Featured Articles on National Parks Traveler

Discovering Grizzlies and Wolves at Yellowstone National Park

It's a brilliant fall morning and instead of being holed up in my stuffy office cube, I'm out stalking grizzly bears. I've come to Yellowstone National Park to learn more about the wildlife here, particularly its two top predators: grizzlies and wolves.

Lame-Duck Congress Has Plateful of National Park-Related Legislation To Consider

Seemingly being pulled in a variety of directions by the election results, the national deficit, inertia, and an overall malaise, Congress nevertheless enters its lame-duck session with much on its plate when it comes to the National Park System.

National Park Service Establishing Protocols For Dealing With White-Nose Syndrome in Bat Populations

It looks somewhat like a dusting of confectioner's sugar, but the white coating that is showing up on more and more noses and wings of bats is the signature of a dire fungal disease that threatens to decimate bat colonies across the country.

Some Good Safety Tips To Keep in Mind While Visiting National Parks This Winter

Winter is one of the best times to enjoy our parks! With majestic, snow-capped mountains and ice-covered lakes, winter provides scenic splendors with an array of exciting activities. While visitation peaks in the summer, national parks receive millions of visitors throughout the winter months, who come to enjoy such activities as skiing, snowshoeing, camping, and hiking in the backcountry, and attending ranger-led programs.

Whitebark Pine Trees in Crater Lake National Park Under Attack From Blister Rust, Pine Beetles

The country's largest lakeside stands of whitebark pine trees, at Crater Lake National Park, are being assaulted by a duo of forces that are slowly decreasing the numbers of these majestic and beneficial pines, according to a new study.

As Winter Settles In, Seasonal Migrations Lend Interest to Wildlife Watching in America's National Parks

Seasonal migrations offer special opportunities to see wildlife herding and flocking, leaving, passing through, and arriving in our national parks.

Report: Climate Changes Could Batter Acadia National Park Economically, Environmentally

The latest of a running series of reports outlining how climate change could reshape national parks portrays economic and environmental impacts lashing at Acadia National Park and its surrounding communities. While the report's authors hope to catch the attention of Congress, they acknowledge that a groundswell of public concern might be necessary to convince politicians to act.

Want to Escape the Cold? Winter is a Great Time to Visit These Desert and Coastal Parks

For some park travelers, winter trips conjure up images of snow-covered landscapes, but for others the season means sun and sand. Here are some suggestions for NPS sites where milder winter weather offers a fine time to enjoy parks that are just too toasty or buggy for most of us during the summer.

Updated: North Face Deal Could Generate Big Bucks for National Park Foundation, But Is It A Good Deal For You?

A deal was announced the other day that could end up sending $150,000 to the National Park Foundation...but is it a good deal for you?

Snapshots of Where To Winter in the National Park System, Cold Weather Edition

Winter long has been regarded as the slow season for national park visits, and that's a good thing if you prefer to have the parks to yourself. With most travelers confined by school schedules to the summer months, and many convinced winter is a bad time to be outdoors, you can savor the best of the parks from coast to coast in winter. Here are some snapshots of wintry fun in the parks that bear that out.
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Rocky Mountain-Winter Programs.pdf154.39 KB
OLYM-XC Snowshoe trails.pdf178.32 KB
MORA-Winter Trails.pdf97.43 KB
MORA-Winter Camping.pdf942.37 KB
MORA-Winter Recreation.pdf947.76 KB
YOSE-Glacier Pt Trails.pdf937.39 KB
YOSE-Mariposa in Winter.pdf220.95 KB

Lost in a Blizzard of Canine Confusion On the Blue Ridge Parkway

Enjoying winter in the national parks doesn't mean traveling west to the Rockies or High Sierra. There are more than enough wintry adventures in the east at parks such as Acadia, Great Smoky Mountains, Shenandoah, and as Randy Johnson explains in the following article, even along the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Finding Winter Bliss in a National Park Lodge

Winter can be a blissful time to visit the national parks. You can head south, and enjoy the warm weather and simply pitch your tent, or you can head to the snow belt and explore the parks on skis or snowshoes. But where should you stay? We asked our lodging experts, David and Kay Scott, for their recommendations.

Trails I've Hiked: The Bloody Angle at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park

From his cabin, Willis Landram had a front-row perch to one of the bloodiest days of the Civil War. Today, a trail leads you across the landscape now recalled as the "Bloody Angle" at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park.

