Recent comments

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I give up. Some people have retired and have absolutely nothing to do but nitpick peoples' comments to death, putting words and meaning where none existed.

    There is absolutely no difference as to whether it is American citizens killed and maimed in a bus accident, or if it is international travlers who are killed and maimed in a bus accident. The reason I said international travlers is because the last two big accidents in California that killed and maimed their occupants were busses hauling international travlers. That is the ONLY reason. I did not in any way mean to infer it was more tragic than if they had been American citizens.

    So go ahead and pick this comment to death now, as this is my final answer.

  • NRA Appeals Ruling Blocking Concealed Carry in National Parks   5 years 27 weeks ago

    If i understand your reasoning correctly it is that since out of three trips you have not needed a gun, therefore you will never need one. I went hiking in New Mexico and saw two bears in one day, and a third later on in the trip. This was during 7 days in the mountains more than 30 miles from any civilization. Im not sure how you feel a gun will only "piss the bear off" but your little can of pepper spray is going to do the trick. If you wore your seat belt to work three days in a row with no problem would you stop wearing it? Consider the fact that a person is far more likely to be injured by a bear than they are to be shot while attending church, but look what happened. If not for an old lady exercising her rights more people would have died that day. The fact is carrying a weapon is a RIGHT. People carry them and the hope to god they will never have to use them, but when the time comes, whether it is in defense from man or beast they are ready. When you come across a bear chewing someones leg off i hope you have the fortitude to run up there with your pepper spray and give that bear a good shot in the face.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Indeed the same and i will respond again. I have no objection to inspections but let them occur where they should - on the highways and bus terminals not our National Parks. There is no reason to foul our Park experiences with vehicle enforcement matters. If our Parks become know as a haven for surprise bus inspections - buses won't go there. - Hmmm, perhaps its not a bad idea afterall.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Why is it relevant that a majority of users are international travelers (mentioned in the article and again by Dottie)? Is it a bigger PR disaster to send a busload of foreigners over a cliff than a busload of Americans? I would think we'd want to ensure the safety of everyone in the parks, not just visitors from other countries.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Annonymous #1 and #3 - I assume you are the same annonymous person. Maybe you are overreacting in this particular instance. I should think busses everywhere have specific guidelines to follow if they intend to keep their passengers safe, and I am sure you read in the news every year where busses have crashed either because the safety issues on the vehicle itself was not up to par, or the driver was not up to par. Why does this particular inspection bother you, beings as it is not a "person" being investigated but a "thing"?

    I truly doubt inspections on the busses (as you also normally see 18-wheelers being inspected in State inspection stations) will lead to taking your fingerprints at the park entrance gate. You are building a scenario in your own head that is way out of proportion to what took place - a bus inspection, for pete's sake! And in reference to my last ending remark - it was an obviously needed inspection.

  • By the Numbers: Memorial Day Weekend at Yosemite National Park   5 years 27 weeks ago

    It seems as if not much has changed over the decades. On Memorial Day weekend 1970, crowds and gathering of Bay Area youths in campgrounds and meadows were such that a precursor developed to what eventually became the infamous Stoneman Meadow Riot of July 4th, 1970. It was very much a mess then too. Later that summer, the traffic was eliminated from the east end of Yosemite Valley and the main roadways were converted to one-way traffic.

    Managing the number of cars and the conjestion of visitors for an optimum experience is a major NPS challenge in Yosemite. I hope the falls were at least full and thunderous.

    Owen Hoffman
    Oak Ridge, TN 37830

  • Glacier Bay National Park Issues New Cruise Ship Contracts   5 years 27 weeks ago

    We'll just have to wait an see, aren't we? Ten years is not much after all and I think this decision is for the best. The park needs to be protected, the sooner we start taking measures the better. As a tourist I wouldn't feel good to know that I harm the environment with my traveling.

  • Jon Jarvis Nomination As Next Director of National Park Service Imminent   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I'm looking forward to having an NPS Director with a very strong natural resources background.

    Owen Hoffman
    Oak Ridge, TN 37830

  • Park History: Obed Wild and Scenic River   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Lee,

    I'm glad to see you commenting on National Parks Traveler. This is a great forum for reaching out to others interested in the fate of our national parks.

    Owen Hoffman
    Oak Ridge, TN 37830

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    ~Some~ park usage needs to be discouraged, anonymous. Some possible park users need to be discouraged too. Utopia it ain't. Isn't that why citizens now must be able to carry weapons, to protect themselves from some users (and usage)? (Not that I agree with that, personally.)

