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The Mountaineering Assizes: what does the future hold for our mountains?

"Imagine the mountain of tomorrow." In spring 2011, a group of climbers and mountaineers looked into the future and set about organizing the "Mountaineering Assizes". Their ambitious goal was to initiate a dialog between all those involved in the mountains, including public authorities and institutions. These Assizes were organized by a group of different French mountain-related organizations, which is now a part of the Mountain Coordination.

SEPTEMBER 2014


  • Project partner:  Observatoire des pratiques de la montagne et de l'alpinisme (Mountaineering and Mountain Practices Observatory) et la Coordination montagne (Mountain Coordination)
  • Country:  France
  • Project type: Gaining knowledge
  • Budget: €37,500 since 2010

The Mountaineering Assizes

Public meetings were organized in Grenoble in April 2011 and in Chamonix in May 2011 to discuss the diversity of mountain activities, the obstacles to their development and mountaineering values.

Flyer of "mountain café"

The series of "mountain café" sessions held during 2010 were "preliminary discussions" for these meetings. They enabled the different groups concerned with mountain activities to coordinate with each other, and also helped unite the community around the challenges the mountains will face in the coming years.

Based upon shared observations, a common vision of the future and clear orientations were defined.

The primary aim of these Assizes was to bring together the public bodies and other organizations concerned by mountain activities. The second objective was then to formulate proposals and to assist in launching their implementation, in order to strengthen and highlight the attractiveness of the mountain activities discussed. The Petzl Foundation is committed to the mountain community and is a well-established mediator in many fields of mountain activities.

The Petzl Foundation supports this type of institutional coordination to facilitate the development of creative solutions for mountain activities.

Aiguille du midi © Pascal Tournaire

The Manifesto (In French)

The Mountaineering Assizes Manifesto which was given to the decision-makers of the town of Chamonix in May 2011. Download the Manifesto (In French)

Manifesto of the Mountaineering Assizes

A Mountain Coordination, for what purpose?

Created in January 2012, the Mountain Coordination comprises representative institutions and professional sports clubs* from poorly bolted or completely unprotected mountain areas and crags, as well as a number of institutions involved in the promotion of these climbing and outdoor activities.

Its role is to bring together mountain stakeholders in order to encourage discussion and coordinated communication with public authorities. Its actions focus on access to the mountains for young people, training and prevention of accident.

The Petzl Foundation is an active member of the Mountain Coordination and supports its actions. For more information, visit: www.coordination-montagne.fr.

In 2012, the Mountain Coordination and the Petzl Foundation launched together an information campaign aimed at candidates of the "roof of the Alps": Reaching the top of Mont Blanc, a concern for alpinists. Practical advices and information are presented in ten languages.

The national coordination committee for the development of mountain and climbing activities (Coordination Montagne) comprises: FFCAM (French federation of mountain climbing clubs), FFME (French mountain and climbing federation), FFRP (French hiking federation), GHM, (high mountain group), SNGM (union of mountain guides), SNGRGE (refuge warden union), SNAPEC (union of climbing and canyoning professionals), SNAM (union of mountain monitors), UCPA (union of outdoor sports centres), GTA (Grande Traversée des Alpes), MW (Mountain Wilderness), ANCEF (association of mountain and cross country ski centres), CIPRA, the Petzl Foundation, En Passant par la Montagne, Sportsnature.org research network, the Mountain Biker's Foundation.

Updated in september 2014


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