CHAPTER TWELVE: Resource Management: 1916-Present A. RESOURCE MANAGEMENT: 1916-1929

Crater Lake National Park: Administrative History by Harlan D. Unrau and Stephen Mark, 1987

 CHAPTER TWELVE: Resource Management In Crater Lake National Park: 1916-Present


The initial National Park Service resource management priorities in Crater Lake National Park were concerned with the preservation of “natural curiosities” and wildlife, the supply and regulation of fishing in the lake, and prevention of forest fires. Among the regulations adopted for the park on May 1, 1917, were rules to prevent fires and hunting, govern fishing, and preserve the national features of the area. These rules stated:

1. Preservation of natural curiosities. — The destruction, injury, or defacement in any way of the public property or the trees, vegetation, rocks, minerals, animal and bird or other life, or other natural conditions and curiosities in the park is prohibited.

2. Camping. — No camp will be made along roads except at designated localities. Blankets, clothing, hammocks, or any other article liable to frighten teams must not be hung near the road.

Many successive parties camp on the same sites during the season, and camp grounds must be thoroughly cleaned before they are abandoned. Tin cans, bottles, cast-off clothing, and all other debris must be placed in garbage cans or pits provided for the purpose. When camps are made in unfrequented localities where pits or garbage cans may not be provided, all refuse must be burned or hidden where it will not be offensive to the eye.

Campers may use dead or fallen timber only for fuel.

3. Fires. — Fires constitute one of the greatest perils to the park; they must not be kindled near trees, dead wood, moss, dry leaves, forest mold, or other vegetable refuse, but in some open space on rocks or earth. Should camp be made in a locality where no such open space exists nor is provided, dead wood, moss, dry leaves, etc., must be scraped away to the rock or earth over an area considerably larger than required for the fire.

When fires are no longer necessary, they must be completely extinguished and all embers and bed smothered with earth or water so that there remains no possibility or reignition.

Especial care must be taken that no lighted match, cigar, or cigarette is dropped in any grass, twigs, leaves, or tree mold.

4. Hunting. — The park is a sanctuary for wild life of every sort, and no one should frighten, hunt or kill, wound or capture any bird or wild animals in the park, except dangerous animals when it is necessary to prevent them from destroying life or inflicting injury.

The outfits, including guns, traps, teams, horses, or means of transportation used by persons engaged in hunting, killing, trapping, ensnaring, or capturing such birds or wild animals, or in possession of game killed on the park lands under other circumstances than prescribed above, must be taken up by the supervisor and held subject to the order of the Secretary of the Interior, except in cases where it is shown by satisfactory evidence that the outfit is not the property of the person or persons violating this regulation and the actual owner was not a party to such violation. Firearms will be permitted in the park only on written permission of the supervisor. Visitors entering or traveling through the park to places beyond should, at entrance, report and surrender all firearms, traps, nets, seines, or explosives in their possession to the first park officer, and, in proper cases, may obtain his written leave to carry them through the park sealed.

5. Fishing. — Fishing is permitted with hook and line only, and never for profit or merchandise. Fishing in particular water may be suspended; or the number of fish that may be taken by one person in any one day, from the various streams or lakes, may be regulated by the supervisor. All fish hooked less than 8 inches long shall be carefully handled with moist hands and returned at once to the water, if not seriously injured. Fish retained should be killed. Five fish shall constitute the limit for a day’s catch from the lake, and 20 from other waters of the park. [1]