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By Jeff Thoren
From montello,wi
Aug 5, 2007
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

I have been visiting the Hollow for the better part of the last decade as my backyard climbing refuge. I know no beta other than that collected by myself and close friends and am unaware of any names for any routes other than our friendly references. I am always happy to meet fellow climbers and share this delicate refuge, however, on my visit today I was quite disappointed and taken aback. Someone has felt the need to extensively over-bolt the first face area as well as several ridiculously easy or improbable lines. I can only assume, due to the easy access, that these routes were not bolted on lead. If that is the case, I say "Bad form, ethics, and, moreover, etiquette." Some of these were sketchy, crimpy, run-out leads. With bolts, these routes barely belong in a gym. Whoever is responsible for de-facing the precious and timeless rock of this delicate refuge can feel free to blame me if their lovely hangers go missing.

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By James23
From Madison, WI
Aug 5, 2007
Likely first ascent, "the Volcanoes", ne...
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Perhaps I should see the new bolted routes in question before I comment,.... but in general it strikes me as arrogant to threaten to chop someone's bolts because the climb is too easy, crimpy, or runout for you. If the climbs are that bad, it shouldn't bother you not to climb them.
What next? Removing lines that are (in exactly who's opinion?) too short, too hard, contrived, overhung, or slabby? Even if the routes are lousy, the holes are there--but if a classic climb was ruined in the process, that's another story.
Otherwise I'd encourage you to leave the hacksaw at home (I think most would agree that completely useless holes in the rock are an even greater waste than pointless bolts)..... Do something a little more proactive than reactive if you feel strongly about a particular climbing ethic (which, even given majority support, does not make it intrinsically right), and to go climb something that you do enjoy.

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By Kayte Knower
Aug 6, 2007
paralysis by analysis
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

I'm a big fan of the new bolted lines at The Hollow. These new lines have exactly the right number of bolts. They are safe and fun to lead from the ground up. I am greatful for the hard work and expense people went to to put up these lines. It's a nice addition to have some well bolted, fun sandstone routes at wisco.

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By Jay Knower
Administrator
From Campton, NH
Aug 6, 2007
Technosurfing, Rumney. Photo by Seth Hamel.
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Jeff,

Please think long and hard before you remove any bolts at Hillbilly. Bolted lines have existed at the area since the 80's, and not just hard stuff either. Swiss Cheese, which I would bet you have done, has existed for at least ten years, and it is an "easy" 5.8.

You do not own the area. Many people, like you, have been using Hillbilly as a refuge, and many of those people approve of the new bolting. I have been climbing at Hillbilly since I was a student at UW-Oshkosh, and that was, lets see, 1997 or so. I have fond memories of testing myself on Pagan Rituals back then. I was psyched to actually have a sport climb in a land of run-out quartzite, and many others share my sentiment.

I am responsible for the "improbable" new lines you mention. They, in fact, are very probable. I would suggest that you get on them, as I bolted both The Gap and Manic Depression so that anyone could try to lead them. As JasonH said, WI has enough sketchy gear leads. This from someone who has led 5.12+ death-routes at the Lake.

By chopping a route, you in effect separate yourself from the rest of the community, from those who think the routes are a good thing. These are good people you will be alienating. They are fantastic climbers who could, potentially, be worthwhile friends. Or, with the turn of the wrench, all of that goodwill could be destroyed.


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By Ron L Long
From Out yonder in Wisco.
Aug 7, 2007
City life
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Jeff, I have tried to engage you privately (off site) apparently without success as I have not heard from you. Not sure if you have re-visited this site since your post/threats, it appears that if you have it has at least not been formally (signed in). As such this may be a shot in the dark, but it seems worth giving it a try. I have put too much of my own time (and money) in to the routes to not try again.

If you are intent on following through with your implications can you clarify exactly what you see as the problem? Are you “anti-bolt” in all circumstances? Do you simply feel the routes that were bolted were done so poorly? Is it the fact you feel they are “over bolted”? Not worthy of being a route? It would also be helpful if you could refer to the routes in question, by name, as given on this forum. To be clear, you are entitled to your opinion, as am I and the others who expressed their feelings on this page.

