Dena Rao

Forum Replies Created

Viewing 25 posts - 1 through 25 (of 28 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • in reply to: 15 yr old transitioning to outdoor climbing #156483

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Henry

    It’s a bit tricky when your folks aren’t climbers and that must be a bit frustrating. It isn’t a case of being too young to go on trips but the need to be independent as we are not able to conduct training on trips and a number of locations are not well suited to beginners and those who are not yet leading outdoors, unless they are accompanied by an experienced person.

    CAWA has run a number of training events for members over the last year that you would have been able to participate in to gain some of the basic skills you need to survive outdoors. We recently ran a ‘transition to outdoors safely’ clinic at low cost and there was a free night run by Adventure Out back in December 2015.

    One of best ways to gain some of the skills you need and be certain that what you are being taught is solid, would be to do one of the courses run by a commercial operator. There are a number of providers listed on the website under ‘Climb’,’Courses’ who may be willing to offer a discount to CAWA members. We are not affiliated with any particular organisation and do not recommend one over another but do very much appreciate their efforts to help us promote safe climbing practices. CAWA members are already offered discounted rates on certain Adventure Out courses and I will shortly be posting the details of a couple of upcoming courses. Likewise, if there is enough interest from members, a number of the commercial operators are happy to help out with specific member training days, as we had in January, doing vertical rescue techniques. There are no scheduled CAWA training events at this stage as we are about to head into a new committee year.

    I hope this helps a bit.

    Dena Rao
    CAWA President

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 9 months ago by  Dena Rao.
    in reply to: Climbing in Esperance #156367

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi All

    We now have a formal arrangement in place providing for ongoing access.

    Please see here for updated information: Climbing at Esperance

    Dena Rao
    CAWA President

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 9 months ago by  Dena Rao.
    in reply to: Climbing in Esperance #156013

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Anne, I wanted to check that nothing had changed since my conference call with the district manager and 3 other staff a few months ago (including Cameron), before commenting further. Climbing is not prohibited but is subject to a few conditions as noted previously. There has and will be further discussion about these and the situation in general, as it’s unacceptable to have an arrangement in place approved by a district manager, to only then have the senior ranger contradicting that. I said as much to the district manager when we spoke this week and confirmed that the previous arrangement does indeed still stand. I have also advised them that the non-commerical activities application form is not applicable to private individuals and that we should not be having to complete these or request permission to climb. An email to the ranger’s office indicating dates should be sufficient, if we are to register at all. There is an increasing sensitivity to things like fires and wanting to know where park users are (duty of care) but other visitors such as bushwalkers aren’t required to register. Discrimmination against climbers won’t be tolerated and we will ensure that there is a clear and solid arrangement in place once and for all in the new year, so that we can all climb in Esperance freely. Just to be clear, the district manager has expressed no desire to prevent climbing. Like other activities, it simply needs to be managed. The current arrangement just needs to be formalised so that DPaW staff at all levels are on the same page. I expect this to occur in early January and updates will be posted on the website.

    I have pointed out that often people from out of town will only get the chance to climb at Esperance during longer breaks like xmas and Easter. As you have endeavoured to do the right thing and there is a current arrangement in place, then I would suggest that if you still want to climb at xmas, then send an email through stating your intention to climb and when, as per my conversation with the DM. I did mention to him that this may occur and that I trusted it would be fine and I have not heard anything to the contrary. Call me if you need to. 🙂

    in reply to: Mountain Quarry stack #155732

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Thanks for posting Scott. You’re right, it’s much better to know what happened from the climber themselves and any info you can share with us when you’re up to it will be appreciated. Hope the Sx went well.

    in reply to: Indoor climbing gym in Bunbury #155724

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    I can tell you that there has been genuine interest in opening a gym in Bunbury for a while now, with at least one very serious party, as I have been approached for advice. However, I can’t tell you if and when it will happen.

    in reply to: Mountain Quarry stack #155717

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    The climber’s name is Scott Richardson. More information about the incident can be found here:

    https://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/wa/a/29981050/quarry-fall-adds-to-richardson-family-woes/?cmp=st

    in reply to: Mountain Quarry stack #155704

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Thanks for the links. I am expecting another update from DPaW with more details but when I spoke with them earlier this afternoon, the man was already on his way to hospital and even though it took some time, nine’s report that he was lying there for ‘hours’ wasn’t entirely accurate. Nice work by our emergency response teams.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by  Dena Rao.
    in reply to: Mountain Quarry stack #155694

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Apparently a head injury as well. I will post again when I have more information.

    in reply to: Kalbarri developments #155680

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi All

    I’ve had some discussion with DPaW and though opinions will vary about this development, I can assure climbers that there is no need for panic. I will be posting more information shortly on the main page of the website.

