𝘿𝙤 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙬𝙝𝙤’𝙨 𝙡𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙮𝙤𝙪’𝙧𝙚 𝙘𝙡𝙞𝙢𝙗𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙤𝙣?
As a part of our 𝘒𝘦𝘦𝘱 𝘞𝘝 𝘞𝘪𝘭𝘥 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘞𝘰𝘯𝘥𝘦𝘳𝘧𝘶𝘭 𝘊𝘢𝘮𝘱𝘢𝘪𝘨𝘯, we want to highlight the importance of recognizing Indigenous communities!
In the 18th century, peoples of the 𝘚𝘩𝘢𝘸𝘯𝘦𝘦, 𝘋𝘦𝘭𝘢𝘸𝘢𝘳𝘦, 𝘔𝘪𝘯𝘨𝘰, 𝘊𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘰𝘬𝘦𝘦, 𝘢𝘯𝘥 𝘔𝘪𝘢𝘮𝘪 𝘵𝘳𝘪𝘣𝘦𝘴 lived and hunted within the gorge. As they migrated, they would utilize rock shelters, also known as overhangs throughout the Gorge that are popular with climbers today.
-𝗛𝗼𝘄 𝗱𝗼 𝗰𝗹𝗶𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗮𝗳𝗳𝗲𝗰𝘁 𝗰𝘂𝗹𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗮𝗹 𝗿𝗲𝘀𝗼𝘂𝗿𝗰𝗲𝘀?
When climbers walk under the cliff line, they disturb the micro-root systems that bind the soil full of indigenous artifacts together. Rain comes along after the soil is loosened and removes artifacts from their original location, effectively ruining the context needed to inform us about the use of such artifacts. The Park has modified climbing routes in the past to save archeological sites that were disturbed by climbers.
-𝗛𝗼𝘄 𝗰𝗮𝗻 𝗰𝗹𝗶𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿𝘀 𝗯𝗲 𝘀𝘁𝗲𝘄𝗮𝗿𝗱𝘀 𝗼𝗳 𝗶𝗻𝗱𝗶𝗴𝗲𝗻𝗼𝘂𝘀 𝗵𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆?
We encourage climbers to diversify their climbing locations to protect archeological sites. Always practice “leave no trace” and do not remove anything, including indigenous artifacts, you find within the park. While climbing, think about the native peoples who were stewards of the land you’re on for thousands of years, and think about how they utilized the very climbing features you enjoy today.
Shout out to Jessica Lynch, Museum Technician at the New River Gorge National Park and Reserve, for sharing this information with the community!
𝘽𝙚 𝙨𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙝𝙖𝙧𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙨 𝙥𝙤𝙨𝙩 𝙩𝙤 𝙡𝙚𝙩 𝙤𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙖𝙗𝙤𝙪𝙩 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙞𝙣𝙙𝙞𝙜𝙚𝙣𝙤𝙪𝙨 𝙝𝙞𝙨𝙩𝙤𝙧𝙮 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝙍𝙞𝙫𝙚𝙧 𝙂𝙤𝙧𝙜𝙚!