Lots of people are making good points. I would add that these parks are terrorism-free zones, at least so far. Some people apparently do think like that. There will come a day when people will need tickets to get into the big parks. I don't think we will ever see light rail inside a national park.
Dec 17th - 21:34pm |
Would have to agree with the gas prices freeing up income and visitors taking advantage of it. For some it might be years if they ever see the parks again and for some that's the only time they will see them.
Dec 17th - 17:23pm |
Sounds like your ad promos to visit National Parks has worked. Congrats! Now pull back and use some of that ad money to support the parks. We live an hour from Yellowstone and NEVER go in the summer; people are crazy! They walk right up to buffalo and then wonder why they woke up in the hospital.
This is a case of a supply and demand imbalance. We have had an essentially fixed supply of national parks for many years. Meanwhile, we have had growing visitor demand. No wonder we have crowding problems at many well-known parks.
Some good posts here. Yes, it is a seasonal thing, but the so-called shoulder seasons are getting longer and longer, and also need to be addressed. Also, last week in Paris, the world delegates stood up and cheered. We've ageed to solve global warming! Now, where did I park my jet?
I actually managed to get a reservation for a campsite in Arches. May 18 was the first available when I called two days ago. I have a few doubts about going, though. Will I be trampled by other visitors?
Dec 16th - 20:49pm |
This year I went to three new national parks, revisited several, and saw about a dozen other NPS sites. I've seen 46/59 national parks and about 100 of the 400+ overall. I didn't have a problem with crowds at any of them. I pay attention to weather, visitation statistics, etc. and work to avoid the crowds.
I find it absolutely fascinating (in a watching-a-car-wreck sort of way) that the only way the NPS seems to think when it comes to overuse of our parks is that they need more funding. Yes, the park service needs more funding. But not to facilitate too many people in the parks.
When an individual with NO wildlife and/or eco system experience is politically appointed as superintendent of Grand Teton National Park it makes sense that he would make reference to wolf jams which do not occur.
When gas prices return to "normal" (and they will), the parks will get another breather. Meanwhiile, we could always rebuild our railroads. . . Okay, there I go dreaming again. But how else will the problem ever be resolved? A reservation system remains highly unpopular, as do higher fees.
On December 3 of this month in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Daughtery, when responding to questions about the NPS not following FLREA in a pending case, said
" It is obvious the public doesn't agree with the NPS, but that doesn't matter.The public doesn't get a vote"
And man, was she ever right.
This seems to underscore comments I've been making the last few days that the NPS simply has to find a way to begin educating the public about challenges faced by parks as part of their interpretive activities.
Dang! The pictures showed up when I pasted them in, but apparently not when it got published. If you want to see them you can visit: http://switchbackkids.com/gators-osprey-treee-snails-oh-my-best-places-t.... ;)
SES is "Senior Executive Service"; the top level of positions below presidential appointees, and above the top of the GS scale (GS-15). They're across the executive branch, not limited to NPS or DOI.
As an NPS scientist, I find Green Thumb's comments at the top surprising and depressing.
Dec 16th - 11:34am |
Please forgive me for the "anonymous" tag on the response to d-2. I inadvertantly sent the message before typing in my name. Again, I appreciate the feedback from d-2. These issues need and deserve the thoughts and opinions of concerned supporters of the parks.
Dec 16th - 01:12am |
d-2, thank you for the response to my earlier posts. You obviously have intense feelings about these issues plus personal experience in caring for the parks, and I respect your point of view. Some of what you write I agree with. I had the pleasure and privilege of working with NPS personnel who personified the highest ideals of the Service.
Dec 15th - 23:09pm |
Ideal: The Organic Act Reality: Commercial interests/Congress/DOI
Examples: Susquehanna-Roseland 500kV transmission "upgrade", winner PPL/PSEG; Peninsula Power upgrade, probable winner Dominion Power.
Lesson: NPS will be led by the nose by commercial interests that have power in Congress and Department.
Please forgive my ignorance, but a whole passel of things have changed since I left the Service. What do SES and EVS and some other abbreviations mean? How about a quick explanation when things like that are first introduced?
Dec 15th - 14:13pm |
Birch, I believe it is absolutely reasonable to expect SES executives to take responsibilities for issues within the NPS. GS-1, 5, 6, 9, 12 level employees aren't afforded the same level of authority or power inherent in their positions. It isn't possible to create a culture of accountability from the ground up. In some cases, they may be the lowest level of management who can
Look at the Green Book. For FY 2016 there is 1 executive series and 24 SES. By contrast there are 55 GS-1's. There are more GS-4s & GS-3s FTEs, than GS-15, 14, and 13s. I don't think you can legitimately blame SES staff for the issues within the NPS. The issue is that there is insufficient funding to manage the parks. There is insufficient staf
Dec 13th - 20:30pm |
Lee, good question. Ultimately it comes from within - not from without - the National Park Service.
I have a home in Fish Bay. Though I understand local concerns, and share many of them. The area does need some positive development, and a Marina makes lots of sense. It will bring tourism to the island, money to local business, and increase property values that have declined. Employment on the island could use a shot in the arm.
Dec 15th - 12:46pm |
For many or more of the same reasons I believe the Coral Bay entire Ecosystem will b e adversely affected. The salt grasses, mangroves, nurseries, community of people will all be affected and damaged by any large project that will change the National Park in any way.
I agree with much of your comment, d-2. But I certainly wasn't suggesting didactic lectures by interpreters. Instead, what I think we somehow need to do is to find a narrative of some kind that be included as part of at least some interpretive activities. Something that will introduce visitors to the concepts of the Organic Act, Antiquities Act, and the challenges involved in
What a delight to concede to ecbuck in this case ! He didn't intend to put the Secretary of the Interior (or Alexander Hamilton) in jail for articulating the Program of the President !
Deepest apologies to ecbuck.
Thank you, d-2 for helping explain what I have been trying with limited success to say. I know what I want to say, but am having trouble finding ways to fully articulate the idea. Gotta think about it some more.
ecbuck's yearning is only to play gotcha, without regard to merit or appropriate occasion.
It is hopeless to try to engage in reasoned debate of intellectual or policy difference, when the only point is to play malign games.
Marc, I know that. But it is entirely possible to introduce the Act and the delicate balancing act it requires without becoming political. (Although some people might feel that ANYTHING said would be political.) The tactic used in a couple of very memorable patio talks at Colorado NM a few years ago was to simply read the Act, point out the contradiction it contains and then a
So is Jewel breaking the law when she talks climate change or Jarvis when he opposed Yellowstone paddling? There is so much other propaganda that comes out of the federal agencies I can't believe discussing the Organic Act would be illegal. Campaigning for a candidate or other ballot item on "company" time yes. Discussing an issue, no.
Dec 14th - 07:52am |
As a federal agency, the NPS and its rangers are banned from discussing political issues of their organic act with the public. So it should not surprise you, that you haven't seen any posters, leaflets or other material on the issue.