The dome of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial is one of the iconic landmarks on the Washington, D.C., skyline. In recent years, however, the gleaming white rotunda has become increasingly darkened, but not by dirt or mold, as the casual eye might suspect. The culprit is a colony of microscopic organisms, called biofilm, which adheres to stone surfaces and is proving a challenge as the National Park Service investigates how to treat it.
Parks in the News
A breakdown in the system, from the management team in place at Effigy Mounds National Monument to the National Park Service's Midwest Regional Office, led to a decade of mismanagement and desecration of Native American sites the monument was created to protect, stated a Park Service report analyzing the long-running incidents that was released Thursday.
Monsoonal rains have brought flooding to Zion National Park and sent dump-truck-size boulders down on the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway, causing park officials to close a portion of the road between Canyon Junction and the East Entrance.
Work is underway in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado to repair damage to trails that occurred in September 2013 when torrential rains swept the park.
More than a century ago, a woman named Josie Bassett Morris found a spot along Cub Creek in eastern Utah and made it her home, living off the land and running a ranch with no electricity, plumbing, or neighbors for more than 50 years. Now, that land is in Dinosaur National Monument, and the park will host an open house from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 13, at the pioneer’s historic homestead.
Work is getting underway this week at Point Reyes National Seashore in California to remove an estimated 500 tons of debris from Drakes Estero, which is part of the Phillip Burton Wilderness in the park.
In the wake of a dog being killed by a sow black bear, Shenandoah National Park officials are temporarily closing a section of the park to dogs. The closure affects the greater Dickey Ridge area (Mile 4.6 Skyline Drive) to reduce the risk of negative dog/bear encounters.
During the past decade, Alaska Department of Fish and Game has sponsored a predator control program that has killed at least 90 wolves that had home ranges within Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve, according to a report that says the National Park Service was forced to end a more than 20-year research project on predator-prey relationships due to those losses.
An explosion from Kīlauea volcano’s summit Saturday evening flung chunks of molten and solid rock onto the rim of Halema‘uma‘u Crater, turned night into day, and destroyed the power system for scientific equipment used to monitor the volcano.
After months of reconstruction, the highway leading over Jubilee Pass into Death Valley National Park is open to traffic. To celebrate, the National Park Service and Federal Highway Administration are hosting a ribbon cutting on Friday.