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Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?


For 364 days a year, the brain trust here at the Traveler tries to come up with thoughtful, occasionally thought-provoking, entertaining, and informative posts on the National Park System. Today we turn the editorial keys over to you.

Tell us what you want to read about, which units of the National Park System need a shout out or two. Do you want more wildlife copy, more "things to do," more of Professor Bob's quizzes or Ranger Jim's anecdotes, or more travel-planning posts? More hard news, more advocacy items, more Mystery Photos?

Give us a list and we'll post it on our monitors and see how many items we can check off in the weeks and months to come.


I would like more stories about adventures the NPT writers take into our National Parks.

(I forgot to include the Yellowstone National Park Forum in my last post)

"...adventure without regard to prudence, profit, self-improvement,
learning or any other serious thing" -Aldo Leopold-

Some of you may have read Off the Wall, which is a summary of all the deaths in Yosemite since its creation. There is even a chapter on the deaths involved in building the dam at Hetch Hetchy. In the foreward to the book, Mike Finley, former superintendent of Everglades, Yosemite and Yellowstone, writes that the book is not about death, but about life, giving us the chance to learn from the experiences of others. Bat (above) echoes this idea saying that these kinds of stories are warnings to subsequent visitors. I join him in encouraging Kurt and the other authors to continue posting these articles. If one reader is more careful the next time he/'she climbs the cables on Half Dome or walks up to Angels Landing or crosses a swollen stream, NPT has performed a real public service. That doesn't mean that we don't mourn the losses; of course we do. But in almost every tragedy in a park area, there is something to be learned.

Rick Smith

Garvin, with regard to all those croaking vacationers, I say that it's all a matter of perception. In my view, such sad stories are both an acknowledgment of victims and a warning. Not all the news coming out of the parks will be entertaining; some of it can be downright grim. I have high respect for the willingness of the editors to give us a dose of reality now and then, and I hope they will continue to do so.

I like the mix of hard news and entertainment information, and I agree with the postings about the need for more advance information about upcoming special events; if I had more notice, I might be able to witness some of these special park events. Also I like to read articles that just tell me what to do and what to expect when I visit a park; sometimes they offer tips I am not aware of.

About hard news, however, I have to admit that I get tired of all the "vacationer croaks in national park" articles (usually because someone fell off something high). These lead to a long thread of blamethrowing and, frankly, they're a little tedious. I guess you can keep offering them; I've just stopped reading them.

Are there any forums y'all currently use that I could join up with?

Yosemite National Park
Glacier National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park

"...adventure without regard to prudence, profit, self-improvement,
learning or any other serious thing" -Aldo Leopold-

I definitely understand that. I can see that there's really probably only a good dozen people here that would regularly post. And yes, wonderful spam. Are there any forums y'all currently use that I could join up with?

Marshall and Dave,

We did offer forums not too long ago, and ran into two problems:

1. Few people interested in parks visited them.

2. Spammers visited them often and created havoc.

We are redoubling our efforts to see if there's a way to block these spammers, but as it was, it became too much effort for little if any return.

I reckon Marshall Dillon has the best suggestion of a forum.

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