Fremont-Winema National Forests History

Fremont National Forest (1908-2002)

The Fremont National Forest was established in 1908 and was named for Captain John C. Fremont, the Pathfinder, who was sent to explore this country in 1843. The forest, on a high plateau and containing over one million acres is located in Lake and Klamath Counties in south-central Oregon on the extreme eastern part of the Cascade Mountains.

Many are drawn to this land because of its unrestrained openness- clear skies and distant views, scab rock flats, rock outcroppings and dramatic cliffs such as Abert and Winter Rim, and the Warner Mountain front. Others find interesting contrasts within this rippled landscape of dry-stream channels, juniper hillsides, pockets of quaking aspen and meadows ringed with sagebrush.

Contrasts in climate, ecology and the solitude afforded by remoteness are what make the Fremont attractive. The Forest provides “Outback” recreational opportunities. The “Outback” is an experience where the self-reliant recreationist has the opportunity to discover nature in a rustic environment.

History of the Fremont NF
Goose Lake Forest Reserve
- 1906
Fremont National Forest Reserve
- 1906 to 1908
Fremont National Forest
- July 1, 1908 to 2002
Administratively combined with
the Winema National Forest
becoming Fremont-Winema National Forests
- December 1, 2002 to Present

Winema National Forest (1961-2002)

The Winema National Forest was established in 1961 and was named for a heroine of the Modoc War of 1872 - Woman of the Brave Heart. More than 50 percent of the Forest is comprised of former Klamath Indian Reservation land. Two purchases by the Federal Government - the first in 1963 of about 500,000 acres and the second in 1973 of about 135,000 acres - were combined with portions of three other National Forests to form the Winema National Forest.

Members of the Klamath Tribe reserve specific rights of hunting, fishing trapping, and gathering of forest materials on former reservation land. This forms a unique relationship between Klamath Tribe and the Forest for the management of portions of the Forest.

The 1.1 million acre Winema National Forest lies on the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountain Range in South Central Oregon. The Forest borders Crater Lake National Park near the crest of the Cascades and stretches eastward into the Klamath River Basin. Near the floor of the Basin the Forest gives way to vast marshes and meadow associated with Upper Klamath Lake and the Williamson River drainage. To the north and east extensive stands of ponderosa and lodgepole pine grow on deep pumice and ash that blanketed the area during the eruption of Mt. Mazama (now Crater Lake) nearly 7000 years ago.

History of the Winema NF
Cascade Range Forest
- 1893 to 1907
Cascade (South) National Forest - March 4, 1907 to March 2, 1908
Mazama National Forest - March 2, 1908 to July 1, 1908
Crater Lake National Forest - July 1, 1908 to 1932
Rogue River National Forest - July 1, 1932 to 1961
Winema National Forest - 1961 to 2002
Administratively Combined with the
Fremont National Forest, Becoming
Fremont-Winema National Forests
- December 1, 2002 to Present