You are here

All Recent Comments

Allies Of The Earth - Railroads And The Soul Of Preservation

Nov 19th - 15:20pm | Owen Hoffman

Very nice review Lee.  Very nice response Ron.  In addition to population growth as an issue, what about near-term issues that will immediately put pressure on parks.  I think of Baby Boomers reaching retirement age, and I think of a time, hopefully in the not too distant future, when American workers earn as much paid leave as their European counterparts.

Nov 19th - 14:47pm | Alfred Runte

A terrific review, Lee. Thank you! Everything you say is true. At some point, the historian becomes the document, provided he or she gets to live that long. I (we) grew up as America transitioned from railroads to automobiles. Looking back, I see things I never would have "understood" had I not witnessed those changes myself.

Nov 19th - 13:15pm | rmackie

Thank you Lee, a very interesting post. I share many of your views on Dr. Runte's book. railroads were replaced by auto's, as the auto gave more freedom and access along with the infrastructure to support them, good, bad or otherwise. I do agree that light rail, high speed rail, etc. has a place in our transportation planning efforts, but as you point out, there are issues.

Around The National Park System: Vandalism, Record Visitation, Possible New "Parks"

Nov 19th - 11:22am | rmackie

Agree Lee. On a another subject, I just finished reading a wonderful jewel of book, "Nature Noir" by Jordan Fisher Smith. "Extraordinary... a penetrating ranger's eye view", Outside Magazine. Or "Smith writes about the natural world with more grace than anyone since Edward Abbey". Newsweek.

Nov 19th - 09:12am | Lee Dalton

Hey, Wild, no need to apologize for speaking the truth. Sorry, I just couldn't resist. Keep smiling.

Nov 18th - 21:01pm | BG Davis

Rick, you are not alone.  It is truly shameful that Casey Nocket seems to have gotten away with felony vandalism. I hope that everyone who cares about nature and our parks will contact the National Park Service and urge them to prosecute this vandal to the full extent of the law. Here's what I have sent:

National Park Service Moves To Restrict Certain Sport Hunting Practices In National Preserves In Alaska

Nov 18th - 20:48pm | Richard Taylor

Thank you!  

Higher Camping, Entrance Fees Coming To Sequoia And Kings Canyon National Parks

Nov 18th - 18:56pm | Kurt Repanshek

Page Overview-55, Wild Places:

Nov 18th - 18:39pm | wild places

Does anyone have a breakdown of the funding sources the national park receives? That is, what percentage of the overall budget comes from taxpayers, entrance fees, lodging, private donations etc.? I agree with EC, these hikes are hardly modest and seem to have hit nearly every unit in the park system (at least it feels that way)

Nov 17th - 09:20am | ecbuck

This modest increase in fees  While I don't have a problem with the increase in fees, I find the use of the word "modest" somewhat baffling when talking about a 50% increase for  cars, 60% for the annual pass and 150% increase for motorcycles.  

Pruning the Parks: White Plains National Battlefield Site (1933-1956) Was a Stillborn National Park

Nov 18th - 03:54am | Wayne

Hi Bob. I believe Washington was chased all the way to Pennsylvania after White Plains. He then U-turned and recrossed the Delaware, eastbound, from Pennsylvania in a surprise attack on Trenton, then another at Princeton. These attacks were not preceded by a winter encampment.

Effort Under Way To Create Big Bend International Park

Nov 17th - 23:30pm | Tony Cortez

I would love to be able to hike in the Sierra del Carmen mtns.

Reader Participation Day: How Was Your National Park Vacation This Year?

Nov 17th - 19:57pm | Michael Kim

I live in AZ & went to both sections of Saguaro National Park & Petrified Forest National Park & Tonto National Monument this year. I love these parks but don't understand why dogs on leashes are allowed anywhere in Petrified Forest National Park, they are not allowed on the trails in Saguaro National Park.

Bangor Newspaper Endorses National Park For Maine

Nov 17th - 13:53pm | Andrew Young

Hurrah!!!!  NOT. She does not own the land she is trying to donate. She only owns 88,000 acres of the 150,000 yet she wants to draw a circle around other peoples lands. Keep you hands off. The Maine woodlands are already open for recreation. 10 Million acres of forest land with a centuries old tradition of public access. Biking, birding, canoeing, fishing, hunting.

Postscript Op-Ed| Railroads And The National Parks

Nov 17th - 09:41am | Jim Miculka

The National Park Service, in partnership with Amtrak, has created the Trails & Rails program in which National Park Service Volunteers provide interpretive programs on select Amtak routes.  Reconnecting the national parks to railroads is made possible through this program which reaches a diverse population of Amtrak passengers.

