News just in from Parks Victoria, in response to our requests/exhortations

(1)     PV are confirming that the additional bouldering and climbing areas recently assessed within Gariwerd are:

Bouldering sites (these were selected based on a review of submissions and discussions with a few members of the bouldering community):

Andersens West, Between the Sheeps, Caves Club, Epsilon Wall, Legoland, Lower Taipan Wall, Mountain Lion, Project Wall (Lemonade Wall), The Bleachers, The Citadel, The Kindergarten, Trackside Boulders (Mt Stapylton), Venus Baths, Wedgetail Boulders, Wildsides

Climbing areas (these were selected based on queries from the climbing community and Licensed Tour Operators):

Eureka Towers, Clean Cut Walls, Eureka Wall, Andersens East, Sandanista East,  Pacific Ocean Wall, the Rockwall (Roses Gap), Legoland, Crank Start Amphitheatre

The final decisions about whether bouldering and/or climbing are supported in these sites is still being worked through by PV who are asking for understanding that this process takes time. “Until otherwise announced, we continue to ask that climbers and boulderers not enter these areas” [PV]

(2)     Consultation report and process

“The engagement summary report provides a lot of detail on all the different areas of concern and feedback. Split not only by chapter but by issues within each chapter. The final plan will include a table that details the different feedback issues and how they were addressed.

 “Regarding further feedback, we have provided two formal rounds of consultation so far, five Stakeholder Reference Group sessions, and more than 20 community and stakeholder sessions through the development of this plan. We hope you we will see from the community engagement report that we understand the community’s concerns well, which was also the view of the Stakeholder Reference Group. We do not propose to consult on the consultation, which would only serve to delay the process many months.” [PV]

(3)    Future assessments

“The plan has been designed to enable future assessments and determinations for possible climbing areas. We hear the interest in assessing areas as soon as possible. In the draft plan changing the designation of possible areas once assessments have occurred is listed as an action. However, as with all actions in a management plan they require resources and available expertise for them to occur.”The Climbing Advisory Group is a great avenue for ongoing dialogue about opportunities for assessments where resources are available and providing us with priority areas. As mentioned in the meeting we really encourage this group to build relationships with Traditional Owner groups to support future opportunities.” [PV]