- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 23, 2014

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Outdoor clothing company Patagonia said Tuesday it has agreed to pay a $4,000 settlement to Capitol Reef National Park in Utah after rock climbing policies were violated in the making of a catalog photograph.

The agreement came after park rangers discovered illegal climbing routes in the red rock park after seeing the photograph in a September 2011 Patagonia catalog. The images depicted a first climb on a new route.

Rangers found illegal climbing bolts were embedded in rock, and other rocks had been moved to create three illegal climbing routes.

Patagonia spokesman Adam Fetcher said a freelance photographer shot the image, and the company has no relationship with the two individuals pictured climbing.

The company is reviewing its policies and reaching out to the photographer involved to find out what happened, Fetcher said.

Climbing is allowed in areas of the park, but climbers are not allowed to place new bolts or fixed hardware.

“We work very hard to makes sure every photo we publish depicts responsible climbing practices that align with Patagonia’s broad environmental mission by asking vigilant questions and requiring locations always be identified,” Fetcher said in a statement.

He said the image featured in the catalog was an action shot and did not showcase gear or clothing for customers to order.

Park Superintendent Leah McGinnis was not immediately available Tuesday for comment.

McGinnis told the Salt Lake Tribune that the settlement will be used to remove the climbing bolts and fill in the holes.

“We want to use this as an example to let people know that climbing is allowed in Capitol Reef, but there are certain rules to follow,” McGinnis said. “It is up to people to figure out what the rules are before they do things in the parks.”

Patagonia apologized in 2006 and later stopped sponsoring a person who climbed Delicate Arch in Arches National Park in Utah.

The climber was not charged with any violation for the 2006 climb but the park tightened its policies to make it clear that climbing of named arches or natural bridges is not allowed.

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