Emil Nordeen wins the Annual Crater Lake Ski Race to the
cheering of 3,500 spectators and permanent possession of the Ft.
Klamath cup in the winning ski time of 5 hours and 35
minutes. The skiers followed unplowed roads from Ft. Klamath to
Crater Lake Lodge and back again.
Weed-Klamath Falls Highway construction begun. Promises to cut
50 miles from a trip to Crater Lake from Northern California.
Newspapers report that “Steven Mather, NPS Director, counts
Crater Lake among his favorite playground.”
Mr. and Mrs. Dale Franklin announce that they were the first
persons to arrive at the Rim at 12:30 pm, having had to wait for
the snow plow to finish the last mile and a half. The opening of
the Park is 2 months earlier than Crater Lake has ever been
accessible by car before. Light snowfall and more efficient snow
removal equipment made the early opening possible.
“Science” magazine reports that the Carnegie Corporation has
donated $5,000 for the furnishing and installation of equipment
for the Sinnott Memorial Overlook. Congress appropriated $10,000
toward the construction of the Memorial. The overlook will be
developed with a twofold purpose: “To bring to the visitor to
the Park an adequate idea of the beauty of the picture presented
and to furnish interesting scientific data as to the formation
of the crater in which the blue lake lies and its geologic
Superintendent Solinsky reports finding a serious infestation of
bark beetles containing about 3,000 trees located in the s.w.
corner of the Park. Staff feels the battle against the beetles
is “not going well.” The superintendent feels that even if one
bug tree is left in the Park it becomes a potential menace that
will undo all of the accomplishments of the bug control work.
Heavy infestation were found outside the Park. So, the entire
beetle control question was much bigger than the Park, and
people were beginning to question if complete control of the
outbreak in the Park was feasible. (Boyd Wickman)
In a letter to Superintendent E.C. Solinsky, Will Steel writes,
“Theories (about Park preservation) should not be endured, when
they interfere with the rights of visitors. Two courses are
open. Either the road will be built over the hills through the
forest, in an uninteresting region, or it will be built from
near the hotel, inside the rim, to the base of Kerr Notch, four
miles distant, on a four percent grade, then through a tunnel,
on approximately a five per cent grade, making one of the most
thrillingly beautiful roads on earth, exciting the admiration of
all who see it.
“At present there are probably not to exceed one per cent of
visitors who go to the water. With the road in question, 100%
would certainly descend and enjoy fishing and boating. Have they
not a right to do so? Whata (sic) tremendous increase in travel
would result from such a road. A brilliant opportunity now
confronts Crater Lake and a world wide reputation hangs in the
balance, but it is threatened by a cheap theory, based on the
hope of getting support from those in command. Shall we stand
idly by and see such a disaster thrust upon the lake, then wait
for posterity to condemn us? If we fail, the next generation
will demand the road and wonder at our lack of vision.” Will
New Chief Ranger Canfield on duty in park.
Bids and plans begin for a new Rim Road. Bids called to grade
the first six miles of a new West Rim Road. Estimated cost will
be $60,000 per mile. 120 men are employed for the next five
New boat launched on Crater Lake.
Twenty new tourist cabins built behind cafeteria. “Will continue
to build until need is satisfied.”
Post Office is located in the Lodge. Hot water, showers, and
plenty of wood available in the upper (Rim)
Campground. Campground located at White Horse Creek, because of
the early snow melt at that elevation and the availability of
Medical services are inaugurated in the Park. A seasonal nurse
and doctor are available to the employees and visitors.
New docks are built at the bottom of the Lake Trail.
A new water system is being constructed that will replace wood
pipe with steel. Munson Spring water has been pumped into five
wooden tanks located on a hill in the campground area, but the
new Garfield reservoir will eliminate two of these tanks.
Carbonized logs found in a road cut, 23 miles west of the Lake
Rim. The ancient burned tree had been covered over by pumice
flows from Mt. Mazama.
Park staff estimates that there are 47 bear living in the park.
