Recent comments

  • Reader Participation Day: Where Is The Best Microbrew In The National Park System?   2 weeks 2 days ago

    I believe the Alaskan Brewing Co. collects sitka spruce tips from Glacier Bay National Park for its Winter Ale...

    Is that legal?

  • Reader Participation Day: Where Is The Best Microbrew In The National Park System?   2 weeks 3 days ago

    I believe the Alaskan Brewing Co. collects sitka spruce tips from Glacier Bay National Park for its Winter Ale...

  • Reader Participation Day: Where Is The Best Microbrew In The National Park System?   2 weeks 3 days ago

    The most popular at Skagway Brewing Company, near Klondike Goldrush Ntl Historical Park, is their Spruce Tip Blond. Each spring they gather about 500 pounds of hand picked Sitka Spruce branch tips to use in their brewing, which gives it a bit of a tart flavor a lot of folks seem to enjoy.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    So true, EC. But tell that to the Seattle City Council. They ignore the war clubs on display in the Burke Museum, along with the rest of the history nobody likes. Of course, the war clubs and shields were only "ceremonial."

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Everyone since Columbus in an interloper.

    Why do you only go back to Columbus? The peoples before him were immigrants and conquerors too.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Why is it called "Big Cypress National Preserve" and not "Big Cypress National Recreation Area"? If Congress had intended recreation to have top priority, wouldn't they have chosen the latter name?

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Just for the record, every national park, preserve, historical site, etc., has had this debate. On Monday, in fact, the Seattle City Council voted to replace Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day. Debate resolved. Everyone since Columbus in an interloper, and that goes for gladesmen and crackers, too. Here is what we forget. In the maintenance of a civilization, in this case one including the national parks, we all have to give up something, including what we perceive to be ancestral rights. Unfortunately, our colleges and universities stopped teaching that long ago. It is all about me, me, me. Given "the system," as it were, future historians will understand why so many agreed to participate, but yes, those historians will be equally obliged to report how our blatant selfishness destroyed the "best idea we ever had," including democracy itself.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Honest answer - I can't speak for others but I would guess that Gladesmen's attitudes on race would vary due to many variables (education, family, peers etc.) we all are subjected to through life. It is great to hear you took the time to learn about our Gladesmen culture hopefully others will also if given the opportunity.

  • Reader Participation Day: Where Is The Best Microbrew In The National Park System?   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Did that new brew pub ever open on Bathhouse Row at Hot Springs NP?

  • Reader Participation Day: Where Is The Best Microbrew In The National Park System?   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Our vote is either for Cadillac Mountain Stout or Thunder Hole Ale by the Bar Harbor Brewing Company.

    www.barharborbrewing.com/products.html

    We may be somewhat biased because Acadia is always on our mind! But both brews have won raves at the World Beer Championships. Great idea for reader participation topic. Maybe we'll borrow the microbrew review topic for an Acadia on My Mind blog post one day and link to this NPT article.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    No, actually I did read the whole document including how it described that term and it's history. I wasn't throwing it out as an insult; it was a honest question in context.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Many people in American society have overcome previous prejudices such as racism and others but I'm sure all Americans haven't and probably never will - what else is new. I wouldn't focus on cracker or gladesmen with an off topic comment like that.

    Just to let you know - cracker culture actually refers to Florida cowboy/cattle culture that "crack"ed bull whips to move cattle out of cypress swamps hence the "cracker culture".

    Now one who is more familiar with urban living might very well be confused with this Florida specific term. I do believe the term cracker in the urban setting is a negative racist term aimed at caucasians - big deal - water off a duck's back to me.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Correct - I wouldn't agree that it evolved since your tenure in the Glades since it was there but invisible until 2011 when the study referenced below was finalized.

    The Gladesmen culture was validated to exist due to extensive comments I made to the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan's (CERP) Master Recreation Plan. At the link supplied here anyone who doubts my words can go to it and read the entire study and/or the letter I wrote in appendix A.

