#OurLand: “We are at a moment of consequence.”
For all their reputation as free spirits, climbers talk a lot about commitment. From local crags to the big walls of Yosemite, you’ll hear the word used to describe the do-or-die feeling on a challenging route—the moment of resolve to make a move with all your strength and risk the fall if you miss the mark.
For Peter Metcalf, CEO of Black Diamond Equipment, it’s a concept that carries over from the sport of climbing to the conservation of the public lands that make it possible. Since co-founding the company in 1989, he’s witnessed pivotal moments in the growth of the outdoor industry from a few upstart innovators to a $640-billion-a-year economic engine.
Metcalf believes we’ve arrived at one of those turning points for outdoor recreation.
“Today our public lands are under attack,” he says. “We are at a moment of consequence. We need to display creativity and resolve and band together if we hope to preserve and keep our canyons, rivers, and crags both wild and open for human-powered recreation.”
From Metcalf’s perspective, the future of our public lands is an issue for everyone—whether you’re among the 6 million Americans employed in outdoor recreation, or the millions more who want the opportunity to push their limits on a tough climb, unwind in a Blue Ribbon trout stream, or (like him) start the day right on a close-to-home trail.
“If the U.S. government ever decided to transfer or sell off the federal lands, it would be absolutely devastating,” Metcalf says. “Not only to the outdoor industry, but to the quality of life of the vast majority of Americans.”
We agree. We hope you’ll join Peter Metcalf, Black Diamond, and The Trust for Public Land in calling on elected officials to honor their commitment to our shared natural resources. The critical Land and Water Conservation Fund is up for renewal in September: learn more about how it works, and what you can do to help it survive.
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