Bolt the Planet

June 15, I will be moving north for a few months. I will tend bar in the evenings and be free most days of the week to explore, clean, and climb M&M Hill. It is located in State Forest land, which allows rock climbing as a recreational activity. 

I am moving north with ropes, top rope anchor gear, a drill, and lots of tenacity and vision. I am also bringing with me all the bolts and hangers that I can afford to buy before I go. Sport route development is a personal pursuit and is typically funded by the route developer. In Minnesota, for example, the Minnesota Climbers Association (MCA) does NOT pay for bolts that go into new routes, the developer does. MCA does buy bolts and hangers and anchors to replace old and worn gear, but development is the sole financial responsibility of the route developer. In this case, that is me.

I believe M&M Hill has a hundred or so routes to be developed. A bolt and hanger for this area cost around $6 combined. Chains, biners, rap rings, all that is additional.  On average, a route at M&M hill will use 6-10 bolts/hangers, costing around $36-60. Last weekend alone, I installed 29 of them on five of the shorter routes the area will offer.

I am asking interested community members to help me continue this development. In return, I believe you will get a brand new climbing destination in Minnesota. The Crane Lake area offers climbing, biking, hiking, boating, swimming, bars, restaurants, camping, resorts, fishing, and more. Imagine being a part of creating a new cliff. How does that make you feel? Me? It makes me want to quit my job and live out a daydream. Will you join me?

If you are a route developer and wish to join me, please get in touch. If you are a climber who wants to check out the cliff, please check out Crane Lake/M&M Hill on Mountain Project for ongoing updates.

This fundraising site allows me to set any target dollar amount without penalty of not reaching a goal. So, I'm throwing $2,500 out there as a figure. At $6 each, that's about 400 bolts. Or, maybe it buys some biners and chains also. No matter what, any money collected from this campaign will be turned into sport climbing and will help keep me developing while I'm not working.

I'll be documenting the process on my social media outlets and you can follow along.

Come visit me at the resort and I'll treat you to some new Minnesota climbing and serve you a beer later that night.

Read a more detailed account of my adventure here .


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Sean Foster 
Hopkins, MN
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