General Park Safety

sign warning sharp curves ahead
The road to Oregon Caves is winding with many blind spots.

NPS Photo

Auto-Deer Collisions

The park and surrounding area has a large deer population. The road to the park is steep and very curvy, making it hard to see around corners. The three most important ways to avoid a deer-vehicle collision are to slow down, drive cautious, and SLOW DOWN!

Hikers viewing Bigelow Meadow from trail
Hikers enjoying the Bigelow Lakes Trail


Hiking Safely: Use Common Sense

Hike and travel in groups if possible. If hiking alone, tell someone where you are going and how long you expect to be gone. Carry and drink plenty of water (a minimum of 1 quart every 2 hours). Bring a headlamp or flashlight, even on a short day hike. Stay on the established trail. Be aware of weather conditions and warnings for the area. Wear the proper footwear for the trail you have chosen. Health or medical issues can worsen when hiking up steep trails. Know your limits and pay attention to how you are feeling.

upclose picture of columbian blacktail deer
Columbian blacktail deer

NPS/Brian Amstutz


Deer will attack. Far more people are hurt by deer in national parks than by bears or cougars. Around food, deer can become aggressive. A doe may defend her young. When startled they may kick. Do not tempt them with food and stay clear of them at all times.

adult black bear in the park
Black bear


Be Bear Aware

Avoid potential black bear encounters on the trail by making noise to make your presence known. Do not approach or startle bears. If you see one make your presence known by talking quietly and slowly back away. Pick up small children. If the bear approaches you make noise such as yelling and clapping your hands. Most black bears will run away as soon as they realize you are a human. Keep them wild by properly storing food and disposing of all waste into bear-proof trash containers. Bears can become very dangerous when they associate people with food.

Cougar track found on the Limestone Trail
Cougar track found on the Limestone Trail

NPS/Brian Amstutz

Cougars (Mountain Lions)

Cougars usually do not confront humans. They may be threatening if kittens or a kill are nearby. If you encounter one, make yourself as large as a possible by standing tall and holding out your arms. Pick up children. Do not run or make any sudden moves.

If the cougar becomes more aggressive, become more aggressive toward it. Convince the animal that you are not prey, but a danger to it.

Last updated: October 10, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

19000 Caves Hwy
Cave Junction, OR 97523


(541) 592-2100

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