Adirondack Rock Climbing Route Closures
Peregrine falcons, an endangered species in New York State, nest on cliffs in the Adirondack Mountains. The population of peregrine falcons has steadily grown since the DEC undertook hacking programs in the Adirondacks in the late 1970s.
Cliffs with known peregrine falcon nesting sites are monitored annually throughout the Adirondacks. Rock climbing routes with active nest sites are temporarily closed to prevent any disturbances that might interfere with the successful raising of the young peregrine falcons.
The closure of climbing routes is based on a number of factors, primarily the route's proximity and visibility to a nesting site. Each situation is unique and a specific distance from the nest site can not be used to make a closure determination. DEC's priority is protecting an endangered species; however, attempts are made to maximize the opportunities for climbing at the same time.
At the beginning of the season DEC closes whole or large portions of cliffs where peregrine falcons have regularly nested. This allows them to choose a nesting site without any being troubled by climbing activity. They often choose a site quickly and begin nesting earlier, than when the cliff's were subject to climbing activities. Climbers benefit because an earlier nesting start results in an earlier fledging of the young and therefore the closed routes are re-opened sooner.
Rock Climbing Route Closures - April 6, 2017
The following rock climbing routes are closed to allow peregrine falcons to breed and establish nest sites.
All routes on the Upper and Lower Washbowl Cliffs are closed.
All routes on the Main Face are closed except the following routes described on pages 39-45 of Adirondack Rock - A Rock Climber's Guide:
- Goat's Foot on Rock
- High and Dry
- Big Buddha
- Pearly Gates
- Battle Creek
- Static Cling
- Certified Raw
- Air Male
- Son of a Mother
- Phase III
- Puppies on Edge
- Hang 'Em High
- Group Therapy
- A Womb with a View
The Amphitheater section of the Black Arches Wall along with routes Hang Time and Black Arch Arête on the Main Wall are closed - all other routes are open.
Shelving Rock Mountain
All routes on the Main Wall are closed.
Sleeping Beauty Mountain
All rock climbing routes are closed.
Current route closure information will be posted at trailheads and online at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/7870.html
Peregrine falcons have not nested on Moss Cliff the last 2 summers so DEC will not be closing rock climbing routes on Moss Cliff or Labor Day Wall this spring unless nesting activity is observed. Climbers are urged to be cautious and observant while climbing in Wilmington Notch and report any aggressive or agitated peregrine falcon behavior to the DEC Wildlife Office at 518-897-1291 or info.R5@dec.ny.gov.
DEC appreciates the cooperation of the climbing community. Once the peregrine falcons have chosen nest ledges, DEC will open additional climbing routes that won't interfere with peregrine nesting and rearing activities.
More about Adirondack Rock Climbing Route Closures:
- Peregrine Falcons and the Adirondack Rock Climber - Facts about Peregrine Falcons and how rock climbers can help to ensure their successful return to the Adirondacks