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Here's A Hiking Guide For Your Next Visit To Zion National Park

Apr 18th - 22:32pm | ecbuck

Why not just use Google Earth?Well first, I don't thing Google Earth has the coordinates for all the backcountry sites in RMNP.  If so, please provide the link. All required is a little effort on the part of people who want to use them.

Apr 18th - 22:23pm | Lee Dalton

Another excellent resource for visiting Zion is a book published by Zion Natural History Association and sold for $17.ZION ADVENTURE GUIDE - EXPLORING ZION NATIONAL PARK by Greer Chesher.  Well worth the dollars spent.

Apr 18th - 22:21pm | Lee Dalton

Why not just use Google Earth?  I use it all the time to obtain GPS coordinates in all sorts of places.  I used it last fall for coordinates in Zion and found them to be almost right on.  The work has already been done.  All required is a little effort on the part of people who want to use them.  In the time spent to complain here, one could have had all sorts of waypoints for Zion and virtuall

Apr 18th - 20:40pm | tahoma

A quick search found these resources for GPS waypoints in NW parks: http://www.wta.org/hiking-info/basics/how-to/how-to-prepare-for-backpack... National Geographic Park Maps 

Apr 18th - 20:29pm | ecbuck

How many GPS units are available to backcountry rangers to carry around on a daily basis?Unless those campsites are moving on a "daily basis" not many would be needed.  I would think in 1 year, a single unit could be walked down every trail past every campsite in the park. 

Apr 18th - 19:40pm | Jim Burnett

Maybe a few possible questions/ answers: (1) How many GPS units are available to backcountry rangers to carry around on a daily basis? (2) Are those units of adequate quality to capture the level of accuracy / detail needed for the project under discussion?; (3) There simply hasn't been enough demonstrated demand for this information to get it done.

Apr 18th - 18:06pm | ecbuck

Obviously at least one of the answers to your questions is "no".  The next logical question is, why not. 

Apr 18th - 16:41pm | Kurt Repanshek

Let me know next time (1) you run into a ranger in the backcountry, and when you do, (2) ask if she/he has a GPS with her/him and if she'/he's making waypoints, (3) if she/he and her/his buddies do a data dump to create a list of GPS coordinates for individual trails and campsites, and (4) if they pass that list to their webmaster for posting.

Apr 18th - 16:16pm | ecbuck

EC, I'm guessing the NPS doesn't have the staff or $$$ to go out and generate GPS coordinates for its trails.I find that hard to accept.  I am assuming the rangers hike the trails and visit the campsites on a frequent basis.  How much time/$$$ would it take to "mark" while on the way. I would think they would want that information for their own uses. 

Apr 18th - 14:05pm | Kurt Repanshek

EC, I'm guessing the NPS doesn't have the staff or $$$ to go out and generate GPS coordinates for its trails. That said, I wonder if the relatively low traffic numbers along the CDT are behind the lack of some commercial GPS program. I noticed Garmin, I believe, or maybe it was DeLorme, had GPS packages for some other long-distance trails.

Apr 18th - 13:46pm | ecbuck

That is a start Acadia but it doesn't cover the backcountry campsites.  Nor is it in a GPX file.

Apr 18th - 13:33pm | Acadia on my mind

Can't speak for other National Parks and GPS coordinates, but we've found Acadia posting some coordinates, some of which we've referred to in updating our latest edition of "Best Easy Day Hikes, Acadia National Park."By searching "GPS coordinates" in the Acadia search field, we found this link:

Apr 17th - 19:04pm | ecbuck

Off topic - but about the Parks.  Planning a trip on the CDT in RMNP this summer.    Trying to figure out an iternary through the backcountry sites.  I can't find anywhere where the site GPS coordinates are listed.   As I search, I see alot of commentary about GPS coords not being available for NPS locations.  Does the NPS have a policy of not making those available?

Apr 17th - 18:49pm | ecbuck

Ordered.  Thanks

Apr 17th - 17:56pm | Kurt Repanshek

So much for quality control, eh, EC?Just added a line for ordering: www.hike734.com

Apr 17th - 17:53pm | ecbuck

Going in a couple of weeks. I see it is available at the VC but was hoping to get a copy earlier.  Is there a place to buy online?

