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Xanterra Parks & Resorts Retains Concessions On Grand Canyon National Park's South Rim

Sep 14th - 00:04am | Norm H.

Yes it will be $100 mil lower but in 15 years Xanterra will likely build up many 10s of millions more in LSI.  Just $5 million per year in investment will put the LSI sell over $100 million next time around and $10 million/year would put the LSI over $200 million.

Sep 11th - 18:49pm | ecbuck

However, the LSI the next time the bid comes up should be $100 mil lower then it would otherwise be.  But I agree, something needs to be done differently to lessen the LSI impact on the bidding process. 

Sep 11th - 15:29pm | Norm H.

Am I missing something or did NPS just pay Xanterra $100 million to continue its operations at Grand Canyon National Park.  If NPS had just accepted Xanterrra in the first place it could have continued without paying down the LSI.  Xanterra can now use the interest on the $100 million to pay any increased franchise fee for the next 15years.

Sep 11th - 08:01am | Recent Visitor

Delaware North has done amazing positive improvements with the Yavapai half of the park.  Thank you for bringing them in.  The Yavapai lodge now has a great place to eat, a very nice coffee/snack shop, a tavern, and an improved registration desk.

Exploring The Parks: Musings From The Needles District In Canyonlands National Park

Sep 13th - 18:22pm | Les Hovland

We were  there in 2005 and had a great time, Tracy and Gary are wonderful folks. It's a total shame the State has closed them down.

How To Make The National Park Service Centennial A Happy Birthday

Sep 13th - 14:59pm | Acadia on my mind

One early birthday wish we'd add for Acadia National Park, which is also celebrating its Centennial in 2016: Get designated as an International Dark Sky Park, as Canyonlands and other national parks already have been.

Sep 13th - 11:08am | Danny Bernstein

* That Park visitors spend more time in national monuments, battlefields and historic homes. They should spend the time to listen to the stories, walk the trails and talk to rangers. The National Park Service has a story to tell but visitors should take the time to listen.Danny 

A Visit To City Of Rocks National Reserve

Sep 12th - 11:21am | Wallace Keck

The National Park Service is a very active partner in the management of City of Rocks National Reserve.  Technical assistance, funding, policy guidance, and higher resource protection standards are provided by the NPS.

Sep 11th - 13:04pm | Lee Dalton

That's true, tahoma, but it was the only way there was any hope of preserving it.  It was also a way for the State of Idaho to collect some money from the Feds.   Politics aside, however, it's a terrific place to enjoy.

Sep 11th - 09:59am | tahoma

With grazing, hunting, and state management, this sounds like an NPS unit in name only.

Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park Earns Dark Sky Kudos

Sep 11th - 07:47am | Kurt Repanshek

Will, here's a link to the park's press release: might call the park back and point it out to them, or call one of the contacts on the release and ask them what the specific dates in June are:

Sep 11th - 07:23am | Will from MN

You say there is an astronomy event for four days in June, but you don't say which four days in June, nor provide a link. When I queried the park's calendar, it said there are no events scheduled for next June.

Explore Ten Thousand Islands In Everglades National Park By Canoe

Sep 10th - 16:06pm | Rafael Montilla

I must go there!!!!

Wouldn't It Be Nice If the National Park Service Resumed the Distribution of Park Window Stickers?

Sep 10th - 14:27pm | Liz Berg

There are companies that print stickers for the parks....old and new designs. It would be nice if the visitor center shop would order several different kinds for their park

Clouds Over Badlands National Park

Sep 10th - 12:58pm | David Crowl

Nice Picture! Bad sky over Badlands.

Obama Administration Offers Year-Long Free National Park Access To Fourth Graders And Their Families

Sep 10th - 12:40pm | Lee Dalton

I have a fourth grade grand daughter who is thrilled to have her own National Parks pass.  I hope her parents take full advantage of it. As for those who are constantly harping about "evil" fees in the parks because they pay taxes to support the parks, I'll ask this question again:  HOW MUCH DID YOU CONTRIBUTE TO THE PARKS LAST YEAR?

Sep 10th - 12:12pm | Kurt Repanshek

All national parks, national forests ... basically all federally managed public lands open to recreation are covered by the passes. Here's a link with more info:

Sep 10th - 11:58am | ?

wish i could find a list of all parks, lands and waters that are participating in this. That would be really determine if I will even benefit from this free pass.

Push On To See Land And Water Conservation Fund Renewed

Sep 10th - 10:27am | ecbuck

Are you telling us thats okay Nope.  Have never made such a statement.  But then you haven't showed us where that has happened.

Sep 10th - 09:24am | Anonymous

Yet how often do they lie or ignore the law because they are trying to please people who have paid them big money?  Are you telling us thats okay

Sep 9th - 23:21pm | Rick B.

And their interests rarely coincide with the interests of the vast unwashed public.

Sep 9th - 22:03pm | ecbuck

And from wealthy individuals and special interests contributing most generously to campaign funds. So what?  Of course private individuals lobby for their interest.  That is quite different  than elected/appointed officials ignoring the law of the land and lying to the public. 

Sep 9th - 20:43pm | Lee Dalton

 pressures to appropriate funds according to the law come not just from Congress but from the White House, the beauracracy and the courts. And from wealthy individuals and special interests contributing most generously to campaign funds. Of all people, The Trump told it just as it really is.

Sep 9th - 13:32pm | ecbuck

And Congress is part of the Government. And while Congress is the ultimate body to appropriate,  pressures to appropriate funds according to the law come not just from Congress but from the White House, the beauracracy and the courts.  They all have their hands in this deception.

Sep 9th - 12:40pm | Rick Smith

Come on, ec, the "government" does not appropriate funds, the Congress does.  And I don't understand your last sentence.

