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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Thurs 08/20/09 BOD Meeting

The board met on Thursday at Pipeworks to finalize the Draft Interim Climbing Management Plan to be presented to the SRA. Attendees were: Brian, Gordy, Aaron, and the following via phone: Collin, Rob, and Andrew.

With some minor tweaks to the wording the resolution to accept the Plan as written was unanimous. Next step will firing it off to the SRA and setting up a meeting to discuss it!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Auburn Quarry Needs Your Support

Do you like limestone? Would you like to be able to drive to the foothills and have your pick of at least 150 good climbs?

If your answers are "Yes. Yes. Yes!!," then the quarry at Auburn State Recreation Area needs your help.

CRAGS is pushing ahead on efforts to get climbing legalized in the recreation area. Access to this climbing area has been long sought by climbers. And it'd help boost Auburn's economy with all the money we climbers spend while we're out there on gas, food, Starbucks, microbrews, camping, supplies and other stuff.

The next step is to seek the city of Auburn's assistance with requesting that the California Department of Parks and Recreation speed up lifting the ban that's been in place since 2003.

The state parks' Gold Fields District, which manages the federally (publicly) owned land, is currently developing an updated General Plan/Interim Resource Management Plan for the recreation area that appears to include technical rock climbing as an approved activity.

CRAGS will make a 15-minute presentation to Auburn's City Council at about 6:30 p.m. Monday, April 13. The meeting starts at 6 p.m.

The more climbers who can turn out for the meeting and show their support for this climbing area, the better. It's a drive for some folks -- carpool if you can so that city officials know how much interest there is when they make their decision.

The city will be considering this request until its April 13 meeting, when the resolution is expected to be voted on. Please call, email or write the city manager and mayor requesting their support for an expedited end to the climbing ban.

For directions to city council chambers and map.

The Auburn City Hall is very easy to find. From the west, take the 2nd Auburn exit. It will say Hwy 49 to Grass Valley. At the end of the ramp, go right. The large old 3-story yellow-brick building right in front of you as you drive up the street is City Hall. Get in the left lane. At the signal, go straight across with a slight angle left, into the driveway for City Hall. Park behind the building, and walk to the left rear entrance (downhill side of the back of the building). Inside the door, stairways go up and down. Bear left and go up. When you reach the next level, the City Council chambers will be through the doors on the left.

Meet the Board

Brian Poulsen (Chairman)

Brian started rock climbing in the foothills of the Southern Sierra Nevada Mountains when he was fourteen. Since then, he has climbed extensively in the western states. His favorite climbing destinations are traditional alpine rock routes of the Sierras, and the splitter desert towers of the southwest. In his free time away from climbing and his three kids, Brian is an environmental attorney for the law firm of Somach, Simmons & Dunn.

Logan Jeffrey (Vice Chair)

Logan has been hang-dogging indoors and out for three years. He recently led his first multipitch trad line and realized that gym climbing doesn't really translate. In addition to climbing, Logan is a full time photographer, bike commuter, hummus expert, world traveler, and knows his way around a foosball table. To fund his jet-setting he works at a mom-and-pop sporting goods shop called REI.

Ellen Trescott (Secretary)

Ellen has recreationally climbed while residing in Washington, Oregon, and California. A water and land-use attorney at Downey Brand LLP, she joined the CRAGS board in early 2010. Ellen hopes that her involvement with CRAGS will help improve outdoor recreational opportunities in the Sacramento area, and give her more excuses to get out of the office and into the hills.

Andrew Housley (Treasurer)

I know I joined up with the organization because I consider myself an active person and I wanted an opportunity to help bring climbing, widely known as an "extreme sport", into the spotlight in order to show people that it is a positive, safe activity that the whole family can enjoy. I'm just hopeful what ever enthusiasm I can bring forward will help bring about a positive change in the public eye.

