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Saving Boat Rock 08.24.2001
Posted on Friday, March 12
by Robert

Climbing News
On the 21st of August 2001 there was a planning meeting in S. Fulton County, Atlanta, GA. At this meeting, the fate of the remaining Boat Rock Boulders was discussed. Brad McLeod was there representing the SCC and the Access Fund, I was there representing the SCC and taking notes and pictures for the website, Pandra Williams was there armed with pictures and info, and many other climbers were there to help in the fight for access to the long-time bouldering area. There were about a dozen climbers there in all.
Brad is explaining things to the developer's planner.
These are the plans that the developer has for the Boat Rock area. Note the drawn boulders in the upper, right-hand corner of the picture and the planned development around the boulders. Actually, there are many more boulders than the satilite photo showed the developer before he made this plan.
On the 21st of August 2001 there was a planning meeting in S. Fulton County, Atlanta, GA. At this meeting, the fate of the remaining Boat Rock Boulders was discussed. Brad McLeod was there representing the SCC and the Access Fund, I was there representing the SCC and taking notes and pictures for the website, Pandra Williams was there armed with pictures and info, and many other climbers were there to help in the fight for access to the long-time bouldering area. There were about a dozen climbers there in all.

When the meeting started, the Boat Rock Road Planning issue was second on the agenda for the committee. The developer and concerned landowners had the issue pushed to the back of the agenda so some issues could be worked out before the committee made a decision.

So off we went, our "umbrella group" of climbers, to the meeting room where we would spend the next two and a half hours listing to the residents and the developer and his planner go round and round about buffers and a proposed hotel/conference center to be built upon the property. During this time, most of the climbers in the room that had seen the color drawing of the proposed project realized that the depiction of the boulders was a little small. After a talk with the developer's planner I found out that the plan was drawn after a satellite photo was obtained. Climbers that have visited the pristine bouldering area know that many of the boulders are under the trees and that most would not be seen from a satellite photo. Pandra Williams informed the designer and the developer that there were many more boulders than they knew about. On the plan, see the picture on the right, the area in question is in the upper right hand corner of the picture, label B. The developer is planning to build high-density assisted living homes around the boulders.

At the end of the meeting the developer was still willing to work with the climbers and the landowners on the issues that everyone had with the proposed project. There still is some hope. Brad informed me that the Access Fund might be willing to help out financially if needed to secure access to the boulders. Currently the land that is in question is owned by a church that is out of state that permits climbing on their land. Even though the land is still "open to climbing" please don't use the area because of the delicate state climbing access is in at the current time. Any disputes with land owners, residents or the developer could bring an abrupt end to climbing access at Boat Rock and spoil every effort made to protect our access to this celebrated bouldering area. There is another meeting coming up to further discuss residents' fears and climbing access issues with the developer. If you would like to attend, please see the Boat Rock post on the Message Board for location and time of the meeting.

If you can't or don't have the time to get involved in the fight to save Boat Rock you can still help. We have set up a paypal account through which you can donate money towards the Boat Rock Cause. The link is at the bottom of our donations page. You can get there by clicking here.

Thanks,
Robert H. Smith
SCC Webmaster

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