Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Wild Scotland - new map published by SNH


Scottish Natural Heritage has published its 2014 map of Wild Land Areas of Scotland - designated areas of coast, upland and undeveloped land - or 'wilderness' - which should be considered inviolate. Some of the areas are notably under protection via bodies such as National Parks, the John Muir Trust, or the National Trust and other private bodies, but the worrying note is that since the draft map was published in 2013, 0.8% of wild land has been developed (20.3% down to 19.5%). If it continued at that rate we'd have no wild land left by 2039 . . .

The conclusions of the report and mapping were as follows:


  • The concepts of wildness and safeguarding of wild land enjoy strong support from the public and many stakeholders in Scotland. Areas of wild land are widely acknowledged as important assets, providing a number of significant ecosystem services that support a range of social and economic benefits and outcomes. 
  • Despite the inherent subjectivity of the concept, the physical qualities most strongly associated with wildness and identification of wild land can be mapped in a robust and repeatable way through applying a systematic and transparent methodology. 
  • A map of wild land areas important in the national context is required in order to provide greater clarity to all stakeholders and better inform decisions affecting them. 
  • The name ‘Core Areas of Wild Land’ resulted in some confusion and we therefore propose the use of the nomenclature of ‘Wild Land Areas’. We suggest that the application of this name should be restricted in use to those areas shown on the map. 
  • The map of wild land areas should be considered a useful and important strategic tool in decision making. Its application will be enhanced by two further pieces work that are being developed during 2014-15: descriptions of the character and nature of each of the areas, and revision of our interim guidance on assessing the effects of proposals on wild land which allows a case by case assessment of proposals in relation to wildness character.

I like the fourth point that there s no such thing as a 'core' area of wildness, it either is or isn't wild. However, there are some who may consider the issue of remoteness and wildness much more complex. For example, what about wild urban areas and brownfield sites (landlocked 'waste' land, no matter how small); underwater wildness; community (commons) wildness versus private, estate-managed (landlorded) wildness . . . it's a complex issue but it's welcome seeing SNH producing a map which can be used practically to inform major policy decisions on what we should just leave alone if we can.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Dumby scanning complete

Well, it's done! The Eagle Bloc scanned for full photogrammetry 3D, the crag laser-scanned, some RTI-based imagery of the graffiti and carvings and the Pongo face 3D'd as well. We'll post the results shortly once I figure out the plug-ins for the 3D modelling, but it was an impressive process and my thanks go out to the ACCORD project which initiated this digital heritage of Dumby climbing. We'll archive all the results. Thanks to all who turned up to help: Sven, Alex, John, Eddie and Frank in particular, there was some good storytelling at the Focus group sessions and the weather was terrific throughout to allow for those hundreds of photographs!

 The ACCORD group led by Alex Hale, Mhairi Maxwell and Sian Jones

 Alex and Sven doing some photogrammetry work on a pole

Kevin ignoring us and doing some climbing...the reason for the project


Sunday, July 06, 2014

Bouldering on Rum 2014

Hamish Fraser and friends, incluidng Chris Everett on a return to the island, have uncovered some hard classic lines on the immaculate allivalite boulders under Hallival. Hamish says: 'Chris smashed out a few hard classics that were worthy of some footage.'

Problems on video
Cell Block H - Font 7C (Chris)
Serious Music - Font 7B+ (Chris)
The Kracken - Font 6C (Stu)
La Jura Jura - Font 7C+ (Chris)



Bouldering on Rum - Hard Additions 2014 from Hamish Fraser on Vimeo.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Want a free 3D model of Dumby?

Help please!

We really need some climbers to volunteer for fun sessions at Dumby next week at the 3D scanning project. It's informal and fun and you'll have access to free 3D modellings of the Dumby boulders. Imagine a 3d print-out of your favourite bloc...

How to get involved:

The timetable is below and we really need some folk for the Focus Sessions and/or the photography of the blocs...give me a text or call on 07546 037 588 if you can come along! Or just turn up during any of the events... it relies on volunteers. The sessions will finish before the World cup games as well and you don't have to attend for the whole time, even a bit of time would help!!

Afternoon Tuesday 8th July: Meet in the Dining Room, Dumbarton Castle;
2pm Meet & Greet (tea & coffee)
2.30pm Intro to ACCORD by Mhairi
2.45pm-4.30pm Focus Group session; co-design
4.30pm-5pm Tea/coffee
5pm-8pm Data Capture (laser scanning and RTI)

Evening Wednesday 9th July: Meet at Dumby Rock;
5pm-8pm Data Capture (Photogrammetry)

Afternoon Thursday 10th July: Meet in the Dining Room, Dumbarton Castle;
2pm-5.30pm Processing, Archiving and Final Focus Group (may extend into local pub!)

What to bring:
- Please bring any cameras, tripods, tablets that you may have.
- Bring any pieces of Dumby heritage along with you! (not necessarily smelly old boots!- was thinking old routecards/ guidebooks, maps, photographs, stories) all of this can be used to enrich the 3D models that we create together.
- Flasks of hot tea/coffee for the evening sessions.