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Climbing Cave Rock In Tahoe Could Change

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The Forest Service is rethinking whether climbers should be allowed on Cave Rock at Lake Tahoe, a site held sacred by Washoe Indians.

Three years ago, the Forest Service limited rock climbing at the site, but did not ban it. Instead, it prohibited the addition of new climbing bolts and ordered the removal of some bolts left in the rock face.

But the Forest Service began re-evaluating that management plan earlier this year when a new supervisor took over the agency┬┤s Tahoe office.

The agency has extended until March 31st a public comment period on a new environmental plan for the site.

The move has frustrated rock climbers. Jason Keith is policy director for the Colorado-based Access Fund, a climbing advocacy group. He says the group would like to reach a compromise, but feels climbers are being singled out. Keith says the latest proposal would ban climbers, but not hikers or other recreation enthusiasts.