Mount Desert Island Road Trip Loop: Schoodic Peninsula, Saint Croix Island International Historic Site

Apr 18th - 13:24pm | Acadia on my mind

Oops! Pardon the double entry. Technical glitch! And couldn't figure out how to delete the duplicate.

Apr 18th - 13:21pm | Acadia on my mind

Springtime in Acadia may still feel and look like winter this year, but the peregrine falcons are already nesting and closing down some of the cliff trails, and some coastal trails are finally snow-free.The rest of April is free entry to Acadia - you don't need to wait for National Park Week this week for that, as in other parks!

Apr 18th - 13:20pm | Acadia on my mind

Springtime in Acadia may still feel and look like winter this year, but the peregrine falcons are already nesting and closing down some of the cliff trails, and some coastal trails are finally snow-free.The rest of April is free entry to Acadia - you don't need to wait for National Park Week this week for that, as in other parks!

Apr 15th - 11:30am | Aimee Beal

Nice piece! Springtime is a fabulous time to enjoy Acadia. Just note that the Thunder Hole stairs and viewing platform are closed till Memorial Day for repairs (though you can still clamber about on the surrounding ledges to your heart's content) and the carriage roads will likely be closed in the next few weeks for their annual drying-out.

One Vandalism Case In The National Park System Resolved, Another Lingers On

Apr 17th - 14:47pm | Rick B.

I know I can't be the only one to be frustrated with the glacial pace of the "complex" creepygirl case.

Apr 17th - 13:08pm | Mike Painter

"The woman used the nom de plume 'creepytings' on her Social Media accounts that displayed some of her images. "_______________________"Nom de guerre" would be a more accurate term ...

Federal Judge Okays Uranium Mining Near Grand Canyon National Park

Apr 17th - 11:13am | dahkota

Why not buy your excess power? Because it cost more than what they can generate power for.I'm curious. Can you post actual examples of this? It is contrary to my understanding of how it works.

Apr 16th - 20:10pm | trailadvocate

Oh ya, save the Grand Canyon (disputable) but welcome a Nuclear Iran and proliferation throughout the Middle East.  Johnny one notes are going to kill the whole nation. 

Apr 16th - 16:06pm | Roger Siglin1

Dr. Runte is right of course. And while we are it it we need to abolish the mortage deduction, abolish all non-profit categories including the girl scouts and tax all religious properties. And the list goes on and on. Regarding the Grand Canyon we need to get rid of all soveriegn nations within the US including the "nation" building the tourist resort in the Canyon.

Apr 16th - 15:28pm | Alfred Runte

You're all missing the point. It's whether two wrongs make a right. If it isn't right to subsidize fossil fuels, how is it right to subsidize their "alternatives?" How about ending all subsidies period rather than arguing which are the "legitimate" subsidies?

Apr 16th - 13:48pm | David Crowl

Domestic Tax showed less than $1B plus less than $1B deffered for a total of domestic tax of less than 2 billion 

Apr 16th - 13:21pm | Roger Siglin1

If you don't believe in taxes then a tax break is not a subsidy I guess. Hopefully EC will respond to David Crowls comment.

Apr 16th - 12:55pm | David Crowl

I might be bad at reading an income statement because I did not work on Wall Street, but I see income for Exon Mobile of $51.6B and total income taxes listed as $18.02B which breaks down to showing $14B as foreign taxes for a net profit of $32B. I was just curious where you get $82B in taxes?

Apr 16th - 09:29am | ecbuck

From Wikipedia.

Apr 16th - 01:00am | Rick B.

You're lying and know it. Not even the Alaskan Tea Partiers bother denying that one now. Lying and you know it.

Apr 15th - 22:11pm | Roger Siglin1

From Wikipedia. A simple search lists numerous examples besides these from many sources.Types of energy subsidies are:

Apr 15th - 21:35pm | ecbuck

Oil and coal are heavily subsidizedTotal myth -as has been demonstrated here before.

Apr 15th - 21:14pm | Lee Dalton

Oil and coal are heavily subsidized, why not alternatives?Besides, why worry about a little radioactive material finding its way to the Grand Canyon.  Just think of the possibilities when the Canyon begins to glow in the dark.  I'm sure someone will be able to figure out a way to market that and reap some hefty profits from the glow.

