Recent comments

  • Park History: National Parks Built Around Caves and Caverns   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Mammoth Cave is in south-central Kentucky, near Bowling Green. Also, it is a National Park - I don't recall any lava tubes.

  • Groups Sue Park Service Over ORV Use in Big Cypress National Preserve   6 years 37 weeks ago

    it really looks like from the photo that clear cutting is he big issue here not the trail

  • Groups Sue Park Service Over ORV Use in Big Cypress National Preserve   6 years 37 weeks ago

    i 'm not with the shutting down of orv but limit it to clubs and club trail permit rides and then fine the entire club if rules are broken the club is fined or have a gunner from the state park system and by the way i want his or hers job.
    get real we spend moneys on a lot more trivial things in the park system and permits could offset cost
    there is a way if you look, if no one is there is it worth it all ?
    if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there is there a noise !!!!!!!
    ps: clubs are beng pushed out of the park system.
    why divide and concuer do they want to fight one big voice or many little voices

  • Park Service OKs Monetary Settlement On Great Smoky Mountains National Park's North Shore Road   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Better late than never?

  • Video : Winter in Yellowstone National Park   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Great video, Jeremy! As a fellow Yellowstoner and old interpretive photographer, I have to say that it's a fine piece of work and makes me feel like I'm right actual peace and quiet!!
    How did you guys get out there....was it before all the vehicles were called out of the park for the winter...or did you have to go out on a snowmobile of your own?

    Thanks again for the video!

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

    Grand Teton is a tricky one. It is very easy to visit without being counted. Unless you drive the "inner road" you don't even pass through an entrance station. You can even camp at Gros Ventre (the park's largest campground) without going through a gate. Also, it is not necessary to stop at any station if you enter from Yellowstone (sign always says, "Please Proceed, No Stop Required), and even the other stations to the inner road are often unmanned. Though I imagine that vehicles are counted by some sort of device, they can't record how many people are in a vehicle. Some of the park's best attractions are outside of any gate, including the Visitor Center, Gros Ventre, Mormon Row, Schwabacher's Landing etc.
    Even at best I would think any of these figures are only educated guesses, because even in Yellowstone if you enter much before dawn or after dark there is no one at the gate.

  • Groups Sue Park Service Over ORV Use in Big Cypress National Preserve   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Snowmobiles in Florida? What's next, swamp buggies in Alaska?

  • Park History: Shenandoah National Park   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Hoover's requirement that it be above 2,500 feet was due to the fact that (at that time) mosquitoes could not live above that altitude. Having spent many nights in Shenandoah above 2,500 feet, I can tell you that is no longer the case, and I'd guess you have to get above at least 3,000 feet to be 100% out of the mosquito's wrath.

    Camp Rapidan is well preserved, and while one can't enter the buildings if you're just hiking through, it's a great spot to stop and have lunch.

  • White House Holiday Ornament   6 years 37 weeks ago

    Kurt/Jeremy: Happy Holidays, and thanks for all you do keep the latest NPS news and discussion flowing. This site must take up a huge amount of your time, and I am very grateful you do it. I wanted to pass along an idea, which is to ask folks to post their New Years Resolutions as it pertains to the NPS. For example, I resolve to visit 10 new NPS units in 2008, or I resolve to pester my senator to make sure there is ample funding for park rangers. Just a thought.

    Keep up the great work, and I hope you both have a great 2008!

  • Park History: Shenandoah National Park   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Thanks for the Great writeup. I had no idea about Camp Rapidan.

  • Groups Sue Cape Hatteras National Seashore Over ORV Traffic   6 years 38 weeks ago

    One needs to understand that Cape Hatteras was established as the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Recreation Area. This has never been officially changed and stands to this day. Note *Recreational*.

    Vehicular driving on the beach predates the establishment of this park and ORV access is a vital component to what attract many of the visiting public: fishing, wind boarding, shell picking, bird watching, etc, etc.

    Seasonally there are large areas closed to ORV access for pedestrian safety and bird and turtle protection and there are many areas that closed year round.

    The beach is not "ruined" as ORVs are confined to a narrow corridor of sand along the seashore and, with each storm, the evidence of ORVs is wiped clean.

    And I will you assure you the areas with ORV access are "cleaner" than those w/o since it's common practice for ORV users to clean-up the area during their stay.

    CHNSRA was established for recreational multi-use and to preserve the beauty of the northern Outer Banks. Under the management of Super. Murray he has done a wonderful job of balancing use and resource protection. Reasonable and responsible access along with scientifically-supported closures for resource protection is what the majority of ORV users want.

    Zero birds or turtles were harmed under the 2007 plan as has been the case for several years and the lawsuit, given that there is an active interim ORV plan in place, is frivolous & I predict these 3 groups will have their arses handed to them

  • Groups Sue Park Service Over ORV Use in Big Cypress National Preserve   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Conservation should be predominant. Superintendant Gustin is supposed to be the person overseeing this responsibility, but it seems her responsibilitiy lies with the snowmobilers. Protecting endangered species and the environment should be the priority here. All it takes is one change and significant damage could be done. Future generations should have the chance to see a pristine environment without the encroachment of snowmobiles.

  • Video : Winter in Yellowstone National Park   6 years 38 weeks ago

    How gorgeous! I'd love to be there right now, watching the Bison, hearing the geysers, listening to the gentle flow of water and the peaceful surround. Glad you edited out the snowmobiles. Now, can you get them out of the park altogether? I can dream, can't I?

