National parks across the country are facing an epidemic of vandalism. Graffiti taggers have apparently moved past their typical urban canvasses and have started to target Mother Nature's constructions. This list is full of the worst wilderness vandalism stories. The crimes range from polluting, to spray painting, to bombing. Yes, you read that right—bombing.Wilderness vandals can face hefty fines and even jail time. Some of the people on this list were identified, but some of their identities remain a mystery. If you happen to know who is responsible for any of this wilderness graffiti, the Bureau of Land Management would love to hear from you.
Frat Bros Who Left Piles of Trash at Lake Shasta
Students from the University of Oregon left behind tents, coolers, bags of trash, and clothing at Shasta Lake after a trip that apparently involved a lot of drinking. Some of the coolers had greek letters on them, making it pretty easy to identify the culprits. The Lambda Chi fraternity, who left multiple coolers with their letters on them, issued a formal apology and offered to help clean up the mess.
The Woman Who Defaced Rock Outcrops at National Parks
Casey Nocket vandalized about a dozen national parks before she was caught. She used acrylic paint to apply her signature to a rocks in the parks, and then took pictures and posted them to her social media accounts, using the pseudonym Creepytings. She was eventually outed by a hiker and journalist.
Three Guys Who Killed Endangered Fish in Death Valley
Three drunk men recently trampled on a pupfish habitat in Death Valley National Park. Pupfish are an endangered species of desert fish, whose population was only about 100 at the time of this incident. Video footage shows one intruder wading into the water to go skinny-dipping and trampling on pupfish eggs, and a dead pupfish was found after the men left. The men also shot a gun, discarded beer cans, and vomited while they were in the protected area.
Whichever Jackasses Drove Across Death Valley's Racetrack
The Racetrack Playa is a dry lake in the northwestern corner of Death Valley. The area is home to the famous sailing rocks, which move across the Racetrack leaving trails behind them, like racetrack tire marks (hence the name).
On September 18, 2016, nature photographer Kurt Lawson posted photos of car tire tracks all over the racetrack, a protected place with large signs explicitly stating the playa if off limits to vehicles and pets. Based on the photos, there seem to have been multiple vehicles at the Racetrack, one of which drove all the way across the playa, another of which did donuts around a famous rock structure in the center of area. In addition to the tracks, Lawson found the initials "DK" carved into a sailing stones.