If you are “anti-bolt” as an absolutist stance, I might remind you that the area in question was bolted long before you or I ever climbed there. I would also remind you that you have listed Ouray as a favorite destination, an area which is wholly artificial and has a large number of bolts both for top-anchors as well as for mixed routes. If you feel the routes were bolted poorly, over bolted or not worthy of being “climbs”, again it is your right to have that/those opinion(s). Let me just say that the routes I was involved with (4 of the 5 new routes) were all bolted after consultation with several climbers of varying size and ability; I know the 5th was “bolted by committee” as well. Also, it is my belief that a “moderate” bolted route should be designed with the moderate leader in mind. To me, bolting a 5.6-5.9 route with the 5.10-5.12 leader in mind (i.e. run out on “easy ground”) is an act of ego. The fact that Wisconsin does not need any more poorly protected routes was expressed here by a person who has lead routes with a higher degree of difficulty and a higher R/X rating then I will ever do; while I do not know you I am guessing the same is true for you.

With all that has been said, if you still intend to follow through, keep this in mind. You will also need to patch all of the holes you are now leaving exposed. I do not know your level of experience with this, but I can say from my own experience that patching the holes so they match the surrounding rock is no where near as easy as it seems; in fact it is a messy pain in the ass.

If you are reading this, you should be aware of the sentiment expressed here (on this page). While this is hardly a large sampling of the Wisconsin climbing community, the sentiment expressed seems clear, please re-think your stance and leave things alone. The routes are there for all to enjoy, not for a few to declare ownership. One last thing; if you do follow through please have the courage of your convictions to state it here publicly, after you have removed the bolts/hangers and patched the holes. There is no reason for people to head to a location planning to climb a route, only to get there and find the route “destroyed”. If you are “leaving things alone”, please state that as well.
-ron long-

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By Chris treggE
Administrator
From Madison, WI
Aug 8, 2007
Other fun stuff.
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Being pretty new to south central Wisconsin, I can't claim to be a local. But I am looking forward to finding some of these areas and climbs and IMO it's always sad to read about bolt wars, even potential ones. That's the type of thing that leads to bad blood and possibly area closures. My $0.02.

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By Leveille
From Appleton, WI
Aug 8, 2007
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Hey Jeff,

I did my first lead climbs at Hillbilly Hollow, the 2nd and 3rd of which were on two of the new routes. So if you're saying that they should be chopped because they are too easy, some one like me needs easy sport routes to start on. If you're saying they're too hard, then should all the 5.14 sport routes be chopped on the same principle? Anyways, I support the bolting Jay did because without it I would have only been able to lead one route that day and although it would have been a start I can easily say I was very happing leading three, and giving a burn on Generation Gap. And if you do chop them at least tell everyone. If you worry too much about their "flashiness" I'll admit they are shiny but eventually they won't be and I'm sure you can do something to "unshine" them. Not to mention, I'm not sure how many people go to the hollow for it's aesthetic beauty. Anyways, I appreciate the easier sport routes and hope they will stay there so that it is easier for more people to join the excellent sport of rock climbing.

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By Elden
Aug 8, 2007
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

First off, I believe this area is on private property. It has been posted in previous years. Point being, maybe you should ask the land owners if they want shiny bolts on their wall. Second, Ouray is a totally different concept in which the WHOLE entire community supports (don't even start). Third, I'm with Jeff, you could have went easy on the bolts. A couple of routes look like ladders. I believe in safety, but don't take away from the difficulty of the climb. Some routes are not that hard to warrant 4 bolts in less than 20 feet. Might as well have just left it to toprope. At least make an effort to disguise them.
To some degree I am disappointed to see all of this hardware. What once was a quiet low traffic crag will now be a littered UWSP gymnasium. Might as well bolt it all now. Like a grid!
In a way everyone sounds greedy about these climbs. No one considered what this place meant to Jeff and only considered themselves. Who cares if we don't have a ton of sport routes in Wisco. Maybe it's for a reason.

P.S. Swiss Cheese 5.8? Feels more like 5.6

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By Erik Olson
Aug 9, 2007
Me
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Sh!t happens. We need to get past the differences and move forward.

