Recent comments

  • Building with Notorious History in Death Valley National Park Burns in Mysterious Fire   5 years 19 weeks ago

    The Barker Ranch should be preserved for its historical value.

    It was originally built in the late 1930's by a retired police office, whose goal
    of finding gold never really worked out.

    It sure seems like a great little vacation home for those who owned the
    property afterwards.

    The Barker Ranch, like the Geologist Cabin, and a few other buildings in the
    Southwest Corner of Death Valley National Park have existed for decades as
    shelters for visitors to use. They have been places where in an emergency,
    one could find water, shelter, and non-perishable food that has been donated
    by previous visitors.

    This is the culture of "desert people."

    This is a culture where people do look out for one another. If one's vehicle is broken down,
    you help them.

    If people don't live like that...guess what might happen if your vehicle breaks down.

    As for Manson, he hated what he called "desert people." He hated people in nearby towns.

    He was a thief, troublemaker, and did everything he could to stand out like a sore thumb.
    (guess who he was caught)

    The Barker Ranch should be preserved.

    The Barker Ranch is a historical place connected with the most vile crimes in US history, but
    one with an interest in history, I believe historical sites should be preserved for future generations.

    I believe the preservation of the Barker Ranch makes a statement.

    This statement is that despite the evil of Manson and his goons, this is still a beautiful place.
    The Barker Ranch is located in a beautiful little canyon, one that is full of life.

    Preservation of the Barker Ranch, and its reclaiming by "Desert People," (prospectors, 4wd enthusiasts,
    gutsy backpackers for example) is one way to punish Manson who once whined that "I'm not fit to live
    in your desert!"

    Right, "Charlie." I don't think Manson is fit to live anywhere, but when I camped out where his
    buggys once roared, the only noise I heard was birds chirping.

  • Judge Mulling Request To Address Yellowstone National Park's Wandering Bison   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Two bits of news ... I was away in the Bechler region of Yellowstone the last couple days and am only now just seeing this ...

    Buffalo Field Campaign has reported a buffalo from Yellowstone killed in Idaho this week by an APHIS employee.

    Secondly, as I said, I was in the SW corner of the park, and on my way to a hike along the Western Boundary Trail in Idaho - which begins at the Bechler Ranger Station, I saw three cows (cattle) inside the park boundaries between the boundary and the ranger station. I don't recall any news about them, how they were hazed out of the park, or shipped to slaughter. I doubt a lot of tourists realize that cows can wander into Yellowstone National Park, but buffalo cannot go to cowless areas of Montana (or anywhere in Idaho).

    Jim Macdonald
    The Magic of Yellowstone
    Yellowstone Newspaper
    Jim's Eclectic World

  • Reader Participation Day: Do You Believe There Should Be Overflight Tours of National Parks?   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Noise from the helicopters would shatter the peaceful beauty of Oregon's only national park

    Owen, you worked at Crater Lake, right? Did we work at the same park? Do you honestly believe the Waragonian's line about "peaceful" beauty? Did you miss my last post with the pictures of noisy road and Rim Village construction? How about the photos of the noisy boat tours?

    I don't want any extra noise at Crater Lake any more than the next person, but for Pete's sake, can we please stop repeating the myth that Crater Lake is pristine and serene? That's a big, warm load of BS.

    The "peaceful beauty" is shattered everyday by thousands of cars, several boats, dump trucks, submarines, research boats, tour boats; my god I don't have the energy to repeat the HUGE list of things that have been shattering Crater Lake's mythical peace for the last century.

    The myth must stop.

  • The First Family Plans to Visit Two Western National Parks Next Weekend   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Mr. President, I hope you and your family have a great visit. It would be nice if you could be accompanied by your nominee, Jon Jarvis, for the office of the NPS director.

  • Free Weekends AND Free Tours At Mammoth Cave National Park   5 years 19 weeks ago

    The cave is a great attraction, but the park itself is an awesome and magnificent little gem. I of course have been on more than one cave tour, but its the park I love so dearly.

