What do we know about the exploration of new climbing routes in the Tatras? Do we even know about the majority of climbs that are taking place? Can we create a clear picture of alpinism in the Tatras today? Do we know how many people are climbing and what their routes are?
A half century ago the the number of people climbing in the Tatras was small, and they were an elite group. Despite the absence of telephones, information was exchanged efficiently. Nearly all of the routes which were completed were announced in old issues of "Taternik" magazine.
Today the Tatras are "smaller", and the number of people climbing in them seems to be much larger. But is this assumption true? If we look at the statistics for ascents in the climbing seasons of the last decade, it seems as if a climbing movement in the Tatras simply does not exist. In fact, it gives the impression that all climbing in the Tatras is restricted to a few sport climbing routes. But I am sure that this is not the case. This is why I appeal to all readers for information about their ascents, from the trivial and insignificant to the epic and spectacular.
I would like to create a full picture of climbing in the Tatras today, not a plain catalogue of numbers. It would be impossible to recount every climb in detail, but it is possible to gain at least an outline of the "modern life" of the faces and routes in the Tatras. I hope to gain a picture of at least a percentage of the exploration of certain valleys, faces, and routes (including the easier and more popular ones). I would like the data that I collect to become a sort of archive, which will be accessible in future years in order to recreate not only the achievements of bygone seasons, but also the activity of specific groups of people. At that point it will be possible to consider summarizing individual and group achievements.
I strongly urge readers to send me information about climbs and routes completed. This information can be very general, for example "In this place I did this or that with my partner". But it will be best, although not obligatory, if the information includes the date, the route, the rating or grade, and a photo or two. There will be an option for anonymity, for those who do not wish their personal details to be published. It will be possible to send information about climbs in areas that are technically "off-limits" without personal details, but for the sake of accuracy and historicity, it is vital to know who has climbed and is climbing in the Tatras. Please send information as well, about climbs observed from a distance, for example that a certain party was seen doing a route on this or that wall. A few sentences about the climb will be greatly appreciated, without regard to literary value or the presence of absence of a signature.
Cheers from the Tatras!