Members see UIAA as modern and reliable

Earlier this year, the UIAA asked Member Federations to help define the future direction of the international mountaineering body over the next five years. The results of the survey are encouraging with more than 75 per cent of UIAA Members taking the time to complete the detailed survey. When asked how the UIAA can support its Members, 79 per cent said they looked forward to receiving help on Training Standards, with information on a reciprocity agreement for...

French mountaineers publish manifesto

The French Mountaineering and Climbing Federation and other key mountaineering and climbing stakeholders in France have published a manifesto to promote a common vision for the future of mountain practices: This manifesto (Assises de l'Alpinisme. Read English version here) is the result of the work initiated in 2010 by the Mountaineering and Mountain Practices Observatory (l’Observatoire des Pratiques de la Montagne et de l’Alpinisme, OPMA) and based on the crucial following question: nowadays and in the...

Accidents in climbing halls on rise

The Legal Experts Working Group of the UIAA has published a paper on the growing number of accidents at indoor climbing facilities. The following is the group's observations: Over the last 20 years many climbing halls have been built and indoor climbing is the training venue for many climbers. It is part of their social life. Artificial climbing walls are especially important in countries which have few or no mountains or cliffs, but they exist even in...

2012 Ice Climbing World Cup schedule announced

he schedule for the 2012 Ice Climbing World Cup events has been announced. On January 14 and 15, the season will kick off for the second year in a row with Lead and Speed competitions in Cheongsong, Korea, hosted by the Korean Alpine Federation. This event will also be the Open Asia Championship. One week later (January 20, 21), the world's elite ice climbers will head to Europe for Lead and Speed events in Saas Fee, Switzerland which will...

Via ferrata systems and plastic chocks to be tested

The growing popularity of via ferrate among families with small children and the advent of climbing chocks made with polymers will lead to new testing and investigations by the UIAA Safety Commission (SafCom). At its annual meeting in Yverdon-les-Bains, Switzerland in late May, the expert panel - which develops global standards for climbing equipment performance – agreed to move forward on a number of testing issues. These involve I-beam karabiners, energy absorbing systems for via ferrate,...

French efforts to maintain freedom of risk taking

The following article was provided to the UIAA by Annibale Salsa, past president of Italy's CAI, Claudio Picco and Carlo Zanantoni. It is a summary of a recent mountaineering symposium in Grenoble, France and touches upon the issue of restrictions on the freedoms of access and risk taking that the authors insist are fundamental freedoms of mountaineering: "At a meeting this spring in Grenoble, France the French mountaineers showed great organizational capability and attracted a large...

Eco Everest Expedition 2011 successful

The Eco Everest Expedition 2011, under the leadership of Dawa Steven Sherpa, succeeded in efforts to clean and collect garbage, debris and waste left by past expedition groups. The following report was provided by Dawa Steven's father, Ang Tshering Sherpa, of the Nepal Mountaineering Association, and Asian Trekking: Apa Sherpa, Climbing Leader of Eco Everest Expedition 2011 reached the summit of Mt. Everest on May 10 for the 21st time - a new world record with the...

Hut reciprocity agreement explained

here are almost 1,200 mountain huts offering accommodation for a total of 66,000 people in the entire alpine region – from Slovenia to France, including the Pyrenees. Those eligible to benefit from reciprocity are offered the same overnight rates as members of the hut-owning associations; in some huts, these special conditions are up to 50 per cent of the regular rate. In the last 10 years, the hut-owning associations have invested almost €170 million in the...

Tribute to the late Stefano Tirinzoni

Stefano Tirinzoni, member of the UIAA Management Committee, passed away on April 29 at the age of 62 after a long illness. He worked as an architect and in urban planning in his home town of Sondrio, Italy, and he had a special interest in the field of mountain huts. He was responsible for the recent rehabilitation work of the hut, Capanna Marco e Rosa, in the Bernina sector of the Alps. He worked with the Italian Alpine Club (CAI)...

Further developments on Training Standards label announced

Significant progress has been made on the further development of the UIAA Training Standards label. Also discussed at the recent meeting in Switzerland of the UIAA Mountaineering Commission was traditional climbing and an update to the Legal Experts Working Group document on legal liability. The full report on the meeting is from Phil Wickens, commission secretary: The UIAA Mountaineering Commission met in Bern, Switzerland, in April. The meeting, which was hosted by the Swiss Alpine Club (SAC-CAS), was very well...