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Video Shows How Climate Change Is Impacting Glacier National Park

Sep 19th - 10:27am | Steve Nelson

This is a nice video.  The ranger in the video is Bob Schuster, who has been working summers at Glacier since 1967.  I had the pleasure of being a member of his hiking groups and attending his lectures in 2009 and 2010, and apparently he is still going strong (and stronger than me at his more advanced age).  He works at Many Galcier, where the daily hike starts for the Grinnell G

Musings From Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park

Sep 19th - 10:26am | Rick B.

We did the bush plane flight 'over the top' when we went to Gustavus a few months ago, and everything about the trip was wonderful. Glad you got some of the fever.

Sep 19th - 08:32am | Lee Dalton

Thanks, Rick.  This was my first experience in Alaska and even with Skagway, it was incredibly astonishing.  I want very much to return soon.  When I do, I may even include Skagway and may stay longer than just 24 hours.  I didn't make it to Dyea, I didn't go looking for Orcas or humpbacks or salmon, I didn't do any real hiking, and honestly, I didn't really carefully explor

Sep 18th - 23:47pm | Rick B.

Lee - you're right, of course, but there is a lot more there for those who persevere to avoid the traps. I've got a wonky connection tonight and this is the fourth time I've tried to reply to you.

Sep 18th - 22:51pm | Lee Dalton

Yes, Rick, I knew you were going to be gone.  Otherwise I'd have hunted you down.  Sure would be fun to meet you in person.

Sep 18th - 22:16pm | Rick B.

Lee - I wish I'd still been there to buy you  cuppa, but I left the end of July for NOCA.  

Sep 18th - 19:31pm | Lee Dalton

I'm sincerely curious, Mega, what was it like then?  

Sep 18th - 19:11pm | Megaera

It sounds like Skagway has changed drastically since I was last there in 1973, before the Klondike National Historic Site even existed.  I'm sorry to hear it.  The trip we made that year piqued my interest in the gold rush, and, forty years later, I wound up writing a novel set in that time and place.

Joppa Church Open For Day-Use Only At Mammoth Cave National Park

Sep 19th - 08:36am | Lee Dalton

A question --- were those large braces part of the original church?  I can understand what they are supposed to do, but why are they there? (Sorry, I guess that was actually two questions.)  

Young Woman Dies After Being Submerged in Firehole River in Yellowstone National Park

Sep 19th - 02:47am | YoungPatty

Same thing happened to me.  I was young and extremely foolish back in 1973.  I joined many visitors in jumping off the cliff at the "swimming hole."  But then it rained for 4 or 5 days.  We went back and the river was so much stronger.  My friends warned me.  Like an idiot, I went ahead and body surfed through the canyon all by myself, out of view.  Whooosh!

National Park management

Sep 18th - 21:27pm | rmackie

Thank you Ray for an informative post. In my own limited experience I must agree. 

Sep 18th - 21:09pm | Ray Bane

Regardless of whatever they may be called, the primary issues remain implementation and accountability.  My first NPS career job was as an environmental planner working as an assistant to John Kauffmann, Chief Planner for what eventually became Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve.

Sep 18th - 13:54pm | Kurt Repanshek

That's not entirely true, as evidenced by the just-released GMP for Everglades and the one a bit earlier this year for Biscayne NP. And Ozark National Scenic Riverways produced a GMP recently, too, I believe. But more and more Foundation documents are appearing.

Sep 18th - 13:51pm | Anonymous

The NPS is no longer doing GMP's. They now do a Foundation document instead.

Sep 17th - 22:06pm | Ray Bane

Thanks for the feedback, Mackie.  I definitely will try to get Binnewies book.  In re: to park GMPs and other plans being shelved, sadly I have to agree.  The Park Service is required to formulate plans - but it they are not required to implement them.

Sep 17th - 21:26pm | Nature Jane

There is a lot to chew on here, particularly in terms of reference over the decades. How do these definitions and guiding policies play out on the nps ground currently?

