Aggressive behavior reported in nested Peregrine Falcons in Rocky Mountain National Park forced the closure of popular climbing routes in order to protect the wildlife and climbers, officials said Friday.
The falcons have been observed acting aggressively toward climbers in the area of Lumpy Ridge Area due to nesting. The falcons become territorial during nesting seasons and pose a threat to climbers because they can fly at speeds of more than 200 mph, park officials said.
New closures were implemented on the Left Book, The Bookmark, and Bookmark Pinnacle in Rocky Mountain National Park Friday, June 4, 2021.
The closures are necessary to protect both climbers and the falcons. If climbers continue to use these areas, the risk becomes high of the falcons abandoning their nest, causing the chicks to die, officials said.
Closures will be monitored regularly and lifted once breeding activity is no longer observed.
Each year, raptor nesting sites are protected by these closures in Rocky Mountain National Park. This ensures the birds of prey can nest undisturbed.
Wildlife managers expect the closures to last until July 31, depending on nesting activity.
The Cathedral Wall in the Loch Vale area has been closed to the public since February 15 due to nesting activity, as well as areas above the Loch Vale-Sky Pond Trail.
In the Lumpy Ridge area, closures include Checkerboard Rock, Lightning Rock, Batman Rock, Batman Pinnacle, Sundance, Thunder Buttress, The Parish, The Book, and Twin Owls, Rock One along with the areas listed above.
Closures include all climbing routes, outcroppings, cliffs, faces, ascent and descent routes and climber access trails to the named rock formations. Check the park’s website at for updated information on nesting closures.
The cooperation of climbing organizations and individuals continues to be essential to the successful nesting of raptors in the park.