Last time I contacted the county zoning office that land was WI DNR or DOT depending on where you are at. (It may be DOT land that is managed by the DNR). Second, if there are ever any issues with access which should be the first concern with this area, people need to contact the Access Fund and they will put you in contact with a local group in WI called Wisconsin Outdoor Access.

And as far as bolting goes... Someone better get out there and camo those bolts as a sign of good will. I can tell you this much, it is always is better to work with someone than against them. By simply painting those bolts you will have shown Jeff and anyone else who dislikes the new bolting that you appreciate their perspective and that you want to work with them. On the otherside Jeff it is bad etiquette to threaten to remove bolts without discussing it with the people who bolted it and the climbing community in that area. Instead try and work with those people towards a solution (i.e. a compromise). Like I mentioned earlier bolting should never be taken lightly, and the same goes for the removal of bolts.

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By Ron L Long
From Out yonder in Wisco.
Aug 9, 2007
City life
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

A few thoughts.......

1 I hope this “slow bleed bitch fest” does not have to continue here.
2 Even if you do not “care for” the new bolts, can you at least agree to leave them alone? (Elden, others?) Jeff has told me via email he will not remove them, I have asked him to state that here publicly since he made his original threats here. While he has yet to make that public statement (that he won’t remove hardware) I am sure that is only an omission due to time.
3 The new bolts are “shinny” because a) they are new and b) they are stainless, used to prevent long term rust staining the rock. That said, if any one has experience with camouflaging bolts, and they are so offended by their current appearance, feel free to do the job. Please make sure you REALLY know what you are doing (a botched job looks far worse), and then let us all know when the job is completed. I know it is unlikely that I (person who bolted 3 of the 5 new routes) will be back there any time soon.
4 I was also under the impression “Hillbilly” is WI DOT land; if it is not and it is privately owned, it is clear that none of the people involved with this conversation have ever actually talked to the land owners about climbing there, so lets drop that.
5 My stance on how routes should be bolted has already been spelled out here, I will say that complaining about “easy routes” being over bolted is pointless. If you the climber are such a “hardman” that clipping (any of) the bolts is beneath you, don’t clip them. Hell, solo the route for all I care, or make up your own variation. Better yet, if you find the route(s) that easy, why are you climbing it/them in the first place? There is other more difficult ground to climb available. If you don’t like bolts, and you would rather place gear, there are gear routes available, there are even 2 gear routes on that same (1st) wall following the seams/cracks left of center. Both of these could use some TLC since they both have loose/friable rock on them as well as dirt and vegetation. I had thought about cleaning them as well, but ran out of time (just got back from out of state) and right now with all this bitching there is a complete lack of interest.
6 Complaining that adding hardware will encourage other people to climb there is really self centered. Yes, we all need to be good stewards to take care of the resource, but not xenophobes.
Remember folks, Hillbilly Hollow does not have to live up to its name, it can be a place for anyone to enjoy.

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By Peter Arndt
Aug 10, 2007
Pete Arndt on final pitch (ramp) of the Conn Route...
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

I love SHINNY BOLTS on Moderate Faces. KEEP EM COMING!!

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By Dave KF
Aug 10, 2007
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

To everyone talking about how bad the bolts are/are not: I am home on leave for the first time in a long time and have been pumped to try Hillbilly Hollow since I found out it's a mere ten miles from my parent's house, and has been since I first started climbing way back when. I'm currently stationed in AZ where you can't throw a rock in the air without it landing at the base of a bolted wall and I can honestly say I don't think it detracts from the beauty or the climb at all when you consider the fact that you can really just skip the bolts, rig a TR, or if you're ballsy enough free.

If someone would like to offer some suggestions for camouflaging the bolts (not a situation I'm used to encountering) I will do it before I go back. I would prefer the bolts stay, as some of my closest friends who have lived here their entire lives and are just starting to lead have adopted hillbilly hollow as their training ground. Don't worry, they are very respectful to the land and will never litter or bother the wildlife. Also there's a great trout stream not too far from the crag.