Crew of 40 men are employed to fight the pine beetle in the
Park. Construction of the Watchman Fire Lookout is begun. Large
concentration of California Tortoise Shell Butterflies, mostly
on the East side.
Electric light facilities are installed in the Rim Campground. A
2 story, six-room seasonal employee’s quarters is constructed of
heavy stone on the Rim just above the present North
Junction-known as the “North House”. Demolished in 1959.
Naturalist conducted boat trips around the Lake and auto
caravans around the Rim Drive become a summer favorite.
Summer 1931 (or 1932)
Oral tradition persists among the old timers that an amphibian
airplane landed on the Lake and was unable to fly out. It was
supposedly packed out in pieces up the Lake Trail.
Boy Scout, Drew Chick, conducts the first narrated auto caravan
around Crater Lake. Chick filled in at the last moment because
the regular scheduled ranger had taken ill. The auto caravan
proved to be very popular.
“Pop” Warner, famous football coach, visits the Park.
Boy Scout, Drew Chick, and Chief Ranger Ansel Hall spend the day
laying out a new trail to the top of Wizard Island. While
exploring the island on the return to the boat dock, Hall
discovers the transom of the Cleetwood. Chick recovers the
remains of the old boat from a small lake inlet while Hall takes
photos of the historic recovery. The letters, “U.S.G.S.” were
still visible. Will Steel confirmed the discovery as being
authentic. Pieces of the pioneer craft are soon displayed at the
Park’s information Bureau and Community House.
Mr. Davidson, construction engineer for the Park during the
years, 1927 to 1934, finds the Cleetwood sounding apparatus on
Wizard Island, having been discarded 45 years earlier. Judge
Steel verifies the find and demonstrates how the Cleetwood Party
was able to sound the Lake with such a crude device.
J.C. Penney visits the Park.
One fourth acre fire on Wizard Island, caused by a careless
smoker. Many thought the Island was erupting.
New 200,000 water tank completed on Garfield, replacing 5 wooden
tanks on the hill behind the Rim Campground. Power lines are
extended to the Rim. Lights are planned to illuminate the Rim
area over a mile north of the Lodge. A 35 inch trout reported to
have been caught in the Lake. The new Rim Drive is completed to
the North Junction. One hundred laborers are working two 8-hour
During the past four years, 33,000 acres of trees are
insects. North Entrance Road is paved from Diamond Lake to the
1931 One of the largest Western White Pines in the World is
found in Annie Creek Canyon. Circumference of 23 feet and is
estimated to be 1,000 years old.
Power is delivered to a transformer substation at the Lodge,
making the first time that generators do not have to be used. An
11,000 volt transmission line is constructed.
Braving the dangers of the high altitude and precipitous cliffs,
the first airplane in history lands on the windblown waters of
Crater Lake. The ship, a yellow winged amphibian with crimson
fuselage, was piloted by Clayton Scott of Seattle, and mechanic
George Dahlberg. The plan approached from over the Annie Spring
Checking Station, circled gracefully around Wizard Island, and
landed easily near the shore of the Island, being tossed about
by strong winds and waves. Soon after it landed, the ship taxied
toward the East shore and slowly raised from the water. The
plane circled low over the Information Building while Pilot
Scott tossed out pictures of the plane and of the
passengers. The plane barely missed the tree tops.
Judge Steel continues to push for his idea of a road down to the
Lake, connecting the Lodge with Kerr Notch below Garfield and
Applegate Peak. Will Steel expressed a low opinion of those who
opposed his plan on a theory that the road would mar the beauty
of the natural landscape. “Crater Lake belongs to the people. If
they want to deface the wall, they can do. What good is scenery
if you can’t enjoy it? Every person who visits Crater Lake wants
to go to the Lake shore and out on the beautiful Lake in a boat.
With the road, I propose every person, be he aged, crippled, or
otherwise unable to make the present long trip down to the water
and back, can drive down in comfort.” “This newspaper (Portland
Oregonian) is entirely behind Judge Steel in his visionary
One hundred laborers at work on two eight-hour shifts of road
building, trying to beat the upcoming winter snows.
Season Visitation: 170,284