Securing and protecting open, public access to rock climbing in the Red River Gorge.
Please support access to the world class climbing of Red River Gorge by making an annual or monthly donation to the RRGCC.
We are dedicated to securing and protecting open, public access to rock climbing in the Red River Gorge area of Kentucky and promoting conservation of the environment on the lands where we climb.
Our strategy is to first secure the highest quality climbing opportunities, whether on public or private land, then make climbing sustainable for climbers and the environment, and finally to provide exemplary stewardship of the natural environment on the lands where we climb. It is also our strategy to educate climbers about access issues, encourage them to take “ownership” (responsibility) for their behavior and its impact on access, and then to become “Citizen Trustees of Climbing” through direct participation.
The Red River Gorge Climbers' Coalition was founded in November 1996 after climbing access issues arose in the Red River Gorge portion of the Daniel Boone National Forest. In February 2000, the RRGCC and the DBNF entered into a Memorandum of Understanding that provided a framework through which these access issues could be addressed. From 2004 to 2008, an RRGCC committee participated in a series of DBNF Limits of Acceptable Change meetings, successfully advocating for the adoption of an LAC alternative that balances recreational use with resource protection. We are currently negotiating a revised MOU with the Forest Service that would expand the RRGCC's role in helping the DBNF address climbing management concerns.
Knowing that climbing access is always at the discretion of the owner, the RRGCC took the bold step in 2004 of directly purchasing 750 acres of land in Lee County, Kentucky and created the Pendergrass-Murray Recreational Preserve. After paying off the mortgage on this property in 2012, we bought an additional 309 acres of land in Lee County in 2013 and created the Miller Fork Recreational Preserve, which was paid off in 2017. In 2012, the RRGCC Board adopted Land Trust Standards and Practices in furtherance of our endeavor to provide, in perpetuity, protection and stewardship of the climbing areas that we own and manage. In 2016, the RRGCC purchased the 102 acre Bald Rock Recreational Preserve, securing access to the world class climbing at the Motherlode and Chocolate Factory in addition to other crags. In 2017, the RRGCC granted easements to Access Fund to all of our property - the PMRP, MFRP, and BRRP - strengthening protection of these lands for conservation and outdoor recreation.