Sep 17th - 21:10pm | rmackie

Nice post Ray. My own limid experience with long term planning processes is that, after all the effort, they tend to get shelved. Yosemite's GMPs are a classic example. The politics behind these efforts are interesting, the best book I have read on the subject, at least for Yosemite, is "Your Yosemite" by Bob Binnewies. I think you would find it very interesting. 

Sep 17th - 18:26pm | Ray Bane

There are a host of guidelines that park managers can use when faced with the need to make a management decision.  Most have been referred to by other commenters.  However, of them all the park General Management Plan (GMP) should be at the top of the list.  Each park is required to produce a comprehensive GMP that is intended to be the prime management guideline.

Sep 15th - 22:28pm | rmackie

Thank you John, I agree. As David Brower once stated, National Parks are "nature centers, not profit centers". The NPS must come to terms both with daily automobile congestion in the major iconic parks and the neo-liberal management policies of its major concessionaires. In an excellent book recently published, "YOUR YOSEMITE", by Robert O.

Sep 15th - 15:30pm | John D Lemons

I had two mentors when I was a seasonal ranger stationed in Tuolumne Meadows. One was William R. Jones, who was then Assistant Park Naturalist, and the other was Dr. Carl Sharsmith who worked for the NPS for over 60 years. My talks with Bill Jones often would take place sitting on some rocks by the Tuolumne River, or perhaps perched on one of the peaks surrounding the meadows.

Names Of Canyoneers Drowned At Zion National Park Released

Sep 18th - 10:38am | Doug Rich

A job well done by the rescuers from all the agencies.  A tragic incident for sure but at least the families have closure and all the parties have been recovered.

Fire Island National Seashore Officials Searching For How Best To Manage Breach

Sep 17th - 23:25pm | New old guy

Only a Fool would try to manage Mother Nature. !

Sep 17th - 06:53am | jan shannon

let it be mother nature is best at managing the earth and the needs for future generations. 

Body Of 7th Canyoneer Found At Zion National Park

Sep 17th - 22:55pm | Peyton Manning

can't expect the park to go after them just because a flash flood warning was issued 

Sep 17th - 19:16pm | Anonymous

Flash Flood Warning was issued at approx 2:00 PM, not at 9-10 AM.

Sep 17th - 15:48pm | BruinBelle

Permit was issued~7:30am, FlashFloodWarning issued~9-10am-FlashFlood occured~LateAfternoon/EarlyEvening; Knowing how deadly FlashFloods can be in the canyon, ParkAuthorities can certainly obtain an immediate helicopter warning in the afternoon hours?

Sep 17th - 14:45pm | Carol Barnes

Knowing how dangerous the slot canyons can be in AZ and UT .. I can't believe a tour compNy would take that chance. I know I never would, cuz death by drowning is my worst nightmare. When we were at Zion a few years ago, I climbed Angels Landing with no fear, but could only wade in the Virgin River till I was knee deep.

Update 3: Flash Floods Kill At Least Six In Zion National Park, One Missing

Sep 17th - 15:05pm | ray schwartz

This group was already in the canyon when a flash flood warning led park officials to announce they were closing their canyons. By that time, park officials say, there was no way to alert them to the violent floodwaters coming their way

Sep 16th - 16:55pm | Bryan

ugh, this so sad.  We just hiked near it two weeks ago.  A little rain came, which freightened everyone with good reason.  The water really has nothing to stop it and drains right in.  May they rip.

Sep 16th - 16:24pm | Megaera

The trouble with flash floods is the word "flash."  My heart goes out to the families of the people who died.

Sep 16th - 15:31pm | wild places

Sounds like it is up to 6 dead now with one still missing..... what a tragedy. This is from the Salt Lake Tribune (hope it is ok to post info from another site).

Sep 16th - 13:54pm | wild places

Very sad. I've never witnessed a flash flood in a canyon but hope if I ever do it's from the top. As someone who doesn't live in canyon country it is hard to grasp that a 1/2 inch of rain can be so deadly.

