Devils Tower National Monument June Voluntary Climbing Closure
Long before modern rock climbers found their way to the area, the American Indians regarded Devils Tower as a sacred place. June and the summer solstice are considered by many Tribal people to be a sacred time at the Tower and ceremonies are often held during this time. Some of these visitors perceive climbing on the Tower as a desecration to their sacred site.
The Climbing Management Plan and the June Voluntary Climbing Closure are set up as a means to mitigate the desires and rights of both climbers who worship the Tower by climbing on it, and those who hold the site sacred in other ways. The National Park Service has decided to advocate this closure in order to promote understanding and encourage respect for the culture of American Indian tribes who are closely affiliated with the Tower as a sacred site. The June closure is considered to be a success by the National Park Service in that it has resulted in an 80% reduction in the number of climbers for the month. Not rock climbing at Devils Tower during any day of the month of June does a lot to continue to ensure that climbing is allowed here by the Park Service in the future.
The Access Fund fully supports the voluntary closure and the Climbing Management Plan at Devils Tower. June is a great time to enjoy the granite face climbing of the Needles in Custer State Park, and Mount Rushmore. These areas are known throughout the world for the terrific summits and pure face climbing. They are near the town of Custer, SD only a 2 hour drive from Devils Tower. In addition, the limestone of Spearfish Canyon is quickly becoming a sport climbing mecca of its own.
Please help ensure future access for climbing at Devils Tower National Monument by rock climbing in one of these other areas during the entire month of June.
Protecting Americas Climbing. Did you know that 1 in 5 rock climbing areas in the US is threatened by and access issue?