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By Elden
Aug 11, 2007
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Mr. Long, You appear to be the most self centered person here. I think you spend more time on the internet than you do outdoors. All you care about is your precious little bolts to help you climb better. as far as bitch fest goes you seem to be the biggest bitch on here trying to justify your little climbs you can now so proudly put your name behind(that's all you seem to care about). Who cares, you won! Now get off the computer and go play on your hooks and shut up you baby.

P.S. I look forward to hearing one of your long and whining rants about how you are always right. Or maybe you could just shut up for once? That would be fantastic!

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By Ron L Long
From Out yonder in Wisco.
Aug 11, 2007
City life
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Elden buddy, thanks for the advice. I was outside enjoying the afternoon until a thunderstorm drove me in off the water, once inside I got bored and decided to check “The Proj” to see what kind of nonsense was going on, thanks for not disappointing. When I read your entry, 2 things came to mind. 1) So much for guideline number one (you did read the guidelines for posting, right?). 2) I need to write a scathing response. Upon further reflection though, I realized that nothing I could write here will make you look any worse than your own words already do.

So, if by your comment “Who cares, you won!” you mean you will leave the new routes alone, could you please just state that here? Not sure why you and Jeff seem to be having such a hard time with that concept. If you guys could just say you will leave the hardware alone we can end this, after all I really don’t care what you think of me.

Ps. Not that it matters but, I am pretty sure my outdoor resume the last 16 years or so is nothing to be ashamed of, but thanks for your concern.

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By Jay Knower
Administrator
From Campton, NH
Aug 13, 2007
Technosurfing, Rumney. Photo by Seth Hamel.
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Elden,

This discussion has been interesting enough without people resorting to character attacks. If you have something relevent to say about Hillbilly Hollow, post it here. If you want to personally slander someone, find somewhere else to do it.

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By lbishop
From Durango, CO
Aug 13, 2007
Self Portrait
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Well done on disregarding guideline #1. I don't think I've read anything on Mtn Project that has so adamantly shunned the "don't be a jerk" criteria. Well done and congratulations!

Leave the bolts alone. A little spray paint (and I emphasize a little) can camo the bolts very well....just make sure to use the same color as the rock obviously.

As per the grades on routes in the Hollow ("P.S. Swiss Cheese 5.8? Feels more like 5.6"), I always remember referring to that route as 5.7 but after climbing in some of the old school spots in the country you may have an argument in saying 5.6. I think the rating of 5.7 would be more consistent w/ other routes in the area.

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By Seth Dyer
Dec 2, 2007
Bangkok Street Art
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Much better than spray paint is the model paint available at hobby stores. The paint comes in handy-dandy sized bottles and can be mixed to create the perfect 'blend'. Stash all the bottles you need with several 10 cent plastic paintbrushes in a small travel bag and you've got your own little 'Michelangelo Kit'. Takes a bit more work than spraying them, but much more satisfying.

Having both added bolts to, and removed bolts from, sensitive areas...I'll keep mum on everything else!

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By JJ Schlick
Administrator
From Flagstaff, AZ
Aug 22, 2008
JJ Schlick on first ropeless ascent of Cranium Cra...
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Wow... I have put off reading this whole section, because A. reading on a computer screen for more than several minutes at a time makes me ornery, and B. after skimming the highlights, I could tell this was better left to those who find themselves in the thick of it; war is hell , and sometimes it is better just to turn the other way.

But, now that the fires seem to be under control I would like to add just a few things...

First, painting hangers is not rocket science. Really, they should always be painted even if they are stainless steel. A good, flat/antirust spray paint prior to the install will go a long way in reducing visual impact. As Seth pointed out, model paints are just as good and one can really do some detail work with that technique. The fact is, is that bolts that people (climbers, hikers, birders, land owners/managers) can't see without purposely looking for them leads to fewer problems across the board. All it takes is a couple minutes, and bam, with quick drying paint, the results are almost instantaneous.

Secondly, bolt wars will come and go, but the rock will be there when we are dead and gone. It is hard to step back from something like this when one feels that one has an emotional attachment to the place. But emotions do not imply ownership, only a kind of love or respect. After reading the comments above (what can you say about that?) I see that both sides of the fence have a level of respect for the climbing there and the climbing potential. However, both sides are also self serving to a degree. Some claim ultimate respect for the rock, where others claim ultimate respect for safety, and/or the climbing community. No one person can say who is right here. We can't simply ask the routes whether or not they are offended by bolts. In my world, it would be left to community consensus. And that may be someone pulling the bolts, and someone else putting them back in. It will work itself out I am sure.

