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UPDATED: Congress Trying To Pass National Park Service Centennial Act

Dec 6th - 21:37pm | Gary Wilson

Shoot... got my hopes up that the bill would remove all roads from National Parks and let them return back to nature, while declaring all lands officially designated wilderness areas.  But alas, just about keeping the mo' money machine a churnin' with just a few measures sprinkled in to protect some resources. Dang.

Traveler's View: Federal Lands Poised To Suffer Under Next Interior Secretary

Dec 6th - 18:27pm | Rick B.


Dec 6th - 16:42pm | Lee Dalton

Just home from the gym where I watched President Obama's speech to military personnel at ???

Dec 6th - 14:19pm | Lee Dalton

Dr. Runte is right when he speaks of the blame plague that has infected us these days.  The idea that "The Other Side" can do no right and "Our Side" can do no wrong is perhaps our biggest nataional problem.

Dec 6th - 13:43pm | Alfred Runte

"At the end of the day, we should question whether an Interior secretary who believes in aggressive energy exploration, reducing the size of public lands ownership, and weakening environmental regulations would be acting in the best interests of the entire U.S. population or simply in the interests of a fraction of that population and industry heads."

Dec 6th - 13:27pm | Rick B.

Ooooh. The tit for tat Kurt hates.

Dec 6th - 13:18pm | ecbuck

Glad to see you support the electorial college Rick.  As to removing mountains, filling lakes or losing a species, non of those are necessary by products of the extraction industries.  And if you want to talk morals, the price of higher energy costs hits hardest and most disproportionatley on the poor.  But I guess in your mind, it is OK to rape them.  

Dec 6th - 12:57pm | Rick B.

One of the primary purposes of the federal government is to protect the interests of the minorities amongst us. If not, the selfish "speaking for the majority" will rape and pillage, as Watt wanted to and as Bishop et al would. Some, obviously, who speak for the selfish, would have you think that is laudable. Once a mountain is gone, it is gone.

Dec 6th - 12:19pm | ecbuck

Well the answer to your last question is clear it would be in interest of the entire population.  Everyone benefits from lower energy and raw materials costs.  The percent of the gains that would go to "a fraction of that population and industry heads" is minimal.  

Fire And Heartbreak In The Smokies

Dec 6th - 15:38pm | Dewayne


Dec 6th - 13:29pm | Judy McGuire

Please tell us where to contribute to help the people of Gatlinburg who were displaced and rendered homeless by the fire.

Dec 6th - 11:40am | ecbuck

The people there need to take a  hard look at their building and firewise maintenance practices.  Appropriate preperations should have prevented much of the destruction.   

Dec 6th - 00:01am | Gary Wilson

This "tourist town" looks like the apocolypse.  The park will rebound, and probably have some unique changess to it and I suspect the forest will be healthier than it has been in 50 years once things start to regrow... but the "tourist towns".. whoo boy, it's going to set this region back for a while. 

Dec 5th - 22:36pm | Debby Davis

Thank you for the update! I made a donation, and now I want to support the area that I love so much by visiting!

Dec 5th - 18:19pm | Jason

Of the largest miscommuntications about the Park's status, it is NOT closed as a whole. Oconoluftee and Cade's Cove are wide open as is Townsend. Those visitor centers are open as well. Unfortunately the superintendent's office is fully occupied with the disaster and may not be makimg it clear to the public that there ARE other areas of the Smokies that are 100% accessible to the public.

Dec 4th - 09:59am | Matt M

"Praying is good," I said, "but cash donations are better." Amen to that. 

Cell Phone Tower Issue At Theodore Roosevelt National Park Raises Questions Of Connectivity In National Parks

Dec 6th - 14:54pm | RodF

Allen writes ""opportunities for solitude or primitive and unconfined recreation". Correct!  The keyword is "opportunities".  Solitude is not mandatory.  You may hike alone, or with companions, as you wish.  Unconfined is not mandatory.  You may stay on established trails or routes, rope up and climb anywhere, as you wish.

Dec 5th - 13:48pm | ecbuck

They may not have foreseen the future but both have designated ways to change to address it.  It niether case does ignoring what the document says represent the appropriate means to change.  