Everglades National Park Ready For Busy Winter Season

Nov 16th - 22:46pm | Anonymous

Glenn Gardner is actually an NPS volunteer at Everglades -- and yes, an extraordinary photographer.  -- Bob Krumenaker

Nov 16th - 12:54pm | Kurt Repanshek

An NPS staffer by the name of G. Gardner, Katy. It is gorgous.

Nov 16th - 12:41pm | Katy Dimos

Who took that amazing photo.  The Everglades is a national treasure.

Exploring The Parks: Musings From Chaco Culture National Historical Park

Nov 16th - 19:20pm | Dr. E. Desgrange

Helloooo, Recently, I had the privveledge of a visit with G. Cornucopia, was in my opinion, amazing! The ancient ruins of Chaco Canyon - OH My goodness! Speaking from the stand point of an ancient Native American decent, I found this sight to be  - Stupendous, Outstanding, Amazing... I send my Blessings to those who do their best to keep it alive - My heritage is alive!

Musings From Glacier Bay National Park

Nov 16th - 17:01pm | Jim Burnett

Great story, Lee, and I agree with your size-up about this wonderful park. My wife and I were able to spend four days there in early June several years ago, and were blessed with sunny weather most of the trip. There was a nice crowd of about 8 or 10 for the guided walk we joined, and we also enjoyed several short hikes on our own.

Nov 15th - 11:20am | Lee Dalton

Thanks, Wild.  One thing that struck me about Glacier Bay was that many visitors seemed ready and eager to partake of interpretive programs.  (After all, there's no TV)  I think my solo trip with Amy Brodbeck was really due to rain.  When I left the lodge and headed down toward the ranger station at the boat dock, there were five or six others with me.  But it was raini

Nov 13th - 11:34am | wild places

Thanks for bringing back some good memories Lee. And unlike most parks you cannot do a drive through in Glacier Bay nor do you have to worry about crowds. It really is an amazing place. I also highly suggest you go back to see the whales. While I also appreciate your love and support of the parks but forgive me if I point out your conflicting statements.

USFWS Urged To Find More Reliable Method For Counting Yellowstone Grizzlies

Nov 16th - 14:34pm | Dave Smith

Finally!! Every conservation group should write letter insistin that a DNA population study on Yellowstone grizzlies is a prerequisite for delisting. There have actually been 2 DNA studes in Montana. One for the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem, and one for the Cabinet-Yaak. 

Every Kid In A Park Gets You A Lift Pass At Yosemite's Badger Pass Ski Area

Nov 16th - 07:28am | Derrick Crandall

More information will be available soon, but concessioners across the nation are embracing Every Kid in a Park and its efforts to help every 4th graders discovering learning and fun in the outdoors.  Concessioner efforts will include support for school visits, for visits by 4th graders with their families and visits to parks by youth organizations with Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.

Deer Culling At Valley Forge National Historical Park Leads To Better Forest Growth

Nov 15th - 05:57am | roslyn

The park is a dead zone.  The real attraction to inner city adultd & children were seeing the deer not your grasses. It's so sad driving through the park knowing its a killing zone of wildlife   Why do you have to kill living creaures that can't defend themselves so your grass looks.  

Huge Crowds Prompt Return To Daily Shuttles At Zion National Park

Nov 14th - 10:12am | tahoma

My past requests for financial information from NPS management were almost completely ignored here at Mount Rainier.  Their favorite press release excuse for the accelerating public closures here in recent years is "insufficient staff'', despite an almost 50% increase in FTE's (personnel funding).

Nov 14th - 09:31am | ecbuck

you have to dig into it to see where the money is allocated.  Unfortunately "transparancy" is a word unfamiliar to the parks.  In 1998 legislation was passed that required them to publish their budget.  I would like to know if, when and why that was dropped as few if any parks comply.   

Nov 14th - 09:23am | Kurt Repanshek

No hard answer without calling NPS, EC, but don't forget the sequester knocked funding levels back a bit, and so while there might be a percentage increase, has it made up for that completely and actually moved budgets forward from before the sequester? And if so, how much?

Nov 14th - 08:44am | ecbuck

Can anyone explain why with the 2015 NPS budget up 1.4%, 2016 request up 34%, visiitation up 17% and fees up 20% why would Zion's budget be down 6%?

Nov 13th - 22:55pm | Lee Dalton

Some readers may find this article interesting.  It's from the Kane County newspaper in Kanab, one of the gateway towns to Zion and a hotbed of anti-federal lands folks. But it sounds as if this meeting was quite amicable.

Television Ad Campaign Launched To Prevent Overhaul Of Land And Water Conservation Fund

Nov 13th - 14:29pm | ecbuck

Rick, I don't have a clue what you are talking about. I present the facts with citations.  I have opinions but if  I am wrong, I admit it (cost of grazing for example).  I don't make baseless accusations.  I don't engage in personal attacks - at least not as initiator.  I don't dismiss an argument based solely on its author.

