Temp Rules on Going High at Smith Rock

March 3, 2016

That's GOING high, as in highlining. The park staff has been meeting with federal and state wildlife biologists, local highlining community representatives, and public land use managers.

They've even reached out to the staff at Yosemite National Park to come up with the following temporary set of rules as of February 27, 2016 that impact highlining and slacklining.

Here you go:

1. Temporary moratorium on new lines as of 2-27-16 (as impact studies continue)

2. Tensioned lines must be attended. (safety issue primarily)

3. No lines left up overnight. After 24 hours lines will be considered abandoned equipment. Gear may be cached overnight. (raptor protection, existing rule, safety concerns)

4. No slacklines in picnic or camping areas. (public safety, existing rule, and exclusion issue)

5.  No lines over designated trails or the river. (the river corridor is a critical pathway for wildlife)

6. Trees must be properly padded. (see national park standards)

7.  Some areas may be closed to highlining during the raptor nesting season.

Praying on the Slackline about the park rules
Praying on the Slackline about the park rules

Starting this spring, the park will be revising its Master Plan to provide direction for the next 20+ years. Both highlining and slacklining will be discussed, with public comment opportunities provided. We'll post the dates as we get them for you to weigh in on the crafting of more permanent rules.

In the meantime, talk to the park at 541-548-7501 for consideration of your special case. They may even provide you with a short-term exception through the Special Use Permit process.

The park's management staff is looking forward to working with the highline/slackline community. Their goal is to strike a balance between their needs and those of all who come here, with the over-arching goal of protecting park resources for years to come.