    If unsafe large transportation vehicles are an issue outside of the parks, then they are certainly an issue inside of them. It is sad that the passenger's experience must be marred, but buyer beware.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Then I suppose you will like be patted down for weapons, drug tested, or fingerprinted every time you enter a park as well. All those actions as well as bus inspections have a purpose. To do them in the Parks, however, can only damage the Park experience and discourage Park usage.

  • National Park Lodging Concessionaires Creating Their Own Stimulus Plans   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Very well said, Kurt !

    Quite a few of the units, should be either private or run by other entities. To me, National Parks are so very special and should be well staffed and taken care of !!!
    It waters down all of them with the pet projects that become National Parks. If we do not get the "National Park house" in order, we may well lose so many things that make them exceptional and in no other place in our nation.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    "Amazing and beautiful place. Utah does a magnificent job with all of their parks."

    *Snort* Thanks for the compliment of our National Parks, but please don't pay it to the state of Utah, which, by my experience, would just as soon see racing ATV's jumping through the arches, as oil wells work in the foreground.

  • Park History: Obed Wild and Scenic River   5 years 27 weeks ago

    The site supervisor/chief ranger/superintendent position there (not sure what they are calling it these days) is currently being advertised on USAjobs. It was attractive to me until I read that it is not a "covered" law enforcement position. I guess law enforcement rangers need not apply. Oh well. Wonder who the two current field-level law enforcement rangers report to, since by policy mandate they must work directly for a chief law enforcement official? Why do I think that I would not be surprised at the answer (Policy? What policy?) Anywho, thanks, Chance, for a good article.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    In Yosemite, when NPS does their inspections its not only for the visitors/travelers BUT it's also adhering to the federal law. When I worked for concessions in the park, there were several crashes that happened in Wawona, Glacier Point & in the valley (we never heard anything about Tuolumme) but because the visitors don't' hear about them, doesnt mean that it doesn't happen.

  • Park History: Obed Wild and Scenic River   5 years 27 weeks ago

    This little jewel of the National Park System is still very vulnerable. More than 32 years have passed since the Obed National Wild & Scenic River was authorized, .... yet almost 20% of the area within the authorized boundary remains unacquired and is badly threatened by oil wells, logging, and especially second-home development. Land and Water Conservation Fund appropriations are badly needed to complete acquisition of the river corridor.

    For further information (including a brochure "How the Obed got saved from being turned into a reservoir and became a National Wild & Scenic River") contact Tennessee Citizens for Wilderness Planning at www.tcwp.org.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Thanks for the clarification, MRC. And thanks for being patient with me, GregS. One of the really neat things about administrative access to the Comments section is that I can go back and edit out some of my own dumb remarks. But alas, I can't go back to Double Arch. As I've said, I've never visited Arches National Park -- at least not yet.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Bob, you really should go to Arches NP again sometimes. The Double Arch is only a few hundred yards from the Windows.
    http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.687168,-109.5347&spn=0.011858,0.015879&t=h&z=16

  • National Park Lodging Concessionaires Creating Their Own Stimulus Plans   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Well said Kurt. The political spoils system is not the best way to measure actual need or effectiveness. Let's hope something new comes along to replace the clearly broken system now in place.

  • Surprise Tour Bus Inspections at Yosemite Yield Disturbing Results   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I commend these agencies for the foresight to help prevent any accidents, whether some or none have happened in the Park in the past. During the past year alone, there were accidents on the California highways involving busses carrying international travelers, with horrifying results, so this inspection is justified. As is obvious from the inspection results, the inspection was definitely needed.

  • Rocky Mountain Wrestling: A Long-Distance Runner's Grizzly Encounter in Grand Teton National Park   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Also, interesting timing as the news this morning reports a grizzly attack just outside of Yellowstone - http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/articles/2009/06/11/news/20bear.txt . You'd think on this coincidence that they happen every day.

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

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I'll give you an "A," GregS, but only for effort. Double Arch did not appear in the 1975 western Against a Crooked Sky.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I've never seen Double Arch myself, Gerry, but photos like this one have got me convinced it's a "must see." Kurt's promised to take me to Arches (and some other Utah parks) if I get out that way, so it's in my plans. Here in the South you'd say I'm "fixing to" visit Arches and see Double Arch.

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    Against A Crooked Sky filmed near The Windows

  • National Park Mystery Photo 6: A Movie-Goers Special   5 years 27 weeks ago

    I do not know the answer to the movie question, but I was at Double Arch two weeks ago. Amazing and beautiful place. Utah does a magnificent job with all of their parks. Great roads, and tremendous facilites that are clean. Plenty of good and knowledgable park rangers to help also. Thanks!