Smith Brothers 1963

Two men ski around the Rim in ten hours.

January 31
The least amount of snow recorded on the ground for a season, with only 44 inches of measurable snow.

Due to the low snow year, seasonal ranger Vic Affolter is able to investigate Scoria Cone Cave. Normally a large snow plug blocks the entrance to the crater cave. The investigation reveals a hole extending down to the heart of the cone. The hole is approximately 200 feet vertical from the north side and approximately 100 to 135 feet semi-vertical with an 80 degree slope on the south side.

August 2
Fatal on-the-job accident, when a dump truck backs over a construction worker during the rebuilding of the South entrance road.

August 7
Fatal heart attack.

The old, 1920’s and 30’s wooden utility shops, across from the new maintenance shops are torn down.

Paul Fritz becomes the Park’s last Landscape Architect, (‘63-’64) working on the vegetative restoration of new road cuts and the areas around the new buildings in Steel Circle. Paul eventually becomes involved in the establishment of the Redwoods National Park where he discovers the World’s tallest tree. The discovery is covered by an article in the National Geographic.

A woman passenger is killed when the family’s travel trailer runs off the road near the Pumice Desert and flips the car. The children become hysterical when they hear the news of their mother’s death over the Ranger radio while being transported to the hospital. Chief Ranger Buck Evens institutes a strict policy of keeping the car radios turned down in the presence of family members.

The Park’s old stand-by generator, near Steel Circle, is replaced with a much larger one from Death Valley National Monument.

Season Visitation: 475,684


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