A Holiday Gift List For National Park Travelers

What do you get for that national park lover in the family? The options are more diverse than you might imagine.

Winter, A Season of Contrasts Across the National Park System

This week the Traveler offers you a series of stories to help you enjoy the coming months in the national parks. We'll take a look at some great lodges to call home for your visit, point out some cold-weather -- and warm-weather -- parks to enjoy (and how to enjoy them), touch on seasonal wildlife moves, and even offer some suggestions on how to stay safe in the parks.

By the Numbers: Cumberland Island National Seashore

Accessible only by boat, Georgia's Cumberland Island National Seashore features undeveloped beaches, maritime forests, huge marshes, historic structures, abundant wildlife, and more. Here are some numbers that tell the story.

Touring The Continental Army's Huts At Valley Forge National Historical Park

Among the highlights of a visit to Valley Forge National Historical Park is looking at, and into, the log cabins the Continental Army built to survive the winter encampment of 1777-78. In the following video from the park, you can gain some insights of the cabins that remain and how proud the soldiers were of what they built.

Republicans On House Natural Resources Committee Planning Big Changes For Public Lands

Fresh off their Election Day tidal wave, and energized by it, Republican members of the House Natural Resources Committee are planning big changes for public lands in the West, changes that could greatly impact national parks.

Yosemite Nature Notes: Glaciers

Last month we let you take a peek "behind the scenes" with Steven Bumgardner and his crew at Yosemite Nature Notes as they were working on a segment about glaciers in Yosemite National Park. Well, here's the resulting product, which is a great primer on the park's glaciers.

GAO Report: Environmental Laws Don't Greatly Impede Border Security In the Southwest

A nearly year-long review by the U.S. Government Accountability Office determined that while environmental regulations at times slowed Border Patrol operations in the Southwest, a strong majority of agents-in-charge "reported that the overall security status of their jurisdiction is not affected by land management laws."

Oprah Went Camping in Yosemite National Park, But Will She Remain A Fan of the National Parks?

Oprah Winfrey took her star power camping in Yosemite National Park at the invitation of Ranger Shelton Johnson. While one of her goals was to encourage more “people of color” to enjoy our national parks, it remains to be seen whether she can now shoulder the mantle of national parks ambassador.

Counting Sea Turtles in the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary off Olympic National Park

Counting sea turtles is no easy task when you're scanning the ocean looking for them, but that's just what the National Ocean Service's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and the National Marine Fisheries Service did earlier this fall.

Do You Know Where Stonewall Jackson's Left Arm is Buried?

There is in a secluded setting behind historic Ellwood Manor at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park a low stone monument that marks the spot where Confederate General Stonewall Jackson's amputated left arm is supposedly buried. But is it really there?
From time to time speculation arises over whether General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson's amputated left arm really is buried at historic Ellwood Manor at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park. In this podcast, the park's chief historian, John Hennessy, discusses the debate and voices his opinion on the matter.

Report Counters GOP Arguments That Environmental Regs, Agencies Hampering Border Security

For months Republicans on the House Natural Resources Committee have claimed that environmental regulations are hampering border control in the Southwest. But a new study notes that "there are numerous examples" of how various federal agencies are working together on border control.
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Rock Falls In Yosemite National Park Provide Homes For Curious Scorpion-Like Creature

Just in time for Halloween -- a new bug to give you the creeps. This newly found arachnid apparently has been living in caves created by rock falls in Yosemite National Park for some time.

Claw and Horn In Yellowstone

Due to possible copyright issues, we've taken down the photo of the bison being chased by a grizzly in Yellowstone National Park.

The Wonder That Is The Linn Cove Viaduct On the Blue Ridge Parkway

The Linn Cove Viaduct on the Blue Ridge Parkway was featured on the History Channel’s Modern Marvels series, for heaven’s sake. Nevertheless, it’s not widely understood why or how it’s noteworthy. The High Country landmark might be nothing less than the combined genius of the 20th century’s two top bridge designers.

Gary Everhardt's Impact on the Blue Ridge Parkway

During his nearly quarter-century as superintendent of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Gary Everhardt developed partnerships to both protect and better the Parkway.

Gary Everhardt: The “Right Man at the Right Time” on the Blue Ridge Parkway

Nations everywhere name buildings to honor pivotal figures, the people whose contributions form the foundation on which the future stands. We all see such structures, but it’s rare to wander the halls of one with the person whose name is chiseled on the plaque and attached to the boulder out front -- especially when it’s the headquarters of the most visited unit of the National Park system.