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Traveler's View: Wilderness Hanging In Balance At Big Cypress National Preserve

Jul 31st - 10:03am | Longstreet

I have to admit I'm disappointed in both my colleagues and in the inconsistencies in Washington. Kudos to Supt. Carlstrom and his staff at Biscayne for following the law and policy and doing what is possible to "conserve unimpaired." Unfortunately, the leaders of Big Cypress have succumbed to the pressure from the locals and the state.

Jul 29th - 14:34pm | Rick Smith

Bad decision by all involved. I am certain this will end up in court.

Concessionaires Push Point That National Park Service Lacks Business Savvy

Jul 31st - 08:55am | ecbuck

Then perhaps Ron can explain why we should be more concerned about a clean stove and pot than a garbage dumpster and food storage boxes?

Jul 30th - 13:32pm | Rangerskip

Ron, I suspect you know your way around bears fairly well after spending most of your career in Yosemite! Skip Prange

Jul 30th - 12:40pm | Julie Doyle

Please reflect on your own statement: "...locked dumpsters and locked food storage containers accomplish that..."

Jul 30th - 08:09am | Anonymous

Julie you are not listening. They don't need a keen sense of smell. The place is already wreaking from the garbage dumpster and food storage. If the bears are going to be drawn to odors, it isn't going to be from my stove and pot.

Jul 30th - 07:33am | Julie

A bear’s sense of smell is at least seven times greater than that of a bloodhound. They can detect even the smallest amount of food residue on items, no matter how thoughtfully a camper may have cleaned them.

Jul 29th - 23:19pm | ecbuck

So tell me Ron, why was my stove and coffee pot an issue?

Jul 29th - 22:27pm | Julie Doyle

Thank you, I will definitely look for that book. Things have come a long way since Yellowstone's bear "lunch counter"! I can certainly appreciate the efforts of those, like Rachal, who put their field of study to use to promote change and awareness. Thanks again.

Jul 29th - 21:07pm | rmackie

Julie, excellent post. There is an book, "ALL ABOUT BEARS", by Rachal Mazur, just a very educational read on the issues of bear management in our National Parks. Rachal is a pro, highly educated, been working on this issue her entire career.

Jul 29th - 16:37pm | ecbuck

"While this regulation and/or its enforcement may seem “inconvenient”, it is just one of the many efforts of the National Park Service to do its job. Which in this case, was keeping you and other campers safe,"

Jul 29th - 16:22pm | Julie Doyle

It is unfortunate that you were “annoyed” by being warned about your grill. When you could have been thankful that this individual was looking after your safety, as well as letting you go with a mere warning, and not an expensive citation (and/or confiscation of your grill). This is a NPS regulation.

Jul 27th - 08:59am | ecbuck

"What's the net benefit?" A legitimate question.

Jul 27th - 07:07am | Alex Worthington

Increasing the operating hours that parks are open will certainly increase revenues for concessioners, and the franchise fees to the parks. But what about increased operating costs and maintenance due to the longer hours. What's the net benefit?

Jul 26th - 08:28am | ecbuck

"Limiting visitation or services, for any variety of reasons, across the park system, is essential for preserving these places." Could you explain how lengthening the hours to visit Alcatraz or the Statue of Liberty (the two examples cited in the article) is essential for preserving them?

National Park Service Says Ranger Ranks On Decline

Jul 31st - 08:52am | Anonymous Ranger

Actually, I should have clarified. Permanent Rangers who particularly worked their way through years of seasonal positions, survived by either ben lucky or pursuing training and experience wherever they could find it, rather than the Pro Ranger program, are far more experienced than the typical nearby police officer.

Jul 31st - 08:41am | Anonymous Ranger

That's too bad you feel that way. Because, actually, most permanent Rangers are far more experienced regarding their park and crimes within it, as well criminal law and tactics, than their local counterparts, particularly in wilderness and rural areas. They also have access, like 4WD, and knowledge of access to areas that most of the local PDs do not.