Apr 15th - 14:13pm | ecbuck

Bottom line Ron, you can put solar on your roof all you want.  Your complaint is that others won't subsidize it. 

Apr 15th - 14:00pm | rmackie

EC, it is a complex subject, off topic and I am certainly no expert.  You can do much research on this issue on the internet, good place to start is Wekipedia, Power Tramsmission.

Apr 14th - 21:51pm | ecbuck

Aha! I caught you not reading the whole assignment,Yep, but only because you started on a false premise.  We are on the same page on this one Alfred.  Now if only Ron would answer the question. Not sure I can do the raft trip, but would like to meet up with you some time in a park. 

Apr 14th - 21:39pm | Alfred Runte

Aha! I caught you not reading the whole assignment, but yes, we agree that the "subsidy" in these things is huge. The one I like is the gas-fired power plant "backing up" the solar and/or wind arrays. Unfortunately, if the gas plant is constantly "cooking" steam--just in case the wind subsides in a rush--where is the savings in having wind? Not to worry, Google says.

Apr 14th - 21:20pm | ecbuck

The grid already exists. If Power Company X is charging me 14 cents per kilowatt hour, why not buy back my "excess" power if I put solar on my roof?

Apr 14th - 19:54pm | Alfred Runte

The grid already exists. If Power Company X is charging me 14 cents per kilowatt hour, why not buy back my "excess" power if I put solar on my roof? Other readers doing this probably know some actual rates. The common complaint I hear is that the power companies want to lowball the buyback rates. Again, I don't know this personally, since I am not an investor in solar myself.

Paddling The Misty Mountains: Kayaking Milford Sound In Fiordland National Park

Apr 16th - 13:09pm | Jonathan Ronzio

Great article! It sounds like you had an epic New Zealand experience. I especially liked where you pivoted away from the boat cruises and talked more to the adventurous traveler.

Reader Participation Day: Grand Canyon Float, Or Appalachian Trail Trek

Apr 15th - 17:01pm | Gary Wilson

The wonderland trail - all of it!

Apr 15th - 12:20pm | NP_Day_Hiker

If I had to choose I would go with the rafting trip through the Grand Canyon.  I can't imagine backpacking for months on the AT.  I'm sure it would be great, but I like the idea of the shorter trip on the river with the excitement of running the famous rapids.

Apr 15th - 11:20am | ecbuck

Roger, I can assure you the AT has more than its fair share of large tees and treeless areas with massive vistas.  That is one of the great things about the AT - huge variety. 

Apr 15th - 10:38am | Roger Siglin1

I have hiked short sections of the AT and do not care for the second growth jungle of small trees. I am happiest in treeless country unless it is the high sierra with it's huge trees, open understory, and slick rock granite. I have not done a boat trip in the Grand Canyon but have walked from top to bottom on both sides of the river and much prefer it over the AT.

Apr 15th - 10:15am | StevePierce50

I agree, these are two very different experiences.  I did a ratfing trip through the Grand Canyon.  You get a real appreciation for the magnitude ofthe Grand Canyon from river level, and the opportunitues for exploring and seeing hard to reach places can't be beat. You pack  a lot of experiences in a 1 or 2 week period.

Apr 15th - 10:15am | StevePierce50

I agree, these are two very different experiences.  I did a ratfing trip through the Grand Canyon.  You get a real appreciation for the magnitude ofthe Grand Canyon from river level, and the opportunitues for exploring and seeing hard to reach places can't be beat. You pack  a lot of experiences in a 1 or 2 week period.

Apr 15th - 09:22am | wild places

Not even close for me. I'll take the Grand Canyon (I have only hiked part of the AT).

Apr 15th - 08:16am | ecbuck

Two very different experiences.  I have done the AT and had an opportunity to do the Canyon a few years ago but passed.  I guess if one votes with your feet, that puts the AT on top for me. A few of observations on the comments above:  

Wild Things With A View

Apr 15th - 09:53am | mtgnppics

  Thanks, Deby. I enjoy your articles and photos.  Keep it up!  :)

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide