We all know about the more charismatic of the endangered and threatened bird species. Trail closures in Acadia National Park and Big Bend National Park remind us that Peregrine Falcons nest on cliffs in parks across the country. Piping Plovers are diminutive shorebirds that bring outsized responses of both appreciation and consternation when their nesting causes beach closures in the national seashores along the Atlantic.
Electric charging stations are beginning to sprout up around the National Park System, making it a bit easier for visitors with electric vehicles to recharge while enjoying the parks.
Whether it was due to lower gas costs, better weather, or an improving economy, the bottom line for the National Park System for 2014 was impressive: An increase of more than 20 million visitors over 2013 levels, for a record total of 294 million, according to unofficial statistics.
Today is not too early to make your summer vacation plans in the National Park System.
National Park Service, Unable To Complete Concessions Contracts On Time, Moves To Extend Dozens Across Park System
Hammering out concessions contracts across the National Park System is not an easy, or quick, job. Failure to reach new contracts before existing ones expired at the end of 2014 prompted the National Park Service to propose extended dozens of contracts for up to a year to keep visitor services operating without interruption.
Whether you were looking to improve your technical expertise with a camera, or curious about the thought processes that professional photographers went through in framing their photos, Contributing Photographers Deby Dixon and Rebecca Latson covered the bases for you through the past 12 months. Here for your review, and just a click away, are the columns they wrote in 2014.
Despite all the electronic gadetry that allows you to consume media, hard-bound and paperback books continue to hold a considerable marketshare. And more than a few of those titles have something to do with national parks. We read as much as we could this year, and came away with the following reviews for your consideration.
Acadia National Park's Visitor Use Plan For Isle Au Haut Allows For Slight Increase In Daily Visitation
Visitors to Acadia National Park who want to escape the crowds might consider a trip to Isle au Haut, a relatively little-known piece of the park that occupies an island south of Mount Desert Island. Under a visitor use management plan adopted by the park, daily visitation to the island will be capped at 128, although the park will allow higher visitation on six days in July and August.
Winter wonderlands come in many shapes, forms, and temperatures in the National Park System. They can be pine forests shrouded in snow, or turquoise waters swimming with green parrotfish, blue tangs, and silvery barracudas. You can climb ice walls at Acadia National Park, kick-and-glide or skate to an overlook of Half Dome and the Yosemite Valley, or find your way to the 13,159-foot summit of Wheeler Peak atop Great Basin National Park.
Saguaro National Park Officials Voice Opposition To Development Proposed Across From Rincon Mountain District
Should there be a development buffer around national parks? That's a tough question, particularly when you look at West Yellowstone's proximity to Yellowstone National Park or Gatlinsburg's presence at the Sugarlands Entrance to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. At Saguaro National Park, officials say a development proposed for a 45-acre parcel across from the Rincon Mountain District entrance is too close.