For my third point though, I must say that when Dave and Rich first started climbing here, there was obviously never an anti-bolt stance. If anything, at the dates the first bolted routes were done, this place was the antithesis of traditional climbing... That was the whole point of this place in the beginning. A place where no one climbed, a place that had no rules, a place where sport climbing in Wisconsin in the 1980s, could find a foothold... The fact that it is now a home of such contreversy seems ironic, at best.

FYI I took my first ground fall here about 16 years ago, on one of my first 5.10 gear leads... So, I do have a love/respect for the place, and I am no stranger.

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By John W. Knoernschild
From Wisconsin
Sep 2, 2008
Breakfast of Champions  Photo by: Mike Lohre
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Nicely put Jeremy. I think as climbers, we need to learn to respect the fact that we all think just a bit differently. Some agree with bolting, other do not. I also agree that painting the bolts is a good idea. One I might take upon myself to do in the near future. I saw a few hikers this last weekend. So we climbers are not the only ones coming back here.

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By ChristopherThies
From Walworth County, WI
Nov 27, 2008
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Drilling holes and placing bolts on PUBLIC land is in violation of Wisconsin Administrative Code. See:
legis.state.wi.us/rsb/code/nr/...
"NR 45.04 General Rules (1) State Property.(a) No person may destroy, molest, deface, remove or attempt to remove any natural growth or natural or archaeological feature except as follows:..."

There's no exception for bolting (even under the auspice of safety).

In case you skipped your high school geology class, a naturally occurring rock wall is a 'natural feature'.

C'mon guys, keep the bolts on private property. We have enough access issues already without people going out there and 'kicking a sleeping dog'.

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By Peter Arndt
Nov 28, 2008
Pete Arndt on final pitch (ramp) of the Conn Route...
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

Chris:

I certainly respect your opinion, however I have no problem with the well placed bolts at HH.

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By Sumbit
From My house
Dec 2, 2008
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

To Chris,

Thanks for kicking the sleeping dog. Rock climbing isn't really allowed on any state property and is a violation of Wisconsin Adminstrative Code unless if it is specifically allowed.
NR 45.03
(8f) “Climbing activity” includes any of the following:
(a) Ascending or descending steep rock walls, ice walls or artificial
structures, usually with the assistance of specialized rock
climbing equipment including ropes, webbing and carabiners.
(b) Practicing the use of specialized rock climbing equipment
near the ground.
NR 45.13
(e) No person may engage in rock climbing except at the
Dalles of the St. Croix state natural area in Interstate state park and
the East Bluff state natural area at Devil’s Lake state park, or other
areas where the management plan allows rock climbing and in
which climbing is allowed by posted notice.

I didn't see a sign at Hillbilly Hollow. Every nut cam hex and bolt placed is a violation.

Not only is there no mention of bolting under the auspice of safety in the code, there is no mention of them at all. Do we as climbers really want such matters decided by non climbers? As in most areas there is a don't ask don't tell attitude towards climbing. Let's keep it that way.

I didn't skip my high school geology class a rock wall is a natural feature.

I also didn't skip my high school English class. Whether bolts molest or deface by pure definition is up to debate. If these bolts do deface or molest the natural growth or natural features then naturally the path to the rock wall does as well. I don't know for a fact but I am pretty sure the DNR did not cut the path to the wall. One mans footpath is another mans act of vandalism. There was no exception made for gear either. Ever have gear fail and break the rock. I have. Ever pull on on a big jug and it breaks off. I have. Ever use chalk. I do.
For the most part climbers are stellar stewards of the land.

If you don't like the bolts don't use them. If you don't like sport climbers don't talk to them. Live and let live. It's Coke v. Pepsi, Mayo v. Miracle Whip, snowboard v. ski, road bike v. mountain bike.

C'mon guy, keep the legalize in the courtroom. We have enough access issues already without people going out there and 'kicking a sleeping dog'.

