National Park Quiz 54: Authors

This week’s quiz will find out if you are as well-read as you think. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you write a ten-page essay explaining, with appropriate illustrations and citations, the difference between an author and a writer.
Yellowstone Treasures: The Traveler Thank goodness there still are independents taking pen to paper to produce guides to national parks. Forget the cookie-cutter approach, toss aside worries about over-emphasizing one area, never mind about catering to one demographic. Janet Chapple's Yellowstone Treasures is a must for Yellowstone National Park visitors.

Grand Teton, Yellowstone National Parks Offering Migratory Bird Day Activities

What better day to go on a ranger-led tour of birding sites in Grand Teton or Yellowstone national parks than on International Migratory Bird Day?

National Park Quiz 53: Castles

Castles here, castles there, castles everywhere. If you know your national park castles, you’ll do just fine on this week’s quiz. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you write on the whiteboard 100 times: “Medieval castle walls have visually distinctive battlements featuring alternating crenels and merlons.”

When Will the Super Volcano Beneath Yellowstone National Park Erupt?

When you fully appreciate that Yellowstone National Park is centered over one of the world's largest super volcanoes, you can't help but wonder when it might next erupt. This final installment of a USGS video series on Yellowstone touches on that question.

What Is The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory?

In this, the second of a three-part USGS video series on the dynamics of Yellowstone National Park's geothermal basement, the role of the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory is explained.

Yes, Yellowstone National Park Is Centered Atop A Living, Breathing Volcano

One of the most fascinating topics in the National Park System is Yellowstone National Park and its geothermal basement. Sometimes, as you're watching Old Faithful or walking through the Upper Geyser Basin, that the park is set atop a living and breathing volcano. Actually, a super volcano.

National Park Quiz 52: Celebrities

This week’s national park quiz marks the completion of one whole year’s worth of these puzzlers. Can you believe it? Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we'll sic the paparazzi on you.

Recovery Funds for National Parks Address Everything From Wastewater Plants to Monuments

Waste-water treatment plant overhauls. New boardwalks. Foot and bridle trail restoration. Roadwork. Attacking invasive species. These are some of the ways $750 million in federal economic recovery funds will be used across the National Park System.

National Park Quiz 51: Administrivia

This week’s quiz is about all things administrative. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you write on the whiteboard 100 times: The word administer derives from the Latin administratum, which means “to screw up beyond repair.”

Yellowstone National Park: No Cellphone Towers in Campgrounds or Recommended Wilderness, Limits on Wi-Fi

Yellowstone National Park officials, in an effort to limit electronic intrusions in the park, are banning cellphone towers in campgrounds and recommended wilderness and limiting wireless access in some hotels.

National Park Superintendents Have Authority To Allow Bear Spray

While federal regulations prohibit bear spray in national parks outside of Alaska, park superintendents have the authority to override that ban within their parks, according to officials at Grand Teton National Park.
For years the folks at Yellowstone National Park have been encouraging backcountry travelers to carry bear spray, as this video clearly shows. But would you be breaking the law by doing so?

Are National Parks That Recommend Bear Spray Encouraging You To Break the Law?

"Bear spray" long has been recommended by national parks in the West as a great deterrent against grizzly and black bears. A check of the Code of Federal Regulations, though, shows those parks just might be encouraging you to break the law.

National Geographic's New Geotourism MapGuide of Yellowstone and Grand Teton – It's Free

Grand Teton National Park
Planning a trip to Yellowstone or Grand Teton National Park? For some hints from the locals on where to go and what to do in the parks—and the surrounding area—you might want to get a free copy of National Geographic's newest Geotourism MapGuide.

Sour Economy Has Created Lots of Availability At Yellowstone National Park Lodges

It's long been written in guidebooks that if you want to stay in Yellowstone National Park during the summer months, you must reserve your rooms well in advance. While that's still a good idea, the sour economy has created quite a bit of availability for this summer, meaning your hunt shouldn't be so difficult.

