Recent comments

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Jeremy and Sandi, why is it that you have to label people with childish insults who disagree with you. Sure, we all have differences of opinion about the subject matter discussed above. My uncle was a flight instructor in WW II, and would prefer the silence of the woods in the National Parks after serving horrendous years of war. I never heard him despise anyone who had a difference of political opinion then his, nor did I ever hear him speak vehemently against anyone who opposed the war, or the bloated war machine which us taxpayers who are overly burden with. Please zip up the trash talk, don't forget there were alot of hippies that fought in Viet Nam (and probably in Iraq too)....and died...Geo. Bush wasn't one of them. So, watch your spiel!

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 37 weeks ago

    As far as I am concerned, those military men and women who guard our freedom can fly over at any damn altitude they wish in our parks

    As far as the LAW is concerned, they cannot. Of course, the military industrial complex and the "conservative" party in power often feel they are above the law.

    The issue here is not left/right. The issue is that our military, like a fascist regime, views itself as being above the law. Additionally, the Blue Angels has an abysmal safety rating (10% fatality rate), and were an airplane to crash in a national park, it would be catastrophic and expensive. Also consider that the Navy's budget (not including the Marines) for the Blue Angels (about $20 million a year) and the cost of the planes themselves ($22 million EACH) are used for "recruitment" purposes. That money could fund several Yosemites and Grand Canyons.

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Jeremy is absolutely right...smelly spoiled leftists who seem to abound on today's college campuses don't even deserve to be in the same room as these fine gentlemen....
    And I can't belive there are so many leftists in this blog who aren't grateful for their freedom that men such as the Angels have granted them thru the years.
    As far as I am concerned, those military men and women who guard our freedom can fly over at any damn altitude they wish in our parks...and when they travel terra-firma, THEY should NEVER have to pay fees!!
    God bless America, and our fine warriors who defend her!

  • Statue of Liberty May Once Again Open to Top   6 years 37 weeks ago

    That's pretty interesting, I had no idea they were considering opening the top back up. I haven't had the opportunity to go inside the statue, but I would certainly consider it if they allowed access to the top again.

    Thanks, by the way, for choosing my photo to accompany your article! She's a beautiful lady, and there are tons of photos of her out there. I'm flattered that you've chosen mine.

    Brian Auer

  • Statue of Liberty May Once Again Open to Top   6 years 37 weeks ago

    I visited the crown 5-6 years before 9/11, and it was a wonder to behold. Yes, it was only a quick stop (due to the long lines and crowds), but it was worth it. You really get a feel for the place when you're crawling around inside it, and even when you're trapped inside, waiting your turn, you can really marvel at the construction of the thing.

    I'm in favor of re-opening the crown, although they may want to establish some time of timed ticketing system like they do at other big attractions, especially during the heat of summer (when it's especially dangerous).

  • Judge Tosses Surprise Canyon Lawsuit   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Kudos to the Judge and hurray for the canyon. There'll be a lot of sniveling by the drones you betcha, but there always was and always will be, and at least the canyon will be too.

  • Top 10 Most Visited National Parks   6 years 37 weeks ago

    I find the statistics reporting 18,953,478 visits for the Blue Ridge Parkway subject to question. I say this not only because of the very high number of visitors registered, but also because the Blue Ridge Parkway numbers are much larger than those reported for urban parks and parkways like the Gateway National Recreation Area, George Washington Pkwy and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. I suspect that the methods used to determine park visitation are not consistent from unit to unit within the National Park System. I wonder what quality control the NPS uses prior to reporting visitation statistics?

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Wish I coulda been there to see the "best of the best" fly over....
    Lot less intrusion than smelling stinking, disgusting, leftist college punks and hippies who come into our place of business on a regular basis.
    I've seen the Angels, and these are fine American gentlemen!
    I'd like 'em to fly over a peak I am on ANYTIME!!

  • Judge Tosses Surprise Canyon Lawsuit   6 years 37 weeks ago

    I find it interesting that you allow and provide for comments, but don't post them all. I posted a comment the other day, I didn't agree with you, so I guess that's why it hasn't showed up.

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 37 weeks ago

    It would have been a lot easier and cheaper to use photoshop. Who'd be able to tell the difference?

