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The latest news from around the National Park System.

Fatal Grizzly Mauling In Yellowstone National Park Highlights Need For Better Safety Practices By Hikers

Being attacked by a bear while hiking the backcountry of Yellowstone, Grand Teton, or Glacier national parks no doubt is near the top of concerns of most hikers, but not enough are taking adequate precautions when they venture into the bears' realm.
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Mojave National Preserve Ranger Buys Fully Automatic Rifles And “Flash-Bang” Distraction Devices

While National Park Service regulations prohibit fully automatic weapons and "flash-bang" devices in the park system, a supervisory ranger at Mojave National Preserve in California purchased nine of the rifles and distributed them to law enforcement rangers at the preserve, according to an investigation.
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Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, Ground Zero In America's Nuclear Heartland

At the height of the Cold War the nuclear missiles in South Dakota and five other states presented a paradox; while Soviet satellites had pinpointed their locations, American citizens were scarcely aware of the arsenal in their midst. Thirty years ago, concerned peace groups undertook the task of mapping the missile fields with the intention of sparking debate about the weapons stored there.
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Grand Canyon Employee Disciplined For Repeated Sexual Harassment Hired At Another NPS Office

In the process of investigating charges of sexual harassment at Grand Canyon National Park, authorities discovered that a park employee who resigned after "being disciplined for repeated acts of sexual harassment and misconduct during river trips" landed a job at the National Park Service's Submerged Resources Center in New Mexico.
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UPDATED: Yosemite National Park To Change Historic Lodge Names To Avoid Trademark Fight

Yosemite National Park officials, looking to avoid a costly trademark fight with DNC Parks & Resorts at Yosemite, announced Thursday that it would change the names of iconic lodges in the park. The Ahwahnee Hotel, for instance, would be known going forward as the Majestic Yosemite Hotel.
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Grand Canyon National Park Officials Accused Of Overlooking Sexually Hostile Environment

For roughly 15 years life deep in the Inner Gorge of Grand Canyon National Park at times reflected rowdy, sexually charged scenes from a frat party for some National Park Service employees, with male employees pawing and propositioning female workers, some of who at times exhibited their own risqué behavior. Now, after an investigation spawned by a letter of complaint to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, the Park Service is determined to change the culture within its River District once and for all.
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Delaware Water Gap NRA Officials Schedule Public Meetings On Historical Properties Management Plan

A series of informational open house sessions has been scheduled at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area in New Jersey and Pennsylvania to update the public on the development of a Historic Properties Management Plan for the park. The sessions are scheduled for January 28-30.
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Survey: Westerners Want Public Lands Protected By Federal Government, Not Given To States

Western politicians determined to transfer federal lands to the states are out of step with their constituents, who value conservation and see economic returns from national parks, national forests, and national monuments in their states, according to a survey released Monday.
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Birding In The National Parks: Parks Strangely Overlooked By Birders

I’ve talked at length about the best parks for birds and the parks where all the birders go. Everglades National Park usually tops that list. Big Bend and Acadia are also extremely popular birding parks. But which of the 59 national parks gets the least birding attention? That’s tough to quantify, but I’ve made an educated guess from perusing eBird data.
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Preliminary Backcountry Access Plan For Big Cypress National Preserve Focuses On ORV Travel

Managers of Big Cypress National Preserve in Florida, already criticized by conservationists for their approach towards off-road vehicles, would increase the miles of ORV trails under all but one of the preliminary alternatives in the preserve's draft backcountry access management plan while holding non-motorized trails somewhat static. The one that doesn't increase ORV use would preserve the status quo.
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