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jerseyscum

Falling climbers' numbers

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I notice on Mr. Skoog's excellent online annual journal concerning local alpinism a story from Park Service documenting a decline in numbers of climbers in N. Cascades on the order of 25% over past four or five years. Apparently some but not all may be weather-related for most recent year. Has anyone noticed this and/or have any theories why it may be so? Has Rainier, Denali, Tetons etc., shown similar decline?

 

Just look on the bright side, Snafflehound numbers are increasing! snaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gifsnaf.gif

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too many climbers, ppl whine about crag overpopulation, erosion, can't get a permit, can't get campsite, whaaa

 

not enough climbers, different problems, same whaaa

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The falling numbers are being reflected in declining enrollment in climbing courses. Mountaineers Basic Climbing numbers are off. Interestingly, Intermediate level climbing enrollment is holding steady.

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For comparison, the number of registered climbers for Denali:

 

2001 1,305

2002 1,232

2003 1,179

2004 1,275

2005 1,340

 

 

I would have expected the numbers & trends of registered climbers to track pretty closely between Rainier and Denali. I'm surprised to see the trends be so divergent. I'm sure you've thought about this- what do you suppose is behind the two trends?

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I'm also hearing "through the rumor mill" that the numbers are also down on Hood, Shasta, in the Tetons, and in other mountaineering areas...

 

I think Denali is the one major destination that seems steady however. I wonder if it's b/c of the international attention?

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For comparison, the number of registered climbers for Denali:

 

2001 1,305

2002 1,232

2003 1,179

2004 1,275

2005 1,340

 

 

I would have expected the numbers & trends of registered climbers to track pretty closely between Rainier and Denali. I'm surprised to see the trends be so divergent. I'm sure you've thought about this- what do you suppose is behind the two trends?

 

Hey, we just posted at the same time. Jinx...

 

I have wondered this too. I suspect Denali "7 summits" status helps...

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I think people are scared of Rainier because they know the evil dark lord lurks there.

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I think people are scared of Rainier because they know the evil dark lord lurks there.

 

Everyone knows that the evil dark lord is actually a good guy in big black suit with a jedi heart of gold. wink.gifgrin.gif

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Here's the 2000 Census Data. The population is getting older.

 

Age Percent

Under 5 years 6.7

5 to 9 years 7.2

10 to 14 years 7.4

15 to 19 years 7.3

20 to 24 years 6.6

25 to 34 years 14.3

35 to 44 years 16.5

45 to 54 years 14.4

55 to 59 years 4.8

60 to 64 years 3.6

65 to 74 years 5.7

75 to 84 years 4.1

85 years and over 1.4

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And they're all on viagra. They've got other things to climb than Rainier.

Brilliant analysis! This guy is sharp.

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Maybe it has to do with PRICES!

 

Not cheap to play the game these days...

 

Only if you believe that you need half this shite to do the sort of climbing most people do. Let's face it you don't need a $500 dead bird pack to hike Rainier.

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Mabey its because people realize that climbing (esp in the MTS) is a whole lot of SUFFERING!!!! If you want to get stuff done in the Cascades you cant always just stroll out to the MTS and send. No, there are bushes, bugs, rain, sweat oh yeah and its fucking SCARY! Who wants to spend all of this time and energy, not to mention money when there is all of that good stuff to watch on TV! pitty.gif

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Good riddance to bad rubbish, both the "outdoor industry" parasites and the clots that think they can buy their way to the top like they see in the movies.

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especially those suckers that buy those lame helmet gimmicky things, eh??

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-I am not too sad to see the masses leave the outdoors. However it will create a $$ crunch for the roads and trails I like to use to get to my climbs.

- As for the drop on rainier and shasta it might be that you have to pay to climb and getting a camp reservation is a PITA, as well as seeing all those people near me. Maybe the general public wants a more wilderness experience when they climb, but the rub for them is that you have to pay your dues on the crowded climbs to get the experience to get to the seldom used routes to get that wilderness experience.

-as for the generational change I will have to agree. I coach high school track and the kids that I see now vs. when I was in high school (even 6 years ago) are less tolerent of suffering. I have had to make my workouts easier for them, not only to retain them in the sport but so I don't brake them. Also there is this attitude of "well if I am not good at it when I first try then I will never be good at it and I might as well give up." You think numbers are declining what a couple more years and you will see a real drop.

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I coach high school track ...I have had to make my workouts easier for them ...so I don't brake them.

 

Yeah, don't brake 'em if you want 'em to run fast.

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