  • Big Cypress National Preserve: The Latest Battleground Over ORVs in the Parks   6 years 38 weeks ago

    i have lived in south florida all my life, i'm also one of the few people born in the state i have lived and breathed both sides. people the dig holes with there tire and run into trees because they can is what hurt the area and not poeple that follow the tread lightly. i have a large 4x4 my self and love to go out for a drive but i do everything in my power not to dig holes or leave trash behide like other. the only way this is going to work is if we have both side sit down and talk about and not call each other names.

    thank you
    MR3 (US NAVY)

  • Senators' Letter to Open National Parks to Concealed Weapons   6 years 38 weeks ago

    I envision scenarios of armed campground users "protecting their families, in car campgrounds in particular" who end up taking potshots at passersby on their way to the restrooms in the middle of the night. Fearing that "Folks are quite vulnerable in their tents from all kinds of derelicts," they might shoot at anything that moves. Well-intentioned but trigger-happy campers seem to pose more of a threat than "all kinds of derelicts."

  • Senators Pushing To Allow Concealed Weapons in National Parks   6 years 38 weeks ago

    In western Montana the locals have more brains than to go camping in Glacier Park because of the Grizzly bears and out of control people from all over the USA and only the visiting Idiots go there.
    The rest of us Montana’s with common sense go to other places in the mountains where we can carry guns and be safe.
    It should definitely be legal to carry a firearm in the parks..............!

  • Senators Pushing To Allow Concealed Weapons in National Parks   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Probably the best point of all here! I guess anyone of us would be shocked if the otherside suddenly said....Gee, I never thought of it that way and then changed our minds. Merry Christmas to all.

  • Video : Winter in Yellowstone National Park   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Wonderful. Loved the buffalo. Looks a peaceful as Alaska, but closer to our home in NC. You have decided for us where our next vacation will be.

  • Park History: Exploring the National Parkways   6 years 38 weeks ago

    I drive the BW parkway at least four days a week. It's miserable with all the traffic and lack of public transportation in the Baltimore/Washington corridor. Nice on a Sunday morning though, and even though it's always jam-packed, at least there are no trucks!

  • Senators Pushing To Allow Concealed Weapons in National Parks   6 years 38 weeks ago

    This is just the same stuff politicians dust off and put out into the public debate when they want to energize their base before an election. And we're all the bunch of idiots who fall for it every time. There are so many more important issues these bozos can't seem to find the time to work on -- health care for children and the elderly, improved veterans' benefits, energy independence, the affordability of a college education, the accelerating destruction of global resources, Social Security solvency, and the list goes on.

  • Park History: Capitol Reef National Park   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Chance, sure enjoyed reading this article and look forward to seeing more from you! Great job.

  • President Bush's Dog, Barney, a Junior Park Ranger at White House   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Just like all good Junior Rangers, Barney must follow the rules, for his own benefit!
    At certain parks, the scent of non-native animals such as dogs can attract dangerous animals that might hurt a pet or deter native animals that need to wander near trails in the evenings to obtain food.

    Junior Rangers promise to help protect and preserve our National Parks, and are very careful to be aware of what the rules are at different parks and places to help keep them wonderful places for visitors and "local residents" (animals) alike!

  • Economic Greed Tarnishes Our National Park System   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Appealing to emotion rather than fact is what has propelled this argument for decades now. It is not simply a case of one footstep in a meadow. These public lands are "our" lands - 300+million of us in this country alone. Add to that figure all of the foreign tourism our nations best idea generates and you have significant crowd control issues, even in the most remote areas of our public lands. That is a lot of footsteps. Moreover, it seems that lands already set aside for consumptive, controlled use are not enough to satisfy an appetite for consumption, as if we are suffering from shortages dire enough to warrant raping our parklands, thereby denigrating the very reason for their existence.

    The Earth is certainly capable of recovering from most types of human impact, but that does not convey the right for careless subjugation of it's resources. At best this practice as advocated by Gerald is disrespectful to the earth, our nation, and subsequent generations; and at worst, it is patently immoral, misguided, disingenuous, and embarrassing.

    The NPS and DOI are responsible for keeping these parks in perpetuity for us, and like it or not, it involves regulating how we use our land and protecting the future us from our current selves. Those are facts. Think in terms of long-term sustainability before calling for the easing or repeal of use policies.

  • Search Under Way for Missing Snowshoer On Mount Rainier   6 years 38 weeks ago

    Godspeed to those that search for the young man as we pray for his safe return. may the lord be with his loved ones during this time of uncertainty.

  • Senators Pushing To Allow Concealed Weapons in National Parks   6 years 38 weeks ago

    The Casper Star-Tribune has an editorial out yesterday that I think clears up some of the issues. They come out against firearms in the parks not because they are anti-gun rights but say that the claim of inconvenience to gun owners is unfounded because all the regulation is interpreted to mean is that the gun has to be disassembled or in the trunk. So, people passing through can have their guns. They just can't have them right next to them ready to use in the front seat.

    I do think the ideological questions are important because they suggest something about government, about people, about their relationship with each other. That's what this discussion is about; it's just too bad that the discussion is fancied up by the senators as though this is really a practical consideration that needs immediate policy attention. Has anyone here ever asked whether they were carrying a firearm either when entering or while in a park? That would be an interesting poll question. (I never have in hundreds of encounters with rangers.) Because, if not, and if the policy really allows people to carry them through anyhow, then the dressing here is taken away, and people can have the important values question discussion.

    I think that people avoid that discussion and couch it in practical window dressing in order to cherry pick support to make it seem as though one view is in the majority (I used to criticize fellow pacifists for trying to do the same in co-opting opposition against the war in Iraq). It would be much better that people had the confidence of their convictions to make the argument on the strongest possible grounds by acknowledging the strongest possible argument of one's opponents. Then, we might get somewhere here.

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