    Link - http://www.evergladesplan.org/pm/progr_master_rec_plan_gladesmen.aspx

    As the study describes the Gladesmen culture extends North to the Kissimmee River valley near Orlando Florida. The culture is a component or sub culture of the Cracker culture. We Gladesmen basically knew there was something more to our bonds with the Glades due to how hard we fight to maintain our access there but had problems pinpointing what it was - eventually some of us figured it out, I wrote the comments citing the US Army Corps violation of the National Historic Preservation Act as amended 2000 and the Corp took it upon itself to study us and did determine the Gladesmen Culture still exists and is alive but not as well as it could be if certain repeated federal plaintiffs (e.g. NPCA, Sierra, Sl Fl Wildlands whatever, biodiversity groups etc.) would go somewhere else to weave their misinformation into frivolous litigation that only saps tax dollars, wastes donors well intentioned gifts, steals other Americans dreams in the process.

    I still can't understand why folks like Adornato, Schwartz and their monied organizations keep coming after us. I mean their predecessors saw to it that in excess of 22,000 miles of previously legal travel routes (understand the area the trails take is about 1.3 % of Big C) were denied us but instead of smiling over their victory and going to the next place to steal local residents dreams they keep fighting over relatively insignificant 100 or 200 miles here and there in Big Cypress. I can only conceive of two reasons they continue attempting to wreck and ruin a small cultural community's "quality of life" and they are pure 100% bigotry and milking the Big Cypress donation cash cow until it's completely dry.

    One reading my comments might sense I have a bit of an attitude - they would be correct!

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Interesting read. I'm curious if the gladesmen you know have overcome the anti-black racism endemic in their 'cracker' roots.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    Mr.Denninger--I worked in Everglades for 3 years before BICY had its own superintendent in the early 80's. EVER managed the Preserve. During all that time, I never heard the term "gladesmen" although I attended meetings in the Preserve on hunting camps and ORV use. I suppose "gladesmen culture" applies to those people who ride ORVs in the Preserve although they certainly didn't appear to be a distiinct culture while I was there. Maybe it has evolved since then.

    Rick

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 3 days ago

    " I don't think ORVs have any place in preserves..." - Technically I believe the fact that vehicles being mentioned in writing within the establishment documents is what allows their (balanced) impact to avoid the impairment of resources argument.

    As a historian you might want to research Gladesmen Culture a bit. After doing so it would be nice to hear your view on Big Cypress management's decision not to allow the word "Gladesma(e)n in any public manner in their interpretation. That decision seems to fly in the face of NPS's responsibility to address cultural communities 50 years old or older that pre-date a federal properties existence. Our Gladesmen's culture has been devastated by these select few obstructionist organizations who hate it's existence and do anything within their means to destroy it. Thankfully our culture's resolve is strengthened by the continual attacks by those that are extremely prejuciced against it.

    That's alright though because as the truths slowly emerge from behind the smoke and mirrors they use it may be there existence which is based in large part upon mis-information that is jeopardized.

    I truly feel sorry for their members and donors.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 4 days ago

    I normally would not agree with Beachdumb and Mr. Denninger, but both of them raise a point. Environmentalists are losing perspective, i.e., consistency, when it comes to the public lands. One moment they are promoting them for the siting of renewable energy (a huge footprint) and the next they are attacking others for inappropriate access. Sorry, but I don't think ORVs have any place in preserves or national parks. Still, environmentalists need to look in the mirror. If the message they send allows their favorite intrusion, all the while attacking how others intrude, their credibility will be shot. If wilderness matters, then climate change is no excuse for altering it, either, whatever that wilderness is being called. All across the American Southwest, huge energy facilities are popping up like daisies. They worry me more than ORVs. I want Big Cypress to be a wilderness. But I want that for the desert, too.

  • Autumn National Park Tours No. 4: Color At Every Turn   2 weeks 4 days ago

    I believe October 2012...

  • Autumn National Park Tours No. 4: Color At Every Turn   2 weeks 4 days ago

    When was that picture taken??

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 4 days ago

    Some of the plaintiffs and intervenor's comments are laugable. The funniest comment is one by Mr Adornato - "The Addition Lands are a unique place filled with rare species, including the ghost orchid, and deserve adequate wilderness designation. At this time, though NPCA is evaluating its options and next steps." - with all due respect the Big Cypress and Addition are not really unique (one of a kind) since very similar habitat (woods ) are all over So Fla. As far as the "ghost orchid goes - they are all over the place including hundreds of them in the Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park to the West of Big Cypress, Ok Slough to the North, Picayune to the West - let's tell the entire story for a change Mr Adornato. Sometimes creative writers/speakers should open a dictionary once in a while so as not to "?unintentionally?" spoof people that might believe them.

