Zach Lesch-Huie sees things differently. He’s the Southeast Regional Director and National Affiliate Director of The Access Fund, a decades-old organization officially established in 1991 “on a mission to keep climbing areas open and conserve the climbing environment.” He points out, “There is a tendency to demonize new climbers, or gym climbers, as the source of the worst impacts to our crags. This isn’t really accurate, and it doesn’t help us come together to tackle these challenges as a community. As climbers we all have impacts, and we share a responsibility to try to make these impacts positive and lasting.” More crag access is one of those impacts. “Occasionally, landowners are now the first to call us to say they have a potential crag, instead of us calling them. They ask us to check it out and maybe help them open it. The Red River [Gorge] area is an example of local landowners realizing the value in having property in climbing areas.” He also mentions that, “The Southeast is known for opening climbing areas on private lands. There have been lots of great success stories, but this sometimes obscures the fact that there are big, important areas on federal public lands here, too.” Bouldering in particular has a comparatively low barrier to entry; just a pair of shoes, some chalk, and a friend’s guest pass, and you can tackle problems inside in no time. Bouldering was a small part of Peak Experiences when the center opened its doors in 1998, but today, it’s exploding. So, how can this diverse body of athletes and conservationists all work together to save our crags and ensure responsible access for generations to come? “It’s often said that ‘the mentor is in the mirror,’” says Lesch-Huie. “The onus is on all climbers who came before to set the best possible example at crags, to take the opportunity to show people the right way to go about it. I was lucky to have good mentors who taught me to be respectful to the crag and land owners. Mentoring and low-impact practices are critical. We all share the responsibility to take care of places we climb.” Many are attracted to climbing for that special brand of aliveness felt in pushing boundaries and discovering new strength. Scaling vertical spaces is a direct proving ground with immediate feedback. “The wall is a perfect mirror,” says Tobin, “If you’re thoughtful, purposeful, and assertive,” you’ll get that returned. “If you’re impatient or act haphazardly, the wall reflects that back at you.” “Expectations of what a climbing gym should look like has changed a lot; over the last ten to twelve years, they’ve rapidly evolved,” says Andrew Kratz, Managing Partner and Founder of Triangle Rock Club (TRC), which has four locations in North Carolina and one in Richmond, Virginia, that opened in 2018. He and fellow TRC Managing Partner Joel Graybeal acknowledge that now, you walk into any gym and are greeted by bright colors and creatively-shaped holds. “Gyms are no longer trying to replicate outdoor climbing. [Indoor climbing] has become its own thing, and you have more people participating inside than will ever climb outside,” they say. “Still, [new members] are learning our narrative of safety, Leave No Trace, and general good practices for stewardship from day one.” While some are excited about increased recognition, others balk at it hitting the mainstream. Many climbers feel that the indoor disciplines can never be compared to their outdoor origins. Another segment is concerned about the potential negative impacts this exposure could have on our mountains. But many others believe novice climbers are a positive force, amplifying the industry’s voice and actively participating in the maintenance and protection of beloved crags. A far smaller segment of folks remain steadfastly outside, vowing to never step foot on a neon hold. One Virginia recreator who preferred to remain anonymous is not a fan of gyms. He feels that their “artificial walls create an engineered experience,” insisting that he’ll always prefer real rock. Another veteran crag-frequenter expressed concern with how the sport’s popularity could threaten the health of and access to favorite areas, believing too many novice gym climbers make their way outside without the proper training and etiquette, often ignorant of Leave No Trace principles. Graybeal, in a video about Triangle Rock Club for Visit Raleigh, says that “Climbing has a tendency to attract highly intelligent people because there’s problem-solving aspects of it, there’s mental resolve, technique, coordination, balance, and strength. To be a successful climber, you have to wrap all those things together.” Photo: Izzy Gifford climbs at the Riverrock Climbing Comp in Richmond, VA Tobin agrees that while a significant portion of gym-goers won’t ever ascend routes outside, he believes they contribute toward the outdoor climbing movement’s critical mass. He remarks that indoor climbers can be and frequently are involved in crag stewardship and accessibility initiatives, like those launched by partnerships between gyms, local climbing coalitions, and larger organizations like The Access Fund. When the community was much smaller, those political battles were often more difficult. Climbing’s popularity has skyrocketed in the last few years, thanks in part to both its induction into the Olympics beginning in Tokyo next year and recent films like The Dawn Wall and Free Solo, the latter of which earned an Oscar. Many climbing gyms started in the 1980s and ‘90s in empty warehouses with homemade walls, designed to mimic real rock, founded by and for outdoor climbers as winter and wet-weather training grounds. Today of course, most outdoor climbers also climb indoors. Modern gyms seem cater to all sorts of clientele; according to IndoorClimbing.com, there may be over one hundred indoor climbing centers open in this magazine’s distribution area, including smaller walls in community centers and universities. “Climbing can be intimidating,” says Kevin Tobin, co-owner of Peak Experiences climbing gym in Richmond, Va. “So many people believe that they’re too this or too that, but I tell them if you can use a step ladder, you can walk in the door and be successful.” Have climbing gyms ruined rock climbing—or opened it to new audiences?