Rob Trelford (Volunteer Coordinator)

I am the coach of The Summit Party USAClimbing team at Pipeworks. My only claim to fame in USAC is that our team has had kids on the US National Team. Also we just got two of our kids their first Pro Sponsorship with Team Madrock. And oh yea, I took third in the old farts division at US National Championships in Boston back in 2005. I climb alot of trad and got my butt spanked on God of Thunder this year. Props to my best partner Vic for sharing the best year of climbing in our lives this summer. And I teach 6th grade in my spare time. See y'all in Bishop this Winter!

Gordon Ainsleigh

Gordy Ainsleigh, 61, is a chiropractic doctor with a home-office in Meadow Vista; a hobby scientist who wrote a landmark medical journal article on the cancer-preventing effects of sun exposure, published in 1993; the founder, staff doctor and 22-times finisher of the Western States 100-Mile Run, and, thereby, the founder of the sport of 100-mile trail running;.an adventure guide for local trail running, trail bicycling, river rafting and rock climbing; he used to lead 5.11c, but now gets pumped on three pitches of 5.7-5.10a.

Jason Bove

Mr. Jason Bove was born Jason Bove, in the gorgeous midwest sector of the United States. He has presently found an even more pristine setting on the west side to reside. Jason Bove may now be your neighbor and friend.

Aaron Rough

Aaron Rough lives, works, and plays in Vacaville, CA. While Aaron has climbed at most major destination around the West, he prefers making the best out of what NorCal rock has to offer. He has developed routes and boulder problems in several local climbing areas from the Vacaville Open Space District, the Auburn SRA, Mt. St. Helena, and other smaller areas dispersed across Southern and Northern California. Aaron looks forward to the day when climbers can once again legally climb in the Auburn SRA Limestone Quarry.

John Robinson

Mike Rommel

Colin Wood (Alternate)

Colin is a 3rd year law student at UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. He grew up in Colfax and is very concerned about local climbing access issues. When he's not climbing, or trying to find an environmental law job somewhere in Northern California (anybody have any tips?) he's likely backcountry skiing in the Lake Tahoe Area.

Renee Ross (Alternate)

Renée moved from the Midwest to California in 2002 in search of elevation and bigger rocks. She enjoys bouldering the most but also sport climbs and will trad climb under peer pressure. Renée treasures the variety in people found in the climbing community and cherishes all time spent outside her fuzzy gray cubicle. She also enjoys real mail, catching fall leaves, and running in new places.

History of CRAGS

A Brief History of CRAGS

In May and June of 2008, a group of about thirty Sacramento area climbers met to discuss issues in nearby climbing areas in order to ensure such areas were properly cared for and maintained for future generations.

This group identified several areas which have been closed or partially restricted to climbing. areas In addition areas that sustained environmental impacts from overuse and neglect were brought to the group’s attention. Safetey concerns for those and other areas were also discussed.

Ultimately, this group decided to formally organize itself into a local climbing organization and affiliate with the Access Fund, a national climbing advocacy group representing over 1.6 million climbers. Dedicated and driven, these local climbers work to protect climbing access and educate climbers about safety and sustainable climbing practices.

Thus was born Climbing Resource Advocates for Greater Sacramento (CRAGS).


Frequently Asked Questions

• Where do you meet?
Currently we are meeting at Sacramento Pipeworks for general meetings. Please check the Events page for times and dates.

• How often do you meet?
We do not have a set frequency as of yet. Please check the events page or subscribe to our mailing list to stay informed on our events and meetings.

• How can I help?
We would love to have everyone contribute to the organization. Please contact us at or use the contact form to drop a line. If you'd like to see us in person, please check the events page for the next meeting.

• How do I donate?
Please use PayPal to Donate (link redirects to PayPal) to CRAGS.

• How do I raise an issue with an area?
Please contact us via the Message Board on this site or @

Also you can post on our forums and get the discussion started.

• How do I join?

• What makes you different from all the other groups? (Sierra Club etc.)

• How does membership benefit me?
By joining CRAGS you are making a statement that you want to take an active role in supporting a sport that you love. As our mission states, our goals are to help support a clean and healthy environment which we intend to do through programs such as Adopt-a-Crag where we will go as a team go and clean up local climbing areas. We do this not only to show appreciation for the opportunity to use what in many cases is private land, but also so that we can be proud of the areas where we love to be.