Recent comments

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    There are limits in sports and this style of sport has crossed into "no man's land". This may require a compromise this year, but it must make a distinct impact to get change started. The dialogues must begin. Keep writing and speaking and sharing and emailing and blogging. Social boundaries have been violated but made to appear legal by those in power, to make those decisions. Nothing is right if it's not right with a democratic society. It speaks volumes about who we are as a species, not just Americans. Every cell in this body is responding to the urgency to stand up.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Shamanic justice? I'm all for for appealing to higher authorities.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    I suggest a multi-faceted approach. In most Native American lore, and from my studies it applies in this specific geography, the bear is a creature to be treated with the highest level of respect accorded to ANY of the Great Father's creations, and NEVER hunted, especially as a food source. Killing a bear, except under the most extreme and strictly defined circumstances is to bring unbelieveable bad fortune upon the slayer. While we're frittering away time contacting elected officials, NPS administrators and other governing bodies, how about contacting the Katmai, Denali, Inuit, etc. and asking for their particluar brand of intervention? There isn't a shaman worth his salt that wouldn't take up this cause. From what I understand, this local justice should be far more severe and swifter than the squeeky wheels of government non-action will be.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Beamis, let's keep the coals burning on this one. No one hangs loose on this one. Ms. Bomar it's your skin and hide now... in the courts. I can see these jerks laughing as they skin the poor animal. Yap! a big booze night for the jerks and you can hear them slurring in there slobber speech about the BIG KILL. John, I sense your anger and it's good as mine. I think your on to something about the Texan mentality of hunting. Remember, the Dick Cheney texas fiasco...safari land Texas style!?

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Mary Bomar can you read this? You had better be doing something about this shooting gallery of a bear slaughter real quick or you will have the wrath of the American public raining down on your head.

    Again what kind of stewardship is this?

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    This a dispicable practice. They are shooting habituated bears. There is no fair chase involved in such a "hunt". Hunting brown bears should be prohibitted in Katmai Preserve and the adjacent Park.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    This is not hunting--this is a slaughter. Many of these bears have become habituated to humans through their exposure to visitors at McNeil River Game Sanctuary. In good conscience, they should be protected. Clearly, when they leave McNeil River, the behavior they learned around humans there is just as shown in the video. They are not afraid of people. Some hunters have proclaimed to the Alaska Board of Game that the bears lose this behavior as soon as they leave McNeil. The videos document the truth. Katmai Park and Preserve should be off limits to bear hunting to prevent this slaughter and provide a sanctuary to these incredibly special bears. They are a world treasure.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    I witnessed people doing the unspeakable and I will never forget it. This was a nightmare. While assisting Daniel Zatz, Chris and Ken Day, Scott Dickerson and Channel 2 Anchorage news on this disturbing trip, I saw what I knew had been happening for years, but didnt really grasp. This area serves as the late season feeding grounds for McNeil and katmai bears, mostly sows and cubs. The bears are all habituated to humans- they trust people. This "harvest" or slaughter acts as a population sink for the invaluable bears that constitute the booming bear viewing industry of the Alaska Peninsula. It is also cruel, unethical and inhumane.
    The bear that was killed in the video was a beautiful female
    who I assume likely would have had cubs next year. She was finishing up a good summer, and was very fat. She wandered right next to our camp several times eating berries, and slept in the bushes about 30 yards outside of our electric fence. This was valuable bear, much more valuable alive than dead. She was valuable as an individual. The bear viewing resource in this region is one of the most incredible wildlife jewels on the planet. Only when you make eye contact with such a bear and feel the mutual trust between you and the bear can you grasp how special and rare she really was.
    On the 1st we watched a party of 3 walk up to her as she carried a fish up the bank of the lake. She was oblivious to their presence until, at 20 yards or less, one man let an arrow go into her chest. The guide put two bullets into her before she disappeared into the grass and came our direction. She stood up and looked at us with a look of sheer terror 20 yards away before hiding in the alders. The guide found her and shot her 4 more times. We filmed and watched all this while set up 10 feet from our camp. The bear was killed 50 yards or less away. We then saw them gut her like a catfish, leaving the white carcass to attract more bears for the next day's hunt. I hope her hide looks good on someone's wall.
    We saw and heard at least half a dozen bears killed on the 1st. As soon as first light came bullets echoed across Narrow Cove and from Battle Creek. My heart sank deeper than ever before. From the air when we left we saw bears fishing and eating berries right next to the ominous tent camps, people were skinning bears, hunting parties stalked the hills, and white bear carcasses were floating in the lake. It was a massacre. It bothered me more than I even could have imagined. I hope this can be stopped.

