Katmai National Park

Fact Box

Katmai National Park and Preserve
Established 1980
4,725,188 acres
Visitation (2007) 82,634

President Woodrow Wilson established Katmai National Monument in 1918 to preserve the "Valley of 10,000 Smokes," so named when the Novarupta Volcano filled the valley with a 100- to 700-foot-deep ash flow. The "smokes" were created when water trapped underneath the ash flow turned to steam and escaped to the surface. Today, the Valley of 10,000 Smokes is still a spectacular visitor destination, though all that's left of the smokes are colorful fumaroles.*

In addition to its volcanic history, Katmai is also known for its sportfishing and bear viewing at locations such as Brooks River. For decades, rainbow trout that grew fat on spawning salmon eggs drew anglers from all over the world. New brown bear viewing opportunities developed in 1980 when the monument was expanded and renamed Katmai National Park & Preserve. In fact, brown bear viewing is now more popular with visitors than fishing.


  • http://www.npca.org/parks/katmai-national-park-and-preserve.html