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Day Use Area at Horse Flats? Access Fund?
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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 1, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Should I contact the Access Fund and Forest Service and try and get some day use parking put in at Horse Flats?

You use to be able to park on the right side across from campsites 6-8, but they put some small boulders in the way to block it off.

The main reason is that Iíve parked in empty campsites and been given tickets. Not just the Adventure Pass tickets, but ones that say failure to pay campsite fees. One time I got a ticket on a Sunday when I had camped there but I just stayed parked at the site an hour past the checkout time. Iím sure others have been ticketed before too and I donít want this place getting shut down for a dumb reason of people not paying tickets. All the guides give directions from the campground too, so anyone new going there will assume to park in the campground too.

To get to the trail that leads to the main area itís about 1 mile extra in if you park outside the gate and 1 Ĺ miles extra if you park at Rosenetta Saddle like the sign tells you to for day use. (I think the day use is more directed to hikers trying to hike Mt. Hillyer). Parking at Rosenetta saddle is perfect if you are going to the Top Rope wall because it is an easier hike in. But parking there for bouldering is a pain.

So what do you guys think? Try and talk to the forest service and access fund and get like a trail building day and make an area for about 6 cars to park for day use for climbers. Or just not be a lazy boulder rat and park outside the gate?

mountainproject.com/v/horse-flats/105920760
www.earthrover.org/horse_flats/Horse_Flats_Bouldering.html

Map of Horse Flats
Map of Horse Flats


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By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
May 1, 2012

Tristan - I have always just parked at the gate and walked..it's not like I was carrying a load of trad gear! But I hear what you are saying...However, you should consider what happens when a parkinglot is added or any convienence for that matter.

I have not been up there in a few years. Everything still the same (except for those pesky boulders blocking your parking spot?).


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 1, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Yeah I know, I like bouldering becuase I don't have to carry all my trad gear, rope, ect because a pad is way lighter.

But thats why I asked here to see if others think its a good idea or if others have had similar experiences. I don't want to go try and do something and end up ruining it for everyone.


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By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
May 1, 2012

Very cool of you to be proactive.

I've seen many trail heads over the years that got a paved parking lot, etc and all of a sudden they were no fun (for me) to go to anymore.

My wisdom: The harder it is to enjoy something, the less it appeals to the masses..

Good luck with your decision.


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 2, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Here's another pic of the area right by campsites 6-8 and the trail to the main area. You can see the boulders that are blocking the place where you use to be able to park.

Boulders Blocking the parking area.
Boulders Blocking the parking area.


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By Fat Dad
From Los Angeles, CA
May 2, 2012

I don't think it's a bad suggestion. All they would need to do is either remove the boulders or convert a small portion of the campground to day use parking (for which they could presumably charge something less than the camping fee). It's true that making access more convenient does bring more people, but it's the drive and the scattered bouldering that keeps most folks away, not the parking issues.

Call the Access Fund and see what they say.


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By Benjamin Chapman
From Small Town, USA
May 2, 2012
old 1/4" bolt.

Tristan B....I've always parked outside the campground at the gate. The walk in isn't that bad. Unfortunately, this situation has been going on for years. My 1st visit was in 1983 and parking in the campground without a campsite got you a sure ticket. It would be nice if the Access Fund could mediate this issue. Try Jim Pinter-Lucke (jlucke@cmc.edu), as he's the regional contact for the SW section of the AAC and the AF. Jim helped with scheduling an Adopt-a-Crag day at Echo Cliffs and hosts the Idyllwild Climber's Festival trail maintenance projects at Tahquitz/Suicide.


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 2, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Fat Dad, thanks. You're right it's not really making it more convenient becuase people just park in camp sites and use to park there a few years ago. I just want to establish it as like an offical day use area so people won't get tickets and if they do get a ticket not pay them and get this place closed or something.

Thanks Ben. I've walked it a few times too, like when the campground was closed from the station fire. But I just want to get peoples opinions before I go contacting people.

Even on mountain project it says "Park in the campground (gotta have adventure pass displayed I think)." So it is a problem.

Here is another thread about the same thing like a year ago
mountainproject.com/v/adventure-pass-for-a-day-trip-to-horse>>>

Ben, Did you put on the adopt a crag at Echo last year? I've been to 2 at Stoney and 2 at Malibu and hopefully I can go to the Idyllwild one coming up soon.


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By tom donnelly
May 3, 2012

It seems like a good idea to me.
One downside is that people will expect to be able to park there,
and once that is full, instead of going back out to the gate, they will cause some other parking problem.