Having been in the lending business for 33 years and seeing many companies come and go in the sub-prime market space, I have a feel for what it takes to be successful in the long term. I stress ‘long term’ because literally hundreds of companies have succeeded for a couple of years only to suffer from a variety of ailments.So, what’s the secret sauce for a successful sub-prime lending program at your credit union? As the saying goes, “results may vary,” but here are some of the ingredients you need to have in your pantry.1 cup underwritingIt all starts with sound underwriting. Since credit histories will be inherently be checkered, sound underwriting means your credit union has to avoid risk layering, or the practice of underwriting multiple layers of risk. An example of risk layering is a borrower with a FICO score in the 500’s, who has marginal ability to repay, and is seeking more than book value on an older car with extended terms. For those of you keeping score in the office, that’s five layers of risk. continue reading » 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr
Technology giant Gojek’s e-wallet GoPay announced on Tuesday a new gold-investment feature called GoInvestasi in partnership with investment fintech start-up Pluang.GoPay managing director Budi Gandasoebrata said the demand for investment through e-wallets had led to GoPay providing the investment platform.“That is why we are sure that an accessible and transparent investment feature is relevant to our users’ needs,” he said in a press statement. Users can register with GoInvestasi using their Gojek-registered phone number. They can then invest as little as 0.01 gram of gold, equivalent to Rp 8,000 (US 57 cents), in Pluang with payment and investment withdrawal made through GoPay.GoInvestasi is available as a GoPay feature, and both are available in the Gojek app.Users can also save their gold and exchange it for PT Aneka Tambang (Antam) certified gold bars.Budi went on to say that all GoInvestasi transactions were supervised by the Indonesian Commodity Futures Trading Regulatory Agency (BAPPEBTI), as well as PT Kliring Berangkat Indonesia (KBI).Meanwhile, Pluang cofounder Claudia Kolonas said that partnering with GoPay would allow more people to start investing in gold.“The public’s awareness and willingness to invest has become more apparent and people are drawn to gold investment because it is low risk but still profitable,” she said.Pluang received $3 million from Go-Ventures, Gojek’s venture capital unit, in the fintech’s series A funding round in September. (eyc)Topics :
Thalia Kirby refused to be blown off course as she defied the blustery conditions to card a brilliant opening round of 69 (-4) to lead the way in the English Women’s Amateur Championship.The 19-year-old (pictured above) carded six birdies in her round on Woodhall Spa Golf Club’s Hotchkin Course to hold a three shot advantage over a chasing pack led by England Girls’ squad player Rosie Belsham.Another England Girls’ international, Lottie Woad from Surrey, ended the day in third spot on her own after a one over par round of 73 on the Bracken Course.Kirby got off to a flyer with birdies at her opening two holes and picked up another shot at the sixth.A bogey at the seventh was remedied with a birdie at the ninth as she turned at three under par.Into the teeth of the gale on the back nine, the player from Stoke Park Golf Club picked up further birdies at 15 and 17 and the only blemish was a bogey at 16.After the round, Kirby said: “The opening birdies settled me down. The wind was really gusting and it almost blew me off my feet on one green.“I’m really pleased with that and I’ll just try to take the momentum into tomorrow’s round.”Belsham, from Whitley Bay Golf Club, has been in sparkling form since competitive golf recommenced after lockdown restrictions eased.The 18-year-old has played in three events – winning two and only losing the other on a countback to England colleague Jess Baker.An opening birdie at the first hole of the Hotchkin settled any lingering nerves and despite carding bogeys at the fourth and fifth, Belsham held her nerve.With the gusting wind causing severe difficulties for the player as they turned for home and pondered the prospect of enduring a majority of holes into the breeze, Belsham was able to play steady, par golf and ensures the round finished all smiles with a birdie four at 18.It could have been a little bit better – her 20-foot eagle putt on the par five 18th hole just needing one more revolution to topple into the cup.“I’m pleased,” admitted Belsham (pictured below) after a relatively stress-free round.“I expected the scores to be better than they are. I played steady golf and I’m very much looking forward to tomorrow.“I just feel like I can’t make any mistakes at the minute and the putting is on top form. I did a lot of work over lockdown and worked hard on my short game.“I was in the garden and played so many new games that I didn’t know existed!”Another of the England Girls’ squad, Woad, had a good day on the par 72 Bracken .The Surrey golfer was the epitome of steadiness throughout her round.A birdie on the par three, seventh hole cancelled out a bogey at the first.And just one more dropped shot on the way home allowed her to sign for a one over par total.Defending champion Ellen Hume is handily placed after a first round of 75(+3) on the Bracken Course left her in a tie for sixth.Also on that score is 2017 champion Lily May Humphreys who shot a three over par round of 76 on the Hotchkin.Following 18 holes of stroke play on Wednesday on the opposite course from the one each competitor played on day one, the top 16 women will qualify for the match play.All of the knockout games will be played over the Hotchkin course. Saturday’s final will be decided over 36-holes of match play.Photograph credit: Leaderboard 28 Jul 2020 Day One – Women’s Amateur: Cool Kirby leads the way Tags: English Women’s Amateur, Lottie Woad, Rosie Belsham, Thalia Kirby