Hello Ice Climbers,
Well it's in. The official appeal with regards to Hyalite ice climbing was received January 31st in the Regional Forester's office in Missoula (the deadline was February 1). The Gallatin National Forest now has 15 days in which to contact the appellants and schedule an informal meeting to negotiate. I believe, these meetings are open to the public. Stay posted.
I will post a copy of the appeal for anyone to look at by the end of the weekend. All along, as some of you know, I have been posting any relevant documents, FOIA requests, media coverage, etc to my personal .mac account (it's free). They can be downloaded from:
http://homepage.mac.com/waterfallice/Personal7.html Click on the "iDisk" link on the top.
The official appellants are SMCC members: Bill Dockins, Pat Callis, Conrad Anker, Peter Aengst, Chris Naumann, and Jim Earl.
The appeal itself was written primarily by Bill Dockins with help from Peter Fritsch, Jerry Johnson, Jason Keith and myself. Various exhibits, maps and articles, were collected by Tom Kingsbury, Erin Taylor and myself. A few extra photos were provided by Chris Naumann and Tony Hatcher.
Thank you all. I believe we have a solid document although I remain only cautiously optimistic the USFS will ever change anything.
Other people that have been helping with various pieces of the puzzle have been (in no particular order):
Todd Lushin, Matt Steen, Emily Stifler, Alex Lussier, Tobias Holleman, the Rack Pack of Neva Steward, Hannah Arm, and Amber Jean, Tom Kalakay, Patricia Dowd, Jerry Johnson, Bill Murdock, Sean Becker, Blair Howze, Neil Westesen, Anne Banks, Jonathan Baker, Jim Earl, Chris Awe, Pete Tapley, Pat Callis, Pat Gladics, Frank Gladics (Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee) and Access Fund staff Adam Cramer, Jason Keith, Deanne Buck.
I am probably missing a few people and to you I apologize in advance.
I'll keep you all posted as soon as I know anything as it develops.
I'll be getting a copy today of the Special Report on the ice climbing access issue put together by NBC reporter Lincoln Graves and aired yesterday on KTVM (I don't have TV so didn't see it). I'll be posting it to YouTube as well as a copy of the presentation I made for the County Commission on January 24th. Stay posted here for the links.
For whatever this is worth, I feel the SMCC has done a great job raising the awareness of both ice climbing and the coalition itself. Many people in the Forest Service, the local community, the Access Fund and beyond have been somewhat amazed at just how organized and influential our organization can be.
We should all be proud of what the Coalition has been doing, the political capital we've earned and I look forward to moving ahead for the betterment of climbing in the area.
Thank you all,