On Tuesday (3/12/19), Barengi Gadjin Land Council (BGLC) informed The Rockclimbing Roundtable (just in advance of public release) that rock art has been rediscovered at Declaration Crag (also known as Taylor’s rock), at Mt Arapiles.
Temporary Restricitons are in place from December 4th while the “Traditional Owners decide what they would like to do with this discovery and how to manage the site”. Note that restrictions are in place for all users, not just climbers.
This is an opportunity for the climbing community to demonstrate our respect for Aboriginal culture and heritage, and show our desire to work with Traditional Owners (which for Arapiles, has been mostly positive). We have been forewarned that climbers response to this (maybe try and forget about the Grampians for a moment) will literally impact how future negotiations go.
We understand the climbing community will have many questions, and you can be assured that the ACAV will be asking them. However, as a community we have always shown overwhelming desire to respect Rock Art, now is our chance to prove it.
- Please note this was a discovery by BGLC, who are the Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) for Arapiles, and is not the result of a cultural heritage survey by Parks Victoria.
- Also indicated was that this is a ‘temporary closure’ “While longer-term protections are explored”.
The press release can be found here: https://www.parks.vic.gov.au/news/2019/12/03/09/05/aboriginal-cultural-values-rediscovered-at-arapiles