  • Snowmobiles in Yellowstone and Environmental Extremists in the Obama Administration   5 years 19 weeks ago

    I am a die hard environmentalist, a Life member of the Sierra Club, and a generous contributor to environmental causes. I also own snowmobiles. I have snowmobiled in Yellowstone and it is an incredible experience. It should be on everyone's "bucket list". I can tell you that I did not see any indication that anyone was going off into the back country and everyone was very respectful any wildlife they encountered. There are park rangers on snowmobiles with radar guns strictly enforcing the speed limits and ticketing anyone who drove outside of the lines. I was given a stern warning for parking with one of my front skis on top of the berm.
    We rode the entire loop from West Yellowstone, where 10 of us rented machines, in one long
    8+ hour day. It was great to be able to stop where and when we wanted to, as opposed to being in a snow coach.
    I would not want to deny this experience to anyone who wished to enjoy it. I am for limiting the number of
    snowmobiles that can enter per day, and requiring that they be four stroke rather than two stroke machines.
    They are much quieter and way less polluting.
    There are limits on the number of permits to raft the Colorado River, another thing that should be on your bucket list, and limits to the number of back country permits issued in many parks. I think that with sensible regulation we can all enjoy and preserve our National Treasures for many years to come.

  • The First Family Plans to Visit Two Western National Parks Next Weekend   5 years 19 weeks ago

    I will be in grand teton and yellowstone next week but I am leaving on the 15th THANK GOD seeing him would ruin it

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    As with Health Care Reform, the public debate on global warming is fraught with mis-information. Some of this is organized and funded by industry, some stems from the influence organized public relations campaigns have had on uninformed opinion, including the opinion of so-called scientists.

    It's amazing to me how many who comment in opposition to anthropogenic climate change discount official sources of information, including the detailed report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) because they are "government funded." The report of the IPCC is quite thorough. It addresses the important role that the sun plays in determining climate change over the past decades and centuries. However, the IPCC concludes that there is a 90% chance that the shifts in climate are due to increases in green house gases emitted from human activities.

    Thus, my chips go with Kurt, Matt, and Ray. Nevertheless, I hope Haunted Hiker is right and that the glaciers will one day return, within my limited lifetime.

    Owen Hoffman
    Oak Ridge, TN 37830

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Yesterday I hiked through a record breaking August snowstorm in the High Sierra.

    I pushing my chips toward the Beamis and Whitten corner.

    The glaciers will return, perhaps with a vengeance, and we may rue the day.

  • Happy Birthday to the National Park Service Arrowhead Emblem   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Maria: The official Arrowhead emblem items(s) you want to buy are, as far as I know, sold by the NPS Arrowhead Store only to authorized purchasers -- a list that is restricted to park rangers, ex park rangers, park volunteer workers (V.I.P's), park partners, and other specified classes of personnel who work in or for the national parks in some capacity. The general public cannot buy official Arrowhead items from the Arrowhead Store. I suggest that you shop for suitable substitute items the next time you visit a national park with a well stocked bookstore. You can also shop online for some items that aren't restricted. I'm sorry it took so long to answer your comment, and that I could not provide a more helpful answer. Maybe a helpful Traveler reader can help you with your search. Anybody want to chime in on this? Good look, Maria.

  • Snowmobiles in Yellowstone and Environmental Extremists in the Obama Administration   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Not limiting access to people, only use of snow machines! I believe snowshoeing and nordic skiing are activities allowed in many areas. Limited mobility? Use the snow coaches.

  • Snowmobiles in Yellowstone and Environmental Extremists in the Obama Administration   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Amen, Mark, amen, amen, amen. Keep the darned snowmobiles out! The snow coaches are there for visitors, and the snowmobilers can't follow the rules. It happens all over---the snowmobilers (and ATVers) think they own the place, leaving the rest of us smelling their fumes, listening to their noise, and repairing their damage to the environment.

    lasergirl
    New Mexico

  • The Park Under the Bridge   5 years 19 weeks ago

    I would note that Fort Point is under the authority of the Superintendent of Golden Gate National Recreation Area. The rangers who provide services there are rotated from the GGNRA staff.

