I’ve been meaning to post about the Muir Valley situation since it was announced, and my trip the other week back to the Red River Gorge reminded me about it. Muir Valley, one of the most popular areas in the Red River Gorge1, is being gifted by its owners to the climbing community:
Muir Valley owners/managers, Rick and Liz Weber, have announced their plan to gift this popular climbing preserve to the Friends of Muir Valley Inc (FOMV). Contingent on FOMV achieving a set of goals during 2014, ownership of the preserve will be transferred from the Webers to FOMV by March 31, 2015.
The Muir Valley owners have long been inspired by the work of the Access Fund to secure climbing access. It has been the Webers’ plan from day one to eventually gift Muir Valley to the climbing community. Although still actively climbing, guiding, and instructing, they are now in their seventies and want to make this move while they can be involved in helping to ensure a smooth transition in Muir’s ownership and management.
This is obviously great news, however there is a bit of a catch: the gifting of Muir Valley to the climbing community is contingent on climbers raising $200,000 to cover future expenses:
To empower and assist the FOMV in making a smooth, successful transition the Webers have provided it with these goals to meet during 2014: 1) phase into responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the Valley, as detailed in a Muir Valley Operations Manual and 2) raise $200,000 to cover Muir’s 2014 and 2015 operating/maintenance expenses, to fund expenses associated with transfer of ownership, and to establish a stewardship fund for the property. The Webers have made this goal a condition of their gift to ensure that resources will be available fo FOMV to operate and maintain Muir Valley into the future at the level of quality and to the standards the Webers have established.
- And likely the entire country ↩