Climbing Route Development

The Climbing Advisory Group reviews all new route development proposals that include fixed protection and/or route cleaning, as well as proposals for the replacement or removal of fixed protection. Procedures for each of these actions vary slightly as described below. The Climbing Advisory Group then makes a recommendation to the Superintendent for final approval.

Replacement of Fixed Protection
Replacement bolt proposals which do not significantly alter a climb or an anchor will go through the Climbing Advisory Group. A date and time for the replacement will be agreed on and the installers identified. The Chief Ranger will alert his/her staff, and the climber can remove the old bolts and install the new bolts. No Special Use Permit will be issued and a power drill can be used. To learn more, email us.

Route Cleaning
Routine cleaning of established routes need not be reviewed by the Climbing Advisory Group. Proposed cleaning of any new route, even if fixed protection is not part of the proposal, must be reviewed by the Climbing Advisory Group. Route cleaning (systematic and comprehensive) of an established route should be reviewed by the Climbing Advisory Group.

New Routes, Route Cleaning, and Removal of Fixed Protection
Proposals for new climbing anchors or new climbing routes that include route cleaning and bolts, or any significant changes to climbs or anchor bolts, beyond replacement and including removals, should be sent to the Climbing Advisory Group. Proposals should be include the name of the applicant, and descriptions of the location, numbers of bolts, type of hardware etc. As climbers are considering and scouting new routes, cleaning of these routes should be limited in scope (not systematic or comprehensive) until they are reviewed and approved. After a review by park staff and members of the Climbing Advisory Group the Chief Ranger will issue a special use permit for approved plans.

Last updated: November 30, 2016

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PO Box 177
Bar Harbor , ME 04609


207 288-3338

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