The winter shuttle buses are running again at Point Reyes National Seashore in California for visitors interesting in viewing northern elephant seals that come to breed on the seashore's beaches, or hoping to glimpse migrating gray whales.
Parks in the News
It hasn't been too long since the Elwha and Glines Canyon dams were demolished, yet already the ecosystem in and around Olympic National Park in Washington state is rebounding in ways that are amazing some researchers.
Growing up in the 1970s, I was unaware of the National Park Service, the system we refer to as the "national parks," or the job possibilities that included a career as a national park ranger. Friends of Saguaro National Park spent a lot of time this year working to inform younger generations of those possibilities.
Although grizzly bear attacks on people in Yellowstone National Park are rare, they draw world-wide media attention and can be quite traumatic for park visitors, staff, and the general public both locally and nationwide when they happen. One of these rare attacks occurred in the park during the 2015 summer season, resulting in a human death, killing of the adult grizzly bear, and placement of two cubs in a zoo. This event was tragic, but also very unusual in the ecosystem, especially in light of the number of grizzlies and humans that could overlap in time and space.
The delisting of the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear is imminent and this we should celebrate (‘’’’dancing’’’’). Now that our happy dance is complete, we must insure the grizzlies’recovery is permanent. To insure “continuity of achievement,” the grizzlies need a firewall to protect the success of this achievement from human foible.
Looking for a little mid-winter exercise? Consider experiencing the wilder side of Everglades National Park and Big Cypress National Preserve during a special ranger-led, Tamiami Trail Triathlon of paddling, hiking and biking.
The national parks of the United States are often compared to, and indeed inspire, works of art. In fact, the USGS has been regularly contributing new and updated works of art for the national parks—maps.
Canada’s national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas are important cornerstones of the country’s tourism industry. By September 2015, Parks Canada had welcomed close to 20 million visitors to parks and sites from coast to coast to coast, an increase of 5 percent over last year.
For many visitors to Yellowstone National Park, and especially those at Mammoth Hot Springs, the photograph of soldiers in old-fashioned uniforms standing with their heavily loaded bicycles on the white travertine formations of Minerva Terrace has become an iconic image.
From striking craggy pinnacles to cavernous underground lairs, the national parks are renowned for their grand wildernesses. However, the inhabitants of these landscapes – the wilds’ wildlife – are perhaps the most beloved of the parks’ draws. Animals of the national parks, including many threatened or endangered species, also provide a significant scientific service: They are indicators of the overall health of their environments.