in this controversy, all climbers are suffering as a result of it. It's just not right.

I also have to say that the bolting style that is present there is in conflict with the way the area 'feels'- in my climbing experience, an area that feels that wild and remote lends itself to a more traditional, adventure-y style of development. The proliferation of so many convenience anchors seems out of place on a crag like this. That's just my opinion, though, and this crag is now what it is, and many people are enjoying it that way. I do think this style detracts somewhat from the character of the area, but I will enjoy it anyway, and if I'm seeking that kind of traditional adventure, I'll seek it elsewhere.
The Alpine

Big Wall climber
Tampa, FL
Dec 23, 2008 - 03:23pm PT
Why doesn't somebody just go talk to Art? He's not underground - only in the climbing sense. Go talk to him in the real world person sense.
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