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National News, July 2019

MCSA National News 1 July 2019 National News, July 2019


After last year’s successful inaugural event in Uganda, the Mountain Club of Malawi is hosting this year’s version of the Pan-African meet on Mulanje in August/September. The initial details are as follows:

  • Arrival in Blantyre on Friday 30th August
  • Start hiking on Mulanje Mountain on Saturday 31st August
  • Descend from mountain and return to Blantyre on Saturday 7th September

From Sunday 8th September group members can fly home or continue their holiday in Malawi e.g. visit the lake, game parks etc.

This meet, as last year’s, is in conjunction with the Confederation of African Mountain Clubs, formed as a result of an MCSA initiative.



This was noted in the last National Newsletter and since then, the UIAA has also put out a statement in support of the MCSA position against this proposed “development”. The CAMC is also on board and discussing more direct action with the Tanzanian tourist authorities.



This year marks the Centenary of the KZN Section of the MCSA so their annual July Camp in the Drakensberg will be very special!

This year the Annual Dinner is being combined with the KZN Section’s Centenary Dinner. Details are on the invitation (below).




Members who read the Mail & Guardian may have picked up on the article/interview with Deshun Deysel who is aiming to go to Mount Everest next year with three other South African women. Unfortunately, certain aspects of the interview were wrong – notably that the MCSA did not admit “black, coloured or Indian people” in 1996 when Deshun went to Everest with a South African party. This is of course, not the case as the Club has been “open” since the 1980s. After a number of exchanges of emails with the editor of the Mail & Guardian, a correction was published.



The American Alpine Club is hosting its 12th annual International Climbers’ Meet (ICM), to be held the week of 13-19 October, 2019 in Yosemite Valley.  The event will include three days of education programming, host climbers available for guidance, and, per usual, an international cast of characters that will be crushing Yosemite.

Applicants should have intermediate or advanced level experience with:

  • Placement and removal of protection
  • Multi-pitch rope management
  • At least two years of technical rock climbing
  • The ability to follow sustained 5.8 granite

Discounted fee for International participants:

Earlybird fee until 31 July is $495 USD per person.** Beginning 1 August, the fee will be $545 ** Your fee includes:

  • Seven nights and six days of camping at secluded Yellow Pines camp ground.
  • Three gourmet catered meals per day from Sierra Gourmet catering.
  • Six days of climbing in spectacular Yosemite Valley.
  • Three optional instructional days hosted by AMGA certified guides and instructor.
  • Pre-dinner mini-clinics on a range of technical topics.
  • One day of stewardship for Yosemite National Park.
  • Nightly campfire for storytelling, socializing, and general carousing.
  • Partner with other participants or experienced host climbers.

Participants provide their own transportation to Yosemite Valley, California. A full roster will be sent to all participants for coordinating ride sharing.

International applicants: You will receive notification of the status of your acceptance by 31 May.

To obtain an application go to

Submit attached application electronically via e-mail to




The UIAA continues to develop its services for members and will be improving its web page to offer federations the opportunity to exchange more details about climbing and mountaineering in their own countries. A Donate page will also be available to members who wish to showcase initiatives and causes they are supporting. Both projects will be rolled out during the first quarter of 2019. Members are therefore reminded of many existing resources, and some new ones, provided by the UIAA.

Members are encouraged to go to the UIAA web site to find out more about the UIAA‘s important activities.



Dates: 20 July to 1 August 2019

Mountains: Alam-Kuh and Damavand

Place: Tehran & Mazandaran Province, Iran

Accommodation: 2 nights in D/hotel, 1 night in Polour lodge, 1 night in Vandarbon lodge, 3 nights in Atour eco-camp in Alam-Kuh, 2 nights in Atour eco-camp in Damavand, 1 night in a villa. The rooms in lodges have bunkbeds and will be shared among mountaineers. The tents in both eco-camps will be shared by two or three people.

Food: all meals are included, warm freshly cooked meals will be served in mountain and lunch box is prepared for summit days. There are warm and cold beverages are available in the eco-camp which is also part of event services.

Guide: for every five mountaineers one guide will accompany the group. All the guides are members of Iran national team and instructors of mountaineering as well.

Participants: Mountaineers of 15 to 30 years old are welcomed to participate in this programme. The programme can be customized for families who prefer to accompany their children as well. ANY PARTICIPANT UNDER THE AGE OF 18 MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY A GUARDIAN OR APPROVED MOUNTAIN GUIDE

Equipment: Trekking shoes, socks, sleeping bag, jacket and pants (Gore-Tex or Synthetic rain/snow/wind), backpack (plus a small attacking backpack), trekking stick, gloves (polar wool), hat (warm pile/wool), hat (should cover ears), balaclava, baseball cap, scarf, sun glasses, sunscreen cream (SPF 40 above), personal first-aid kit, water bottles, headscarf, camera, headlamp, Swiss army knife, travel clothes.

