Climbers Asked To Stay Off Devils Tower In June

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by Staff 5-23,2016

A voluntary closure for climbing at Devils Tower will be in effect through the month of June.  Climbers are asked and encouraged to refrain from climbing on the Tower June 1 -30 out of respect for the spiritual and cultural significance of the Tower to regional American Indian tribes.

American Indian activities and ceremonies occur in the Monument throughout the year, however the month of June is an especially significant time for traditional tribal practitioners.    Climbers are asked to consider tribal perspectives and encouraged to climb during June at the many other climbing sites in the region such as the Mt. Rushmore Needles, Custer State Park Needles and Spearfish Canyon in South Dakota, and Tensleep Canyon and Tongue River Canyon in Wyoming.

The final 1995 Monument Climbing Management Plan for the Monument established this annual voluntary closure for all climbing routes as a way to balance the cultural and spiritual importance of the feature to American Indian tribes with its history as a unique and world class rock climbing destination.  The Access Fund, a nonprofit organization working to maintain access to climbing areas and protect the climbing environment, fully supports the voluntary climbing closure.  Most climbers choose not to climb the Tower during June.

In addition to the voluntary June climbing closure, certain sections of the Tower are currently under a mandatory closure to protect nesting peregrine falcons.  This mandatory closure can shift depending on falcon behavior during nesting and fledging, so please check the park website at www.nps.gov/deto for affected routes, areas and current status, or call the Climbing Ranger Office at 307/467-5283 x632.  The mandatory nesting falcon closure will be lifted once the young have fully fledged.

 

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