Dec 5th - 12:00pm | Hiking Paddler

Elitist hand wringing at its best!   I'm sorry, are the elitists those who can afford cell phones and the various accessories and apps, or the ones who would prefer that you leave them at the trailhead? 

Dec 4th - 16:47pm | Rick B.

And have your LE rangers enforce a "no broadcasting out loud" rule or however you phrase it. I love Willie Nelson, Asleep At The Wheel, and Patsy Cline, but play them out loud when I'm having a wilderness commune with the dirt, trees, and wildlife and you'll see my antisocial side.

Dec 4th - 07:35am | Dave Samsel

It's been said just because one can do a thing doesn't mean you should do it.  This is simply a safety issue.  Towers can be, and should be, made virtually invisible.  If you have a problem with it, leave your phone in the car, at camp, at home, whatever.

Katahdin Woods And Waters National Monument: A Pretty Magical Place

Dec 6th - 13:50pm | drew hanson

Thank you to all who made this monument happen. Hopefully I can bring my kids there someday.

Fishers Released At Mount Rainier National Park

Dec 6th - 10:03am | KJ

Great news to start my day!  Too many negative conservation stories unfolding but this one gives me pause and smile.  Thank-you!

Site Of Powhatan Chiefdom Added To National Park System In Virginia

Dec 6th - 09:22am | Polly Clifford

In declaring the Ripley's property @ Purton Bay, Werowocomoco, the powers that be are ignoring the local lore that preceeded "finding" the village @ Purton.  Indeed, there is evidence of Native American habitation up & down the York.  Ripley's property is different only because it was made available to the archaeologists.  I live @ Blundering Point, across from the mouth of Q

Sunrise Viewing Reservations Coming To Haleakala National Park

Dec 6th - 09:08am | tahoma

A buck and a half to watch the sunrise is a real deal.  Here at Mount Rainier, watching the winter sunset from Paradise can cost a person $135 if they get to Longmire after the daily 5 PM gate closure (and are not a famous climber or friend of the ranger).

Olympic National Park's Mountain Goat Population Grows Past 600 Animals

Dec 5th - 15:16pm | [email protected]

Read this Book:  White Goats, White Lies ...Abuse of Science In Olympic NP "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence!" -- Carl Sagan, Astronomer  

600 Fighting Chimney Tops 2 Fire At Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Dec 5th - 09:58am | kevin and tammy...

to all our freinds (family) in tennesee,  y"all are the most wonderfull folks on the face of this planet...keep your heads high because much better days are coming your way, were all praying for your recovery....GOD BLESS...

Legislation To Put Price Tag On Outdoor Recreation’s Economic Value Sent To President

Dec 4th - 17:43pm | Rebecca Latson ...

I agree totally with Lee Dalton.  With this new administration, in particular, I think the key word will be "profit".

Dec 4th - 16:39pm | ecbuck

Such analysies are WAGs at best.  Policy should never be based on such studies.  Agree, the reults will be prone to manipulation to meet a predetermined goal.  Total waste of taxpayer money.  

Dec 4th - 15:44pm | Harryb3570

I agree with Lee Dalton. This sounds good on the surface but what is just beneath the surface?  What are the hidden dangers? This legislation will bear watching? How is the economic value of our parks to be determine? Will the NPS do this or will some private group be contracted to determine the numbers. Will there be a threshold that every park must meet?

Dec 4th - 11:05am | Lee Dalton

Sounds good.  On the surface.  But as with virtually everything else that comes down from the top of Capitol Hill, it may also have some other aspects that may be hidden somewhere.  Intended or unintended as the case may become.

National Park Mystery Photo 51 Revealed: A Once-Hidden Treasure

Dec 4th - 12:23pm | CW Logan

Built by my 6th great grandfather.

Traveler's View: Concerning Times For National Park System

Dec 4th - 10:28am | ecbuck

Yes he is, you might note he has a poliitical slant.  There is a difference between earned income "salary" and unearned income (municpal interest, dividends, capital gains).  He pays a higher rate than his secretary on his earned income but, because so much more of his income is unearned income which is taxed at lower rates, his overall tax rate is lower.