    Dena Rao
    CAWA President

    in reply to: Mt Franklin Trip 25th 28th sept 2015 #155180

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Ben

    Have you been in touch with Megan, the trip coordinator, yet? There may well be other members signing up and looking for a climbing partner that weekend as well. Assuming of course that the weather gods are smiling on us…:)

    in reply to: Speed ascent Bluff Knoll #155159

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Howdy All

    The forum is for discussion. Anyone who posts does so knowing that it may attract comment. Just because you disagree with or dislike something that someone has said, does not make it ‘bashing’ or trash talk. John has made valid points that we would all do well to consider, is entitled to express his concerns and has done so in a respectful manner. Many people wrongly assume that a rescue is just a phone call away. It’s also my experience that many climbers heading out are not prepared to deal with even a minor emergency – no first aid kit or training, no self-rescue skills, no means of communication in a remote area and no emergency plan. So John has highlighted an important consideration not just at Bluff Knoll (BK) but in any similar area.

    I can’t, however, say the same for ‘worthy opponent’, who was clearly so embarrassed by the contradictory and inflammatory comments he/she posted that he/she had to hide behind a pseudonym.

    I share some of John’s concerns. I spend a lot of time trying to encourage climbers to take personal responsibility (and also encourage Department of Parks and Wildlife to take a similar view) but I also worry that someone is going to come unstuck, regardless of their skill level. It goes without saying, that when you rush, there is an increased risk of making mistakes. Bluff Knoll already presents greater objective hazards than many other climbing areas in WA and we don’t need to create more. Jonas himself mentions a few run outs – unavoidable or part of saving time?

    As John points out, BK also presents significant rescue challenges. It’s my understanding from communication with the Albany SES Vertical Rescue Team last year that they have actually been training in the Stirling Ranges to be better prepared for potential rescues, though they tell me that they don’t often have to assist climbers. This is both good and bad. Unlike dedicated mountain rescue units with paid full-time staff, who tend to see a lot of action and are set up for rapid responses, if you bugger up at BK, SES volunteers need to be alerted, assembled and then deployed. And despite their dedication and commitment, it’s a reality that they have limited experience. So you’ll be on your own for quite a while and the actual rescue will take a long time. We simply don’t have the luxury of a specialised rescue service.

    Whilst Ueli Steck runs (literally) up all sorts of things, this isn’t Europe, where rock climbing and mountaineering are embraced and considered normal activities. This is Australia, the nanny country, where the phrase, “I’m going mountaineering” generally elicits looks of disapproval and the suggestion that I must be a few sandwiches short of a picnic to even consider such an outrageously dangerous activity. In WA, we already have to deal with the land manager’s reactions to accidents when all due care is being taken, let alone having to deal with the fallout from an incident that may result from climbers engaging in and promoting what could be seen as unnecessarily risky behaviour. A perfect example of this is the completely avoidable incident that occurred at Mountain Quarry early last year. Such an incident doesn’t just impact on the climbers involved, it impacts negatively on our relationship with the land managers and future access. Climbing is already generally seen as ‘dangerous’ and a lot of work has been done to try and educate DPaW staff over the years about the real, rather than perceived risks, to ensure continued access to crags. DPaW staff do read forum posts and I doubt whether this is something that they’d be happy to see. It’s unfortunate that Australia has become so overregulated in so many ways, but that aside, purely from a safety perspective, I would suggest that BK is not the ideal location for this type of fun and would question the wisdom of doing it on such notoriously unstable rock.

    Please remember that as much as we might not like it, liability is an increasing concern for land managers. More than you can imagine and not just in relation to climbing. I’m a big fan of natural selection but unfortunately the department doesn’t see it that way. We have become a litigious nation. An increasing tendency to want to blame someone else for our decisions and actions instead of accepting responsibility for our choices (and this being endorsed by court decisions) means we are now suffering the consequences, with an excess of rules and restrictions. CAWA is working to keep these to a minimum in rock climbing and I am actively trying to discourage a micromanagement approach to recreational climbing by government departments. But I need climbers to support this stance by demonstrating that they can indeed be trusted to engage in responsible behaviour and appropriate risk management. Remember that there is a wide range of opinions about and understanding of the sport. I have to take a global approach and consider all perspectives and consequences, as well as liaise with DPaW and field frantic phone calls (as after the MQ incident last year).

