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Old RD's

Posted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 2:27 pm
by Warren G
Hi Folks

I am keen on updating the wiki to include all the out of print routes on within range of Cape Town, starting with the Apostles. Tony's new guide is fantastic, but as it is only a "Select" Guide, it misses the mediocre and the bad routes out there, meaning you have no idea if you are new routing, getting lost where you shouldn't be or on some old route. I have started taking from the MCSA journals, but I know there is more out there. If anyone has an old guide with these routes please can I borrow it, or a copy.

Thanks folks

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 5:44 pm
by Nic Le Maitre
Try ask Rose at the MCSA, the club at some stage published guides to the Apostles and Du Toitskloof amongst others and there might be a copy in the Library.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 6:05 pm
by FernwoodFace
Warren, how you going to find out exactly where these old, grotty routes go without climbing them? There are hundreds...

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 12:10 am
by Warren G
I tried Rose a while ago, and the closest I got was Muizenberg- which I took, but Tony's new guide does a good job of that area.

I think it is important to have those awful routes publicly available, so if some well accomplished climber wants to they can go out there and do them too. For example on Corridor there are several more lines written up in the 1973 journal
(which I will post on the wiki because they aren't in the guide), but if you look at the picture and read the RD it is more obvious why they were excluded. There are more striking lines "wanting" to be done, which must have been attempted in the past, but I can't find any evidence other than the odd rusty peg etc.

And what about that rope hanging from the crack in the roof of Valken buttress, did that line go, or was it an abandoned project... all these questions that could be answered if the info is publicly available. But more than just the functional aspect of it being open or not, no doubt there would be a great story to tell about it that are part of RSA climbing heritage.

I suppose I should have a word with Tony, Mike Scott etc...

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 7:45 am
by mokganjetsi
two thumb's up for volunteering the work, Warren. it makes so much sense to have RDs in electronic format; instead of having to hunt down old MCSA journals.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 9:32 am
by ant
I have a fairly large repository of RDs in electronic format.

I have been meaning to do something with them.
The two concerns are copyright, and sensitivity re access...

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 3:56 pm
by Warren G

1. Access.
I am keen to get the publicly accessible stuff up for a starters, and don't see how this line of fears would hesitate the publicizing of TM etc rock routes. Please elaborate further.

copyright only covers a limited period of time, and only deals with the manner in which information ( in this case) is presented. this means that one can publish the fact that M N O and Q routes are on a given wall next to P where P is in a current guide. I would argue - but need to find proof to the effect- that if a book has been out of print for a long enough period of time they become in the public domain.

I only know of one case in the world were there is a copyright on a crag which prevents other guides from being printed with that info, and that only works because the copyright owner also bolted and opened all the routes which gives him rights to claim ownership. In those other guides they have simply stated that the crag exists, where to get more info and the basic info on the routes- ie just names. As we are talking about a great deal of routes whose RD's have been offered publicly- and freely- to publishers in the past I can not see how there is any similarity between the situation above and the one at hand.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:33 am
by adamr
Hi Warren,
Big Job. I have an old copy of the MCSA dutoits kloof guide. pm me if you want to borrow it. I don't think there is anything in there that isn't in the old journals but at least it is in one place for a start.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:01 am
by Warren G
A thought just occcoured to me- which while being an unusual event in itself was not followed by an immediate logical reply:

How does Copyright work on old RDs? Does Tony, David, Roger, Gustav etc who have reprinted RDs have to ask for permission to do so, and to whom? Are we simply not publishing RDs on the Wiki etc out of politeness to authors and publishers of current guides where the routes have been published before? if something was not published and so put on the Wiki, only to be published later how can the publisher demand that RD be removed.

I bet that there is no law about these RDs because they are no different to paths, air routes used by planes etc. There is also no info on the Copyright link on the Wiki, which actually follows what I am saying.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:25 pm
by Richard
This issue was debated at length in the UK, when the Rockfax guides came out. Wiki type guides are great, but a lot of other useful/interesting info is often omitted. Real guidebooks usually contain a wealth of researched info on history, geology etc. If RD's are freely available there is no incentive for writers to produce books and maybe something is lost in that?

Re. Copyright, I would guess that it may only be an issue if text was copied (plagiarized) verbatim, and the original book writer was now losing income as a result.

There's still something really satisfying about using and reading a good guidebook and it would be nice to continue to support those few devoted writers and chroniclers of our climbing history.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:51 pm
by Warren G
Nothing gets me more psyched than reading a guide book and planning the next day out. A well constructed and informative guide book beats any wiki out, and I'm certainly not promoting the replacement of guidebooks with any online resource, however look at the size of the market of these guides and you will see why there are so few guidebooks. It would be fantastic if the country routes, The berg, and the kloofs had guidebooks however instead we only have the most popular areas or routes published.

A wiki is a great starting point for information, and it would be great if the guidebooks were comprehensive enough not to need any additions, but that isn't practically possible. Right now if you want to climb Corridor Triangle you must find an old guide book last published in 1978. For this sort of route info an informative wiki is the right place. In fact I would argue a wiki is a great place to put things like "we tried this line but man, the rock is loose, vegetated and only the 2nd pitch was worth doing." this is useful info best left to a wiki.

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 2:43 pm
by Nic Le Maitre
I'm with Warren here, guidebooks are awesome things to browse on a rainy day while imagining climbing that route especially the classics with all their associated history.

But since there aren't comprehensive guides to a bunch of areas one has to go scratch through old journals to find a route in a journal. It's a pain even if you have the journals and I do have almost all of them. A decent, searchable resource would be wonderful aid to finding that route you've heard of in a 70's journal but avoiding the pain of finding it in 10 years of everything else.

As long as you're not scanning pages out of Tony's books I seriously doubt that anyone would have a problem with you reproducing a route description from a journal and putting it on the Wiki. I personally would be stoked to find that someone had dug a description of a route I opened and found it worthy of inclusion in a resource as cool as the Wiki. And furthermore, if we're honest, the Wiki is the future of climbing guides. It's free, always up to date, it's more comprehensive, I can print out the bits I need or carry it around on my phone in my pocket rather than in a book too big to fit into a pocket.

Go ahead Warren, I'll even lend you my Journals if you need

Re: Old RD's

Posted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 6:18 pm
by FernwoodFace
Climb one of those old grotty routes and see if you're still as enthusiastic about including them in a route guide.

Corridor Triangles was opened way back in 1936, so the Journal of that year should have an RD of sorts.

There are many routes on Corridor Buttress, and the only two worth doing are the ones in Tony's Peninsula Select: Vertigo and Corridor Heights. There's Echo Wall to the right of that (and a Mike Scott route called Crackerjack, I think), and there's Cuspidor just to the left of Vertigo. Then Triangles and Gable, then you get Corridor Frontal followed by Skyline straight up the front of the buttress; then Cha-Cha Wall up the scary scoop to the left of the crest, then Corridor Crest (looks like fun from below, but ask Tony what he thinks of it - he did it a few months ago - and then decide if it merits inclusion in a route guide). Cuspidor is scrappy but has its moments. Vertigo is arguably the best line on the buttress.

Some of these old scrappy routes are downright dangerous, especially to the majority of the current generation of climbers who only climb the clean and sound sandstone of Fountain and Africa Ledge. Back in the day they climbed anything and they loved grot. And those routes are often run-out on dodgy gear... Why don't you go check out Corridor Skyline? It's one of the most beautiful lines on TM and goes at 15/16 (F2). The route should be easy to find: straight up the crest, never deviating more than a few feet to the left or right. "RD" can be found in the 1949 Journal.