  • Marketing Alaska's National Parks; Why Not All National Parks?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Jim Stratton
    Alaska Regional Director
    National Parks Conservation Association

    One of the opportunities provided by the Centennial Challenge is to test ideas, like this marketing approach, and if it is successful, roll it out to the rest of the country. I agree that all parks could benefit from something like this....

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Frank, you're going impartial on us? I'll give you my signature in advance of WHATEVER comments you all care to make on this issue. I don't believe that there could possibly exist too much language that I wouldn't stand behind on this pathetic, spineless, underhanded deal cut with another loony special interest group. How's that for a start?

  • Death Valley Looking to Electronic Rangers to Raise Money, Lure Younger Generations   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Good day Lee-

    My given profession in cancer research, more specifically in the drug discovery arena. As such, technology is not something I shy away from, and as a friend told me years ago, "man should embrace technological advances and utilize the tools available to him to his own unique best advantage, not be intimidated by them".
    My comments, as I mentioned a few times above, have less to do with technology in the parks as the fear that they by misused and visitors become dependent on gizmos and lose their self-reliance. GPS route-finders on the trails, I fear, will encourge too many under-equipped visits into the nether-reaches, as people even now ignore the warning to be properly prepared, physically, mentally, and equipment-wise, over-rating their ability to successfully conqueor such barren areas due to the fact that they carry this "security blanket" with them, completely ignoring the fact that getting lost is the LEAST of their concerns. I understand that this type of instrument is 180 degrees from what you have proposed, but too many times I've experienced the scenario that "if A, then B", and I can envision what you might call the natural progression of the beast. Once these devices are deemed successful, as I imagine they will be to some extent, the next logical step would be to expand on the uses of the technology, once it is in place. It called cost-effective planning and execution. I'm just hoping that someone realizes BEFORE undue stress is placed on an admittedly understaffed group of rangers what they're opening the doors to in the future, and make provisions to monitor, control and limit the advancement of technology before Pandora's Box is left wide open.

    I would gladly experiment with your device. As a matter of fact, I'm quite looking forward to the opportunity. Then at least I can lend an informed opinion. Worst come to worst, at least I'll be on the trail again!

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    As someone who lives in Alaska and who has testified at the last 2 board of game meetings on the hunting in this area- I can tell you the bottom line is its the Alaska Outdoors Council and the Board of Game (B.O.G.). Ron Summerville the former chair of the B.O.G. blames bear viewers for habituating these bears then complaining about hunting- well that means that only bear hunters can use these areas by his logic. You can't ethically fish or camp or bear view in these areas as long as the BOG allows this stuff to continue. Sarah Pallin said on the radio that she wouldn't allow bears that use McNeil River to be hunted. She clearly isn't living up to her promise because these bears very likely use McNeil.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    This reminds me of Timothy Tredwell (Grizzly Man) and what he was fighting against. The video is sickening.

    I realize this site is more about impartial reporting of stories about national parks, but I would encourage the editors to turn into advocates on this issue. Perhaps the editors, contributers, and readers of NPT could send a unified letter and/or message to the appropriate managers and congressional representatives expressing our outrage and disgust and this blatant violation of the Organic Act and mismanagement of our national park.

  • Death Valley Looking to Electronic Rangers to Raise Money, Lure Younger Generations   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Good Day,
    I am Lee Little the developer of the GPS Ranger.

    I too enjoy Ranger led talks and try to attend as many of these as possible. However one day at a National Park I was unable to find a Park Ranger to ask a question. I was frustrated. This lead me to start thinking about how technology could be used to relay the messages of the Park. Remember, I just wanted an answer to a simple question. This frustration lead to me to realize that the NPS maps dont' have alot of information either. So if I can't get a park ranger, what is the next best thing ?

    Honestly I hate technology. But I like information, especially information about a Park that I have never been to. This is the fundamental theory behind the GPS Ranger. The GPS Ranger is a video player that triggers in front of a point of interest. We work with the National Parks and their interpretive personnel. In the process we video tape the "experts" and our system delivers their message. It is their tour. We offer a tool that helps them deliver their message. We have two goals when we develop a tour, they are, deliever a quality experience and make money for the Parks.

    The goal of our system is to offer an educational tour for visitors that they most likely would not have gotten given the cut backs in staffing in our National treasures. Did you know that the GPS Ranger tour in Death Valley has over 3 hours of video content all approved by the Death Valley interpretive staff ?

    We have designed our system to give back to the parks. We want the system to be a money maker for the parks. This money in turn goes back into other interpretive programs.

    I would encourage those on this blog to try our products and tell us what you think....you can visit us at www.gpsranger.com.

