Recent comments

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    The history behind some of the great American (and European) artists and there paintings which made the national parks such a grandeur to see...like Albert Bierstadt, Horance Kephart and others. Poets and writers would suffice as well.

  • Driving Trail Ridge Road and Other Fall Travel Information for Rocky Mountain National Park   5 years 22 weeks ago

    The plows are out today, or at least will be shortly! Snow all the way down into the foothills around Denver, and a bit in Estes Park. Nice photo ops for green to yellow aspens with an inch or 2 of snow.

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Sorry Bob--

    My bah humbug was pretty lighthearted, too, even if the last day of summer was more like the first day or spring in weather as well as day length around here.

    I try to see both sunrise & sunset outdoors for both equinoxes and solstices, preferably from a National Park. I recommend that over sending cards, although you've convinced me to make sure I add a good beer to the tradition. [I'm partial to ales over lagers, but both New Belgium & Fort Collins Brewing have nice Octoberfests this year.]

    What's your take on the SC DOT plans to rebuild the causeway for 601 through the Congaree floodplain?

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    As a regular reader, I appreciate all the hard work that goes into this website. Thank you! Wht I would like to see are more articles on the lighter side. These are the kind of articles that make you feel good about our national parks or make you want to visit or learn more about a particular park. There is no doubt that our parks are being threatened from many fronts, and there is a lot of politics involved. And there is no doubt that this is important and this is the appropriate place to talk about these issues. But sometimes, I just like to feel good after I read an article and not feel like I have to go out and change the world. So, what I would like to see is a little shift in the balance to articles on the lighter side.

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    I just discovered this site recently, and I am thrilled that you guys are doing this. In other words, thanks! What I'd like to see somewhere -- and have thought about doing myself, but lack a forum for it -- is an occasional in-depth analysis of some individual parks. Is the park staffed properly, what are its strengths and weaknesses, what would you change if put in charge and given enough money, what would your priorities be if the money weren't there, how is the concessionaire doing, what should a visitor do on a short visit, what should they do on a long visit, etc., what do the park employees feel about the place, etc., etc., etc. This doesn't fit your format, but it's the kind of "white paper for the public" that I'd love to see done by an independent group, followed up by an NPS response.

    Otherwise, I hope you find the opportunity to expand and do more to-do articles, off-the-beaten-path features, and wildlife and ranger anecdotes. The mystery photos do nothing for me, but others may like them.

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    First let me say that I really enjoy reading your forum. I especially enjoy reading about the current happenings at the National Parks that I am familar with. I also like subjects where you get comments from your readers. So, I would like to see more subjects that ask for reader feedback. I thought of a weekly list of five things. Like your five favorite hikes in Glacier or your 5 favorite spots to take photographs or the five trips you would love to take but you know you never will. It could be as broad or narrow as you like.

    Keep up the good work. I look forward to reading more.

  • National Park Mystery Spot 3: Do the Math   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Yes, McKinley was the 25th president. No, President McKinley is not the mystery spot.

  • National Park Mystery Spot 3: Do the Math   5 years 22 weeks ago

    I don't know a specific name for this, but is it President McKinley? He was the 25th President, but his tomb is somewhere along the Ohio and Erie Canal Historical area. Maybe someone can come up with the correct name, if this is the answer.

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Often times I will read a great article ie Condor release. However, the date is always 3-4 days away (too soon to try to plan a trip for the event) It would be great if there were some avenue in which to learn about events that are a norm for a park such as annual events etc (even if specific dates aren't included but maybe general time frames) so that we can plan on attending those events. One year I read about the Padre Island Turtle release but only after all the releases were finished. We did go the following year (and it was wonderful) but it would be great to know about events sooner. I,too, want to thank you for a great forum. It is a part of my daily reading and I always look forward to all the interesting information.

  • National Park Mystery Spot 3: Do the Math   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Nope; it's not Arlington National Cemetery.

  • National Park Mystery Spot 3: Do the Math   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Arlington National Cemetery

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Gosh, tomp, this whole thing was supposed to be a joke -- just a little lightweight fare to start the day. But it looks like I may have tapped into a reservoir of pent up emotion. Maybe it's time to turn this whole thing over to Glenn Beck.

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    Thanks for the encouragement, Kevin. Your comment about the valuable contributions of the Traveler community is spot-on. The breadth of experience and expertise that this community represents is amazing, and being able to draw on it is certainly a main reason to make Traveler part of your daily routine.

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 22 weeks ago

    I'm partial to Sam's Boston Lager myself, Bob, but somebody digging through my fridge might come up with a bottle of October Fest (or is it Octoberfest?) if I happen to buy the variety pack. Now then, on the matter of the autumnal equinox. I do realize that many people forget to schedule parties, send greeting cards, and exchange "Happy Autumnal Equinox" greetings when they meet. We here at Traveler are trying to fix that, and we'd appreciate your help.