    It's also really windy there. Anyone visiting should bring a wind-resistant jacket and maybe a cold-weather hat. Once I was watching (from what used to be the rooftop gun battery of Fort Point) a sailboat that ran into one of the piers of the Golden Gate Bridge. The wind just kept on pressing the boat into the pier until the operator could get the sail down. By then the Coast Guard had already arrived and I suppose they were required to escort them back to port and take a report.

  • National Shooting Sports Foundation Upset Over Grand Teton National Park's Suggestion That Lead Ammunition Is Health Threat   5 years 19 weeks ago

    There may never have been a documented case of HUMANS getting lead poisoning from lead ammo but it is way past time that some humans realize that there are OTHER CREATURES on this earth that ALSO MATTER ! If some of you don't mind eating lead that is fine with me but I want to protect the innocent.

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Wow, a lot of misinformation here. Come on, just think about it. When you lay in bed at night, if you put on another blanket you are more insulated and get warmer. That's just what happens. We are adding (literally) tons of greenhouse gases to our atmosphere. Greenhouse gases trap heat. Shocking, we're getting warmer as we further insulate ourselves. That's what greenhouse gases do. To deny that is to deny basic laws of physics.

    I find it amazing to read the round-about conjectures trying to explain our increasing warmth as NOT being the result of adding that extra layer of insulation. Occam's Razor and all.

    I am also fascinated to read that some believe that government scientists with guaranteed year-to-year funding regardless of results are supposedly less-believable sources than scientists funded by oil companies and the like. If a chemist from this company (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Lakes_Chemical_Corporation) doesn't believe in human-caused climate change, surely it can't be true!

  • National Shooting Sports Foundation Upset Over Grand Teton National Park's Suggestion That Lead Ammunition Is Health Threat   5 years 19 weeks ago

    No studies?!? Look on the left side. Yes, this is primarily about condors, but surely they aren't the only animals affected.

    http://www.azgfd.gov/w_c/california_condor.shtml/

  • National Shooting Sports Foundation Upset Over Grand Teton National Park's Suggestion That Lead Ammunition Is Health Threat   5 years 19 weeks ago

    There is "science" to support any claim anybody wants to make; whichever side you may be on. As to the statistics supporting anyone's claims, as Disraeli said, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    How strange! On the front page of the El Dorado News-Times (my hometown paper) THIS morning there is an article about a speech given by a retired chemical engineer, Nick Macchiarolo. Here is a quote " Follow the money, check the FACTS and review the history of the world about global warming: it is an inevitable fact of nature, with no solid corroborating contribution from human activities." He goes on to point out that there have been seven ice ages and at least seven periods of global warming - "and we are still all here." The last ice age, "the little ice age" ran from about 1400 to 1850, ending with a period of global warming - without global warming we would all be under 2,000 feet of ice! Lief Erickson named Greenland because of all of the GREENERY - the subsequent ice age ended that. June 24, 1974 - the Time magazine cover story was on the threat of another ice age because the U. S. temperature went down by 0.15 degrees (while CO2 levels increased from 290 to 330 PPM). The bottom line seems to be, you can't look at the last 30, or 50, or 200 years - this is a long SLOW process and it has been occurring for hundreds, nee thousands, of years and we will continue to go through these cycles!