Jul 31st - 05:45am | Joseph Hayward

In many parks there are local police forces available and they are the ones who end up coming to the rescue when there is a real emergency. They have more experience and they are the ones I am going to call when the you know what hits the fan!

Jul 30th - 18:53pm | NCali Ranger

It's entertaining that the PEER study was about NPS Law Enforcement positions yet the National Parks Traveler picture is of an interpretive ranger. This just further shows the lack of respect of law enforcement in the NPS. Many in the NPS see LE as an evil, and in many parks an unnecessary evil.

Jul 29th - 10:21am | Skip Prange

The NPS and it's Superintendents have always had a love hate relationship with its cadre of Protection Rangers. Law Enforcement in the parks has always been considered a necessary evil by park managers. And with the ever shrinking federal budget, law enforcement continues to be short changed in many of the parks.

Jul 28th - 14:05pm | Anonimity

Keep drinking that conservative kool aid buddy!

Jul 27th - 20:34pm | Anonymous

The respectful and intelligent people have left or are leaving. I've noticed this change at two local parks. They are tired of environmental agenda dictating them and the leftist politicization. What do you expect?

Jul 27th - 19:35pm | Alfred Runte

What happened to all of that beer money?

Living History Program On Frontier West Offered At Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site

Jul 31st - 06:16am | estle denny

The event will help people to be thankful for the progress man has made since then.

Appellate Court Affirms National Park Service Immunity In Deadly Mountain Goat Attack

Jul 30th - 20:29pm | Anonymous

at some point, man has to be responsible for his actions. Especially when he/she does follow the rules

Jul 30th - 14:38pm | Tanya Rogish

I can't understand how a judge can compare a wild animal in its natural habitat to that of an aggressive dog whose owner didn't properly handle. This is a wild animal and any human entering a national park should understand that and keep clear of it. The mans actions in protecting others was heroic, but ultimately his decision and not the parks fault.

Glacier National Park Fire More Than Half Contained, Possibly Human-Caused

Jul 30th - 18:38pm | mandy Cripps

We were at the St Mary's visitor centre today. It was not closed.

Climber Who Abandoned Companion In Grand Teton National Park Cited For Disorderly Conduct

Jul 30th - 17:31pm | cj stevens

I don't understand the kerfuffle. What am I missing? "Not long after the device was activitated, rangers aboard a Teton Interagency helicopter hovered over the duo's location, and Mr. Selwyn signaled that he wanted to be rescued, the release said."

Grizzly Bear Shot and Killed By Hikers In Denali National Park and Preserve

Jul 30th - 12:46pm | BK

When it comes to personal self-defense,I'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6.By the way,the forest DOES NOT belong to the bears,or any other animal for that manner.Neither does the forrest belong to the hikers either.If the bear had been 100 yards away, I would have fired into the air to scare him off. How quick we are to judge when it is not our life that is at risk.

Delaware Water Gap NRA Working On How Best To Handle Visitation In A Changing World

Jul 30th - 08:53am | Nicholas Homyak

A title change; away from recreation area to National Park may instigate a different mind set. Nothing to lose. Congress should wake up and provide more funding for LE personal. Signs are also important shy of having Rangers present; No Littering for example, or no camping no fires. Would think too much goes for road repairs and trash removal, litter abatement is another story.

Building A National Park From Scratch

Jul 29th - 13:05pm | SmokiesBackpacker

Dear Anonymous, During the shutdown the citizens of TN did pay for the operation of the park. However,

Jul 28th - 22:30pm | tomp2

The long-winded anonymous addressing SBP was me (tomp2). Somehow when I log in from one computer I get to be tomp2, but logged in from another computer I am an anonymous coward.

