In the ongoing effort to gain acceptance and credibility for recreational/technical tree climbing as a valid activity within the outdoor recreation community, the Tree Climber Coalition has now entered into partnership with two other organizations, Leave No Trace (www.LNT.org) and the Association Of Outdoor Recreation Education (www.aore.org). These partnerships support the idea of our form of climbing as being a recreational activity and that we pursue this activity in an ethical manner showing respect for the tree, the forest, and the outdoor environment in general.
AORE has already responded by suggesting that we apply for the opportunity to conduct a recreational tree climbing pre-conference workshop during their annual conference at the University of North Carolina/Asheville this coming fall. The application has been submitted and we should have a reply shortly. This represents an opportunity to present our activity alongside other outdoor recreational activities and on an equal standing with these other activities.
Membership in Leave No Trace carries a burden of responsibility. In order to be perceived as members-in-good-standing recreational tree climbers will need to subscribe to a more exemplary set of ethical standards, particularly while climbing in areas designated as wilderness. Our climbing should exert as little impact on the environment as is possible, and the forest should be left as it was found after the climb is finished and we leave to return to our homes.
Being good members in these organizations and being faithful to their stated principles can go a long way toward having recreational/technical tree climbing accepted within outdoor recreational circles. This should be a step in the right direction.