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Been there Diana, found this whole region to be just awesome. This is a geological wonder that testfies that mother nature bats last. Yes, it deserves the status as a National Park...and more. Just to see the slow ecological recovery after this big blast is a remarkable thing to see. Try to visualize the impact that nature(after the eruption) has on this beautiful part of the country Ruth. It's not Central Park, but the rugged outskirts of Washington...I just love it!

  • Judge Tosses Surprise Canyon Lawsuit   6 years 37 weeks ago

    This sure is interesting. Access to Panamint City is as it was when the first prospectors showed up and chased the local Indians away. You gotta walk!

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Oh please Ruth,be for real.. Any one who has ever taken the time to go to St.Helens knows ,it's anything but a barren wasteland. Maybe people, who don't know what their talking about,should keep their thought 's to themselves.Especially, when it comes to such important matters.

  • And, Speaking of Volcanoes ... Audio Story at Lassen Volcanic   6 years 37 weeks ago

    I have not been to Lassen yet, but I completely agree with your Devils Tower comment. The 5 mile loop is terrific. The beauty of these "hidden trails" is that you not only you see more of the actual landscape, flora, and fauna than on the well-traveled trails, but you can also put the entire park into context. For example, at the bottom of that DT loop, near the river, you can easily visualize the erosional forces that shaped the entire region, leaving only an escarpment, something you can't quite experience from the tighter loop.

    Back to vulcanology, the same can be said about Craters of the Moon. A long hike through there can also put the whole thing in a context not seen by simply flitting about the cinder cones.

    So two thumbs up for remote trails :-).

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 37 weeks ago

    My original comment:

    "This was the most momentous volcanic eruption on the continental United States in the history of the country."

    Beamis' comment:

    "If I'm not mistaken the eruption of Lassen Peak on was equally powerful. Any vulcanologists out there know which was bigger?"

    I wasn't eluding to the power of the eruption. I was using "momentous" in terms of a historical event. It was the first eruption in the continental U.S. of the modern media era. The eruption spawned coverage that was deep and broad, and will therefore be etched in the memory of the country for an extremely long time. I also think that St. Helens had a greater impact on the population (more evacuations, more casualties, more economic impact) than Lassen.

    I think the geological, ecological, and historical elements of the St. Helens area demands NPS status.

    "Do the Hawaiian islands count? I know many native islanders who consider the United States a hostile occupier and so maybe they don't count in the "momentous eruption" category as being in the United States."

    I clearly stated "continental" for that very reason. Hawaii has an intimate relationship with its many volcanoes; to us "conties", volcanoes are an extremely rare occurrence.

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 37 weeks ago

    St. Helens is anything but a "barren wasteland", and those who have visited have seen the abundant covering of wildflowers, grasses, saplings, and sedges. Fish, bears, deer, mountain lions, and other wildlife call it home. St. Helens provides us with a rare opportunity to study natural recovery after a cataclysmic volcanic disturbance.

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 38 weeks ago

    I have no idea if any animals were harmed. However, studies done in Yellowstone have shown that the noise pollution from snowmobiles have changed feeding patterns for moose and deer, and may show a decrease in offspring the following year. Someone made the comment above saying that thunder is louder than a fly-by and the wildlife don't have a problem with that. I'm no biologist, but I would say that the noise produced by thunder is something the animals have adapted to over their lifetime, and even know when the storms are coming and are able to prepare for them. I've witnessed fly-bys several times (and have been awed and inspired by them, to be sure) but the noise grows very quickly into a roar -- not something the wildlife would be able to prepare for. And when they hear it, does it scare them into unnatural behavior? Do they bolt into oncoming traffic? Would that, along with a hiker coming up a trail, scare a bull moose into charging? I don't know, and I doubt anyone knows; I'm just bringing up the point that I don't think the benefit of a photo opportunity offsets any potential disturbance of the wildlife. Besides, there are so few places left in the United States where one can go to get away from the hustle & bustle of everyday life, get away from cars, planes and exhaust fumes, and find some time in the peace and quiet of the outdoors. I know if I was trying to enjoy some time on the trails in Grand Teton while the jets roared overhead, I would be a tad annoyed at the break in my solitude.

    Having said all that, considering all the other problems the NPS has in regards to funding, mismanagement, and illegal activity within park boundaries, jets flying over the Tetons really is small potatoes, and not really worth a bunch of time arguing about.

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Sell it off to developers or put it back into timber production...it's just a barren wasteland.

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 38 weeks ago

    I live in Portland and am familiar with the politics and problems surrounding the monument. It was carved far too small to serve as the island of scientific and natural study it should have been, but it's better than nothing...

    However ever since it's establishment, the monument has been beseiged by commercial interests who seek to decrease its size or get inroads in. From lumber interests to mining interests to real estate interests, the monument is under attack and the Forest Service - far more used to bending to commercial use - is not protecting the resource as it should be.

    The visitor center that is closing is only one of two in the park (the other two are managed by private sources - one of which is Weyerhauser, a major logging enterprise, whose visitor center is a pure propaganda machine.) And though I understand some who want to be alone with the mountain, there are many who wish to know more about it and would like to have some understanding of what they're seeing. The visitor's center is imperfect, but far better than no interpretation at all. There are still plenty of miles of trails on which to be alone with the mountain.

    If the site of this historic eruption is to be preserved for future generations and for study, it must be moved into NPS hands. Sure there are money issues in the NPS (and there aren't in the NFS?) but at least their mission is primarily about preservation and not about selling out to the highest bidder.

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 38 weeks ago

    a blanket statement about if it's good enough to have a visitor center then it should be an national park is too black and white. there are *plenty* of urban interface (public lands) areas that aren't nps administered and need visitor centers, but might not cut it as a park unit. i think it's a limiting view - america's public lands are too diverse and serve far too many roles other than just the niche the nps lands fill. and i'm not just talking about the oil & gas industry happily coexisting with atv'ers.

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Mookie, what animals were harmed? Could you be a bit more specific, please?

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 38 weeks ago

    I'm going to be up there in the Tetons in 6 more weeks and perhaps I'll feel differently about the Blue Angels making a couple of passes thru the park at that time.

    Now, my thoughts are how wonderful it is that we live in a country that we can have such a variety of beauty and freedom. How anyone can worked up in a lather over the Blue Angels making a couple of flyovers is beyond me. There are much worse things, IMHO. We could have car bombs or suicide bombers exploding all around us and killing and maiming us every day, instead, or having leaders that dictate what we can or cannot do.

    Things could be so much worse than a half dozen jets flying around for 20 minutes thru a National Park. I think there are some that take our freedom for granted and lose sight of the bigger picture, as well as what our military has done for us, also. Surely, it's not really *that* horrible that the Blue Angels shared their beauty and performance with a few lucky folks for a few minutes in their lives this past Wednesday? I know I sure would have been thrilled to have been a witness to the moment.

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 38 weeks ago

    From the USGS: "Dramatic eruptive activity in the Cascades has been rare so far in the 20th century. Until the recent eruptions at Mount St. Helens, the only Cascade volcano that had a major eruption during this century was Lassen Peak in California. A series of intermittent eruptions of steam and volcanic ash beginning in May 1914 and lasting until 1921 climaxed, during the 4 days from May 19 to 22, 1915, in a series of violent events comprising small lava flows, massive lava-triggered mudflows, and explosive eruptions of ash. The most destructive of these eruptions included a nearly horizontal (lateral) blast that reached only about one-fifth as far as the recent Mount St. Helens lateral blast."

    http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Volcanoes/Lassen/EruptiveHistory/eruptive_activity_1914.html

    Hey, it's not the size of the eruption, it's the... well, I don't know. But it is the most significant eruption of the 20th century in the Cascades and it ought to be left alone, IMO.

  • Blue Angels Fly By Grand Tetons   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Does freedom have a sound. Yes you got to make a stupid remark about the Navy and there sound of the engines noise. U.S. men have died all over the world to protect us and others. There sound is great. Did you know that thunder and lighting is louder than the Navy Jets? God made that noise too and the animals have heard it for many years and there doing fine. Freedom cost and people like you don't understand it. You should be proud of the Navy and all our military. If not leave, you won't find a better place to live on God Earth than the USA.

    USA Love it or Leave it!!

  • Mt St Helens as National Park?   6 years 38 weeks ago

    As far as the explosivity of Mt. St. Helens, it is smaller than that of other volcanoes that are presently inside of the United States. But, I think the original comment is correct, that since the United States has existed as a country, Mt St Helens has been the biggest. I know that the Mt Mazama eruption, was bigger (the caldera of which is now called Crater Lake), and eruptions inside of what is now Yellowstone are about the biggest ever documented on the planet. Check out this interesting page on Wikipedia, the Volcanic Explosivity Index.