  • Reader Participation Day: What Aspect(s) of the National Park System Do You Want to Read More About?   5 years 22 weeks ago

    More articles on things to do, please. In a forum like this, they are especially enjoyable and helpful, because the community rounds out and adds to the story. Based on information obtained here, I would like to re-do certain trips where out of ignorance, I did not hike the best trails.
    That being said, the variety of articles makes this something to at least check in on daily.
    Keep up the good work.

  • Lost to Hurricanes, the Flamingo Lodge at Everglades National Park Will be Hard to Replace   5 years 22 weeks ago

    April, I'm sure you're not the only one feeling a deep sense of loss over the demise of Flamingo Lodge. Despite the various and sundry complaints (usually involving mosquitoes and sticky heat), the Flamingo Lodge was part and parcel of a fondly remembered place and time. Like loved ones who've passed, the Flamingo Lodge is kept alive in our minds and in our hearts.

  • Dog Owner Cited After Pit Bull Attacks a Deer at Great Smoky Mountains National Park   5 years 23 weeks ago

    For goodness sakes, Leash laws started being enacted over 30 years ago, because many dogs WILL CHASE and injure wildlife, other domestic animals and people if given the opportunity. 30 years ago literally thousands of farm animals and wildlife were injured or killed by loose roaming dogs EVERY year.
    Stop, people, this isn't about Pit bulls or German Shepherds, it's about predatory behavior - which all dogs have.
    Keep ALL dogs on leashes for the safety of ALL.

  • Ahwahnee Hotel in Yosemite National Park Could Shut Down For Structural Strengthening   5 years 23 weeks ago

    It's not a question of corporate greed. It's a matter of the National Park Service allowing the work. The Ahwahnee has national historic landmark status. The concessionaire can't paint a public bathroom in it without NPS approval.

    ...and if they decide to take down the metal balcony on the 6th floor, I want it. After all, my grandfather built it and put it there...

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 23 weeks ago

    In the nearly 39 years of my life, no one has ever wished me a "Happy Autumnal Equinox" or harvest home, harvest tide, Cornucopia, Feast of Avilon, Alban Elfed, Festival of Dionysus, Mabon, Night of the Hunter, Second Harvest Festival, Wine Harvest, Witch's Thanksgiving, and of course, the first day of autumn. Hence, I do not care what "they"call it. Now will someone please pass me a Sams' October Fest?

  • Half Dome Hiker Falls to His Death in Yosemite   5 years 23 weeks ago

    I just hiked Half Dome this past weekend and it's my second time. Both times I'm SHOCKED at the lack of respect for this rock. It's a sheer, smoothed piece of granite that we're climbing only because we can pull our weight up by the cables and the little wood step that's given to us. I just witnessed a father take 2 of his sons up around 12 years. One of them was mentally challenged and had difficulties climbing up. This started a huge traffic jam. I rested on each step for over 1 minute to 5 minutes waiting to go forward. My arms were killing me. Some people were starting to just turn around in the middle of their climb because of the traffic jam caused by the father and son. On the way down, it took even longer as I got caught behind the father and son. The mentally challenged son couldn't move and the father had to coax the son and help him on each step. It was sooooo painful to watch because I was thinking I would never put my children in this kind of danger. I also saw people climbing this with moccasins, bare feet, and flip flops. I've done it twice and I'm still amazed at how people don't realize how difficult it is climbing this granite even in top form. I understand that even if you're prepared with correct equipment and shoes, tragedy happens, which is why I'm still amazed at the lack of respect for this climb.

  • Haleakala Visitor Deaths Yield $5 Million Settlement   5 years 23 weeks ago

    Not a nice subject, but nicely written and nicely perspected. A word to the wise.

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 23 weeks ago

    Bah Humbug back at y'all!

    Maybe I'm grumpy because we had snow in the foothills and 50deg for a high for our last day of (northern) summer (winter equinox??), but calling it "September equinox" is a pretty small step toward thinking globally about global phenomena. The point is that today the sun rose due east and set due west everywhere on earth. Today day length changes most rapidly everywhere on earth: shortening in the north, lengthening in the south. "Autumnal" only applies locally where days are shortening.

    ps: don't get me started about "vernal pools", which have nothing in common between New England forests and southern California chaparral.

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 23 weeks ago

    Why does it have to be "hemispherically neutral"? A hemisphere is not a person. I live in the northern hemisphere, so it will be the fall equinox, thank you very much. BTW, on the Gulf coast of Florida, we don't have autumn, so it has to be fall.

  • Seasons Greetings! It's the Autumnal Equinox -- or Maybe the September Equinox   5 years 23 weeks ago

    Let the scientists call it what they want to call it, and I will call it what I want to call it. It is not offensive to me that they want to say "September Equinox". By the same token, it should not be offensive to them if I continue to call it "autumn equinox". But if it is offensive to them... oh well!!

  • Yellowstone Grizzlies Are Back on the Threatened Species List   5 years 23 weeks ago

    This is good news. As in the case with polar bears, it's not so much the bears that are endangered as the habitat. If the habitat goes, the bears go. Also, there are far too many bears being killed by people; hunters by "mistake" or because of conflict especially. Many areas near the park should be closed to hunting.