Seasonal Nesting Advisories

Created on Sunday, 27 February 2011

Not only are local San Diego crags great climbing destinations, many of them are also home to raptors. Beginning some time between December and March, they begin their courtship and nesting behavior. 


At this time, the raptors become more sensitive to human disturbance, and to ensure they have a chance to nest successfully, the CNF and ACSD partner up to monitor for nesting activity and implement appropriate closures.

Falcon chick photographed by CNF Biologist Jeff Wells

With some of the nest sites located on or near climbing routes, it is possible that climbers could inadvertantly rappel or climb too close to an active nest. To make sure that doesn't happen, we do a number of things, including
  • Monitor for nesting activity: In many cases, the CNF doesn't have the manpower to monitor exactly what's going on at the crags. We are their eyes and ears on the ground and can help them tremendously by providing detailed, accurate info.
  • Post current closure information on the CNF and ACSD websites: Check both for the latest information. If you have any questions, call the CNF office via the phone number posted on their website.
  • Place informational signs at trailhead: The CNF has permanent signs at the trailheads to crags that regularly host nesting falcons. During closure periods, additional information is posted describing which portion of the crag is closed.
  • Place closure tags on affected routes: Watch for red or black aluminum hang tags on the first bolt of a route, or at rappel stations to indicate routes that are within an active closure area.

The picture to the right is a peregrine falcon chick at Corte Madera, photographed by biologist Jeff Wells of the Cleveland National Forest during a raptor monitoring visit in June 2010.

Check the Cleveland National Forest website and check here at for updated information on closures before you head out to climb.

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