Lysefjorden: Polske Marcin Tomaszewski slo i sommer bolter på et av våre mest kjente naturikoner, i anledning hans nye rute Thor (7c). Det ble satt fem bolter i veggen, samt anker i veggen og på toppen (og to bolter for slack line).

BRV (Bratte Rogalands Venner) og Norsk Tindeklub reagerte både raskt og kraftig, og Tomaszewski måtte pent komme tilbake og fjerne alle boltene. Det gjorde han, og i tillegg fylte han igjen boltehullene slik at skaden ble minst mulig.

Les også: Ønsker ikke bolter på Preikestolen

I en epost til magasinet Klatring beklager han hendelsen, og uttaler sin ydmykhet i forhold til lokale tradisjoner. Dog mener han at om han hadde kontaktet lokale myndigheter på forhånd, så ville muligens bolteløyve blitt gitt. Han mener videre at bolting i større grad burde aksepteres, slik at klatresporten i større grad åpner for andre enn de aller beste.

Tomaszewski er ikke en hvem-som-helst. Sammen med Marek Raganowicz førstebesteg han for et par år siden en svært imponerende ny rute i Trollveggen, ground up, vinterstid, i et push. Han har tidligere førstebesteget en rekke lange og harde ruter i flere land, og han ansees som en av verdens aller ypperste storveggsklatrere.

Han tar nå sikte på å lede Thor (7c) på naturlige sikringsmidler. Dette vil i følge han være svært krevende, og han mener det er synd, fordi ruta ville vært mye finere med bolter. Han gikk den i sommer på topptau.

Les mer om trollveggbestigningen her og besøk hjemmesiden hans på marcintomaszewski.pl.

Les også: Polakker med ny rute på Kjerag

Rogaland: Marcin Tomaszewski på Kjerag. Foto: Marcin Tomaszewski

Her er brevet fra Marcin Tomaszewski om boltingen på Preikestolen:

In May 2016 I established a new route called Thor (7c) on Preikestolen – Pulpit Rock – in Norway, a granite obelisk being one of the most famous tourist attractions of Lysefjord near Stavanger. The granite crag is visited by ca 200 000 tourists annually, but up to that moment by almost no climbers. I equipped the route from the top down, by abseil and with stainless steel bolts in places where traditional protection was not possible, whereas along the natural sections I used camming devices. The ascent triggered off a heated debate in the climbing community as well as severe criticism of the protection style and bolt placement, the act I had not consulted with the local authorities, which I admit was my mistake. The following commentary aims at explaining and this way defusing the conflict that should not exist between mountain enthusiasts.

To begin with, I would like to sincerely apologize to all those who felt offended by my decision to drill and bolt, which turned out to be the violation of the ethics rules laid down by the Norwegian climbing association. I hereby encourage all foreign climbers to get familiar with the abovementioned regulations so that similar misunderstandings do not occur again in the future. As a guest in the area I should have turned to the local authorities in the first place and I do believe that if I had addressed a properly phrased and reasonable request to them, the events would have taken another course and I might have even obtained the permission to place a few bolts in the places where other form of protection was impossible. I strongly believe in it for several reasons.

First of all, as an alpinist with many years experience my climbing origins are deeply rooted in the domain of traditional rock climbing followed by visits to various mountain ranges around the world. Most of the classic routes I established – ground up and using natural gear only – have seen no repeats to date due to among others, risk of severe injuries or death as a result of taking falls from the most dangerous parts. As an alpinist having already a sense of fulfillment in this respect, for several years I have been trying to put up new routes for climbers who for various reasons be it family, health, time or money, cannot afford accepting the risky and expensive challenge of traditional climbing but simultaneously they would love to experience a place like Preikestolen at its best being able to lead this exceptionally beautiful route safely.

Since the beginning of the affair I have received a few e-mails from climbers from all over the world asking if and when I am going to remove the bolts as they wanted to try the route ground up. Respecting local tradition and ethics, I decided to remove all the bolts and fill all the holes during my next trip and so I did. Heavy rains prevented me however from giving it a go and I decided to postpone my attempts to my next visit. Currently, Thor remains my trad project with an officially acknowledged top rope ascent. The ascent requires using sky hooks in the lower part of the route which at the same time offer no guarantee of protection.

In view of the exposure of the route taking falls will definitely not be extremely dangerous to health however it will be psychologically demanding probably for the majority of people climbing 7c routes, which I really regret – the place that is visited by crowds of tourists deserves to be visited also by a bit larger group of climbers, who together with their families would take the opportunity to look at it from another perspective. As a climbing instructor and a person actively promoting alpinism I am of the opinion that climbing should not be an elite sport available to only a small circle of people. Just as all mountains around the globe offer via ferratas made of kilometers of steel cables and ladders to enable tourists to experience the vertical world, so should bolts (if there is no other possibility) be used to help climbers experience the world of climbing rather than to lock them out of it.

But the horse has already bolted and it only remains for me to apologize again and ensure all my fellow climbers from Norway that I do understand their tradition. I never meant to act in bad faith nor did I want to cause the conflict. I believe the issue has been solved out and the conclusions have been drawn. It is time we put this conflict behind us and focused again on our biggest passion meaning climbing ;)

PS. Before ascending Thor I top roped using a locking devise (and an 80 meter rope) a line of cracks on the opposite side of Pulpit and found a nut-like protection point, which indicated that the formation had been already climbed before. As it turned out later, the route was called Norwegian Style and had just been established. The line offers very good protection with big cams and I can truly recommend it to all lovers of traditional climbing. I would also like to congratulate its authors on their ascent as well as the place and style of the route.

Marcin Yeti Tomaszewski www.marcintomaszewski.pl