The Obama administration might have lost its ambition to declare Utah's San Rafael Swell a national monument, but that doesn't lessen the beauty and richness of the landscape and what it encompasses.
Missing From the System
Valles Caldera National Preserve is an ecologically rich 89,000-acre swath of land in New Mexico, one with a long human history and with a spectacular history of volcanism. And it's an area that National Parks Conservation Association officials believe would best be served as a unit of the National Park System.VCNP_Report.pdf
With personal visits from Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis, has a Civil War-era fort on coastal Virginia become a slam-dunk to be added to the National Park System?
Not far from the bright lights and card tables of Las Vegas there's a stretch of desert so relished by developers that street names were attached to blueprints of suburbia. Now, though, that landscape and its unique collection of Ice Age fossils is being promoted as the country's next national monument.
There are many areas across the country -- both wondrous landscapes and rich pockets of American history -- that arguably would be strong candidates for inclusion in the National Park System. Fort Monroe, a Civil War-era fort in suburban Virginia, is one such candidate, as this story explains.
After years when few additions have been made to the National Park System, many important places are poised to be added. A huge dormant volcano in northern New Mexico might well become the first addition under the Obama administration.