Thanks for pointing that out Jimmy.
We’d prefer that AMs should give guidance on this sort of matter, rather than the MT having to step in in a policing role. However, it’s so clear in the case of Roque Nublo, EA8/GC-002, that we really can’t let this pass. This is a summit that really obviously needs rope skills to enter the AZ.
It really should be obvious enough from the map, or indeed from standing at the base of the rock, judging from the pictures, that the AZ is way up high.
Here’s the Spanish IGN map. The 1750-m contour (64m below the summit) is quite obvious:
To make it really clear I’ve gone to the raw point cloud from the Spanish LIDAR survey. This has a ridiculously high resolution (better than a metre). Here’s a contour plot with a 5-m interval:
The ground level rises very quickly from the low 1750s up to the top. So the delta Z is approximately 60m. Activations from the foot of the rock are out of bounds by > 2x.
The last contour before it goes clearly vertical is 1750m.
It’s even clearer if you make a perspective view. Here’s the model draped with satellite imagery. The Activation zone is shaded purple-to-green:
So, no ropes = no activation! We’re going to have to contact any and all activators on that one to produce evidence they made the climb. Sorry, but this deserves proper credit to whoever does this one for real.
Further useful information (and pretty pictures) for climbers of Roque Nublo may be found here:
Brian adds the following:
Roque Nublo is definately rock climbers territory. The easiest route that I could find on line was a sport climb (pre-placed bolt protection) which was UIAA grade V, corresponding roughly to a traditional UK adjectival grade of VS (Very Severe) and various sources give the height of the pillar as 63m, 65m and 80m. The debris around the base suggests that the rock is not very firm and there are comments that the rock is loose. Anybody who does a valid activation of this summit needs to be at least a competent rock climber.
Now we turn to EA8/GC-008 Roque Ventiago (or Roque Bentayga). Here’s the IGN map:
So, with the summit at 1415m the AZ extends down to 1390m. You can spot the 1390-m contour not far down from the top, above some very tightly-packed contours. Let’s look at a 3-d model produced from the sub-metre resolution LIDAR points cloud, zooming in on the AZ:
Here the 1390-m contour is highlighted in red. Once again we can see a bit better with a perspective view:
The shaded AZ extends to just above a shoulder on the rock. You can see this feature on the Google Earth view also, although a bit less well defined. Below the shoulder again the contours are very closely-spaced and the rock is near to vertical. Below that the ground on the approach to the rock reaches 1339m, 76m below the summit, so well outside the AZ.
However, from the approach I think the shoulder just below 1390m is what you will see (i.e. about 51m above). Perhaps this partly explains an underestimation of the height of the summit above the activator?
Further information may be found here:
From there I note the following that would apply to climbing into the AZ:
On Roque Bentayga, due to its historical and archaeological significance, some additional restrictions apply. Together with the neighbouring rocks it has been protected as archaeological park Roque Bentayga y Cuevas del Rey. Hiking to the platform to the east of the rock is allowed while exploring the caves in the south face generally isn’t. The bolted climbing routes on the north face are free to be climbed but additional routes may not developed
As the “platform to the east of the rock” will be well outside of the AZ it seems the only way into the AZ is to climb by the established bolted route on the north face.
Other sources suggest that even the established bolt routes are at risk of being banned because of the archaeological importance of the site but AFAIK the above is still the status quo. To be explicit you may not explore the caves or climb on the rock except for the established bolt routes - which do NOT appear to be a piece of cake! Besides anything else the rock is basalt, and as you will easily find from the Quiraing and Storr cliffs on Skye, sound-looking holds are liable to come away in your hand if you put any weight on them! Thus even if the platform (more like a glacis) on the edge of the AZ can be reached by a scramble, doing so is forbidden.
There are rock climbs on the north side of Roque Ventaiga but I can find no details. Climbing and scrambling on the other sides is forbidden to preserve archaeological sites, including caves with pubic carvings.
Extraordinary summits such as these two do stand out. Activators claiming them might well anticipate the questions that will inevitably arise over access by posting their experiences. Go on, you can amaze us all with some cool pictures! Otherwise do expect questions to be asked and ultimately for the MT to take action.