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Cape Hatteras National Seashore To Adjust Wildlife Boundaries

Jun 23rd - 18:05pm | beachdumb

Buxton, why weren't these possibilities documented before?

Jun 23rd - 18:02pm | beachdumb

The staff didn't cave, they got to use common sense and reasonableness. No one has or will drive on the dunes, it's never been allowed. ORV access is different here, meant to get families and beach gear to remote areas.

Jun 22nd - 21:16pm | rmackie

It looks like the the staff caved in here, I hope that is not the case. It is important that the that the endangered species of the area are not compromised.

Jun 22nd - 19:45pm | Rick B.

I guess it's like the old story of "how long is too long depends on which side of the bathroom door you're on". What's a problem for a chick trying to live is different from what's a problem for a guy driving on the dunes.

Jun 22nd - 19:03pm | Buxton

The usual, chicks being run over by vehicles when they try to hide in the ruts. Birds run off their nests by vehicles that sort of thing. It will eventually get docummented if these regs stand.

Jun 22nd - 15:03pm | beachdumb

Never was a problem before, what problems do you expect?

Jun 20th - 05:28am | Buxton

I expect there will be some problems allowing vehicles along the ocean shoreline with unfledged chicks.

Jun 18th - 15:55pm | Rick Smith

Or their seashore.

Jun 17th - 20:27pm | beachdumb

This is a good start, but I think the NPS are purposely making this more complicated than it needs to be. The excessive closures and buffers are still not making any significant difference. I hope we can eventually revert to more simpler measures that used to provide reasonable access.

Jun 16th - 19:00pm | Kurt Repanshek

Just testing...Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country...

Photographing National Parks: A Guide For Scouting And Shooting America's Most Cherished Lands

Jun 23rd - 14:17pm | QT Luong

The reviewer makes it sound like there are already tons of books about photographing the national parks. There are books about the national parks that feature photography (of course). There are quite a few books (and e-books) about photographing a particular national park. There are books about photographing a particular geographic area, which happen to include some national parks.

Jun 23rd - 13:23pm | FRANCES THOMPSON

I am so eager to own a copy of this new publication as soon as it is available in August 2015.

Plane Makes Emergency Landing On Beach At Lake Mead National Recreation Area

Jun 23rd - 11:30am | Jim Burnett

Wild places - The site has undergone some major changes in the past week or so. There have been problems posting comments, so one this is a test :-) Kurt has his tech team working on this. One big change - the most recent comment on a thread will be on "top" of the "stack"  of those posted, so you don't have to scroll down through a long series of posts to see the latest ones.

Jun 23rd - 10:59am | wild places

Is the web site experiencing problems or modifying the format? Appearance is a little different and comments were not working. Just checking to see if it's my computer or something at NPT.

Visiting Dinosaur National Monument's Quarry Exhibit Hall

Jun 22nd - 21:02pm | Lee Dalton

I could barely hear it too. The first few moments, Kurt's introduction comes through fine, but narrative through the rest of the video is almost completely inaudible even with volume turned up as high as possible at my computer.

Jun 22nd - 20:17pm | Acadia on my mind

Must have just been a glitch on the smartphone. Thanks for checking, and glad to see Web site is allowing comments again. Cleaner look with the new Web design, making it easier to surf - thanks for thinking of us users!

Jun 22nd - 08:18am | Kurt Repanshek

Volume is working on our end, Acadia, so not sure what the issue is.

Jun 21st - 08:57am | Acadia on my mind

Couldn't hear anything when played the YouTube video, although I checked volume settings on this end. Hope it's something that can be fixed on NPT'S end? Just shared it with friends who volunteer at the monument. Never thought of Dinosaur National Monument as something for the bucket list, but NPT'S reports from there - volume or not - are making us rethink that.

Should Anything Be Done With Angel's Landing?

Jun 20th - 20:25pm | Lee Dalton

Here's a recent article from the Salt Lake Tribune that might interest some readers:

Reader Participation Day: Would You Support A Reservation System For Visiting National Parks?

Jun 19th - 21:05pm | Robert0117

For most the planning and expense to visit National Parks is considerable. Hundreds of miles of travel, gas, airlines, motels, camping fees, etc. etc. It would be very nice to be assured that when you arrive you can visit the park. So for that reason, I would support a reservation system where the parks are turning people away.

Jun 18th - 10:37am | wild places

Given my penchant for spur of the moment trips I don't like reservations in general but recognize that crowding problems will require changes. The only other alternative that comes to mind is establishing a daily capacity which when reached the gates get closed. Guess I'd rather see this than a reservation system, or perhaps a combination of the two?

Jun 15th - 18:14pm | NormalReactionS...

Like a golf course with tee times... Leave some open for "walk ons" but mostly save your time and space. Not required but highly recommended? Might work...

Jun 12th - 08:36am | ecbuck

Like the new look Kurt, especially putting the latest post on top. The "Who's in the VC" doesn't seem to be working however. Also, in the past you could go to a commentor's bio by clicking his name. That isn't there now - perhaps intentionally or perhaps because the VC is working. Ah and spell check is back.

Jun 11th - 16:21pm | ecbuck

Well since deposits are required for reservations in most vacations destinations, I think my principles are in line with the norm. 

Jun 11th - 15:33pm | Megaera

It's the principle of the thing.  Your principles obviously vary from mine.

Jun 10th - 22:22pm | ecbuck

They've got $200 of my money for that long just so that I can spend 2 nights at Roosevelt and 3 nights at Old Faithful in 2016. *That's* just WRONG.Gee, at current interest rates, $200 for a year is less than $5.00.  Seems like a small price to pay. 

