Superintendent's Compendium

Superintendent’s Compendium

Of Designations, Closures, Permit Requirements and Other Restrictions Imposed Under Discretionary Authority. Steve Black, Superintendent, February 25, 2021
In accordance with regulations and the delegated authority provided in Title 36, Code of Federal Regulations ("36 CFR"), Chapter 1, Parts 1-7, authorized by Title 16 United States Code, Section 3, the following provisions apply to all lands and waters administered by the National Park Service, within the boundaries of Russell Cave National Monument. Unless otherwise stated, these regulatory provisions apply in addition to the requirements contained in 36 CFR, Chapter 1, Parts 1-7.

Written determinations, which explain the reasoning behind the Superintendent's use of discretionary authority, as required by Section 1.5(c), appear in this document identified by italicized print.
 
I. 36 CFR §1.5 - VISITING HOURS, PUBLIC USE LIMITS, CLOSURES, AND AREA DESIGNATIONS FOR SPECIFIC USE OR ACTIVITIES

(a)(1) The following visiting hours and public use limits are established for all or for the listed portions of the park, and the following closures are established for all or a portion of the park to all public use or to a certain use or activity:

Visiting Hours:
  • Russell Cave National Monument is a day use only location. The visiting hours are 08:00 AM to 4:30 PM
(Justification: To provide for reasonable and safe public access to the park and trails and to protect cultural, natural and archeological resources)

(a)(2) Individuals over the age of two years must wear masks, except when actively eating or drinking, in the following locations:
  • All common areas and shared workspaces in buildings owned, rented, or leased by the National Park Service, including, but not limited to, park visitor centers, administrative offices, lodges, gift shops, and restaurants.
  • The following outdoor areas, when others are present, where the superintendent has determined that physical distance (staying at least six feet apart) cannot reasonably be maintained:
    • The cave boardwalk
    • The cave platform
    • All designated trails
    • All picnic areas
    • All parking areas
Closures:

Drones/Unmanned Aircraft
  • Launching, landing, or operating an unmanned aircraft from or on lands and waters administered by the National Park Service within the boundaries of Russell Cave National Monument is prohibited except as approved in writing by the superintendent. (Justification: to maintain public health and safety and to protect park resources and values within Russell Cave National Monument. This temporary closure will remain in effect until the NPS can determine whether specific uses of unmanned aircraft on lands and waters administered by the NPS are appropriate and will not cause unacceptable impacts on park resources and values.)
Cave
  • All cave entrances or access locations are closed to the public, to include but not limited to: Ridley, Picnic, Pig, Canoe, Buckeye, Main, James, Stump, Montague, Corner Sinkhole, Russell Road, Russell Point, Howard's Hole, Roy's Plunge, Cave Below the Road, Boundary Sink are closed to public access.
(Justification: To protect archeological resources and to prevent the spread of white nose bat syndrome.)

Creek
  • Walking, climbing, wading, or swimming in Dry Creek, creek bed or its tributaries is prohibited.
(Justification: To provide for reasonable and safe public access to view the cave area and to protect cultural, natural, and archeological resources.)

Emergency Closures
  • During periods of severe weather conditions, all or portions of, Russell Cave National Monument may be closed to the public in the interest of public safety.
(Justification: To provide for public safety and enjoyment)

(a)(2) Designate areas for a specific use or activity, or impose conditions or restrictions on a use or activity:

E-Bikes
  • The term "e-bike" means a two- or three-wheeled cycle with fully operable pedals and an electric motor of less than 750 watts (1 h.p.).
  • E-bikes are allowed in Russell Cave National Monument where traditional bicycles are allowed. E-bikes are prohibited where traditional bicycles are prohibited. Except where use of motor vehicles by the public is allowed, using the electric motor to move an e-bike without pedaling is prohibited.
  • A person operating an e-bike is subject to the following sections of 36 CFR part 4 that apply to the use of traditional bicycles: sections 4.12, 4.13, 4.20, 4.21, 4.22, 4.23, and 4.30(h)(2)-(5).
  • Except as specified in this Compendium, the use of an e-bike within Russell Cave National Monument is governed by State law, which is adopted and made a part of this Compendium. Any violation of State law adopted by this paragraph is prohibited.
36 CFR §1.6 - ACTIVITIES THAT REQUIRE A PERMIT

(f) The following is a compilation of those activities for which a permit from the superintendent is required:

The following are some of the activities that require a permit.
  • Groups in excess of 25 people
  • Placement/Replacement of Fixed Protection for Rock Climbing
  • Collection of Research Specimens
  • Special Events
  • Public Assemblies/Meetings
  • Sale/distribution of Printed Matter
  • Noncommercial Soliciting
  • Scattering Human Ashes
  • Commercial Advertisements
  • Business Operations
  • Commercial Photography
  • Commercial Filming
  • Construction of Buildings or Other Facilities
  • Camping Outside Designated Areas
  • Weddings
  • Birthday Parties or Celebrations
(Justification: To provide for public safety and enjoyment)

36 CFR §2.1 - PRESERVATION OF NATURAL, CULTURAL AND ARCHEOLOGICAL RESOURCES

(a)(5) Walking, hiking, or jogging is limited to established trails and roads, improved or not.

