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NSW NPWS support requests to close the Mt Warning Summit hike

In January we sent the letter below to the NSW Premier requesting her "Liberal" Government provide assurances that access to the summit of Mt Warning will remain open to all and not be banned in the future.
Today we finally received a response, not from the Premier but from the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service. No assurances have been given and the prospect of the summit walk being closed remains a reality. Incredulously NSW NPWS, an agency funded by all NSW residents to look after our National Parks for ALL of us, provide support for the closure. "The local Aboriginal Elders requested that people not climb the summit due to its cultural significance. The NPWS support this request through signage on the Summit Walking Track."
The language being used is very similar to that used at Ayers Rock. This language only serves to cause confusion and antagonises the public. To our great sadness, in their signage NSW NPWS do not mention anything positive about the summit walk, or encourage visitors to complete the climb. The views are among the best from any summit on the east coast, and the walk itself is a real adventure, which is why over 100,000 people make the climb each year. 
The 2010 Uluru -Kata Tjuta Park management plan provided for the Ayers Rock climb to be closed. This plan slipped through despite opposition of the then Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, and the then opposition leader Malcom Turnbull. In 2016 the current government gave assurances that the Ayers Rock climb would not be closed, and yet due to the success of myth and superstition over common sense, it will be closed next year.
With NSW NPWS openly supporting a closure and not encouraging climbing, there remains a very real chance that the walk up Mt Warning will end up the same way as the Ayers Rock climb. All it will take is for one bureaucrat to quietly write the paragraph and insert it as an amendment to the current plan, thereby amputating another beautiful part of the country off from public access. 
Keep an eye open on any proposed amendments to the management plan for the area that could make this a sad reality, and if you see any notification of any proposed changes please get in touch. 
Make sure your local politicians receive a clear message that these wonderful natural places remain open to all Australians to enjoy and not just a select few.


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Climber's Handbook: A guide to climbing Ayers Rock.

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Indicative Contents History of discovery and climbing Facts and figures Geology and Geomorphology Route Maps Reasons to climb Climbing stories Chronicles of the fallen  Preparations Best time to climb What to wear How to climb What you can see from the summit Things to do at the summit Climbing Trivia Selected climbs and hikes in central Australia
Hoping to hit the internet book shelves in time for Christmas 2018.  In the meantime wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  I just want one thing in my Christmas stocking: a ban of the ban!



A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers Rock

A pictorial response to arguments against climbing Ayers RockIt's too dangerous Group of women aged 19-70 climb Ayers Rock as part of the 1957 Petticoat Safari. This was prior to the chains being installed. Since the 1950s over 6,000,000 people of all ages have climbed the rock. In that time there have been a reported 36 deaths mainly heart attacks to older men, not acclimatised to the heat of central Australia. If you are fit and healthy and stick to the marked path climbing Ayers Rock is an exhilarating adventure but a decidedly low risk activity.

Here's Arthur Groom's take on the climbing options: extract from I saw a strange land
Various writers have described Ayers Rock as difficult of ascent, when in reality it is a trained mountaineer's job on the east-south-east corner, a rough and steep scramble up at least two places on its southern side, and nothing else but a strenuous and spectacular uphill walk on its western side It’s a Sacred Site, climbing is disrespect…

The Ban on Climbing Ayers Rock is Immoral and Illegal

The Ban on Climbing Ayers Rock is Immoral and IllegalQuadrant Magazine have placed my recent article online outlining reasons the ban on climbing Ayers Rock is immoral and illegal.

Claims that Aborigines never ascend the monolith are false and the highly sacred nature of the route a recent invention. The cultural-heritage significance of the climb to both Anangu and millions of non-Aboriginal visitors is something that should be celebrated and maintained, not discouraged and condemned.

Read the Article at Quadrant.
“In the realm of ideas there has been no better publication in Australia over the last fifty years than Quadrant magazine.”
— Former Prime Minister John Howard