You would likely need to do much of the work yourself to organize some locals and present your proposal to the Angeles NF. Jim/Access Fund are quite dependent on the locals in an area to accomplish anything. He can put the name of the AF behind a proper effort, so you can demonstrate that you are not just some unknown uncontrolled climbers.


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 7, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Tom, check this picture out, people park in the wrong area so if there were signs saying day use area for like 5 cars and then telling others to go use an overflow area out of the campground I think it would solve both problems.

Here's a shot of 2 cars parking in the camping spots but they weren't camping. The area where they should be able to park is right behind them.
Here's a shot of 2 cars parking in the camping spots but they weren't camping. The area where they should be able to park is right behind them.


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By Xan Calonne
From Studio City, Ca
May 7, 2012

Tristan, while I certainly prefer the hike in from the campsite area I think that going down this road (Forest Service, AF, etc.) will ultimately lead to access issues. One of the great things about bouldering up at the flats is the solitude, and unspoiled nature of the place. As such, I am kind of with gearwhore here in thinking that simplifying parking will draw a larger crowd and unfortunately not everyone (especially LA boulderers, ime) cares about LNT ethics, etc. So for my money, just enjoy the pretty, twenty minute hike-in and leave the place as it is; whichever way you decide to go though, good luck!
-Xan


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 7, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

I don't want to blow this spot up. But I want to fix the problem before there is an acess issue. People just park in the camping sites without paying for them, so I don't want that to ruin it for us. Check out the getting there for HF on MP, it says park in the campground, which is perfect if you are camping, but if you are up for the day you'll probablly just park in an unused site.


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By x15x15
May 8, 2012

Tristan B wrote:
People just park in the camping sites without paying for them, so I don't want that to ruin it for us. Check out the getting there for HF on MP, it says park in the campground, which is perfect if you are camping, but if you are up for the day you'll probablly just park in an unused site.


seems like a simple fix. rewrite the getting there for HF on MP and advise non-campers to park outside the campground, like we do for most areas.

this place definitely does not need any day-use parking inside the campground. and ignorance of the rules will hurt our access, so lets hope the boulderers become a bit more educated on land-use and how it affects all users.

i'm still having a hard time understanding the need to put in day use parking when it will save you a whopping 10 minutes.


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By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
May 8, 2012

Hats off to Tristan for trying to get opinions before taking (or not taking) action.

Tristan you may or may not know but HF was the premier place for a long time. It's be out of style for many years now. Although interest is back some it's nothing like it was a long time ago. Like I said earlier - it seems perfect now.

Anyways, in regards to parking in a campsite intentionally or by accident; I assume that the rangers don't mind as they get money from the tickets issued. First time I went there, I did the same thing you described...parked in a campsite and put up my A-pass. Ranger came by and let us know that was not cool. We reparked and had a great day...all alone.


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 9, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

X15X15, It's not as simple as rewriting it on here, it's a good start, but the guide books say it too. But thats why I'm doing this to stop it before it hurts our access like you said.

Thanks Gearwhore. Yeah I know this use to be a spot for some bad asses. I'm sure the rangers don't care when they get paid, but some people probably don't pay. It is unfare to pay $14 for something that you aren't actually using on top of the forest adventure pass fee. When you talked to the ranger did they say anything like people do it all the time, or that it's a problem for them or anything?


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By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
May 9, 2012

Nope, she just said that we can't park there and we should get a ticket but to just move the car. It was about 10-12 years ago. The campground was completely empty BTW.


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By x15x15
May 9, 2012

i guess i am too old. my guidebook does not tell me to park in the campground, but it is not a recent one. if guidebook authors are advising folks to park inside forest service campgrounds without paying, then that is irresponsible, a serious issue that needs to be fixed.

the posted regulations usually advise people that day-use is still pay-use. is this not the case anymore at the HF board?


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 9, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

There is a sign right at the gate for HF that says day use go right up to Roseneta saddle and camping left. And then on your way in you get to the campsite pay area thing. I'll have to check that out soon too to see exactly what it says.

I'll have to recheck my book to see exatcly what it says and also check some other books too. But I know it gives directions like hike up from certain camp sites which isn't irresponisble but could be misleading I guess.

Heres another hiking site that says to just park in the campground. www.simpsoncity.com/hiking/hillyer.html
This is irresponsible of him tellign people to park in the campground.


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By Tristan B
From La Crescenta, CA
May 11, 2012
Hanging out on Royal Arches

Photo bump from the other night.

Sunset from the top of Pie Slice
Sunset from the top of Pie Slice


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By gearwhore
From Orange, CA
May 11, 2012

EEEK! Keep it up with this thread and you'll need a bi-level parking lot put in.


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