It was brought to our attention the 5th of June 2016 that a number of expansion
bolts were placed by the Polish climber Marcin Tomaszewski on Preikestolen in
Forsand for the sake of protecting a single pitch climbing route (“Thor”) leading to
the top of the rock formation. The bolting was done while abseiling from the top
of the route.
What follows is Bratte Rogalands Venner’s (BRV) official view on this matter.
Bratte Rogalands Venner is the largest and most influential climbing club in
Rogaland, and the only climbing club in the region with traditions for big wall and
multipitch trad climbing.
Preikestolen is an inspiring rock feature for climbers; steep, exposed, esthetical
and clean. Some teams have previously attempted lines on and in the vicinity of
the feature. All attempts have been done purely with natural protection. It is
obvious that the most direct lines would require bold top level climbers and it
would be a great loss if these impressive unclimbed lines were reduced to trivial
(though hard) sport pitches.
The governing bolting ethics in Rogaland are similar to those in other parts of
1. In general, bolts should not be placed in the mountains but only on sport
2. Bolts should not be placed on lines which are possible to climb with natural
3. The local climbing club and community should be consulted before placing
4. Bolting must not be done without the consent of the land owner
In this case all guidelines were violated. We are surprised and sad that such a
well-respected climber would proceed in this manner, whose merits (including the
impressive first ascent of “Catharsis” in Trollveggen last winter and a new route
on Kjerag last summer) puts him among the elite alpinists of our time.
In Marcin’s defense it must be noted that Preikestolen is among the least
preserved natural features in the Norwegian mountain landscape. The path has
been made to accommodate thousands of tourists with minimal mountain
experience. There are carved stairs, wooden walkways and rails almost all the
way from the parking lot to the top. The presence of a small number of expansion
bolts is in many ways quite insignificant in comparison. Also, there were already a
few expansion bolts placed on the summit which were used for securing crew
during filming for commercial and promotional purposes amongst other things.
However, none of this means that the climbing community can look away from
the governing bolting ethics. On the contrary, because Preikestolen is such a
famous landmark it is even more important that the climbing community
preserves it as natural as possible, even though local tourism organizations have
Because the bolting was done without the consent of the land-owner there are
also juridical issues present, but as a climbing club it is not our mandate to
comment on these.
As we see it the bolts must be removed as soon as possible. We are very pleased
that Marcin has agreed to do so himself and we expect it will be done shortly. We
also encourage that the other bolts previously placed on the top plateau are
removed. Hopefully this incident will send a signal that bolting of such a route is
not accepted within the Norwegian climbing communities.
Harald Kleven and Leiv Aspelund,
Leader and deputy leader of Bratte Rogalands Venner