Jul 28th - 14:41pm | Deb

Let me know when your park is up and running because I WANT TO VACATION/CAMP THERE. :-)

Jul 28th - 12:35pm | Anonymous


Jul 28th - 01:34am | tomp2

The questions somewhat imply a natural resources / scenery park, not a historic / cultural park, so that's how I'll answer.

Jul 27th - 15:32pm | Bill

Sweet, if you don't like it then stay out. More room for me!

Jul 26th - 20:56pm | SmokiesBackpacker

If you were given 500,000 acres from which to design a national park, how would you do it, where would you start? It's already happened, Kurt. It is called the Great Smoky Mtns National Park and the land was given to the NPS by generous residents of North Carolina and Tennessee. And now we have to pay the NPS to use it.

Jul 26th - 12:02pm | NormalReactionS...

Great questions. The new park has to be accessible to be enjoyed. So, I start with infrastructure. I am mostly a developer with the primary goal of protecting. I'd try to do spoke and hub. Leaving sections more wild and some more developed. Try to give something for everyone.

Reader Survey Day: How Far From The National Park Parking Lot Do You Venture?

Jul 28th - 17:51pm | snowwhite

My husband and I travel to a National Park once a month all over the country. We typically hike about 10 to 12 miles each day, carefully planning our itinerary. It is our experience that the trails are deserted after about 1 mile from the visitor center or road. For us, that is perfect as we enjoy the solitude of our beautiful parks!

Jul 28th - 14:08pm | Brown

I am not brave and don't go too far, especially in the West. Thank goodness there are beautiful things to see close to the lots. We take boat rides, Ranger tours, and hikes of less than 3 miles. There are good things for all of us to see, thanks to fine planning by the Park Service.

Musings From John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

Jul 28th - 13:28pm | Arthur Foley

Very informative article! I visited John Day Fossil Beds in 2002. I can attest that it is located in a very remote area of the state. I recall it being a long drive to Prineville for gas and dinner!

Op-Ed|How Eco Is Ecotourism?

Jul 28th - 10:49am | Alfred Runte

And when Johannes, aka Al Gore, flies home, he writes a book about global warming. The penultimate paragraph here says it all. It is the many destructive, "profound" changes to the natural landscape that have caused the problem in the first place.

Jul 26th - 10:26am | tahoma

This article does a good job of illuminating impacts of tourism at the host location, but whether your chosen destination is 'eco' or otherwise, just the indulgence of travelling to it, especially by air, might have the largest worldwide "consequences":

Photography In The National Parks: How It All Started For Me

Jul 28th - 07:47am | Anonymous

I enjoyed this article, appreciated the insight, photos and inspiration tips.

Treasure Your National Park Visits With A Photo Album From Shutterfly

Jul 27th - 20:28pm | Micharel Maine

I really enjoyed the park at St. Augustine and the help I received from the Park Ranger. Thanks

Yellowstone National Park Concession Worker Missing In Yellowstone River

Jul 27th - 13:09pm | JohnKC

These aren't "kids". They know better but choose to either disregard warnings or safeguards for their personal safety. All accidents are preventable.

Jul 26th - 01:17am | david kornelussen

with the abundant search by air ground showing no results it's possible that the water temp, exhaustion of the struggling, and light frame of the person missing, that his body might be being held in an undercurrent or whirlpool behind a boulder/tree in a heavy current area.

House Subcommittees Dissecting National Park Service, Searching For Solutions

Jul 27th - 11:08am | rmackie

Anonymous, an excellent postin , you have it right on my own view of the issue.

Jul 27th - 08:54am | dm

Megaera and tomp2 have funneled down to the core points. The childish name calling of the other comments is pitiable.

150 Miles Long and Still Counting - Jewel Cave National Monument Passes a Milestone

Jul 25th - 23:10pm | Dee R

I did the Spelunk tour in the early 90's. I see they have made the group smaller now, and still make you crawl the block on the one patio. Big tip. Crawl it on your stomach, that's the position you will be in when you go through the Brain Drain.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide