January 16, 2019



AUSTIN - Rep. Ryan Guillen, D-Rural South Texas, filed a bill Tuesday to protect landowners from liability when guests on their land participate in rock climbing.


"Rock climbing is an increasingly popular activity with growing demand for rock climbing locations," said Guillen. "But landowners are still liable for risks taken by their guests, leading to closure of many popular recreational locations."


Current Texas laws protect landowners from liability when their guests engage in numerous recreational activities, including camping, hiking, biking, swimming, and more. This has given property owners protection and security to open up their land to people seeking to engage in those recreational activities. However, rock climbing is excluded from the list of protected activities, forcing landowners to close off their private land. Since 95 percent of land in Texas is private property, this poses difficulty for those seeking the activity.


Guillen's proposed legislation, HB 687, would protect landowners from liability and encourage them to open up their property for recreation. This is a welcome change as rock climbers seek varied locations to enjoy their activities and as landowners want to avoid liability.


"Texas has been blessed with beautiful lands, but unfortunately much of is closed because owners are not protected from liability," Guillen added. "I want Texans to enjoy the great outdoors and have fun. That requires access and protection. This legislation provides both."


Serving ten rural South Texas counties in the Texas House of Representatives, Ryan Guillen is known for his hard work, fierce independence, and relentless efforts for South Texas families. Recently, Capitol Inside called him a “House Bill Machine,” and a “one-person assembly line for legislation.” Since elected, few other legislators have passed more bills than Guillen. Sign up for updates at,, and