Recent comments

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    Sorry Bill, You must have misread..."There is no such thing for private citizens to obtain a National Concealed Carry Permit" is what I actually said. I would love to get my hands on a National Concealed Carry Permit. Just no such thing.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago


    For those of you who do feel unsafe in National Parks, you can thank in part the willful disobeying of federal law by sanctuary city governments that have encouraged millions of illegal aliens to flock across our borders. The result is mountains of trash on our federal lands and crimes of all types in our parks and elsewhere. Cities are setting the example of pick and choose laws that we should obey or break and there is no punishment from the federal government. Now that the precedent has been set, what other federal laws will cities choose to ignore in the future? How about clean air or ground water pollution? At least Senator Coburn is trying to change a law with legislation and not telling us to ignore it!

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    In the old west everybody carried a gun. We all know how safe that made everybody! In old Chicago, everyone carried a gun. We all know how safe THAT was. Even today many victims of violent crime are carrying guns at the time, or have guns in their homes or vehicles. Some people end up shot with their own gun. Others have had their guns taken away from them and used in the commission of other crimes. I don't think anyone has a problem with Nbar having a gun in his RV, as long as that's where it stays. While technically illegal, the Park Service isn't going to shake him down. Heck, I sleep with a canister of bear spray under my pillow in mine. It's not there for bears. I do that because I'm not always camped in a National Park. Sometimes I'm camped in a Wal Mart parking lot on the road. I've never had a problem. This law is more about people openly carrying loaded guns in places where poaching is a real problem (with which rangers already have their hands full), places where violent crime is extremely low (as low as anywhere in the country), places where some of our most valued national treasures are housed, places where we proudly show off the best of the best of our country to foreign visitors, places where we take our children and grandchildren, our parents and grandparents to recreate.
    Arguing that criminals are always going to break the law and carry guns makes no sense. That is like saying, "People are always going to speed, so why have speed limits?" or, "Some people will always manufacture and sell dope (and others use it), so why have laws against it?" Heck, for that matter, people are always going to rob banks.....if robbing banks is illegal, then only criminals will rob banks (and get in on all that extra cash!!) How fair is that?
    If we only pass (or keep) laws that everyone is going to follow, we won't have ANY laws. Then we truly will be back to the days of the old west.

  • Cycling at Haleakala National Park Given "High Risk" Rating   6 years 31 weeks ago

    I really hope that the NPS doesn't ban bike tours down the Haleakala road. This trip was the high point of our trip to Maui. Our tour company and our tour leader gave very clear and graphic warnings of the need to keep the bike under control, and pointed out the places where people had been killed. He told us that if you dumped the bike on the lava fields you would get cut up by the sharp rocks rather badly. We wore a full jumpsuit to protect us from that. He said that if you feel uncomfortable at any time, the van was there to bring you down the mountain. The trip does not require that you be tremendously muscled or fit, with one exception. Your hands must be strong. You have to be able to control that hand brake for miles without losing your grip.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    II own a handgun and carry it in my RV. I do not have a CCW and I do not carry the weapon on me but I have on my property and legal or not there it will stay. It is protection from an intruder only. I see no need to carry a concealed weapon in a National Park. Let's face it if you are carrying concealed for protection from animals, a handgun is only going to make them mad.

  • NPS Retirees Oppose Carrying Guns in National Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    What about that young girl what was brutally murdered while walking the Appalachian trail a few weeks ago? The animals are not what I fear while transverse the back country, it’s the two legged critters I don’t trust. I am a gun owner and CCW licensee, but I don’t hunt . My creed is , “don’t kill it or bother it, unless you fully intend to eat it”. My local supermarket supplies me just fine. But if you want to hunt I have nothing against that , just do it legally. This silly idea that if you let licensed hand gunners into a National Park that poaching will go berserk is totally unfounded and stupid. Here is in the Smoky Mountains, a few years ago a black bear killed a woman while her and her boyfriend were fishing or picnicking . Another incident occurred when a black bear invaded a camp and killed another woman and hurt a child. So don’t tell me this won’t happen. After all criminal will continue to prey on unarmed citizens, and they will carry their weapons , laws or no laws. I guarantee you that Park Rangers don’t go into the back country unarmed, so why should we? So get off your “I know better than you , liberal attitude.”