It's not your land, it's OUR land.

Sorry if I broke rule #1 Jay. I really tried not to.

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By ChristopherThies
From Walworth County, WI
Dec 21, 2008
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

To Chris Hannes,
Your statement that, "...Rock climbing isn't really allowed on any state property and is a violation of Wisconsin Administrative Code unless if it is specifically allowed..." is incorrect.

Rock climbing is allowed on state property unless stated otherwise, see "NR 1.33 Policy on rock climbing. Rock climbing is a traditional recreational activity that may occur on non-designated use areas on department lands, and is consistent with the department's mission to provide recreational opportunities to the public. Rock climbing should be considered in master planning for department properties which contain areas where rock climbing may occur."

Rock climbing is not allowed by code on any 'designated use areas' such as state natural areas (we currently have 590 SNA's in WI)- less the two exceptions listed in NR 45.03 which you cited, nor on any state scientific study areas.

All that said, the code also allows gives any DNR superintendent the authority to post notice on any site in his/her jurisdiction banning rock climbing. I haven't seen or heard of this occurring anywhere yet. I suppose they would only do so if they felt that the activity was damaging the land in their jurisdiction.

WI Legislative Administrative Codes pertinent to climbing can be viewed @ nxt.legis.state.wi.us/nxt/gate.... nr 45 , these codes include: NR1.33; NR45.03(8f) [*note: paragraph (a) of this code defines “climbing activities“ too include ’ice walls’]; NR45.03(16m); NR45.04(1)(e); NR45.04(r); NR45.04(s); and NR45.13(1)(e).

I posted the info about NR 45.04 simply to inform any future PUBLIC land bolters of its existence, and I thought it would be of interest to anyone who posted of the activity at Hillbilly Hollow. You may do with the info what you will. The life of climb versus the life of crime, it's your choice. If you choose the latter, then you may wish to budget for legal expense on your next PUBLIC land bolting spree. Fines, attorney fees, lost wages due to court appearances - it could cost more $ than just the hardware. I don't know if you'd be a repeat offender, but there's also the chance of jail time if you are a career criminal. But who knows - jail may agree with the bolter. Plenty of walls to climb (sans bolts of course). And when that iron door slams shut for the night they may find that their new roommate, 'Bubba', likes drilling too...



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By Mr. Mix
From Sauk City, WI
Mar 11, 2009
Zane and me
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

I empathize with those who have known this area for a long time and are scared to see it change. I have had similar feelings when returning to the forests where I spent my childhood building tree forts to find a sea of ugly Mcmansions. I think some of the hard words that have been directed at the bolters have come from those not wanting to see this beautiful and remote area overrun and defaced. None of us want that and I am sure we can all empathize with their fears.

Having said that there are two points I would like to make:

1. The ecological impact of bolting an area is inconsequential. I conducted my thesis research on the conservation of the whip-poor-will (keystone species) in this very area. I am very aware of the ecological impact that humans have in these habitats and am also concerned for their conservation and preservation. Take a look at nearby shiprock and roch-a-cri. Quite honestly these are ecological disasters compared to the hollow, why? Human encroachment, when you pave parking lots, put in buildings, boardwalks, lawns, bathrooms, roads, and extensive trails, the natural ecosystem suffers. The rock is still there but most of the native animals and a good number of the plants cannot handle the traffic and migrate to more remote areas (like the hollow). Climbers, for the most part, do little to effect the ecosystem. The bolts are obviously a permanent alteration, however as far as having an ecological impact on the flora and fauna I doubt if it is more detrimental than a passing owl shitting on the rock face. The truth is most people are not very concerned with the established ecosystem but frequently use its "preservation" when it is convenient to further their agendas. In this case what many of us really don't like is looking at shiny bolts that stand out against the rock. However, most people really like manicured lawns, sandy beaches, trails, boardwalks, and frequent restrooms in our "wild areas". My argument is not for destroying the park buildings at roch-a-cri or blowing up the wayside at shiprock, however those using the "lessen ecological impact argument" for cutting bolts would be much better served donating some time or money to the nature conservancy (hands off land preservation).