Nov 13th - 13:45pm | Rick B.

What's it like to live in a world where, as long as anyone here can recall, you exhibit zero self doubt and absolutely zero admission of error? All the same time lecturing one and all - fellow adults with education and experience and stuff - lecture one and all about their own errors.   What a special world.

Nov 13th - 13:18pm | ecbuck

Nope.  And never claimed that was the case.  All I have claimed is that this bill doesn't do what the ad (and many on this blog) claim.  

Nov 13th - 13:16pm | Rick B.

So what you are saying is that you cn't prove there were no backroom deals in this.

Nov 13th - 11:29am | ecbuck

Alfred, I generally agree with you other than I don't think Bishop is gutting the LWCF. However, dispite some conservative credentials, you are a Federal lands guy at heart so I can see how you would feel that way.  

Nov 13th - 11:20am | ecbuck

This revision chips away at the original intention/mission of the LWCF

Nov 13th - 11:19am | Alfred Runte

Why is anyone in the least surprised that Congress is all about backroom deals? Take Obamacare; take green energy. All began as backroom deals, as well. To visit Congress is not to find them debating the merits of ideas on the floor. That C-Span speech is just for the constituents. If the camera panned the room, the seats would be empty.

Nov 13th - 10:22am | Kurt Repanshek

EC, while we have yet to see amendments, any thoughts on how the PILT program found a home in LWCF? Someone might "infer" it was a backroom deal.But here's the larger problem: This revision chips away at the original intention/mission of the LWCF, just as Congress chips away at the Social Security program by diverting funds elsewhere. No doubt, there are other examples.

Nov 13th - 10:08am | ecbuck

Huh??? You are a big Fed government guy - that is giving Congress more power.    backroom deals and amendments unrelated to bills 

Nov 13th - 09:15am | Lee Dalton

"PS, what is a contradiction is your constant ranting about Congress but wanting to give them more power at the same time." Huh??? And when even Paul Ryan cites backroom deals and amendments unrelated to bills to which they are attached as one cause of American lack of confidence in Congress, it would seem I'm on pretty firm ground with that.

Nov 13th - 09:01am | ecbuck

 It's those sneaky backroom legislation by amendment deals that have given so many Americans so little confidence in Congress Legislation by amendment has nothing to do with allocation of the $900 mil.  No contradiction on my part just more empty accusations on yours.   

Nov 13th - 08:45am | Lee Dalton

Comrade, when you wrote: "True, Congress has seldom if ever appropriated the $900 million.  . . .  the blame isn't Bishop's bill but rather Congress as a whole."

Nov 13th - 08:35am | ecbuck

Ol' Lester Dethloff And your other mentor Alinsky told you, when you know you are wrong, change the subject or personally attack your opponent.  When you can contribute more than empty accusations or personal attacks.   Let us know.  

Nov 13th - 08:31am | ecbuck

Kurt, as to your intentions, I can only infer based on your statements (current and previous).  There is minimal reduction in actual land acquisition.  The by far larger changes this bill implements is a shift from fed to state land acquisition and from "other" to education and innovation in the offshore drilling business.

Nov 13th - 08:07am | Kurt Repanshek

EC, no ideological objections to fossil fuels. You are quite handy at assuming what others think. That would be like me saying you're really pleased with Bishop's revision because it strips at least a third of the money away from conservation projects, which you support because you don't like conservation. 

Nov 12th - 22:43pm | Lee Dalton

Ol' Lester Dethloff, the crusty, dusty old pilot who taught me to fly, gave his students some wonderful advice.  "When ye get t' thinkin' ye absolutely know yer right, yer likely t'be dead pretty quick."

Nov 12th - 21:58pm | ecbuck

As directed by Congress and their lobbyists. Nope.  Congress writes the Executive executes.  The only way Congress can direct is by rewriting the legislation.  Are you absolutely sure of that?  Until you provide evidence to the contrary - absolutely  

Nov 12th - 21:54pm | Lee Dalton

Congress writes the laws. Correct. The executive branch (and its unelected bureacracy) executes them. As directed by Congress and their lobbyists. Bishop will have no ability or slither space to game the system.  Are you absolutely sure of that? 

Nov 12th - 21:31pm | ecbuck

That gives them all kinds of slither space to game the system.  Once again you have proven the failure of your civics teacher.  Congress writes the laws.  The executive branch (and its unelected bureacracy) executes them.  Bishop will have no ability or slither space to game the system.  

No Charges Yet In "Creepytings" Vandalism Case That Left Painted Images Across The National Park System

Nov 13th - 08:59am | Creepy Thongs

Any updates to this?

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide

Recent Forum Comments