Dec 4th - 10:12am | ecbuck

Ah, a little research reveals the "fake news".  That article is comparing reported income, as required by FASB (Financial Accounting Standards Board) to taxes paid.  Taxes aren't based on FASB standards, they are based IRS accounting standards.  Under the IRS accounting standards, these companies weren't making profits over the time frames your report covers.

Dec 4th - 09:17am | Kurt Repanshek

EC, I guess you better tell Warren that he's spreading fake news.

Dec 4th - 09:07am | ecbuck

Sorry Kurt, I missed your comment from the 22nd.  Yes they (government employees) are taking advantage of the system.  I didn't say or imply they were doing anything illegal but that many are just parasites or even worse as many due damage as well.  And no Buffett doesn't pay a lower rate on earned income than his Secretary.  That is what we call "fake news".

Dec 4th - 08:12am | Gary Wilson

Thank you Ray, I agree with everything you said.  Great post!

Dec 3rd - 10:12am | Lee Dalton

Salt Lake KSL Channel 5 news just reported that Rob Bishop and Trump will meet soon to discuss Bishop's proposal that Trump undo the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument and possibly other areas as well.

Dec 3rd - 09:55am | rmackie

Excellent points Ray, thank you for all your efforts. I want to share your approach but must admit , at this point, I am not very optimistic. 

Dec 2nd - 21:27pm | Lee Dalton

Excellent points, Ray.  And we all need to renew our memberships and support of organizations that will stand up to him when needed.

Dec 2nd - 18:23pm | Ray Bane

To President-Elect Donald Trump the world is a stage, and he is the star of the show.  If he sees national parks as backdrops for his craft of public outreach/minipulation the parks may actually prosper.  National parks have a great deal of national support, so he may be encouraged to be supportive - as long as there is a quid pro quo that benefits his agenda and personal image.

How Will A Trump Administration Treat The National Park System?

Dec 4th - 09:06am | ecbuck

Here is an interesting piece from the WSJ how politics tries to squash real science if it doesn't meet the AGW agenda and how the AGW crowd manufactures their numbers to fit their "conclusions"

Dec 3rd - 18:25pm | Kat Tatsumi

I want to start a letter writing campaign for a good Secretary of the Interior; any nominations?

Permit Issued To Kill Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area Mountain Lion

Dec 3rd - 00:28am | jmorley

This is a function of shrinking habitat and competition by predators for food on what little remains. Perhaps people who live near wilderness areas will be happier when these predators are vanished entirely. It's happening to the Florida panther. Will the California mountain lion soon be next?

Dec 2nd - 18:04pm | Rick B.

Sorry - I see the source of the term, which I still dislike greatly. If I read your use of it and heard it in what I presume is your usual tone of voice around here, and that was inaccurate in this one instance, go in peace.  

Dec 2nd - 17:43pm | ecbuck

Rick - the term "hobby animal" originated from the article not me.  The article did not use it in a derisive sense and neither did I.   If you do all you can to protect them and assume the risk were you can't, we are in agreement. You blast a bear to save your cat, you might raise a few back hairs on this site.  

Dec 2nd - 17:33pm | Rick B.

I really hate the term 'hobby animal', as evidenced by Eric's deriding comment above. I live in the boonies, just outside a national park. It is my property - acreage that I will be paying the mortgage on for years to come.

Dec 2nd - 13:09pm | Lee Dalton

According to this morning's CBS news, the woman who asked for the permit to kill the lion has now asked that it not be killed, but relocated instead.

Wyoming Has No "Intent" To Allow Grizzly Hunt On NPS Lands If Grizzlies Delisted

Dec 2nd - 20:54pm | [email protected]  IDAHO FALLS, IDAHO  An adult male grizzly bear has been killed in eastern Idaho and a $6,000 reward is being offered for information leading to whoever is responsible.

Man Who Stole From Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site Pleads Guilty, Sentenced To Probation

Dec 2nd - 12:59pm | Dave S.

Well, good for Stanley.  He stands to make around $17,000 profit at a cost of a few counseling sessions.  What's wrong in this picture?

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