With a park system that is being strangled by its maintenance backlog and operating costs, would the National Park Service, and the system, be better off if the agency outsourced entire parks?
A problem roughly a century in the making that left Grand Canyon National Park in a nearly $200 million hole is impacting parks from coast to coast, with superintendents forced to find programs and projects they can postpone, cutback, or simply cut.
Xanterra Parks & Resorts, which operates lodges and restaurants in some of the most iconic national parks in the system, on Wednesday announced it was suing the National Park Service over its handling of concessions contracts on the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.
Birding In The National Parks: Grand Canyon National Park Designated Important Bird Area Of Global Significance
When it comes to the preservation of threatened and endangered bird species, it’s safe to say that there’s no such thing as too many layers of protection. Just because the habitat of a declining bird falls within the borders of a national park doesn’t mean that bird’s best interests will always be served. In most cases it will, but it never hurts to have that extra recognition.
Many of us are awestruck by the beauty and grandeur of Grand Canyon National Park, but enjoying that landscape comes with the caveat that it can be a dangerous place if you're not careful or simply unlucky. A recent day in the life of Grand Canyon rangers drives that message home.
It very likely will be a bit more costly to enter Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Acadia, Shenandoah and the other 126 units that charge entrance fees by the time the National Park Service's centennial arrives in 2016, and you also should brace for slightly higher fees to camp, shower, paddle, and participate in boat and cave tours.
My 10-year-old daughter, Alex, and I follow the steep and rugged New Hance Trail on a nearly 5,000-vertical-foot march down into the Earth’s most-famous hole in the ground. The sky seems to levitate steadily higher above us, but it’s just a trick played on the eyes by the severe topography of the Grand Canyon: As we slowly descend deeper, burgundy rock walls creep higher, pushing the cerulean dome overhead farther away from us.
It's been 50 years since President Lyndon B. Johnson signed The Wilderness Act into law in 1964, but the question remains: Why has so much land within the National Park System not been designated as wilderness?