Proposed Backcountry Fee At Great Smoky Mountains National Park Would Be A First For Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers

A proposal to charge for overnight stays in the backcountry of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, if enacted, would create the first area along the 2,180-mile Appalachian National Scenic Trail where thru-hikers would have to pay to lay down for the night.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park Officials Proposing To Charge For Overnight Backcountry Use

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials are proposing to begin charging fees for overnight backcountry use, though in return they're promising better service in obtaining a backcountry permit and better ranger presence in the backcountry.
Best Easy Day Hikes Great Smoky Mountains National Park (Best Easy Day Hikes Series) Not a backcountry trail warrior? Don't have more than a morning or afternoon to take a hike? Then Best Easy Day Hikes, Great Smoky Mountains National Park is for you.

Curatorial Facility Proposed for Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Four Other Park Service Units

One facility, nearly 1 million artifacts and records, five units of the National Park System. That's a short overview of a proposed curatorial facility that would be located in Townsend, Tennessee, not far from Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Reader Participation Day: What Lures You To Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Fall Colors Or Backcountry Trails?

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is renowned for its fall colors...and it's also famous for its hundreds and hundreds of miles of backcountry trails. Which do you base a Great Smoky trip around?

Chimani's Library Of National Park Apps Continues To Grow

Chimani continues to grow its library of national park apps for iPhones and Droids.

Talking to Kevin FitzGerald, Deputy Superintendent at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Kevin FitzGerald in uniform
How does one become a national park ranger? Danny Bernstein talks to Kevin FitzGerald, deputy superintendent of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, about his career path.
Hiking North Carolina In Hiking North Carolina's Blue Ridge Heritage, Danny Bernstein comes to the task with a keen eye for details in general, but a specific eye for wildflowers.

Chimani Adds Great Smoky Mountains National Park To Its Library of National Park Phone Apps

Add Great Smoky Mountains National Park to the number of national park apps Chimani has in its growing library.

Pick Your Park At National Parks Traveler

Looking for information to help you plan your national park vacation? Today the Traveler is rolling out the first in a series of "park profile" pages to help you with your homework.

Where Can You See Wildlife Right Now: Fireflies At Great Smoky Mountains National Park

There is one place in the National Park System where the fireflies are almost like a well-conducted orchestra in that they all blink in unison. And if you head to Great Smoky Mountains National Park now, you just might see that performance.

Odds and Ends From Around the National Parks To Kickoff The Summer Travel Season

With spring still on its way to the Rockies and High Sierra, and summer well under way in some parts of the country, this seems a perfect time to honor all 2010 Appalachian Trail thru-hikers, consider ways to support national parks, and look at ways to enjoy the parks.

Trails I've Hiked: Spend the Night At LeConte Lodge In Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The payoff in hiking to LeConte Lodge in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is, in large part, the journey itself. Let Contributing Writer Randy Johnson lead the way with this video.

Walking Cape Hatteras National Seashore - Part 1

On the Dunes
The Mountains-to-Sea Trail in North Carolina travels the length of Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Danny Bernstein, the author, walked the beach and reports on her experience. This is part one.

Does Today's Technology Offer A Better Connection, Or A Disconnect, To Enjoying National Parks?

How much should the National Park Service rely on technology to connect visitors to the national parks once they reach a park?

"State of Birds" Report Points To Value of National Parks, Other Public Lands For Birds

The Interior Department's 2011 "State of the Birds" report focuses on the importance that national parks, and other public landscapes, provide for hundreds of bird species.

Updated: Tornado Damage Leads To Closure of Some Hiking Trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Damage inflicted by an apparent tornado has forced the closure of some trails in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Corporate Relations And The National Parks: Good Deal?

While corporate support can be vital to the health of national parks, whether to accept that support can be a challenging question, particularly in these times of financial stress and overall declines in charitable giving.

Camper Killed As Severe Storm System Thrashes Natchez Trace Parkway

On April 26th and 27th, a 300-mile stretch of the Natchez Trace Parkway was impacted by several major storm systems that inflicted heavy property damage and killed a camper in his tent.

Former Seasonal Employee At Great Smoky Mountains National Park Sentenced For Killing Wildlife In Park

Federal authorities say a former seasonal employee of Great Smoky Mountains National Park has been sentenced to pay $3,000 in fines and restitution, and ordered not to hunt or accompany anyone while hunting, anywhere in the world, for two years, for killing a black bear and white-tailed deer in a national park.

Construction Making It Tough To Drive The Blue Ridge Parkway This Summer

Cruising the Blue Ridge Parkway end-to-end won't be easy this summer due to construction involving 28 miles of the handsome stone guardwalls that line the route.

Inn Step With Asheville, The Blue Ridge Parkway’s Premier Place to Pause

Even if you don’t explore the Blue Ridge Parkway’s miles of easy “leg-stretcher” trails, this meandering, 45-mph-motor-trail delivers the explosive bloom of Appalachian spring right through the windshield.

Save Money On Your Next Visit To More than 100 Units of the National Park System

Interested in saving some money while enjoying the national parks? Click over to Eastern National from the Traveler and you can save 10 percent on your entire purchase of maps, guidebooks, and other interpretive materials.

White-Nose Syndrome Confirmed In Bats At New River Gorge National River

Another unit of the National Park System has detected white-nose syndrome in its bat populations.

Trails I've Hiked: Spruce Flat Falls in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Spruce Flat Falls is one of the hidden gems of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The hike is about a mile each way, not too rugged, but with a bit of a climb. The trail passes through a thicket of Mountain Laurel, which will be in bloom the first week or two in May. It's also a wonderful spot for photography.
The National Parks: Our American Landscape If the cover photo of The National Parks, Our American Landscape, doesn't encourage you to call in sick and head into the national parks, well, perhaps one of the hundreds of other images inside this book will.

Kicking Off National Park Week By Getting Dirty At Joshua Tree National Park

National Park Week arrived in Southern California with hot, dry, sunny weather, and a volunteer effort indicative of the good that can be done for national parks when the need is demonstrated.

Plans To Shut Down Coal-Fired Power Plants Should Help Clear Air Over Great Smoky Mountains National Park

While much of the haze that inspired the name for Great Smoky Mountains National Park is natural, more than a little is the result of pollution from coal-fired power plants. But a landmark agreement should soon lead to less pollution over the park, which will be good for both views and your health.

Mammoth Cave National Park Officials Taking Added Precautions Against White-Nose Syndrome

White-nose syndrome, a deadly disease that's spreading through bat colonies in the eastern half of the United States, has been detected in Kentucky, prompting officials at Mammoth Cave National Park to step up their safeguards against the disease.

Sixty Years Later, "Permanent" Oconaluftee Visitor Center Opens In Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Oconaluftee Visitor Center
The new Oconaluftee Visitor Center on the North Carolina side of Great Smoky Mountains National Park is airy, spacious and so beautiful.The museum focusses onthe cultural history of the park.