To help make your visit to John John Day Fossil Beds National Monument safe and enjoyable we have listed a few of the park regulations intended to protect both the resource and the visitor which are most commonly violated. The following information is based upon Title 36 of the Code of Federal Regulations and the Superintendent's Compendium of specific regulations that pertain to John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. The park regulations from CFR-36 listed below are the most frequent visitor questions but are not all regulations. Click the Title 36 link above for all NPS CFRs.
Preservation of Natural Features: The digging, disturbance, or possession of fossils, rocks, plants, and other natural resources is prohibited within the monument.
Preservation of Cultural Features: Possessing, destroying, injuring, defacing, removing, digging, or disturbing a structure or its furnishing or fixtures, or other cultural or archeological resources, is prohibited within the monument.
Hunting and Firearms: Hunting and the use/discharge of firearms on park lands is prohibited. A lawfully possessed firearm may be possessed within the monument except in any federal building. Firearms may not be discharged. A permit is required to transport other weapons such as bows across park land. If a lawfully taken animal is shot on land outside the monument but the animal enters the monument before expiring, a permit is required to retrieve the animal and transport it out of the monument.
Pets: Pets must be kept under physical restraint (such as a leash) at all times. Pets are only allowed in developed, outdoor areas and along designated trails. Pets are not allowed in the backcountry.
Horses: Horse use on monument trails and within picnic areas is prohibited. Horses may traverse the backcountry but must stay off bare rock and hardpan exposures.
Fishing: Fishing is permitted with the appropriate Oregon fishing license.
Camping: Camping is not allowed within the monument boundaries. There are many public and private campgrounds nearby.
Fires: Fires are only permitted in established metal grills located at picnic sites within the monument, when local fire restrictions allow.
Trails and Backcountry: Off-road vehicle use is prohibited. Hiking off trails into backcountry is permitted on areas of soil with vegetation. Due to the fragility of small buried fossils, walking upon bare rock or hardpan exposures is prohibited. Hiking into the Blue Basin area is restricted to developed trails. Please refer to signs and notices at each of the trailheads for site regulations.
If you are unclear about any of the regulations listed above, or wish to check on other regulations, please contact the park before or during your visit.
Did You Know?
Some of the earliest rhino fossils in the world were found in the John Day beds. We call these the "running rhinos".