    What I’m presenting to you here are perspectives you may not have considered but reflect the types of concerns land managers have and that I have to deal with. At a time when we are still trying to achieve a more uniform approach to the ‘administration’ of climbing on DPaW managed land, I ask everyone to consider how their actions (and forum posts) may negatively impact on these efforts. I understand that isn’t the intention, but it is a possible consequence.

    Dena Rao
    CAWA President

    in reply to: Gym prices #154970

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Spange, I’ve sent you an email.

    Just to clarify, CAWA members should receive a 10% discount on full priced merchandise at RF if a current member card is presented. If you have any issues, then ask to speak to the manager on duty. Sometimes new staff may not have been advised.

    Dena Rao
    CAWA President

    in reply to: Route Recommendations at Peak Charles #153866

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Matt

    It depends a bit on your idea of well protected. Peak Charles is considered adventure climbing not just because of its remote location but because the routes are frequently run out. Route finding is part of the fun. So even the lower grades might not be quite what you are expecting or necessarily as easy as you might imagine, depending on your level of experience and the type of climbing you’ve been doing. I think it would be fair to say that you need to be comfortable with run outs to negotiate the multi pitch routes safely.

    Also, on Kweleman, which I really like, the start of the 3rd pitch is much harder than a grade 16. It looked like something critical may have fallen off. There were also some random bolts that were not part of the route as far as we could tell.

    in reply to: Route Recommendations at Peak Charles #153860

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Ron

    If you are in the area and nobody has dealt with it yet, would you mind doing the same to the fixed hangers at the start of Juluka? I didn’t make it out there at Easter this year and am unlikely to be in the area any time soon.

    Thanks

    in reply to: Info on routes at Bobs Hollow #151883

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    I just led Burswood Rd a few weeks ago. It’s fully bolted though I’m not sure how I feel about the lower offs. I can’t remember how many bolts it has though.

    in reply to: Looking to buy a harness #151751

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Ash

    I have a brand new women’s Arc’teryx harness in that size range that needs a good home. Please email me for details: denar atclimberswadotasndotau.

    in reply to: new route at Gibraltar Rock #151313

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    A nice safe outing for those dipping their toes into multi pitch climbing for the first time.
    I think the grading is pretty spot on. P3 is taxing on the calves if you haven’t been climbing much and on any of the first three pitches a step or two either left or right could change your perception of grade.

    in reply to: New route at Wallcliff #151231

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Krish

    I’ve replied to your email. Chat to you soon.

    in reply to: SES training at Churchmans #150528

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Chris

    Thanks for responding. I have spoken to DPaW but will contact you privately to have a chat before posting anything further on here.

    in reply to: Gear lost at Willyabrup #150489

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    I have posted on our FB page but not mentioned your name. Hopefully someone will contact us or you soon. Let me know if you hear anything.

    in reply to: Gear lost at Willyabrup #150488

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Oh no!
    Which area did you leave them at? Saturday or Sunday? It might just help to prompt anyone who was in that specific area to double check their gear.

    I will also post something on the CAWA FB site.

    in reply to: SES training at Churchmans #150484

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    There is no specific management plan for Churchmans.

    in reply to: SES training at Churchmans #150483

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Jordy

    Thanks for the info.

    My understanding is that commercial activity involving abseiling is allowed, but that there is a gentleman’s agreement that abseiling does not take place. This is something that I have been trying to clarify just recently and still working on it. I would be keen to see abseiling as a stand alone activity banned there for the exact reasons you have noted above – the unique nature of the crag, erosion and safety issues.

    Do you know which SES unit it was or have the name of the group leader? If so, please email me the details. My address is on the committee page. I’m happy to have a chat to them but will also need to talk to DPaW who are supposed to be contacted about that kind of activity prior to the event. Abseiling is not permitted on DPaW managed land without permission unless it is a designated abseiling site (potentially different again to it just being allowed in an area) and there are regulations that cover prevention of damage and disturbance to DPaW managed land.

    I’ll keep you posted.

    in reply to: Climbing Insurance for Canada & USA #150335

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Most likely reason will be high value claims being made.

    in reply to: Climbing Insurance for Canada & USA #150275

    Dena Rao
    Participant

    Hi Em

    This must be a very recent development because I had their alpine cover on my recent trip to Canada in August, having previously used it in Europe. As mentioned in another post, I had issues with their service before I left Australia so I am working on trying to source insurance from another provider. It’s taking a while and I can’t say at this stage when and if it will be available.

Viewing 25 posts - 1 through 25 (of 28 total)