Climbing Advocacy 101: How to Make a Difference

Climate change. Extractive industries. Floods, wildfires, and cash-ready developers. America’s climbing areas face serious threats. Without focused advocacy from climbers, we could lose these battles. But there is good news.

Mt. Emerson, Sierra Nevada range, California. Ancestral lands of Numu and Eastern Mono/Monache. © Ken Etzel.

Climbers just like you are mobilizing all around the country. There are 8 million of us now, and our sheer number and our connection to the land make us a powerful force for good. Access Fund is a constant watchdog for critical conservation and access threats to climbing areas, and our job is to activate the climbing community's voice at critical moments. Ready to add your voice?

Our team works on issues across the country, so there’s always a chance to be heard in your backyard. We are climbers, and we are a powerful force for protecting the places and the sport we love. Each of us have an incredible opportunity to influence the future of climbing and the greater conservation movement.

We make advocating for climbing easy once you’re plugged in. Here’s how to get started:

1. Plug into the climbing advocacy network
Our email and social media action alerts make it easy to get involved, no matter where you are. They include a detailed breakdown of the issue, as well as talking points and an easy letter-writing tool that gets your message to decision makers. Weigh in on important issues from home, on the road, or at the crag.

2. Act fast when you get an alert
Time is always of the essence. Act fast when you receive an Action Alert to make sure your voice is heard before conservation and access decisions are finalized. With the easy letter-writing tool that we include with Action Alerts, it only takes a few minutes to speak up.

3. Make your advocacy personal
Review the talking points we provide, but don’t just copy and paste them into your message. Put your own personal spin on the issue, and include details on how a decision will affect you and your climbing community. Personalized messages are much more effective advocacy tools than form letters.

4. Share with other climbers who care
Take the time to spread the word to other climbers who care about climbing access and are ready to take action. Forwarding the action alert with a personal note to some of your close contacts is the first and best way to get the word out, and sharing on social media is a close second.

Access Fund works to protect and conserve all the beautiful places that make the climbing experience so special. That means showing up in Washington, D.C. to protect public lands and advance climate action. It means buying threatened climbing areas that are about to be sold off for trophy homes. And it means rolling up our sleeves and working in the dirt to build sustainable trails and climbing areas. Access Fund is here for all of it and more. Job number one is to protect and conserve the amazing lands that give so much to climbers.