Peaks Crag climbing area closed to protect falcon nest

Contact(s): Flagstaff Ranger District, 928,526.0866

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., July 10, 2018, For Immediate Release – Coconino National Forest officials will implement restrictions on climbing and other activities in the area known as the Peaks Crag beginning Wednesday (7/11) in an effort to protect an active peregrine falcon nest.


The nest was located by Flagstaff Ranger District biologists on the cliff face of the popular climbing area earlier this spring and it currently has one nestling in it. Due to the small size of the climbing area and the location of routes in relation to the nest, the decision was made to temporarily restrict access to the area to provide the adult falcons the opportunity to raise their young.


During the closure, it is prohibited to enter the area north of the Peaks Crag Kiosk at Forest Road 522 (Freidlein Prairie Rd.). The restriction is expected to last until July 30, as this will allow the young falcon sufficient time to learn to fly and start to become independent.


The Forest Service, with the help of volunteers, will continue to monitor the progress of the nestling through the coming weeks.


The peregrine falcon was delisted from the Endangered Species Act in 1999, but the species is still monitored by both federal and state agencies in Arizona since they are designated as a Forest Service Sensitive Species and an Arizona State Species of Greatest Conservation Need.


Access to the area is prohibited pursuant to 36 CFR 261.8(a) and is punishable by a fine of $180 and/or mandatory court appearance.


If you have any questions, please contact the Flagstaff District Recreation Staff Officer at (928) 527-8226.