Devils Postpile Unmanned Aircraft Policy

Subscribe RSS Icon | What is RSS
Date: August 20, 2014
Contact: Deanna Dulen, 760-924-5505

On June 20, 2014, National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis signed a policy memorandum that directs superintendents nationwide to prohibit launching, landing, or operating unmanned aircraft on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service.

"We embrace many activities in national parks because they enhance visitor experiences with the iconic natural, historic and cultural landscapes in our care," Jarvis said. "However, we have serious concerns about the negative impact that flying unmanned aircraft is having in parks, so we are prohibiting their use until we can determine the most appropriate policy that will protect park resources and provide all visitors with a rich experience." Unmanned aircraft ha­ve already been prohibited at several national parks. These parks initiated bans after noise and nuisance complaints from park visitors, an incident in which park wildlife were harassed, and park visitorsafety concerns.

Today Devils Postpile National Monument,posted an updated compendium with this regulation in place stating: launching,landing, or operating an unmanned aircraft from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service within the boundaries of Devils Postpile National Monument is prohibited except as approved in writing by the superintendent.

This restriction is to protect the public from hazards and preserve the park's natural, aesthetic, and scenic values. The use of unmanned aircraft potentially presents unacceptable risks to visitors (collisions between unmanned aircraftand visitors, the uncontrolled fall of unmanned aircraft, contact with spinning propellers or rotors of unmanned aircraft). The use of unmanned aircraft adversely impacts visitor experience by negatively affecting scenic and natural sound opportunities, and/or the avoidance of conflict among visitor use activities.The use of these devices also has the potential to disrupt terrestrial and avian wildlife by interrupting migration, nesting, mating, and acquiring food and other activities.

This restriction is in accordance with NPS Management Policy 8.2 which prohibits recreational uses that conflict with the scenic values and view sheds that the park was designated to protect and the associated activities in which individuals seek solitude and tranquility with an expectation of privacy.Furthermore, approximately 85% of park lands are designated wilderness in which the use of motorized equipment is prohibited under the Wilderness Act.

Last updated: February 28, 2015

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 3999
Mammoth Lakes, CA 93546


(760) 934-2289

Contact Us