National Park Quiz 50: Wilderness

This week’s quiz deals with wilderness in the national parks. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you memorize the entire list of designated wildernesses.

Springtime: Roads Opening In Yellowstone National Park, Bears Coming Out in Grand Teton National Park

Ahhh springtime in the Rockies, that wonderful season when plowers open more and more roads in Yellowstone National Park, bears come out of hibernation in Grand Teton National Park, and blizzards aren't out of the question.

Are Yellowstone National Park's Grizzlies Changing Denning Habits Due to Climate Change?

Are grizzlies in Yellowstone National Park altering their long winter's slumber due to a changing climate? Federal wildlife biologists think so, and want to take a closer look into this possibility.

National Parks: Valuable Assets In Efforts To Conserve Birdlife

Xantus's Murrelet, copyright Glen Tepke.
Peregrine Falcons, once teetering on extinction, are regulars at Acadia National Park. Bald Eagles, also once feared to be ready to blink out, have rebounded incredibly and are highly visible in many national parks. During a week-long canoe trip in Yellowstone National Park last fall I was blown away by the birdlife. But how is the overall "state of birds" in America these days? Unfortunately, things aren't entirely as they appear.

Interior Secretary Salazar Sends $15.2 Million to USGS Volcano Observatories to Improve Monitoring

The five U.S. Geological Survey Volcano Observatories are receiving $15.2 million to help upgrade their monitoring of volcanics across the West, in Alaska, and in Hawaii, including within Yellowstone, Mount Rainier, Hawaii Volcanoes, and Lake Clark national parks.
Yellowstone and the Snowmobile: Locking Horns over National Park Use What is the role of a national park? How should we value what lies within the boundaries of a national park? Those are simple and yet provocative questions these days. Some answers -- perhaps the answer -- can be found in a new book that chronicles Yellowstone National Park's bittersweet history with the snowmobile.

Is Winter in Yellowstone National Park Losing Its Allure?

For decades winter visitation to Yellowstone National Park has been a lifesaver for the December-March economies of gateway towns such as West Yellowstone, Gardiner, and Cooke City in Montana, and Jackson and even Cody in Wyoming.

National Park Quiz 48: Mysteries

This week’s quiz will test your knowledge of various and sundry national park mysteries. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you explain the difference between a mystery, a riddle, and an enigma.

Creature Feature: Yellowstone National Park, Home to Wolves, Grizzlies, Elk, Moose, and ... Crystal Salamanders

Yellowstone National Park is "charismatic mega-fauna" defined. Spend a handful of days in the park and you're likely to spy wolves, elk, grizzlies, black bears, moose and more. But salamanders?

Tracing The Postage Stamp-Sized History of the National Park System

You could call it a postage stamp-sized history of the National Park System, but the history of park scenes on U.S. postage is really quite colorful and carries a few stories with it.

What Should a Park Do With "Surplus" Wood? Yellowstone National Park Has One Answer

stack of firewood
Any NPS area that has very many trees will occasionally face a dilemma: what to do with the wood that results from activities such as hazardous tree removal, wildland fire fuel reduction and similar work? Yellowstone National Park has one solution—firewood permits.

Scientists in Hot Water at Yellowstone National Park—for a Good Cause

Scientist next to hot spring at Yellowstone.
Research projects have become a popular target for politicians and citizens concerned about government spending, but at least some studies do have practical applications. A recent example involves a project at Yellowstone National Park, where scientists have been in hot water for a good cause.

Designations Just One Example of Disparities Within the National Park System. Web Sites Are Another

The recent article about the roughly 30 designations that are in play across the 391 units of the National Park System highlights just one of the disparities that exist among units. Another example is the uneven quality of the 391 units' websites.

Yellowstone National Park Roads Opening to Cyclists Sans Automobiles

It's that perfect season for cycling in Yellowstone National Park -- the roads have closed to over-snow traffic, plowing is under way, and automobiles won't be allowed into the park's interior for a month or more.