    Thank you
    Lee Little

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    You're absolutely correct John, we need to have a new interpretation of the 2nd amendment and the right to arm bears.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    P.S.- Life is indeed cheap.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Thanks Robert.......I was wondering how much graft it took to grease the proper paws at the local park offices.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    "Fair chase," my ass. These fat bastards are likely lazy Texans wankers who can't walk to the 7-11 let alone be alone with themselves and the bears in the backcountry.
    The Park Service demonstrates again that this Bush Administration is the worst thing to happen to sportsmen since PETA. When will Republican sportsmen take their heads out of their asses and realize that these people are the worst enemy of all that is good about hunting and fishing. No more excuses--the sportsmen community must wake up and take responsibility--the more you elect these f***ing morons under the guise of the 2nd amendment, the more you get this kind of result. Disgusting.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Like Chris I am mad!
    I have had an air taxi out of homer for 40 years.I started taking people to see Bears at McNeil River in 1962,working for another outfit.
    Never had anyone threatened by these animals...we didn't bother them and they didn;t bother us.
    At each Game Board meeting in Anchorage we have pleaded for justice for these decent animals.
    Lately we begged the Parks system to place these bears off limits...lately because of an overkill of bears in the area in which this movie was taken.
    They can place the area off limits based on the overkill of past sasons...but they haven't.
    I pointed out to them that they are,unlike the State of Alaska,answerable to all the people of the United States; it is a National Park!!
    This is not stewardship.
    The damage is done, to this area; hunters will find other easily hunted animals,and people to guide them and pilots to fly them.Blame the Outdoor Council,Alaska Board of Game,National Parks, and the owners of that land; us...!!

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    I enjoy fishing and have been to Katmai numerous times and to Lake Clark nearby but now I realize that it is unethical to fish or even visit these parks as long as they are going to allow hunting. These trophy hunters pay around $15,000 to hunt a bear so a guide can make $105,000 in a day. And a lot of these guides and hunters are from out of state many hunters are from other countries. Some one needs to talk to the Alaska Outdoors Council they are the biggest lobbists for these hunts, they are the key people behind all of this.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Hey Kurt and Jeremy could you get us some names and numbers of who in the NPS approved this public slaughter? I am in the process of contacting my Congressional representatives and would like more specific information if it is available.

    Some cozy NPS careers should soon be in deep jeopardy, starting at the top with Mary Bomar. If after seeing this hideous display of mismanagement she does not act swiftly and severely then I am prepared to begin a campaign for her removal as the head of the agency. Whomever signed off on this disgusting spectacle must be censured or even removed from the responsibility of resource stewardship that has been entrusted to them.

    This was appalling and exceedingly cruel. Who are the bozos in charge?

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    What a disgusting display of selfish and unsportsman like idiocy. And I mean both the NPS and the hunters—I'm just not sure who piss me off more.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    My family has traveled to Alaska for 2 summers now and had the time of our lives bearviewing in Katmai National Park this past summer. We realize hunting will be a part of society, but to allow 2 commercial endeavors to take place with the same animals is appalling. There is plenty of room in Alaska to hunt, so make it a fair hunt. Don't collect millions of dollars during one season to turn around and collect more money on the same animals. What a poor excuse for hunting. Hunters should be ashamed. This is nothing more than bait hunting. The animals didn't even have a chance.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Let me first state that I don't hunt. Never have, probably never will. I'm just a urbanized homonid who gets my meat from the grocery store, or once in a while a local buffalo ranch or private farm. I do, however, know plenty of hunters and serious fishermen, who take pride in their knowledge, abilities, equipment, and love the spirit of the sport, along with the interaction between preditor and prey. No serious fisherman that I know utilized the sport-fishing technology that includes range finders, depth finders, water temperature meters, and the sporadic stray piece of dynamite or speargun. True hunters differ from sportsmen, and that can be gauged by the amount meat in one's freezer versus the number of heads mounted on the wall. And truth be known, the most respectable hunters of all are those of the bow. Any novice with a high-powered rifle can down a critter from 400 yds, drive over on their ATV and drag it out to the processing plant. Some accomplishment. And somehow they actually derive some sense of pride, power, dominance and achieve the ever-popular testosterone rush. Please don't tell me about how much effort you put into packing your own loads, obtaining the latest in winter camouflage gear, spread deer urine all over you face, clean your weapon and sharpen your skills by hunting squirrels with an AK-47. Hunting what are almost domesticated animals qualifies as hunting? This isn't hunting, it's a way to gather collectibles. Show up, pay your fee, and take home a mug for your collection. Some sport.

  • Is the Bear "Hunt" in Katmai National Preserve Sporting or Ethical?   6 years 42 weeks ago

    Park and wildlife managment is generally very good in Alaska. So what are the NPS thinking?? Hunting and bear viewing don't mix. And only one of them is truly sustainable. Despite being unsporting hunting an habituated Bear, where is the hunting/gun etiquette?? Shooting towards people?? Now it is on the internet sadly the NPS judgement is open to the world.