It's been said that in many national parks, visitors don't trek far from the parking lots. Which is a shame, as there's so much to see and experience in the backcountry. How far do you typically roam into the backcountry during your national park vacation?
Reader Participation Day
In mid-May, world-class climber Dean Potter and a friend were killed in a BASE-jumping incident in Yosemite National Park. A lengthy New York Times story examined the accident, and raised some contradictions in National Park Service policies.
Last month, during the Memorial Day Weekend, traffic waiting to enter Arches National Park backed up so far onto U.S. 191 that the Utah Highway Patrol temporarily shut off access to the redrock wonder. That dilemma prompted a suggestion by the park superintendent that perhaps the time had come to issue reservations for people hoping to visit Arches.
Higher entrance fees are spreading across the National Park System. Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Cape Cod, Capitol Reef, Yosemite, Shenandoah. The list of parks that are raising, or have raised, their entrance fees goes on and on.
There are more than a few experiences of a lifetime to be had in the National Park System, but arguably two right at the top of anyone's list would be a raft trip on the Colorado River through Grand Canyon National Park, and a multi-month sojourn along the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.
Reader Participation Day: Do Predictions That Glacier National Park Soon Will Be Glacierless Have You Planning A Visit Sooner Than Later?
With the possibility that Glacier National Park will be glacierless by as soon as 2020, are you moving up your plans to visit the park?
Summer really isn't as far off as you might think. With that in mind, is anyone thinking about camping? And, in particular, are you thinking about your favorite campground in the National Park System?
Recently, a website that will go unmentioned put together a list of "the nation's worst national parks." While that list was soundly, and justifiably, ridiculed and dismissed, it brings to mind this question: What are the nation's best national parks? If you were to compile a Top 10 list of national parks, which would you include on it?
Reader Survey Day: Should The National Park Service Angle For "A New Generation," Or "Go Back To Its Roots"?
The clock is ticking down to the National Park Service's centennial in 2016, and the focus of the PR campaign has been on attracting a new generation to the parks. But how far should it go in trying to lure millennials and a more diverse visitor? At least one Park Service veteran wants to see the agency "regain the spiit of John Muir and Teddy Roosevelt."