Wildlife Protection Closures
Northern Elephant Seals
Drakes Beach Temporary Beach Closure - February 4, 2016, through March 31, 2016
A temporary closure of Drakes Beach starting approximately ¼ mile southwest of the Kenneth C. Patrick Visitor Center and continuing south to the current permanent elephant seal closure will be in effect to better protect elephant seals from disturbance during the pupping season when they are exceptionally vulnerable. All public use shall be prohibited.
Determination of Temporary Closure - February 4 through March 31, 2016 - signed on February 3, 2016 (31 KB PDF)
Map of Temporary Closure - February 4 through March 31, 2016 (93 KB PDF)
Chimney Rock Fish Dock Area Temporary Closure - December 30, 2015, through March 15, 2016
A temporary closure of the road leading from the gate at the end of the Chimney Rock Road to the Fish Dock area, including immediately adjacent beaches, is in effect through Tuesday, March 15, 2016, due to nursing elephant seal pups in the Fish Dock area.
Determination of Temporary Closure - December 30, 2015, through March 15, 2016 - signed on December 30, 2015 (25 KB PDF)
Map of Chimney Rock Fish Dock Area Temporary Closure (326 KB PDF)
To protect harbor seals from disturbance during the most crucial part of the pupping season, from March 1 through June 30 the National Park Service has closed the following areas to the public: Drakes Estero, Estero de Limantour, the western end of Limantour Spit, and South Blue Gum Beach. Pelican Point, Duck Island and the east side of Hog Island are closed to the public year round.
Map of Estero closures (258 KB PDF)
Map of Tomales Bay closures (209 KB PDF)
Map of Hog Island closure (42 KB PDF)
Western Snowy Plovers
Temporary closures of beaches were instituted during the 2014 Fourth of July holiday weekend, the 2015 Memorial Day weekend, and every weekend between June 20 and September 7, 2015, for the protection of the threatened western snowy plover. In 2013, there were eleven plover chicks at the beginning of the 4th of July holiday weekend; three survived to Monday. Plovers can be impacted in a number of ways by heavy human activity in their habitat, including increased flushing caused by humans or pets, and by activities that draw corvids (ravens, crows, and jays) to the beach, such as poor food management. The closures usually extended from Abbotts Lagoon south to the North Beach parking area. Map (289 KB PDF) Although no decision has yet to be made as to whether similar closures will occur during the 2016 summer,chances are good that there will be a closure in effect on weekends from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
Llamas are prohibited from all areas that are inhabited by tule elk. Map (200 KB PDF)
Marine Protected Areas
On May 1, 2010, a number of Marine Protected Areas went into effect within and adjacent to Point Reyes National Seashore, in part to better protect nesting birds. Per the Marine Life Protection Act (MPLA), the Point Reyes Headlands is closed to all vessels within 305 meters (1000 feet) of shore from Chimney Rock west to Longitude 123° 01.00'. Per the Superintendent's Compendium, from Longitude 123° 01.00' west to the Point Reyes Lighthouse the headlands is closed to all vessels within 91 meters (100 yards) of shore. There are also 91-meter (300-foot) special closures around Point Resistance and Double Point/Stormy Stack, per the MLPA.
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