by: Ryan Bittan
Posted: / Updated:
(ABC4) – The Utah Department of Transportation has released two proposals to address winter traffic congestion in Utah’s Little Cottonwood Canyon.
One would construct the world’s longest gondola to carry riders to the top of the canyon and the other would widen the road by adding bus-only shoulder lanes.
The gondola and buses would only service ski resorts at the top of the canyon and would not stop at climbing areas.
There has been some pushback on the proposals, however, as they are considered a threat to the roadside bouldering resources, and would impact the overall climbing experience in Little Cottonwood Canyon.
The Salt Lake Climbers Alliance has expressed concern, with its mission to serve as the voice of all climbers in the greater Wasatch region, engaging as an advocate to protect outdoor climbing access and to maintain sustainable climbing resources.
“Let’s preserve the incredible beauty of LCC with less costly and lower impact transportation solutions, such as increased public transit without road widening, that serve all canyon users,” said Julia Geisler, Salt Lake Climbers Alliance Executive Director.
“Little Cottonwood Canyon is a special climbing area with a rich history and incredible access,” said Pitt Grewe, Director of the Utah Division of Recreation. “The combination of high-quality climbing, quick access near a large city, and continued investment from the state to improve access and safety truly make it a premier climbing area in the country.”
The Salt Lake Climbers Alliance has teamed up with Gnarly Nutrition to host an in-person premiere of its latest film, “Home Crag,” at The Front Climbing Club SLC (1470 S 400 W Salt Lake City, UT 84115). The film will feature rock climber and Olympic-medalist Nathaniel Coleman, and will address the reason why they aim to preserve rock climbing in Little Cottonwood.
The decision to develop new transportation methods in Little Cottonwood is still pending.