Jun 10th - 22:13pm | Megaera

*Some*thing has to be done about Yosemite Valley.  I suspect a reservation system might be the only solution.Yellowstone, OTOH, isn't that bad, even in August (speaking as someone who's been there at some point during every month between May and October).  Even Old Faithful in August can be uncrowded if you know what you're doing.

Jun 10th - 13:48pm | Lee Dalton

I love the campground reservation system through  It's very comforting to know that I'll have a place to lay my little head when I arrive.  And I don't have to pull into a park in the wee hours hoping I'll find an open campsite.  I've actually had to cancel reservations twice and even that has worked very well.  There's a $10 charge to cancel, but the balance of the reservation

Jun 10th - 13:46pm | SmokiesBackpacker

sure.  Anything to help the NPS and goold ole Canadian based Recreation.govBut only if there are fees to do so.  Perhaps the NPS should consider charging people to use the parks. 

Jun 10th - 11:08am | rmackie

In my own view of the issue, I have found that reservation systems work quite well. It can be offset with holding some back for first come first serve or no shows. Recent experience both at the Washington Monument and Mammoth Cave were very well done.

Jun 10th - 09:17am | ecbuck

Demand based pricing would be far easier and less expensive to implement and would spread usage to periods of lesser demand.

Jun 10th - 08:41am | Lee Dalton

Yes.It may be the only viable answer to a terribly difficult problem.

Jun 10th - 08:40am | ecbuck

There are so many open questions here it is hard to provide a definitive answer.   Will their be reservation fees?  What's the penalty for not showing up?  Will a reservation be required or just an option to get you to the front of the line?

Musings from Glacier Bay National Park

Jun 17th - 15:15pm | Rick B.

My wife and I just returned from a nice weekend trip to Glacier Bay. After five years living in Alaska, and now a month before moving elsewhere, it was great to finally get to visit this National Park. It is truly a world class site, and sight. The magnitude of what one sees is truly beyond simple description. We spent one day where I was out all day sport fishing while she hiked and biked.

Traveler Housekeeping Notes

Jun 17th - 11:43am | David Crowl

The website looks awesome.

Impetus For Current Move To Raise Fees Across National Park System Dates Back More Than A Decade

Jun 11th - 18:47pm | SmokiesBackpacker

There is no way to earn free volunteer passes in the Smokies.  The kings and queens at the smokies decided they were different and didn't have to follow the same annual pass rules as the other parks.  But such is the mentality of you NPS bureaucrats.  They also don't honor any of the other passes that other parks do, despite being asked to do so where they charge fees.

Jun 10th - 19:26pm | Rick Smith

You are correct, RodF.  Backpacker says a lot of absurd things, but he goes beyond absurdity when he says that NPS employees like fees.  Makes you wonder where and how he comes up with this stuff.Rick

Jun 10th - 19:16pm | Lee Dalton

Isn't anyone going to take up the challenge of telling us how many of their tax dollars went to support the national parks last year?

National Park Gateway Towns Sprinkled Through List Of Top 100 "Best Small Towns"

Jun 11th - 15:21pm | Jim Burnett

Some fine choices. I have no idea how it would rank in terms of criteria used for this list, but I've always enjoyed Estes Park, Colorado as a place to visit. Yes, the traffic can be a challenge at times, but this park gateway has managed to retain it's local character, has avoided being overrun by big box retailers, and the setting for Estes Park is hard to beat.

Is Global Climate Change A Threat to National Parks? Another Response

Jun 11th - 11:10am | rmackie

Thanks Rick, I must admit being a bit skeptical about all the information flow on these issues is not entirely bad. I do however have enormous respect for those that work in the field and have the expertise to comment. There are questions, but taking a position of completely denying the research by the scientific community to date is not a good approach.

Jun 10th - 19:17pm | Rick B.

Ron -I agree about evidence to support both sides. I think that there is a lot of semantic dancing in the shadows between the differences of "caused by" versus "contributed to".  Posturing ensues.

Jun 10th - 14:29pm | beachdumb

Oh, so a 25 year old article from an Australian newspaper proves that there is no global warming.Right.Be careful. Don't fall out of that cherry tree.

Jun 10th - 14:10pm | rmackie

Interesting post Jim, unfortunately, there is enough evidence to support both positions,  the debate over human activity contributing to climate change and the periodic droughts common to the southwestern United States including California. Issues of water and growth go back to John Wesley Powell. As Alfred Runte points out, population pressure is a key factor.

Jun 10th - 13:53pm | Lee Dalton

Oh, so a 25 year old article from an Australian newspaper proves that there is no global warming.Right.Be careful.  Don't fall out of that cherry tree. 

Jun 10th - 13:44pm | beachdumb

NASA has known for 25 years that satellite data is more accurate than surface data, but it gives the wrong political answer so they continue to ignore it. Why would the US space agency trust satellites?

Jun 10th - 13:27pm | beachdumb

Have some people simply picked graphs that appeared to agree with their belief without fully understanding what the graphs actually portray?

Jun 10th - 12:56pm | ecbuck

those who live in the west need to face the fact that "human activity" is a major factor in the current water problems: demand for water exceeds supply in sections of the country that are arid in the best of times.

Jun 10th - 12:46pm | Jim Burnett

Two sources cited above say water woes in the west are due to a combination of inadequate supply due and increased demand."It's important to note that California's drought, while extreme, is not an uncommon occurrence for the state . . .multiyear droughts appear regularly in the state's climate record, and it's a safe bet that a similar event will happen again . . ."

Jun 10th - 08:38am | beachdumb

While I have a hard time trusting much out of the NOAA these days, I do agree with their common sense analysis of the normal cyclical drought in California. 

Jun 10th - 08:36am | Lee Dalton

Going back and exploring further in the woodfortrees website, I found that it may be possible to cherry pick almost anything you want to try to prove a preconceived agenda.  But a little digging found this information.  Quoting now:

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide

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