I’ve written a few times about the national parks I consider the best for birding, but several readers have asked which would be the best to visit to maximize the diversity of birds seen. When we talk about number of different birds seen, I always think about a big year. During a big year, a birder tries to see as many birds as possible in one calendar year within a certain geographic range, or under certain conditions.
Death Valley National Park
In what could be a rare ‘super bloom,’ Death Valley National Park is transforming from a valley of death to a valley of life.
A small handful of days before the National Park Service announced that its maintenance backlog had crept up to nearly $12 billion, five congressmen called for more funding for Internet connectivity in the National Park System. But here's the rub: Can the National Park Service easily provide that service if told to provide it? The experts don't think so.
When Albert Johnson had his villa built in Grapevine Canyon in what is now Death Valley National Park, floods likely were not factored into the design. Nevertheless, the Mission Revival-influenced "castle" held up remarkably well during the torrential rains and flooding of last October. The same, however, cannot be said of the infrastructure surrounding the 32,000-square-foot mansion.
It's only early January, yet the colors starting to sprout in Death Valley National Park are an indication that this year's bloom in the park could be spectacular.
How are we to act in a national park? That might seem to carry an obvious answer, but it's not always so obvious these days. As different generations, different racial groups, and different cultures enter the National Park System, not all seem out to enjoy the natural beauty on display in the landscape parks simply by walking about and gazing at the setting, hiking or backpacking, paddling or climbing, or watching wildlife.
Roughly two months after torrential storms tore through Death Valley National Park, workers have many things back to normal in the park.
It took nearly a month, but Artists Drive in Death Valley National Park is back open for visitors to tour. But the reopening didn't come easy.
Work is continuing almost non-stop to rebuild roads in Death Valley National Park that were washed out by torrential rains last month. So far the North Highway to Ubehebe Crater and Racetrack Road have been reopened to the public, though many other popular sections remain closed.