Members of the chapters’ mountaineering committees are working with the Rumney Climbers Association and the Access Fund, which have secured the right to purchase technical climbing areas known as the “Final Frontier” and Northwest Crags and in central New Hampshire. These privately owned parcels abut the Rumney Rocks climbing area on the White Mountain National Forest.
Rumney is a climbing mecca, with the Final Frontier offering more than 60 technical climbing routes, with others under development, according to the Rumney Climbers Association.
Through the cooperative project, which is intended to provide permanent conservation and climbing access, the Rumney Climbers Association plans to purchase 86 acres of privately held land and ensure that it remains undeveloped. The parcel includes six crags with existing and potential climbing opportunities: Northwest Territories, Buffalo Pit, Northwest Passage, Prudential, Asylum, and the western section of Black Jack Boulders.
The effort is designed to benefit hikers as well. Eventually, the groups plan to construct a new trail with scenic vistas that will connect with the existing Rattlesnake Mountain Trail.
Key to the project is a $300,000 fundraising effort to purchase and provide stewardship for the land. Acquisition costs are set at $185,000. The Rumney Climbers Association plans to raise an additional $115,000 for improvements, including construction of a parking lot and the hiking trail. The group then intends to transfer the land to the White Mountain National Forest.
AMC chapters are supporting the project by providing matching funds for the land acquisition phase. The Boston and New Hampshire chapters will match each dollar donated through December 31, 2016, up to $10,000 and $15,000, respectively. The transfer of those funds was approved by AMC’s Executive Committee in recognition of the project’s contributions to recreational opportunities, access protection, and conservation goals—all consistent with AMC’s mission.