    Folks need to start accepting the Big Cypress and Addition are NOT National Parks they are the earliest Preserves which mean one can use them and use them hard - just not to hard. That is the balance which folks sometimes don't get too easily. Kind of like the word "trammeled" in the wilderness act; had to look that one up myself to find out they aren't referring to trampling. LOL

    To ease the minds of those that worry a lot about ORVs in swamps let me tell you - the only area of the 729,000 acres in the Big Cypress swamp that ORVs can go are on ORV designated trails whether primary or secondary unless an emergency or gov't. ORV is involved. There will never be more than 7 or 800 miles of them ever authorized so maybe those who worry may now be able to sleep at night. Other than the area the trails take the whole place is a wilderness. Does anyone understand that - why heck they didn't even need any wilderness study since 728,200 acres are already wilderness without the process.

    Anyone giving money to these obstructionists/plaintiffs ought to demand a refund due to them misinforming their vulnerable contributors since they knew the above scenario all the time. LMAO - but is sad to see well intentioned trusting people being robbed continually by these slick talking shysters along with other people's (Gladesmen"s) dreams being stolen or delayed.

    My hope is that NPCA or Peer appeals and loses again as the truth slowly emerges from the swamp and the next legal decisions become precedent setting regionally or better yet nationwide.

  • UPDATED: Court Upholds National Park Service Decision To Put Recreation Above Preservation   2 weeks 4 days ago

    We have been losing access to public lands at an alarming rate. Finally, it is refreshing to see some common sense and a step in the right direction. The American people are loudly applauding this decision. We desperately need a change in NPS philosophy and the groups opposing this change should take thier fears elsewhere.

  • Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail At Great Smoky Mountains National Park To Close For Bridge Repairs   2 weeks 5 days ago

    Perhaps they still exist in other parks, but I'd forgotten about 'Motor Nature Trails' until reminded by this story. I think these interpretive oxymorons must date from the fifties or sixties?

    At Mount Rainier, the Westside Road once had numbered posts referencing a returnable brochure. All but the first three miles have been closed to public vehicles for about twenty years, supposedly because of flood hazard. Locals call it the Mount Rainier 'Country Club' because one must be a member to drive past the gate and because of the extensive 'administrative' vehicle use to ease the access to five backcountry cabins and the best (formerly) day hikes in the park.

  • Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail At Great Smoky Mountains National Park To Close For Bridge Repairs   2 weeks 5 days ago

    Trillium Gap trailhead is at the same location as the Rainbow Falls trailhead. The point along Trillium Gap trail that is 2.3 miles from the Rainbow Falls trailhead is simply the popular starting point for those looking for a shorter hike to Grotto Falls via the Trillium Gap trail.

  • National Park Basics For RVing Newbies   2 weeks 6 days ago

    And this point cannot be overemphasized - please practice simple driving? Turn radius, the difference between turning right vs left, braking distances at different speeds, mirror placement.

    All that simple stuff and more is so important. All you legally need is a driver's license to be legal; to be safe you need to practice and get competent.

  • National Park Basics For RVing Newbies   2 weeks 6 days ago

    A fine article, but I think there's a very important point that wasn't mentioned.

    New RV drivers or those come from flat country (no matter what kind of vehicle they drive) need to know that they MUST use lower gears when descending steep grades. I can't begin to count the number of times I've been behind an RV or vehicle towing a trailer when the smell of smoking brakes has been overwhelming. When brakes heat up, they often lose their ability to do their job. The results can be catastrophic.

    A runaway rig will provide a very memorable vacation story -- if you live to tell about it.

    It seems that the rental RV folks do a good job of teaching people how to bring the machine back in one piece and it's rare to smell one of them. But RV dealers? Apparently not so much. Trailer pullers may be even less likely to understand the need for low gears on downgrades.

    In any case, it can be a matter of life or death.