  • Cycling at Haleakala National Park Given "High Risk" Rating   6 years 31 weeks ago

    I am truly deeply sorry for the loss of the person who died riding down Haleakala. I too have done this ride down the side and it was awesome!!! Our instructor was very thorough and very safe and I too look at it as one of the best experiences I had in Maui. I think that it is sad that you can no longer experience such an awesome ride! I wish that the state of Hawaii would have you fill out and sign some kind of waver that does not hold the state of Hawaii responsible for these kinds of incidents including climbing on waterfalls, getting to close to the blow holes etc, getting too close to the volcanoes. Hawaii is such a beautiful and rare area to experience and ever so slowly one by the one the "people" can no longer enjoy these wonderful things anymore. I do not think that is fair. People know that they are taking risks and should use common sense and caution when enjoying these kinds of activities AND PAY ATTENTION to the INSTRUCTOR. There is a reason why they explain everything to you. It is just going to be a matter of time until you can no longer enjoy Hawaii's beautiful treasures anymore!

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    I agree with you Joel that we're probably talking about a very small number of people that would be carrying guns in National Parks if it were made legal, and I do believe that most gun owners are quite responsible. My problem with a change in the law and what I was emphasizing in my letter to Sen. Coburn is the potential increase in accidental shootings or the like that might result from having more guns in the parks. A couple years ago at a mall where I live a guy in JCPenney went to pay for his merchandise and as he was getting his money out, his concealed pistol went off and he shot himself in the foot. Those are the kinds of accidents that I think are avoided under the current law that requires guns to be locked away in National Parks.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    Gee, Bill, I have visited scores of national parks, all without a weapon, and believe I have retrieved my investment. I assume you could do the same.

    Rick Smith

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 31 weeks ago

    I have to say that the NPS has upgraded their website in the past 20 months or so, from horrendous to almost mediocre. There's still lots of improvement they could do, but they are trying. Adding the maps is a huge help, even if they aren't topos.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 31 weeks ago

    I've always said Senators can't add correctly...no wonder they can never find enough money for the NPS.

  • Cycling at Haleakala National Park Given "High Risk" Rating   6 years 31 weeks ago

    NOW they tell us! When Sandy and I took this bike ride down Haleakala in 1992, it was a lot of fun and seemed quite safe, even for us relatively inexperienced riders. Some pretty slick advertising had enticed us to sign on for the bike ride -- and get out of bed to board the the shuttle van at a god-awful early hour. As I recall, the brochure we responded to featured pictures of (ex) Vice President Dan Quayle and his family enjoying the ride. The tour operator gave us an excellent orientation as well as a practice session that emphasized safety. We were repeatedly assured that the ride would be easy, and indeed there was only a quarter-mile of pedaling required on the entire trip from mountain top to the ocean. We were even told (inaccurately, it turned out), that our breakfast stop near the foot of the mountain would be a champagne brunch. Sandy was mortified to learn that the bike trip down Haleakala is now considered dangerous. That said, this ride was one of the most interesting and memorable experiences that my wife and I have ever had in a national park. We're glad that we weren't scared off.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    I must have missed something. Joel seems to imply some one suggested there was a national CCW permit issurer out there somewhere. Have no idea if he was referring to my comment in my statement that my CCW permit should be recogniized in a NP anywhere. and not just in the 32 states for which I am licensed or recognized as legally authorised to carry a concealed weapon. It's federal land that I pay to maintain and paid to access. After all these years, I'd like to retrieve a little of that investment.

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Sorry-- I just noticed that all parks DO NOT have the maps. Check out Valley Forge as an example of one that does.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Some of the comments are just plain insane throughout the gun articles on this site. Think the whole way through society and how human interactions work. Just because you keep the ban on guns in national parks doesn’t mean you’d all of the sudden be defending yourself against a rock or knife or any other object. You can’t count on a bank robber to have a firearm permit. People who break the law will always break the law. They have a proven track record for disregard. The problem with gun control will be the same always. There are a curtain group of people who don’t have faith in others. We don’t believe that all people are good and we believe there is a possibility that those evil doers could possibly want to do us harm. There is no law or agency on earth that has the ability to protect us. Only an Us vs. Them scenario. We believe that the 2nd amendment was placed there because the founding fathers believed that every human has the right to do whatever is necessary to protect themselves as long as they don’t interfere with the freedom of others. You may feel that the very presence of someone with a gun is interfering with your freedom. What the senator is saying is that your government can’t tell you who does and doesn’t have a gun. They can only tell you who was willing to take a test and let them know they wish to carry for protection. This small minority of gun carrying individuals are the people we’re all having a fit about.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    I don't know how the point gets missed on every story that comes up about guns. There are an extreme minority of citizens that actually posses a "Concealed Carry Permit". There is no such thing for private citizens to obtain a National Concealed Carry Permit. In some states it's regulated by the local sheriff's office. In other states it requires a written explanation. Still other states require you to take a minimum number of hours for a course. Each state has decided what other state's CCP they are willing to accept or deny. This is called reciprocity. This has existed for as long as gun restrictions have evolved. This bill is asking that if the state has determined that the individual is safe to own and operate a firearm in the extremely rare circumstance they should need to use it, then the state knows its people better than the federal government. I have a CCP and have had it for years. I doubt anyone will ever even see my gun or know it's there. I visit several national parks a year. I live in UT. I carry daily. If I am ever in the circumstance that my fellow Utahans were, during the "Trolley Square Shooting", I have exercised my right to protect myself, and my loved ones. Do I feel this will happen in my lifetime? Very, very doubtful. If it does then a fundamental right as a being on this earth is that I have the right to decide for myself if I am safer fighting or running. It is not anyone else's decision. If you would like facts on good citizens with guns I invite you to check out http://www.keepandbeararms.com/opsd/ . I promise that citizens defending themselves in many situations are not as rare as you may think.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    I know that some readers on this website are going to say I'm naive because I feel safe in National Parks without a loaded gun, but here's the note that I sent Sen. Coburn several days ago:

    I am dismayed to find that you are putting forth an amendment that would prohibit the Secretary of the Interior from prohibiting loaded weapons in National Parks. Each year my family camps in National Parks around the country, and the absence of loaded guns in the campgrounds makes my wife, my two sons, and me feel quite safe. Your attempt to allow loaded weapons in places where families and small children frequent demonstrates a lack of concern for the safety of National Park visitors. Because of your medical background, I assume that you're familiar with the large number of people who visit emergency rooms each year because of accidents with firearms. Knowing that the people in the tent next to me might have loaded weapons does not make me feel safe at all. I truly believe loaded firearms in the parks puts us more at risk for death and injury than if they remain unloaded and locked away as the law now states. I urge you to re-consider your amendment.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Internet polls are the lamest way of either finding public opinion, or of making decisions. Senators should know better.

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Could any of you print the maps into a file? I got an "unknown error" each time I tried. I'd prefer to to se that feature, as I can edit the map then much better than on paper.

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 32 weeks ago

    It is a really great feature. Before--and still--the way to find maps was under "Directions," which was not as clear as a link to a map on the front page. It did take me a while to find the link, though, since it blends in with the rest of the page.

    "God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars." -Martin Luther
    wonderly00, The Lone Ranger

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Hey, thanks for pointing it out, Anon. Not sure I like the color coding...it blends in too well, but I sure like the feature.

  • U.S. Sen. Coburn Runs Poll On Whether "Concealed Carry" Should be Allowed in Parks   6 years 32 weeks ago

    Don't think the bill goes far enough. It should supercede state laws to the point where it allows CCW license holders (concealed weapons licensed holders) from any state to carry a concealed weapon in any NP. Under the current proposed bill, as I understood it, would permit the Republik of Kalifornia to enforce it's laws over federal laws. Something is not right with that picture. Kalifornia cannot protect it's citizens and it prohibits them from legally protecting themselves. There are over 30,000 licensed CCW holders in the Republik of Kalifornia and they can't carry a handgun in Death Valley legally. Charles Manson and his friends weren't out there spreading cheer and good will. Granted they didn't kill anyone in the desert that we know of.

    Glad Kurt found a topic that has the readers responding so well. Good writer and I enjoy the articles. Can tell where his sentiments are oriented and I wish i agreeded with him, but I have been on the receiving end of crime and didn't like it. Managed to distance myself from most two legged mammals until health problems cut down my hiking, canoeing & 4X4'ing.

    Stay safe what ever you do!

  • National Park Service Claims to Have Added New Map Feature to Web Sites   6 years 32 weeks ago

    It's in the green banner displaying the park name at the top of the page. I really like this feature, thanks for pointing it out.

  • Mt Rainier from 20,000 Feet   6 years 32 weeks ago

    yep ... 737 (i was on Southwest, which is all 737) and I was flying to Salt Lake. I've been on that trip a couple of times, and I really like the route it takes over the state of Washington ... Fly-by Mt Rainier, continue through central Washington (over the wine country), then exit the state somewhere near the Tri-Cities. If the weather is clear, lots of good scenery to see.

  • Venturing Into the Backcountry of the National Park System   6 years 32 weeks ago

    The front county is just a place to register, get some last minute supplies, and bump into hordes of people and traffic. The backcountry is where the real beauty & excitement are at!