Rockfax Makes Contribution to Sustainable Bolting on Mallorca

Bolting-article-montageOver the last few years we have been very pleased at Rockfax to be able to make some significant contributions to various bolt and access funds. A lot of this has been to UK-based  initiatives but we have also made donations to the El Chorro bolt fund and are in negotiations with several other non-UK areas.

We have just completed a deal working together with Derek Watson, Isidre Bisbal and other climbers in Mallorca, to purchase some long-lasting bolts to be used at Santanyi.  This venue has suffered for years from the highly corrosive effects of the adjacent Mediterranean which has damaged many of the bolts within the space of a few years of them being placed.

Santanyi - great routes but a lot of corrosion from the sea.

Santanyi – great routes but a lot of corrosion from the sea.

Sheffield company Titan Climbing run by Martin Roberts, produce titanium bolts which are designed to last generations in even the harshest climbing environments. Martin has given Rockfax and the Mallorcan climbers an excellent deal for an order of titanium bolts for use at Santanyi.

Martin commented, “It’s great to hear about people, companies and communities coming together to solve a problem. I think that some climbers take bolts and maintenance for granted. I’d like for every climber that clips a bolt to feel that they should donate to their local crag maintenance and actually get their hand in their pocket. This change of mindset is coming but I think it’s too slow. Sure, I want us to sell more bolts! But more importantly, I just want myself, friends, family and all climbers around the world to be clipping safe gear, made of the right material for the environment and not some rusty half worn through bolt. These are the reasons I started producing Titanium bolts many years ago for me and my friends, long before I started Titan Climbing.”

On receiving the consignment of bolts, Derek Watson said, “The order of titanium glue-ins and anchor rings has arrived. Thanks so much to Rockfax for this contribution to start the rebolting of some routes in Tijuana (Cala Santanyi). We are also receiving contributions from local climbers to purchase the top quality resin which will be used with the titanium bolts to hopefully last at least 50 years. As always the most important (and scarce) resource is the time donated by experienced re-equippers to do the job properly. As a token of our appreciation for their time and effort, we are offering them material (steel expansion bolts, hangers and lower-off) to put up one new route for each route rebolted in Tijuana. Hopefully in the coming weeks we can fix a date to get started.”

We look forward to continuing this relationship over the next few years to help promote safer bolts in areas covered by Rockfax guidebooks.



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A New Lofoten Climbs Rockfax


We are putting the finishing touches to a new Lofoten Climbs Rockfax guidebook. This follows on from the extremely successful and popular 2008 book Lofoten Rock which won the Banff guidebook award that year.

We have updated and expanded the information with a completely new set of crag photographs, plus some fantastic maps and all the new developments from the nine years since the last book was published. For the first time we have also included coverage of the astounding set of peaks around the Stetind area on the mainland, close to Narvik.

The books is due to go to the printers in April and will be available in May – just in time for the main Lofoten season.


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Peak Bouldering added to the Rockfax App

We have finally managed to prepare the Peak Bouldering book for the Rockfax App. We had initially had some problems due to duplicated information and the slightly different format this book was in but this has been solved and the full book is now available via the Crags > Downloads tab.


Geo-located Maps

One of the benefits of waiting this long is that we have been able to take advantage of the new geo-located map ability. This means you can now see yourself on the Rockfax detailed crag maps as a blue dot and it has the bonus of only needing a GPS signal, which is more reliable than the 3G/4G signal in countryside areas.

In testing we found it to be accurate to around 5m or so which was a great help when trying to find specific boulders. New maps have been created for Stanage Plantation, Millstone area and the central gritstone around Cratcliffe and Stanton Moor and all the other maps have been updated to work with geo-location.

Eastern Grit and Peak Limestone

We have also updated Eastern Grit and Peak Limestone with geo-located maps. To update these packages you will need to update the app to version 2.0 – more info here. Some problems previously covered in Eastern Grit and Peak Limestone have been moved to Peak Bouldering since it isn’t possible for a route/problem to feature in two app packages. This is mostly hard problems and the significant ones have been indicated on the topos in the updated crag packages.

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Rockfax App Updated to Version 2.0

Version 2.0 of the Rockfax App is here and it includes full integration with UKClimbing Logbook as well as a number of other great features. 

It is available via the updates tab in the App Store although it will update automatically if you have this option selected (we strongly recommend that you do – check Settings > iTunes & App Stores > Updates ON).

Before we go into details, there are a couple of awkward matters to get out of the way.

IMPORTANT – Upgrade Crashes
After upgrading some users are experiencing crashes on start up of the new version. We are looking into what is causing this but, in the mean time, there is an easy fix below.
1) Delete the Rockfax App by pressing any until the apps wobble then tap the cross.
2) Go to the App Store and reinstall the app.
3) Restore purchases by going to Home > My account > Restore purchases.
4) Download the packages by tapping on the cloud icon under Crags > Downloads next to any crag you have bought.
NOTE - Even if you miss stage 3) you won’t be charged on any Crag Bundle you have previously bought, it just look like you might when you tap on the price icon.
UKC Forum Discussion Thread on this here

IMPORTANT – Gower Sport Climbs Package Owners
The old Gower Sport Climbs package has been discontinued and is no longer available for download. We were unable to transfer the packages across to the new South Wales Sport Climbs package however we are offering a free upgrade. Just send an email from Home > Help & Support > Email us with Gower Sport Climbs added to the subject, or in the body. This email includes a file which lets us see which packages you have purchased.