(Justification: To protect natural, cultural and archeological resources and to provide for public safety)

(c)(1 ), (c)(2) The following fruits, nuts, berries may be gathered by hand for personal use or consumption, in accordance with the noted size, quantity, collection sites and/or use or consumption restrictions:
  • (c)(1) Individuals may collect by hand blackberries, blueberries, persimmons, hickory nuts, muscadine grapes, or walnuts for personal use and consumption.
  • (c)(2) Individuals may collect by hand up to one gallon per day, per species for personal use and consumption.
(Justification: To provide for public enjoyment and the protection of natural resources)

36 CFR §2.2 - WILDLIFE PROTECTION

(a)(1) Hunting in Russell Cave National Monument is prohibited.

(Justification: Hunting is not authorized under Federal statutory law and is not consistent with public safety and enjoyment)

(b)(4)(d) The transporting of lawfully taken wildlife in or through the park is prohibited.

(Justification: Hunting is not authorized under Federal statutory law and is not consistent with public safety and enjoyment of the site)

36 CFR §2.3 - FISHING

(a) Fishing is prohibited.

(Justification: Fishing is not authorized under Federal statutory law and is not consistent with public safety and enjoyment of the site)

36 CFR §2.10 - CAMPING and FOOD STORAGE

(a) The Superintendent may require permits, designate sites or areas, and establish conditions for camping.
  • Recreational camping is not permitted. Organizations such as Scouts, living history groups and volunteers may be granted permission by the Superintendent to camp in conjunction with planned park projects and/ or interpretive activities.
(Justification: To protect archeological resource)

36 CFR §2.11- Picnicking

(a) Picnicking is allowed, except in areas closed in accordance with §1.5.
  • Picnicking is prohibited on the cave walk-way and at the cave entrance.
(Justification: To provide for reasonable and safe public access to view the cave area and public enjoyment of the same)

36 CFR §2.13- FIRES

(a)(1) The lighting or maintaining of fires is generally prohibited, except as provided for in the following designated areas and/or receptacles, and under the conditions noted:
  • No fires or grills allowed within Russell Cave National Monument, except by authorized personnel in designated areas.
(Justification: To provide for public safety and enjoyment and to protect archeological integrity)

36 CFR §2.16 - HORSES AND PACK ANIMALS

(C) Riding horses within Russell Cave National Monument boundaries is prohibited.

(Justification: To provide for public safety and enjoyment and the protection of archeological resources)

36 CFR §2.35 -ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES and CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES

(a)(3)(i) The following public use areas, portions of public use areas, and/or public facilities within the park are closed to consumption of alcoholic beverages, and/or to the possession of a bottle, can or other receptacle containing an alcoholic beverage that is open, or has been opened, or whose seal has been broken or the contents of which have been partially removed:
  • The consumption of alcoholic beverages, in any form, is prohibited within the boundaries of Russell Cave National Monument.
(Justification: To provide for visitor safety and enjoyment. The possession of alcoholic beverages in public areas is prohibited by state law and to be consistent with local laws and regulations)
  • Simple possession of prohibited liquors and beverages, Alabama Title 28-4-20, the possession of alcoholic beverage in public areas is prohibited by state law.
(Justification: To provide for visitor safety and enjoyment. The possession of alcoholic beverages in public areas is prohibited by state law and to be consistent with local laws and regulations)

36 CFR §2.51 - PUBLIC ASSEMBLIES, MEETINGS

(a) Public assemblies, meetings, gatherings, demonstrations, parades, and other public expressions of views are allowed within park areas.
  • (c)(3)(e) Public assemblies are prohibited on the cave walk-way, at the cave entrance and on the sidewalk around the visitor center.
(Justification: To provide for public safety and not to impair the historic atmosphere of the site)

36 CFR §4.10-TRAVEL ON PARK ROADS AND ROUTES

(a) Park roads, open for travel by motor vehicle are those indicated below, and/or as indicated in the following publication or document (attached hereto):

36 CFR §4.30 - BICYCLES

(a) The use of a bicycle is prohibited except on park roads, in parking areas and on routes designated for bicycle use; provided however, the Superintendent may close any park road or parking area to bicycle use pursuant to the criteria and procedures of§ 1.5 and§ 1.7 of this chapter.
  • Bicycles are prohibited on the driveway loop in front of the visitor center and on Mountain Road. (Justification: To provide for public safety and enjoyment and to protect the cultural, natural, and archeological resources)

Last updated: July 21, 2021

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