Climbing Closures

Closures for Peregrine Falcon Protection

The peregrine falcon is a fully protected species in California and a special status species in Yosemite due to its sensitivity to disturbance during the nesting season. To protect this species, the superintendent of Yosemite National Park is designating peregrine nesting cliffs as areas closed to visitor use, including climbing and slacklining activities, until peregrine chicks have fledged and dispersed from those areas in 2023. 

By order of the superintendent of Yosemite National Park and under authority of Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations, Section 1.5(a) and Section (a)(1): The following areas are closed to visitor use, including climbing activities, beginning March 1, 2023 and remaining in effect until July 15, 2023, or until further notice:

  • B.O.L.T. Wall – Immediately southwest of Leaning Tower. Closure includes all routes on the B.O.L.T. Wall.
  • El Capitan, West Face – Closure includes all routes left of and including “Mirage”. “The West Face” is CLOSED. “Lurking Fear” remains OPEN. (Effective 5/16/23)
  • Fairview Dome, West Face – Tuolumne. Closure includes all routes between and including “Heart of Stone” to “Lucky Streaks.” All other routes remain open.
  • Higher Cathedral Rock – Closure includes all routes between and including “Power Point” and “The North Face.” All other routes remain open.
  • Mt. Broderick – West of Liberty Cap. Closure includes the entire SE face of Mt. Broderick opposite Liberty Cap.
  • Parkline Slab - The top 4 pitches of the “Eagle’s Eyrie” climbing route and top 3 pitches of “Moss Madness” are closed to protect an active Golden Eagle nest. All other routes at Parkline Slab, the first 6 pitches of “Eagle’s Eyrie,” and the first 5 pitches of the “Moss Madness” remain open. (Effective 5/16/23)
  • The Rostrum Lower Merced Canyon. Closure includes climbing routes on all sides of the Rostrum formation. Super Nova and the Jungle Gym areas remain open. Slack-lining is prohibited at the summit and the top of the adjacent cliff.
  • Wawona Dome – Closure includes all routes between and including “Cream of the Crop” to “Bark at the Moon.” From the base, the first pitch of the closed routes between and including “Lunar Eclipse” to “Bird in Flight” will remain open.
  • Widow’s Tears – Closure includes all routes within the Widow’s Tears Alcove. Routes on Tower of Cosmic Winds remain open.
  • Yosemite Point – Closure includes all routes between and including “Czech Route” and “Yosemite Point Buttress.” The first 3 pitches of “Czech Route” and the first 5 pitches of “Yosemite Point Buttress” remain open.

Nest sites will be monitored to provide current information on nesting status and to ensure prompt re-opening of these areas when appropriate. Closures are subject to change based on current nesting status. Your cooperation in complying with these temporary restrictions is greatly appreciated. The designation will remain in place until rescinded.

Learn more about special status bird species in Yosemite National Park.

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The peregrine falcon thrives in Yosemite Valley, but this remarkable bird was temporarily extirpated from much of its native range, including Yosemite where it disappeared for decades, leading to its listing as an endangered species in the early 1970s. Because of the remarkable, collaborative efforts of Yosemite climbers, UCSC Predatory Bird Research Group, and NPS biologists, with generous funding from the Yosemite Conservancy, the story of Yosemite’s peregrine falcon is one of hope.

Last updated: May 17, 2023

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