Featured Articles on National Parks Traveler

Is The Time Right For A "Maine Woods National Park"?

Inspired in no small measure by others who gave so much to the National Park System, Roxanne Quimby is offering 70,000 acres for a national park embracing Maine's North Woods.

Musings from Glacier Bay National Park

It was a familiar sound, and yet unfamiliar. I was out of place: heading into the woods at Bartlett Cove along the coast of Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska, not the Rocky Mountains, and the whooshing sound startled me.

History To Be Made With Dismantling Of Dams Impacting Olympic National Park Watershed

Nearly a century after they rose up and blocked the Elwha River to generate power, two dams on the river with headwaters in Olympic National Park will begin to be removed this weekend in a historic event aimed at restoring the watershed.

Archaeologists Find Curious Prehistoric Artifacts At Noatak National Preserve

A curious set of prehistoric clay disks has been discovered in Noatak National Preserve in northwestern Alaska, leading archaeologists to believe they've encountered a new aspect of the region's past.

Birding in the National Parks: Fall Migration's On the Way

You might not like it, but fall is in the air. Sure, the temperatures might not feel like it, but the migratory birds know what time of year it is and soon will be taking flight. Around the National Park System there are more than a few parks where you can see this in action.

Crisp September Weather Brings Crisp Apples, Along with History, To the National Parks

Finally, the most-anticipated month for visiting national parks has arrived. That's right, September, the month when apples ripen and are ready for picking. From Pennsylvania to Utah and on west to California, the desire to bite into a nice crisp apple, or pick a bag or bushel for pies and sauce, are luring visitors to parks.

Many National Parks Get The Indian Story Wrong

Earlier this year we ran a story by former Park Service historian Richard West Sellars that examined how fully the National Park Service at Fort Laramie National Historic Site recounts the history of the 19th Century Indian Wars. The following article from Robert Pahre takes a broader look at how the National Park Service interprets Native American history.

National Park Service Issues 5-Year "Call To Action" Plan For Moving Toward Its Second Century

A more expansive, and inclusive, National Park System, stronger educational outreach, and a revised approach for managing today's natural and cultural resource challenges are among goals laid out in a blueprint for leading the National Park Service into its second century.

Bear Watching Mayhem In Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks

Bears in Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks have been in the news a bit this summer, both because of their behavior and the behavior of tourists watching the bears. The following column, which Todd Wilkinson posted on his Wildlife Art Journal site the other day, will have you scratching your head over how there haven't been more bear-human incidents this summer.

By the Numbers: Voyageurs National Park

This northern Minnesota park's waterway system, consisting of four large island-studded lakes connected by narrows, was once the route of the French-Canadian voyageurs. A large peninsula with a glaciated, boreal forest landscape completes the ensemble.

Birding In the Parks: Reviewing Binoculars from Vanguard

The truly essential items for the birder’s or wildlife watcher’s gearbox are few, but binoculars are pretty difficult to do without.

Traveler's Checklist: Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis

The Arch taken from the Courthouse
Standing under the iconic arch at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial is awesome. But the site has so much more worth exploring.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s Changing Landscape is the Only Constant

Change is constant, and magical, at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Here change is taking place right in front of you.

The Million Club: National Parks That Had More Than A Million Visits in 2010

Crown jewels like Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and Yosemite get huge numbers of visitors, but most of the Million Club's heavy lifters don't even have National Park as part of their name.

University of Georgia Study Finds That Cold Water, As With Warm Water, Can Kill Coral Reefs

University of Georgia researchers have determined that unusually cold seawater, as with unusually warm seawater, can be deadly for the coral reefs that can be found in places such as Virgin Islands and Biscayne national parks.

Persistent Pedestrians: Black Bears in Big Bend National Park

Black bears, once thought to be long gone from Big Bend National Park, have been on the comeback, though the recent drought could create problems for the small population, as Meghan Hicks has learned.

Traveler's Checklist: Petersburg National Battlefield

Virginia has plenty of Civil War battlefields, many of which are part of the National Park System. One that seems to rise above others, though, is Petersburg National Battlefield, which history has left with a massive crater from a poorly executed Union attack.

Shutting Down Small-town Post Offices Could Make Things Tough For Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers

How far are you willing to go out of your way for a meal? For Appalachian National Scenic Trail thru-hikers, that question could take on more relevance if the U.S. Postal Service closes down some of its smaller operations in a cost-saving move.

Where Can You Enjoy The Best Wildlife Experiences In the National Park System?

Here at the Traveler we put our heads together to come up with a list of where best to watch wildlife in the National Park System. We're sure you can help us grow this list.

By the Numbers: Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park

"Two" has important meaning in the context of Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, and so do many other numbers.

Birding in the National Parks: Down The Park Road Towards Flamingo in Everglades National Park

Everglades National Park offers some of the best birding in the National Park System, but you need to be alert for the hazards -- gators, poisonous snakes, mosquitoes, and sharp, slippery rocks, as Kirby Adams discovered.

Issue Of Hunting Brown Bears At Katmai National Preserve Arises Again

Four years ago we brought you a video that touched more than a few nerves. The subject was hunting brown bears in Katmai National Preserve and raised the question of whether it was really sporting or ethical. While the resulting uproar died down, it's creeping up again as Park Service officials seek public comment on a proposal to allow two sport-hunting guide businesses to operate in the preserve.

At Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Birds, Turtles, And Humans Have Created An Air of Controversy, Part II

Having deflated the tires of his Suburban so each held only about 20 pounds of pressure, John Couch drives me out onto the seashore under a bright June sun. The ocean is rhythmically slapping the beach, the air is warm, not yet too humid.

At Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Birds, Turtles, And Humans Have Created An Air of Controversy

A dispute over birds, turtles, and humans has filled the air over Cape Hatteras National Seashore with controversy, and has drawn into question the very purpose of the national seashores and the mission of the National Park Service.

Proposed Backcountry Fee At Great Smoky Mountains National Park Would Be A First For Appalachian Trail Thru-Hikers

A proposal to charge for overnight stays in the backcountry of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, if enacted, would create the first area along the 2,180-mile Appalachian National Scenic Trail where thru-hikers would have to pay to lay down for the night.

National Park Road Trip 2011: Lodging At Mammoth Cave National Park

A stay at Mammoth Cave National Park marked the final stop on David and Kay Scott's legendary tour of parks, and it delivered some interesting lodging news.

Weeks Act Celebrated From the Perch of the Blue Ridge Parkway

The 100th anniversary of the Weeks Act establishing national forests in the East was celebrated on the Blue Ridge Parkway this past Saturday as officials looked out over the first tract of land purchased under the law.

Devils Postpile National Monument Officials Building Management Plan With An Eye on Climate Change

In drafting a general management plan for Devils Postpile National Monument, Superintendent Deanna Dulen is keeping an eye on how climate change might impact a scenic crossroads of the High Sierra.

National Park Road Trip 2011: The Cabins At Ozark National Scenic Riverways

Having left Buffalo National River behind, David and Kay Scott discover they couldn't flee the heat and humidity, where they checked in the other day to check out the lodging for an update to their book, The Complete Guide To the National Park Lodges.

Grand Teton National Park Refines Bear-Watching Guidelines

With grizzly bears and people coming closer and closer to one another in the front country of Grand Teton National Park, officials have refined their guidelines as to how close people can be to wildlife. The need for the revisions arose as more and more visitors took to the roofs of their vehicles to photograph bears and, in at least two instances, bears took exception and charged the vehicles, according to park officials.