How To Make The National Park Service Centennial A Happy Birthday

Sep 17th - 11:37am | Rebecca Latson ...

I'm all for Lee Dalton's suggestion of respecting the parks and those who staff it.  I wonder how many people actually stop and think about that.  I try to pick up after others, but I admit to forgetting about thanking those people who clean up after *me* as well as others, and who are there to provide assistance and information.

Sep 16th - 02:17am | Ray Bane

Well said!  

Sep 15th - 19:55pm | Ray Bane

The reference to ORV use in Big Cypress Nat. Preserve is, unfortunately, all-too-common in other national parks, particularly those in Alaska.  Virtually every national park unit in Alaska experiences impacts from ORVs, including designated wilderness lands.  The modern four wheeler and other ORV variations became widely used in rural Alaska during the late 1970s and early 80s.

Sep 15th - 18:51pm | wild places

This is what would make 2016 bettter for me. That the NPS finally understands that more is not always better. As in more revenue, more visitors, more employees, more buildings, more conveniences and more parking lots do nothing to enhance the parks.

Life Buoyed By The National Parks

Sep 16th - 20:15pm | Anonymous

Deepest sympathies for the loss of your friend.

Creature Feature: The Common Raven is an Uncommonly Intelligent Bird

Sep 16th - 18:51pm | Annie Haines

Gary, thankyou so much for your account - are my eyes watering a tad? You are indeed blessed *) . I've recently started a tentative interaction with an adult pair whose nest is in a tree not far from my CBD-edge apartment balcony (Melbourne, Aust.).

Photography In The National Parks: A Cloudy Day In The Park Can Be A Photographer’s Dream…With The Right Filters

Sep 16th - 16:04pm | Smeisy

Thanks !  Good stuff

Why Your Call To Paradise Went Unanswered...

Sep 16th - 09:10am | Don J

Might have to resort to soup cans and string.

Photography In The National Parks: Your Armchair Guide To Arches National Park – Part 1

Sep 16th - 06:03am | Rebecca Latson ...

Thanks for the nice words, everybody!  I'm so glad that these guides may prove helpful to you.  Amarillobymorning, you made me laugh with your comment.

Sep 15th - 22:02pm | Lee Dalton

My last three attempts to get to Arches have met with defeat and forced cancellations.  I sure hope it works better next spring.  In the meantime, many thanks for some tantalizing glimpses of what I've been missing.

Sep 15th - 21:34pm | Rick B.

What nice work.

Sep 15th - 21:08pm | Amarillobymorning

So much better than the ones that show wonderful photo sites and then mention in passing that you have to rapell down a cliff or crawl through a cave to get there! Not all of us can outclimb a mountain goat! Please keep these coming.

Sep 15th - 19:08pm | Judy Miracle

thank you for this!  Delicate Arch proved too much for me so I am especially enjoying your pictures and photo advice.  Next visit will be even more exciting!

Remembering Flight 93 Through A New Visitor Center

Sep 15th - 22:20pm | Carolyn Martin

May their souls Rest In Peace

Hiker's Death At Grand Canyon Possibly Tied To Lightning Strike

Sep 15th - 18:32pm | wo;d places

Some of my most terrifying esperiences have been being caught in exposed terrain during a sudden and unexpected lightening storm. My sympathies to the family and friends.

What pressing problems face the NPS that the public is not aware of?

Sep 15th - 17:26pm | Nature Jane

Thanks, Kurt, I'll find it. Are there any other on the ground resource issues or initiatives that seem either particularly thorny or promising?

Treasure Your National Park Visits With A Photo Album From Shutterfly

Sep 15th - 09:32am | Lynn

Acadia National Park is one of the most beautiful places on the East Coast.  

Reader Survey Day: Should Appalachian Trail Be Rerouted Away From Katahdin?

Sep 15th - 05:24am | The Chief

I love how the modern response to issues seems to be the equivolent of sticking our tongues out saying "nah-nah-nah, you can't use it, you can't use it"  Grow up park director.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide

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