Sep 9th - 11:22am | ecbuck

    I fail to see where you put the blame on the Congress Sept 8 7:34 AM  "Whos is "embezzling"?  Our government. "  Which of course includes (but is not limited to) Congress.  

Sep 9th - 10:09am | Rick Smith

Sorry, ec, I went back over the posts on this thread.  I fail to see where you put the blame on the Congress which is responsible for the shortfall in appropriations.  But, it really doesn't matter.  You now know where to focus your energy to get tha Act reauthorized, if for no other reason than the difference that money makes in our local communities.  Besides, it does

Sep 8th - 21:12pm | ecbuck


Sep 8th - 20:50pm | Rick B.

Rick...   Land acquisition is a special interest of real estate developers, you know.

Sep 8th - 19:03pm | ecbuck

 Why is it so difficult for you to understand this? What makes you think I don't understand it?  I was the first to point out the shortfall in appropriations existed and the first to place the blame on Congress. And, the first to point out that vast majority of the funds that are spent don't go to the NPS.

Sep 8th - 18:50pm | Rick Smith

ec-- There is no doubt that the embezzlers are our Representatives in Congress who use the money intended for the LWCF for other purposes.  And aside from the small amount that goes to land acquisition, the money is managed by local municipalities.  Why is it so difficult for you to understand this?

Sep 8th - 12:23pm | ecbuck

First, I would have the state and local programs turned over to the state and local governments.  For federal purposes, how about legislation that identifies the funding source and forces those funds to only go to the intended purpose. 

Sep 8th - 11:59am | Rick B.

Even damaged as it may be, it's a better way than - but I haven't heard you suggest anything to compare it to.

Sep 8th - 10:38am | ecbuck

Again, I have to ask, WHO is "embezzling" from the fund? Why do you have to ask again.  I already told you that.  Yet you continue to think that fund is an efficient way to acquire land.  

Sep 8th - 09:47am | Lee Dalton

  Again, I have to ask, WHO is "embezzling" from the fund?  It took me all of thrity seconds to find the answer.  Here it is, excerpted from a posting you can find at this web address: ::::::::::::::::::::::

Sep 8th - 08:38am | Anonymous

 it's the "gift that keeps on giving."  No argument with that.  The question is whether the LWCF is the best mechanism for making that gift.  If you  knew of any charity were only 33 cents on the dollar made it to the intended recepients, you would be screaming bloody murder. 

Sep 8th - 08:34am | Anonymous

So please share your knowledge with us.  WHO is embezzling this money.  We need to know so we can try to stop it.  Could it be Big Oil companies that resent anything that might cut a little into their profit margins?  Is it Congress?  Who?

Sep 8th - 07:28am | Jim Burnett

As to whether the impact of LWCF funds are "significant" or "miniscule," there's another perspective that's more important that the percentage of these funds in the overall NPS budget.

Sep 7th - 23:39pm | Lee Dalton

Okay, ec, how about telling us exactly WHO is "embezzling" from the LWCF?  In the meantime, I hope you had a great holiday weekend.  I spent part of it in a park that displays a sign that reads something like this: "Park Development funded by the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act."

Major Changes In Store For Grand Canyon National Park's Maswik Lodging Area

Sep 9th - 21:02pm | Pinecone

When will construction begin? Hasn't started yet.

Photography In The National Parks: Your Armchair Guide To Glacier National Park – Part 3: Many Glacier

Sep 9th - 17:53pm | Tom Bricker

Kudos on this post--takes me right back to my Many Glacier visit last year. 

Top 5 National Parks For Wildlife Lovers

Sep 9th - 14:41pm | Andrew Elston

Glacier should be on this list.  It was here that I and my companions saw a wolverine in the wild.  We were able to watch it from close range for about 20 minutes, and it was watching us, too. This was on the Highline Trail. We also had an opportunity to watch a young grizzly inspect a pit toilet in one of the backcountry camps.

Classic Fall Hikes: The Ice Age National Scenic Trail

Sep 9th - 11:59am | wild places

It's a great trail but still a long way from being complete so every bit of support helps. Thanks for including it Kurt. And happy belated anniversary. You run a great site.

Sep 9th - 09:54am | drew hanson

We love the Ice Age Trail.

"Senior Skip Day" In The National Parks

Sep 9th - 10:12am | Bernard Katz

I don't think any--or most seniors--are going to be tempted just for a "free day." For $10 as indicated, you can get a great bargain for entry into any park, any day. I got one years ago--when the were free! A year or so ago, I couldn't find it; bought another one. Ten bucks? The bargain of any lifetime, and money well spent...a pittance.

Life Buoyed By The National Parks

Sep 9th - 07:00am | Acadia on my mind

So sorry for your loss, Kurt. You are fortunate to have found each other, and to have had so many wonderful experiences together in the national parks. Thank you for sharing some of the memories of your great friend.

Sep 8th - 17:24pm | Rick B.

I always like the idea of taking a small token of a lost loved one with me when I make those future trips. I'm not embarassed to admit to having had late night conversations like "Well, Dad, you made it here after all."

Sep 8th - 15:26pm | Marty Koch

Simply beautiful Kurt.  My condolences.

Exploring The Parks: Big Bend National Park In December

Sep 8th - 19:17pm | amanda

I am currently considering visiting BB in mid-December but im a little nervous about how cold it is going to be...but after reading this article i do feel better about it, thank you!

Crossing The Border In Big Bend

Sep 8th - 17:11pm | Dennis Altom

We took the river crossing and guide across the Rio Grande into Boquillas Del Carmen in March after they opened the new crossing. The US side is operated efficently even though it is all automated. You have to check in with the Mexican Border patrol station in town before you can see or do any shopping (2 cafes/cantinas and gift stores).

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide

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