When is the Android version available?
We have been delayed on this since the task is more difficult than we anticipated. The good news is, now that iOS Version 2.0 is out, we will be moving both developers onto the Android project. This will help move things along massively but we aren’t able yet to come up with a date.

What’s New in iOS Version 2.0

Full UKClimbing Logbook Integration


Previously it has been possible to add routes you have ticked to your UKClimbing Logbook via the Rockfax App, but only Rockfax routes on the crags you have purchased. We have now added an extra tab to the main screen dedicated to Logbook. If you link your app to your UKC profile (Home > My Account  > Connect to UKC Logbook) then your entire UKC Logbook will now appear here. You can also access the UKC Logbook crag and route data and add routes as you climb them at the crag. That’s nearly 400,000 routes tickable on over 20,000 crags!

More on using your UKC Logbook with the Rockfax App

Offline Maps with GPS locator


You have always been able to see yourself as a blue dot on the maps on your phone when using the Rockfax App maps tab, but these maps aren’t very detailed and don’t have specific climbing data. Additionally they require a stable 3G/4G connection.

We have now added GPS location capabilities to our own Rockfax maps so that you can see your location as a blue dot. As an added bonus this doesn’t need a 3G/4G connection since it relies only on the phone’s GPS capability which have a far greater coverage than data.

In order for this to work, we need to release new versions of each Crag package which will take some time. So far South Wales Sport Climbs, Eastern Grit, Peak Limestone and the imminent Peak Bouldering packages have geo-located maps enabled. Mallorca and other areas will follow soon after.

Other New Features

Tooltips – We have added a tooltip system that highlights some of the features of the Rockfax App that are easy to miss. They will only appear once, and you can just tap them away, but you can also reset them via Home > Help & Support if you need a refresh.

Google Maps – When you tap a parking location or crag navigation link, you are now given the  option of using Google Maps as well as Apple Maps. You can still copy the coordinates and paste them into an alternative navigation app if you wish.

Other Minor Improvements

Your logbook can now be sorted by crag name, ascent date and date added (use the sort button next to the search bar).

  • We now have scaled crag flags on the map tab showing bigger pins for more major crags.
  • Long route names are now displayed in their entirety when you tap on them.
  • There is a ‘News Feed’ and a ‘What’s New’ section where you can see what has been added.
  • We have added a 1Password extension to help logging in if you use the 1Password app.
  • Many other improvements and bug fixes – full details here

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Rockfax Donations to Bolt Funds and the ACT – 2016


The year has ended and we have just made our final set of donations to the various funds supported by Rockfax and This has been a great year and a grand total of £2992 has been donated so far split between the BMC ACT and various bolt funds for the most part, this includes £132 from Point of Sale donations from people buying books direct from the Rockfax web site and adding them to their purchase.

We also have £1075 sat waiting to be donated to rebolting in Mallorca making a grand total of £4067 allocated for the year – nearly twice what we gave in 2015! (The reason for the delay in the Mallorca donation is that discussions are ongoing for the best use of the money).

In addition to donations to the Yorkshire Bolt Fund, Cumbria Bolt FundGary Gibson Bolting, Dorset Bolt Fund, North Wales Bolt Fund, El Chorro Bolt Fund, we have also been able to make a first donation of £488 to the South Wales Bolt Fund which is a great start.

The Dorset Path restoration project we set up in conjunction with the BMC ACT has now amassed £1342. Rob Dyer of the BMC got in touch with the following information:

“We’re currently aiming to get a work meet together, spearheaded by Neal Heanes and Marti Hallett for some much needed shrub and bramble clearance at the Cuttings during the next couple of months – this should be really beneficial to climbers and boulderers alike and will make use of the donations you have made. The path work at Blacknor is definitely in the pipeline and last time we spoke, Neal was sounding out a small local team to potentially start once the weather improves (given the slippery nature of the current path in the wet it’s better we wait until the weather improves to carry out stabilisation/improvement work as it would be grim trying to carry heavy kit/dig out and bed in steps etc in anything other than relatively dry conditions).”

In another great development, we have got in touch with Pierre Duret at Saint Léger and Olivier Gaude in the Dentelles de Montmirail and have had some very positive emails. We are discussing  how to add these areas to and also how to help publicise bolting and access in these areas to non-French audiences.

We welcome approaches from all bolt funds, from anywhere in Europe covered by a Rockfax guidebook, to get involved. Contact us using this form.

Thanks to everyone who supported this by buying direct from the Rockfax web site, or making a generous PoS donation.

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