Insurance: Participants are advised to get themselves insurance for accident, rescue, and third-party liability which is valid for participating in the programme of climbing and trekking. It is not compulsory on our part. However, personal travel insurance is mandatory and should be obtained by the traveller.

Visas: The organizer will arrange for visa, providing visa code for all participants (and families) which would ease the process of visa issuance greatly. However, considering that the process of Iran visa is different for each country.  For South Africa it is a long process, and includes specific medical information.

COSTS: there are three different packages:

Booking before 10 June 2019:

Alam-Kuh only = €350;

Damavand only = €330;

Full package €670.

After 10 June 2019: 

Alam-Kuh only €380;

Damavand only = €350;

Full package €720.

SPONSORSHIP:  Interested MCSA Youth Members can apply for some funding from the Centenary Journal Youth Fund. For further information and an application form and information about sponsorship, please contact:



It appears that the news given in the last National Newsletter that 11 people had died on Everest this season was accurate and fortunately that figure did not go up further. It does appear that the over-crowding was at least partly to blame. Any MCSA members considering going on a guided trip to Everest are strongly urged to consider all the ramifications before embarking on such a trip.

The UIAA has taken cognisance if the situation and issued the following statement which is on the UIAA web site:


All member associations of the UIAA (International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation) extend their sincerest condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives on Mount Everest recently.

The UIAA views the tragic events on Mount Everest with considerable distress and disquiet. The majority of incidents during the 2019 climbing season have occurred due to mass overcrowding on the southern route on the Nepalese side of the mountain.

The UIAA calls for all stakeholders to engage in urgent dialogue to work towards a safer and more sustainable approach to climbing on Everest. This includes the tour operators, the majority of whom are recognised as vastly experienced and highly responsible.

Solutions should focus on supporting the communities who live and work in the region, increasing climber safety, improving the experience of climbing Everest, as well as protecting an increasingly fragile mountain environment, where the issues of waste and pollution have become chronic.

The UIAA believes access management, climber experience, training and self-responsibility are amongst the key topics to address. Working with both its international and local partners, the UIAA, together with its member associations, will collaborate to this fundamental process. The time to act is now.”



Members are urged to go to the UIAA website and read Doug Scott’s keynote speech to the Himalayan Travel Mart Conference. Lessons there for us all. The link is  Doug’s presentation and pictures are an education in themselves.



The UIAA Mountain Protection Award (MPA) was created in 2013. During its six years of existence, the annual UIAA Mountain Protection Award (MPA) has made a tangible difference to mountain lives, communities and the environment. It has enabled people to raise finances to build key infrastructures, conduct vital research and fulfil pending goals; it has provided an international showcase and communication platform for projects to raise awareness and exchange ideas and initiatives. Not only has it supported local communities, it has fostered its own global community. The Award celebrates innovation and a desire to make a difference.

The award consists of a platform where selected mountain protection projects are showcased and promoted, as well as a prize which is awarded to one winning project every year. The UIAA MPA projects platform is open to all UIAA member federations, as well as other associations or institutions whose activities are directly related to mountaineering and mountain-based sports. To apply for the UIAA MPA, projects must correspond to at least one of the following categories:

  • Conservation of biodiversity – including flora and fauna
  • Sustainable resource management, such as energy or water
  • Sustainable waste management and disposal
  • Adaptation to/mitigation of effects of climate change
  • Protection of the environment through culture and education






Please send any newsworthy items for inclusion in MCSA National News Editor, Ineke Moseley at:



8.1 Climbing in very different localities – Spain: several different areas are described, including the Costa Blanca,  Peñon de Ifach and Calpe as well as  Alicante Province. See

8.2 Climbing in Egypt: ‘we wanted to repeat some of the existing climbs around Saint Catherine’s, a remote, 1,500-year-old Islamic town nestled at the base of Mount Sinai, a central hub for the area’s rock climbing and a pilgrimage site for Jews, Christians, and Muslims alike. Second, we wanted to do some exploratory climbing deep in the Sinai backcountry. While the Mount Sinai region has roughly 200 established routes from 5.7 to 5.12 on walls up to 1,500 feet, most of the area’s unique desert stone remains untouched’. Go to

8.3 Everest and climate change: This season on Everest has been especially deadly, though there have been fewer fatalities than the 2014 season, in which bottlenecked crowds were not the root of such devastation. Geological locations where bedrock is held together by ice—as is the case on many high altitude peaks – are more prone to rock and ice fall as that ice begins to melt, said Ballinger. The glaciers of Everest are melting and receding at an exponential rate according to the study Glacial Status in Nepal and Decadal Change from 1980 to 2010. Read more at:




‘If you’re going to climb with young people, you get very, very used to seeing your climbing partner as a tiny little dot’   Chris Bonington in his fifties.

“explore – discover – connect – protect”

“verken – ontdek – ontmoet – bewaar”

“phonononga – fumanisa – qhagamshela – khusela”



MCSA-CT Office Admin

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