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Tribune Takes Stance on New Arches Restrictions Proposals

I don’t often notice a newspaper taking a clear position on an environmental issue. Below is the Salt Lake Tribune’s position statement on the proposed climbing & canyoneering regulations in Arches National Park: CLIMBING RULES August 3, 2010 Opinion Editor, Salt Lake Tribune There is a reason the name of Delicate Arch contains the word “delicate.” Although the iconic span often featured in photographs and paintings, as well as on Utah license plates, has withstood centuries of wind and rain, human contact now threatens to ruin its natural beauty. That’s why we support park managers’ plan to revise and possibly strengthen limits on rock climbing and canyoneering in Arches National Park. The changes would expand rules already in place that prohibit all rock climbing on any arch or natural bridge named on U.S. Geological Survey 7.5 topographical maps. Also prohibited is the practice of slacklining, walking on a flat nylon webbing or rope between rock formations, trees or other natural features in the park. The existing rules did not stop Dean Potter, a professional climber who scaled Delicate Arch in 2006. Potter said that making the ascent had become an obsession. We saw it more as an ego trip and … Continue reading

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