NRAC, the New River National Park Service, and the Summersville Lake US Army Corps of Engineers have teamed up with the Access Fund to bring two stewards, Ryan and Bill, to the New River Gorge area for the 2022 season. The program launched the weekend of May 6-8th and since then, the stewards have been busy holding climbing coffees and crag chats.
This week, we're introducing you to Ryan!
NRAC: Why did you want to become a Climber Steward here at the New?
Ryan: I heard about this opportunity and got excited about the prospect of being a voice for this place that is so dear to my heart. I hope to get others to care about this area and start thinking about what impacts their actions have. I've traveled all over the US climbing and I've seen the impacts that more and more climbers can have on these unique ecosystems and I got excited about the prospect of being able to help this area.
NRAC: What's something you hope to be able to educate climbers through the Climber Steward Program this year?
Ryan: I hope to get others to care about this area and start thinking about what impacts their actions have. I'd love to get people to take responsibility and ownership for their actions and the conditions and health of our climbing spaces.
NRAC: What's your favorite climb here at the New?
Ryan: Puppy chow. What a wild and unique pitch that is one of the best anywhere. I'll take a lap on this mega pitch anytime I'm at the lower meadow.
NRAC: What's your favorite crag snack?
Ryan: Gummy bears all day, every day. Cold pizza is a close second.
[Edited for length and clarity]