Coconino National Forest officials are implementing restrictions on climbing and other activities in the area known as the Peaks Crag—located on the southern flanks of The San Francisco Peaks--beginning Wednesday, July 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. The nest currently has one nestling in it.
According to officials, 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 Road); entering is punishable by a fine of $180 and/or mandatory court appearance.
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, according to a Forest Service press release.