    Kyoto, according to "Nature" in October 2003, will change the temperature by 0.05 degrees - who cares?
    The computer models the government uses to predict the temperature change over the next 100 years vary by 400% - who cares what they say?
    Why are the ice caps in Antarctica not melting? Wouldn't global warming affect the whole globe?
    "Nature in 2001 details the impact of the sun on global climate and temperature AND we cannot do anything about what the sun does.
    Greenpeace, The Sierra Club, The Natural Resources Defense Fund and others only exist to get federal funds to fight global warming - do you think that they would suggest that it is a problem we cannot fix?
    We spend $25 Billion on this - wouldn't that money be better spent elsewhere? We can do something about people starving or tyrannies in the world, we cannot even predict what the Earth's temperature will be in 20 years, much less a hundred or a thousand!
    This is my last entry, you cannot change a mind that is firmly entrenched in the gospel of the day...

  • National Shooting Sports Foundation Upset Over Grand Teton National Park's Suggestion That Lead Ammunition Is Health Threat   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Anyone that claims there is no science behind these decisions clearly has not ever looked for it. There are quite a few scientifically sound studies that have been thoroughly reviewed by the scientific community at large and deemed worthy science.

  • Judge Mulling Request To Address Yellowstone National Park's Wandering Bison   5 years 19 weeks ago

    I've never heard anyone say they wanted to visit the state of Montana to see cattle but apparently (again) the Montana Livestock Assos proves they will not be happy until the wildlife (especially the ones who eat grasses) are gone and they have total control of the lands (even though most of it belongs to all of us Americans).

  • National Shooting Sports Foundation Upset Over Grand Teton National Park's Suggestion That Lead Ammunition Is Health Threat   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Sounds to me like the National Shooting Sports Foundation is just another organization with their heads in the sand. When science proves something they don't like, they just push that head a little deeper !

  • Humane Society of America Critical of Culling Elk in Rocky Mountain National Park   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Elk were eliminated from the Rocky Mountain National Park in 1870 by commercial hunting. By the turn of the century the gray wolf was gone, a key preditor for elk in this area. In 1914, twenty-eight elk were transplanted to this area by the request of local sportsmen. In 1915 Rocky Mountain National Park was established. Hunting is prohibited in national parks. Without predators or hunting the population exploded. By 1933 biologists expressed concern about vegetation conditions. Starting in 1944 park rangers began to use lethal reduction (shooting the elk) as a means of population control. This was the policy untill 1969 when policy changed. The policy was natural regulation, meaning do nothing and everything will balance out. This policy has been in place untill now.
    The recomended elk population in the park is 1200-1700. In 2005 the park was estimated to have 3000-4000. Densities as high as 260 elk per square mile and the highest ever recorded. If you enjoy seeing elk in the park culling or regulated hunting would be a great economical way to control the population.
    Or would you rather see starvation, disease and destruction of a habitat. Kurt Repanshek - natural regulation has been proven not to work.

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Pardon me butting in again, but I recently read an article in the June 29, edition of the New Yorker titled, "The Catastrophist" by Elizabeth Kolbert. It is a profile of James Hansen, Director of NASA's Goddard Institute. Hansen is actively working to educate the public and political leaders on perils of human forcing of climate change. He pulls no punches in presenting scientific findings tracing global warming with human activities and that postponing actions to significantly reduce CO2 emissions verges on the criminal.

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    Actions have consequences. Over the past 200 years, and particularly over the last century, humans have extracted, burned and returned to the active atmosphere billions of years of carbon accumulation. From a geological perspective, it has been a massive, planet-wide carbon eruption. To believe that human forcing is of no significance in climate change seems illogical.

  • Interior Department Releases Study That Tracks Decline Of Glaciers in Alaska and Washington State   5 years 19 weeks ago

    With all due respect to Jimi I would rather put my faith in the facts as presented by scientific entities like NASA and USGS. The junkscience site just doesn't inspire my confidence. There's so many disclaimers in it, it's no wonder that whoever wrote it wasn't even confident enough to put his name on it. I think there's plenty of documented proof out there of how human activity degrades Earth's biosphere. No amount of smoke and mirrors will make it go away. As for predictions, there's so much we DON'T know that our best guess may as well come from a fortune cookie.