With so many folks out bouldering this spring in the West Kootenays I thought I would bring to attention a few points about access around Arrow Lake and beyond as the season ramps up and the weather turns amazing. There has never been this many people bouldering in the Kootenays and though it is really great that so many people are stoked and getting out, we are a relatively new scene (especially in the Castlegar area) and it would be great to be seen as stewards to the area and not a nuisance.
Beachside – If we could park perpendicular to Broadwater Rd. so more cars could fit in the parking pullout that would be great. The last few weekends the parking has overflowed onto the road and towards Scottie’s Marina (this is private property). The lake is as low as it’s been in years, it has been such a good start to the season down there!
Keenlyside – Please use the picnic area parking (towards the Dam), having a bunch of cars parked on the drag strip (people really rip on that straight stretch) is pretty unsafe and not necessary (its a 1 minute extra walk)
The Range/Fukushima – Please don’t park in the Gun Clubs small parking area. Parking parallel to the road right at the trailhead is better as the Gun Club doesn’t have much space. This also helps maintain our great relationship we have with them. (As a reminder please stay on trail while in the area for obvious reasons)
As much as we all like having fires on cooler days there are several places that this is not cool and could definitely jeopardize our access. Fantasyland is private property and up to this point our presence there has been generally accepted, having crappy fire pits all over the place up there raises several red flags and I am almost positive this would make the landowner un stoked. Grohman is another spot that basically crosses over CP property. They have been known all over Canada for having very low tolerance, as of now we have not had any problems, lm sure they would not be stoked if they saw climbers having fires or hanging on the tracks. Lastly, Keenlyside borders private dwellings on each end and Syringa and is a Provincial Park.
Tick Marks & Garbage:
Brush off your excess chalk and tick marks, no one likes having the problems laid out for them like the gym. Although they serve as a great indication of where to grab or smack a hold, it’s much more fun figuring it out for yourself. And finally garbage, and that includes finger tape and Cliff Bar wrappers. Even if it is not yours, maybe pick it up anyways? Its always good to give a last look over before you leave anyway.
This is a great time in the West Kootenays, the climbing scene is blossoming and more people than ever are out crushing, this is just a friendly reminder to try and leave a lasting, positive impact in the region for years to come.