2. This goes out to you Chris Thies. I am pretty sure I use to beat you up in school, the little cry baby that always threatened to tell the teacher when I was doing something against the rules. We would all like to keep climbing legal so we don't all become outlaws, respect for the land and others is essential. But the climbing community needs to have a little backbone. We pay taxes like everyone else and we deserve the right to use these lands to climb. Our imprint is small our sense of conservation is large. Humans have and continue to drain wet lands, have clear cut the entire virgin forest of our state, dam rivers, pollute and wreak ecological genocide against the land. What the f-ck do you think a couple bolts placed in a rock so we can further enjoy our sport is in comparison to what we have done to our environment? If you are a conservationly minded climber and want to help out, donate money to buy up some of this land that hasn't been ruined, support the access fund and the nature conservancy. And please stand up for yourself and other climbers! We have the right to use these lands, bring your fight to those who want to take that right from us. Quit fighting with each other and pointing the finger at bolters for ruining it for everyone. Gibralter wasn't closed because of bolting, it was closed because the climbing community wasn't able to represent their case strongly enough to keep it open. Ever seen when they try to close hunting in a given area? All hell breaks loose. Why? The hunters come together and don't argue amongst themselves, the rifle shooters don't blame the shotgunners for ruining it for everyone. And Chris as for me I will continue to break your rules, take my chances with Bubba ( I know him by the way not such a bad fellow) and stand up for what I believe in. Fight the power climbers, hey anyone for a trip out to Gibralter with me?

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By ChristopherThies
From Walworth County, WI
Apr 11, 2009
This post was originally a comment in Hillbilly Hollow

I apologize for the short notice (this annual meeting is this Monday), but the following link describes the process of one of the options available for any one/any group of concerned citizen climbers who would like to have the DNR authorize bolting/"development" on any specific DNR property (or any other proposals for that matter):

dnr.wi.gov/org/nrboard/congres...

Such a group could also present such a proposal directly to the NRB, see there webpage for details.

Or such a group could first try dealing directly with the DNR superintendent of the property in question (which were it my cause would be the first choice of action).

Start your own group, call it 'Friends of Sport Climbing' or whatever, develop your plan, make it happen.

It would take some work, it would take some time, but ultimately your goal of increasing sport climbing opportunities within the state could be achieved without jeopardizing the access of the entire climbing community.

FYI, I've been told that the DNR Biathlon Range in the South Kettle Moraine State Forest was first planned back in the '70's. It finally came to fruition a couple years ago. This was a project that demanded far more $ than some donated bolts and hangers. The biathletes didn't go around skiing and shooting at will in the interim, and now the state has a range/opportunity which everyone can enjoy and be proud of. Point being if you're patient and persistent you/your group can overcome the bureaucracy.

BTW, Mike Lohre, I was not the cry baby tattle-tale you beat up in school. By my calculations you were still jumping off the schoolbus while I was wearing stripes in the Army. But I may have dated your teacher, what was her name?

FLAG
By jamesroddewig
Jul 15, 2009
Its interesting to see all the debate about a place so few use. I have been climbing there for years and have never seen anyone else out there. About the new bolted routes:
1. The ones I have climbed are good routes with the bolts put in logical places. Good job to whoever put them in.
2. To say that routes are too hard or easy to be bolted holds no merit. If someone thinks the route is good enough to spend the time and money on, it is. Maybe not to everyone but that is the best part about having more routes, you have a better chance of finding one you like.
3. As for the style of this area as a whole, it seems that bolts have been there longer than anyone posting on this thread has been climbing.
4. The legal problems bolting could cause is a legitimate issue. This is a wonderful place and I would hate to see climbers get thrown out for bolting. This is public land and permission to place bolts can be obtained. It could also be denied. Simply approaching the DNR about this topic could bring up dangerous issues. The don't ask don't tell mentality seems to work for now. However, it may not in the future. Obtaining permission to both climb and bolt would establish a precedent that the could benefit other climbing areas as well.
5. I think it would be a good idea to try to organize ourselves somewhat and see if we can get our right to climb legally protected.

All that being said I would like to meet some of you that climb at Hillbilly Hollow. I only know a couple climbers in the area and always enjoy meeting more.

FLAG


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