2009 RRGCC Year in Review
This past year had a lot of exciting happenings for the RRGCC.
The year began with a large ice storm. Bill Strachan worked with 5 climber volunteers and three US Forrest Service personnel. On February 21, 2009 they cleared storm damage in Martin’s Fork area, which includes the approaches to Military and Left Flank.
Todd McCormick and the University of Pittsburgh hosted a climbing competition to raise funds for the RRGCC. Their event raised $1,125!
On April 11, 2009, Miguel’s hosted Red River Reunion to benefit the RRGCC. The event included a shoe demo by 5.10, climbing competition at Torrent Falls, Rodeo Clip contest, as well as booths by 5.10, Petzl, & Black Diamond. The evening ended with the Stone Alliance Film Tour, music and, of course, a giant bonfire. The event raised over $500 for the RRGCC.
This year, we kicked off our grassroots, community-led trail program. Rather than rely on one large trail day to accomplish much needed work, the climbing community broke the work up into smaller chunks, maintaining their crags with smaller, more focused trail days.
Jack Dickey got us started with the Spring Trail Day on April 18, 2009. He headed up a crew of 16 volunteers and tackled projects in Sore Heel Hollow. The trail crew repaired trails damaged by the winter ice storm. They began stabilizing and reclaiming the denuded hillside leading down to the parking lot and made a specific path for trail that traverses top of said hillside. They built stairs for the beginning of that trail. In addition, they improved the bridge to the Gallery and built a new bridge on the trail to What About Bob Wall.
Phillip Gall’s partnered with Patagonia’s 1% program. They raised more than $1200 for the Coalition in 2009 in addition to several generous gear donations!
On June 13, 2009, Mike Driskell and Driskell Home Repair continued the trail day initiative by conducting a trail day at Roadside. He and his crew were able to remove downed trees that had fallen across the trail, relocate and widen the start of the trail. They then added stairs to the beginning of the trail and added water breaks to the new trail and portions of the existing trail.
We made our $30,000 mortgage payment on July 15, 2009.
On August 1, 2009, the Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition hosted their most successful trail day event in their 13-year history. Over 90 people came together to lend their skills and talent to developing new trails, and rehabbing existing pathways on the Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve. Additionally, the trail day most certainly ranks as one of the largest Access Fund sponsored Adopt-A-Crag events in 2009! Work was accomplished in Sore Heel as well as at Darkside, Drive-By, Bob Marley, and Crossroads. Afterwards, the volunteers enjoyed live music, food, beer, and the 100-foot-long slip-n-slide! Special thanks goes to Sandy Davies for organizing this event.
In other exciting news, for the first time ever the Johnny and Alex Trail Day raised money for the coalition, both in private donations and sales at the event. The event raised $800! These funds and donations of goods and services from our generous sponsors financed that great party.
Red River Outdoors partnered with Mountain Gear’s to host their U-Climb clinic. It was held on September 12 & 13, 2009, and both Mountain Gear and Red River Outdoors donated proceeds to the RRGCC.
Then, on September 26, 2009 RockQuest Climbing Center & Benchmark Outfitter put together a climbing competition to benefit the RRGCC. Climbers competed for excellent prizes from vendors like The Benchmark Outfitter, Sterling Ropes, Arc’Teryx, and La Sportiva. The event raised $500 for the RRGCC!
Finally, the RRGCC wrapped up the year with their 9th annual Rocktoberfest on October 9-11, 2009. The event kicked off on a rainy Friday with vendors, a dyno comp, movies, milk crate stacking, funnel cakes, games, and a great DJ. On Saturday, the rain held off for the climbing comp in Sore Heel. This was followed by water balloon launching contest, dyno comp, dunk tank, a milk crate stacking challenge, movies, live entertainment, and vendor giveaways and raffles. The event raised $12,500 for the RRGCC.
As of right now, we have only four annual payments, approximately $118,000, left before we’ve fully paid off the mortgage. We’re all counting down to our last payment on July 2013. Thank you for your help and we look forward to owning the Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve!