June 30th, 2015 by Yasmeen

May 6, 2015. Lexington, KY – As many are aware, the recent rains and flooding in Miller Fork Recreational Preserve and the Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve took a heavy toll on the roads and bridges. The RRGCC put out a call to help and our community came through in a big way! Many of you donated and several hardy souls helped put our washed away bridges back in place. One member of the local community came up big in a way we didn’t anticipate and we are very grateful!
Mr. Bernard Benningfield, a Powell County resident, contacted the RRGCC after noting the damage caused by the recent flooding. He offered his services and those of the company he works for, ATS Construction. In a meeting with RRGCC President Bentley Brackett, Mr. Benningfield expressed his desire to work with the RRGCC to address our immediate needs and foster a relationship for the future. He offered to fix the road leading into the MFRP, with ATS donating the manpower, equipment, and expertise to get the job done.
ATS Construction is a third generation family-owned road construction company based in Lexington, KY. They have several locations across the Central Kentucky Bluegrass Region and work all across the area.
Mr. Benningfield and ATS certainly came through on their promise to go the extra mile. Work began on Friday morning and continued into Saturday afternoon. Huge improvements were made, not only repairing the road but also re-routing it in order to lessen the chance of a washout happening again. Five culverts were upgraded and replaced, and two new culverts were installed. A 500 foot section of road was relocated to higher ground, the rest of the road was graded, and poor drainage areas were addressed. The existing parking lot was also graded. All told, 150 tons of stone were laid.
We cannot express our gratitude to Mr. Benningfield and ATS Construction enough. As a local resident, Mr. Benningfield is very active in his community. A member of the Powell County Search and Rescue Team, Mr. Benningfield is also an avid hiker who enjoys spending time in the Red River Gorge with his wife, Lisa. He has clearly shown that he is an excellent steward of the land and community he loves!
The road leading to the MFRP is in the best shape it has ever been! While there is still work to be done to ensure the road stays in good condition, it is now completely passable, making it easier for you to enjoy the land you own!

About the Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition
The Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition is a 501(c)(3) non-profit working to ensure open, public access to quality outdoor rock climbing opportunities in and around Red River Gorge, Kentucky. The RRGCC works to conserve the natural environment on publicly managed and privately owned land by protecting, promoting, and ensuring responsible climbing. The RRGCC is an affiliate of the Access Fund and a member of the Land Trust Alliance, operating according to the LTA’s national land trust standards and practices. For more information, visit rrgcc.org.
About ATS Construction
ATS Construction is a third generation family owned road construction company with operations that have served the Central Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region since the 1950’s. ATS Construction delivers superior service and quality workmanship while utilizing a safety-oriented approach. We are a full service highway contractor, which employs a dedicated, well trained, professional workforce capable of performing all types of highway and road projects. The ATS team of engineering, project management, technical consulting, estimating, and material testing personnel can meet the needs and schedule of your project–including Public Works, Commercial, Industrial, Farms and Private Residential. Our well-maintained fleet of equipment utilizes the latest computer and GPS systems to ensure your project is completed to your specifications. We strive to deliver the highest quality product at an economical price and will go the extra mile to deliver your project on time and on budget. For more information, visit atsconstruction.com.

May 11th, 2015 by terri

On Saturday, May 2, dozens of volunteers gathered in the PMRP for a Trango-sponsored trail day, with the main focus being to rehabilitate one of our most well-loved crags, The Shire. Trango provided the materials and even brought swag for the workers! After a brief information session headed by RRGCC Land Manager Mike Driskell, the volunteers headed off to their respective work areas.

A small team tackled the repair of the Sore Heel shortcut bridge, which had been split in two in the recent flooding. They spent all day salvaging parts from the old bridge and putting together a new (higher!) bridge.

Further up the trail, another group worked on reinforcing the Sore Heel shortcut trail, repairing a small footbridge and armoring the trail to better handle flooding.

At The Shire, the bulk of the volunteers busily worked on completely re-doing the base. The old terracing, which was badly deteriorated, was torn out. New, more stable terracing was put in place using treated lumber the volunteers hauled up from the parking lot. The shortcut trail that bypassed the main trail and headed straight up the hillside was closed and covered up. A new trail that will better handle wash-out was put in, complete with stone steps to minimize erosion’s affect on the trail. By the end of the day, it looked like a brand-new crag!

We also got to meet the kind EKU professors who are doing the RRG Economic Impact Study, as they kicked off their Spring in-person data collection phase on the same day!

We owe a huge thanks to Trango for sponsoring the trail day and providing the materials, to Rob Moore for all of the time and effort he dedicated to the planning and execution, and to Miguel’s for supplying lunch to the hungry volunteers!

Our work, however, is not done! We have another Trango Trail Day on Saturday, May 16 to finish the work at The Shire. We need your help to make this happen! Please RSVP at: rrgcc.org/upcoming-trail-days/

April 7th, 2015 by Yasmeen

Spring’s rain hasn’t been kind to our roads and bridges! Please see the points below for a summary of what’s going on:

  • Bald Rock Road is passable in most all locations by passenger vehicles
  • Access to Flat Holler parking lot is not available at this time – please park elsewhere.
  • Flat Holler parking lot should be accessible by this next weekend provided weather cooperates. Next week at the latest if it does not.
  • Hell Creek Road is in disrepair, and traveling beyond the intersection of Shumaker Ridge Road and Hell Creek by vehicle is NOT advised until further notice – road repairs are contingent on weather.
  • We ask that you DO NOT travel back to Sore Heel in anything less than a 4×4 vehicle and DO NOT park along Sore Heel road during this time.
  • Parking in front of oil wells, next to oil well access roads, in the road, or anywhere where you might close the travel corridor more than 12’ is strictly prohibited. The oil company MUST have access to repair roads and maintain their equipment. Violators WILL BE TOWED.
  • Please use good judgment when parking during this time – do not impede local or company traffic in any way.
  • If you cannot find a place to park responsibly, please consider a different crag until we can repair this Spring’s damage.
  • All climbing is OPEN and always will be!

We do the best we can to balance mortgage payments and land maintenance with a limited budget, and all of these repairs are going to cost far more money than we had allocated to land maintenance in 2015. Please help us get our roads and bridges back to the condition they were in prior to the floods, and until we do, be ready for some creek crossings when visiting Miller Fork!

MFRP Bridge

MFRP Bridge, 4/4/2015, photo by Marty Vogel

April 2nd, 2015 by Yasmeen

Congratulations to the winners of the 2015 Torrent Falls Climbing Comp!

Ladies Jalapeno:
1. Larkin Beaman

Gentlemen Jalapeno:
3. Jeb Jarrell
2. Roger Bess
1. Nathan Ross

Ladies Habanero:
3. Sarah Brengosz
2. Stephanie Harrelson
1. Amanda Anderson

Gentlemen Habanero:
3. Jared Dean
2. Mark Wilson
1. Kevin Quinn

Thank you to Dr. Bob Matheny and Craig and Wendy Bentley of Red River Outdoors for allowing us to hold the comp at Torrent Falls. Thank you to the Torrent Church for allowing us to park in their lot.

March 13th, 2015 by Yasmeen

Indian Creek Road 9B will be gated closed to vehicles until sometime in the fall due to a stream restoration project. A temporary gate will be installed at the start of 9B (right after you cross bridge). This gate may be installed as early as this week. Road 9 and 9A will remain open this year. Visitors will not be allowed to drive down 9B but can walk the road using caution to avoid construction zones. Hopefully all work will be completed sometime this fall and the temporary gate removed. At that time, a new gate will be installed 0.9 miles down from the current end of 9B (at the location of former concrete dam).

December 23rd, 2014 by Yasmeen

grant matchedThe RRGCC is ending 2014 on a high note! We just received a large donation from a long time member of the RRG climbing community. Along with all the recent individual match campaigns and fundraisers sponsored by local businesses, his incredibly generous donation pushes us over the top! We now have met and surpassed the match requirement for the Conservation Alliance grant. The $35,000 grant, plus the match we received from you, will allow us to pay down the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve mortgage by more than $70,000. Hundreds of climbers helped make this happen. Thank you everyone for your support, and we wish you all a very happy holiday season and great climbing in the New Year!!!

November 28th, 2014 by Yasmeen

Congratulations to Miguel’s Pizza on their unveiling of the online version of Miguel’s Climb Shop: http://www.miguelsrockclimbingshop.com!

As if instant access to the Miguel’s Climb Shop inventory isn’t exciting enough, the Venturas have extended an extremely generous offer to the RRGCC – in effect as long as it is the year 2014: 5% of every online purchase you make from the Miguel’s Climb Shop will be donated to the RRGCC!

Now, even when it’s too cold/rainy/snowy/condensed/hot/humid/buggy to drive to the Red and drop by Miguel’s Climb Shop to do this:

IRL Shopping (photo: Elodie Saracco PhotoGraphic)

IRL Shopping (photo: Elodie Saracco PhotoGraphic)

, you can still buy all the guidebooks (RRG North, RRG South), gear, and clothing you want from Miguel’s Climb Shop online, like this:

Online Shopping

Online Shopping


We can’t thank the Ventura family enough for their decades of constant support of the Red River Gorge climbing community. You guys are amazing. :)

Photo credit: Elodie Saracco PhotoGraphic [SmugMug] [Facebook]

November 1st, 2014 by Yasmeen

The Red River Gorge Climbers’ Coalition is holding an open meeting on Saturday, November 8, 2014 at the Pine Crest Camp Lodge (203 Pinecrest Camp Rd, Beattyville, KY 41311) from 9:30 – 10:30am. The purpose of the meeting will be to discussing the formation of three volunteer committees to improve our effectiveness in 2015 and beyond. The work of these committees will focus on the areas of communication, land management, and fundraising. We will also be discussing the Conservation Alliance grant for the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve purchase and the RRGCC’s need to raise a little over $11,000 in matching funds by the end of 2014 to fulfill the grant requirements. If you are interested in being involved with one of the committees or want to help with the Conservation Alliance grant fundraising but can’t attend the meeting please contact us.

October 26th, 2014 by terri

Another Rocktoberfest has come and gone, and this year has proven once again that we have the best climbing community around! Despite the not-so-great forecast, the rain and the mud (so much mud), hundreds of you came from all over the continent to hang out with friends, check out the awesome vendors , climb and give money to support the RRGCC and the land you own!
We are extremely proud and excited to announce that all of your donations helped us raise over $20,000 towards our goal of the $35,000 required to match the Conservation Alliance 2014 Grant! This brings us so many steps closer to paying off the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve, and we are so grateful that despite the unfavorable weather conditions, you all stepped up and made this happen.Dance Party (photo by Lisa Jolan)

On Friday, attendees ventured from tent to tent, entering raffles (with all proceeds supporting the RRGCC!), grabbing freebies and checking out the latest gear from the vendors. Later in the night, everyone gathered under the main tent and watched the Reel Rock 2014, Valley Uprising. As always, the film was a hit and became the talk of the night. Special thanks to William Keenan (“Uncle Dave”) for doing the sound. After the movie, DJ Carlos Atman kept the party going for a couple more hours for a crowd of energetic dancers.




On Saturday, after a morning yoga session with Danielle Bartos, the rain gods smiled on us and the weather cleared up enough for us to proceed with the Black Diamond sponsored Clip-n-Go comp, held for the first time at Miller Fork so the competitors could sample the routes their donations are helping to secure. Congrats to the winners listed below- give ‘em a high-five (and maybe ask for some training tips) if you see them!
Women’s Jalapeno:
1. Anna Fahey

Men’s Jalapeno:
1. Nathan Ross
2. Steven Lee
3. James Hanson

Women’s Habanero:
1. Lindsay Auble
2. Sarah Brengosz
3. Hayley Watts

Men’s Habanero:
1. Jon Shen
2. Dan Beck
3. Ben Circello

Teams [Beer]:
1. Dirty Nuts
2. Blue Poo

Teams [Bourbon]:
1. Guiding Light
2. Team Guido
3. Lost in Transgressions

While the competitors (and many others) were out enjoying the climbing day, Andrew and Hannah Tolliver spent their time improving the land, installing an awesome sign welcoming visitors to the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve. They deserve a huge pat on the back for their efforts.

Venue (photo by Lisa Jolan)

The party continued Saturday night, and thanks to extra volunteers the always popular crate stacking was able to get underway despite the rain. The winners, stacking 24 crates each, were Brett Dougan and Synda Clements. Our event this year even gained the attention of the Pendergrass and Murray families – James Paul, Robin, David, and Karen (all cousins and all descendants of Daniel Boone Carter Pendergrass) stopped by Saturday evening to check out the festivities. (If those last names sound familiar, it’s because Mr. James Paul Murray is the gentleman who sold the PMRP to the RRGCC all those years ago!)


Then everyone moved back under the tent to dance to the music of the Mike Creech Band. The party continued late into the night, but since this community is so great, lots of volunteers still managed to emerge from their tents early in the morning. After re-fueling with breakfast provided by the Solid Rock Climbers for Christ, they helped clean up the venue. Our pro athletes (Regan Kennedy and Josh Muller, Karsten Delap, Margarita Martinez, Chuck Odette and Maggie Smith-Odette, Shingo Ohkawa, Brittany Griffith, and Nick Duttle and Dan Mirsky) taught the clinic registrants some new tricks while the weather granted them a rain-free day, closing the books on another successful Rocktoberfest!

Throughout it all, Rae Hartley oversaw the army of volunteers, arriving at the venue early and staying late; our emcee Kris “Odub” Hampton made sure every sponsor got shouted out and every event got announced; and our incredibly talented event photographer, Elodie Saracco, captured each moment (check out her albums, shared on our Facebook page).

We’d also like to give a special shout-out to our amazing sponsors- we couldn’t do this every year without them! So, a big round of applause for…

Our Rocktoberfest Sponsors

Outdoor Research
Access Fund BlueWater
Petzl La Sportiva
Black Diamond
Patagonia Marmot Goal Zero Scarpa
Belay Specs Five Ten Quest Outdoors Moosejaw
Mountain Gear Evolv Trango Sterling Rope
Metolius Rab Joshua Tree Skin Care Miguels Pizza
Mountain Ranks Ale-8-One J&H Lanmark Benchmark
Tenaya CamelBak Red River Outdoors The North Face
Fox Mountain Guides Driskell Home Repair Power Company Climbing Bluegrass Bouldering
Red River Rockhouse Rockquest American Alpine Club Rocksport
Warriors Way DryPointe Wolverine Publishing Solid Rock Climbers for Christ
Perfect Descent West Sixth Brewing Eno
October 7th, 2014 by Yasmeen

2014 Rocktoberfest Clip and Go Climbing Competition @ the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve
Sponsored by Black Diamond (read: awesome prizes)



1. Points = bolts clipped on redpoint x multiplier. (Try often. Only the highest score counts.)
2. Stick clipping 1st bolt is allowed, but you must climb to it free.
3. Trad routes’ points are all or nothing.
4. Anchors = 2 bolts (so, 2 points).

Example route experience: The Hustler (with a grade multiplier of 2): 1st attempt, you clip 3 bolts x 2 = 6 pts. 2nd attempt, you clip 6 bolts x 2 = 12 pts. Your score for the route is 12 points.

Sport climbing? It doesn’t matter if the gear is hanging.
Trad climbing? Place ’em yourself.

Start time: 10:00am
End time: 5:00pm
Location: MFRP parking lot (GPS coordinates are 37°38’31.9?N 83°40’44.0?W (37.642204, -83.678900), and more detailed instructions are on your comp scoresheet and the registration PDF)

Scoresheets must be turned in to Rick or Yasmeen in the MFRP parking lot at 5:00pm sharp, with your own score tallied and entered in the appropriate spot.

You can compete alone or as a team (or both, if you buy both an individual scoresheet and a team scoresheet).

Female Jalapeno
Female Habanero
Male Jalapeno
Male Habanero
Team Beer
Team Bourbon

Final rule: if the scoresheet is wrong, the scoresheet is right.