RRGCC Pays Off Miller Fork

11/09/2017

Last month, the Red River Gorge Climbers Coalition (RRGCC) made the final loan payment on the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve in Beattyville, Kentucky. In 2013, RRGCC and Access Fund teamed up to acquire the 309-acre property, which includes several miles of cliff line, much of which was undeveloped at the time of purchase.
Photo courtesy of Elodie Saracco

The previous owner saw the RRGCC’s involvement in community meetings and climbing’s positive economic impacts on the local community, and she approached the RRGCC with the opportunity to buy the land. Knowing that the acquisition would create a brand new destination for climbers in the region and help to relieve climber impacts on other crags in the Red River Gorge, RRGCC jumped at the opportunity and reached out to Access Fund for help.

Access Fund provided both a $10,000 grant and a $200,000 loan from the Climbing Conservation Loan Program, the revolving loan fund that provides local climbing organizations with the funds and expertise to quickly save threatened climbing areas. The RRGCC pulled from its own funds to make up the difference and purchase the property for $245,000.

Over the last four years, the RRGCC has successfully fundraised to pay back the Climbing Conservation Loan, allowing Access Fund to invest those dollars to save other climbing areas. Today, Miller Fork features over 485 routes across 25 climbing areas. RRGCC and Access Fund have worked together to improve access points and build sustainable trails.

Congratulations RRGCC for securing this gem in The Red!

Photo Courtesy of:
Dan Brayack

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