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    Stuart Watson

    Hi KMC members

    We thought we should update you all on our thoughts on holding climbing meets at the current stage of lockdown.

    For the last week or two, the BMC have said that it is OK for people to go climbing in pairs, providing you are ‘cautious in your actions, respectful of local communities and extremely vigilant in avoiding transmitting the virus’. The full article with a lot more detail is on the BMC website https://www.thebmc.co.uk/can-i-start-climbing-and-hill-walking-again.

    Whilst it may be possible to maintain 2m social distancing if top-roping single pitch routes, most ‘normal’ climbing involves closer contact at belays and touching of shared gear. Whether you feel this risk can be mitigated (by actions such as hand sanitising) is a decision that you and your climbing partner can take together. Many club members are already going out climbing, while others may well feel this is too risky.

    The KMC committee met yesterday to discuss whether we could/should restart climbing meets. The consensus was that it is still too soon for normal climbing meets to resume (because the club does not want to be seen as inciting members to take risks with virus transmission). However, we do intend to restart some organised scrambles as soon as possible (as it is easier to avoid close contact or gear sharing). So look out for subsequent emails (plus information on the website and Facebook) for details of scramble meets. We intend to require members to book onto such meets in advance (do not just turn up), so that we can ensure we go out in small groups of 6 or less.

    Many members join a club like the KMC in order to find people to climb with. If you do want to go climbing, but don’t have a regular partner, please do use either the club Facebook group, or the Climbing partners wanted forum on the website in order to broadcast that you’re looking for a partner on a particular day. Hopefully members will respond, and everyone can get to go climbing if they feel they can do so in a responsible way. We will keep the issue of organised meets under review (and canvas opinion when we meet for scrambles), and I hope we may still be able to hold some climbing meets a bit later in the season.

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