Death Valley National Park

National Park Quiz 53: Castles

Castles here, castles there, castles everywhere. If you know your national park castles, you’ll do just fine on this week’s quiz. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you write on the whiteboard 100 times: “Medieval castle walls have visually distinctive battlements featuring alternating crenels and merlons.”

National Park Service Concerned Over Solar Power Plans on BLM Lands in West

DEVA-Artists Palette, Kurt Repanshek photo
The National Park Service has been trying to raise its "climate friendly" image in recent months, but it's concerned about the potential impact huge solar power arrays on Western lands could have on national parks.
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Jarvis-Solar Energy Memo.pdf19.24 KB
Feinstein-New Monument.pdf74.67 KB

Creature Feature: Feral Burros are "Equina Non Grata" in the National Parks

Guys who holler “watch this!” just before they do something incredibly stupid aren’t the only jackasses in our national parks. We’ve got the real kind too, and where there are feral burros the habitat is degraded and native wildlife suffer. Cute though they may be, burros are unwelcome in our national parks.

Rescue of Injured Woman from Isolated Canyon at Death Valley National Park

Canyon at Death Valley.
A 58-year-old woman sustained serious injuries earlier this week in an isolated canyon at Death Valley National Park. Two rangers on patrol in the area heard calls for help and set a rescue into motion.

Can You Find the Desert Five-Spot In Death Valley National Park?

Desert Five-Spot, Jimmie Affholder photo.
With all the talk of late about the prospects for a colorful, and plentiful, bloom in Death Valley National Park, let's start talking flowers in earnest. For instance, have you ever seen a Desert Five-Spot in the park?

National Park Quiz 42: Rocks and Minerals

This week’s quiz will find out whether you are a rock star. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll give you a sledge hammer and make you turn big rocks into little ones.

Will Recent Storms in Death Valley National Park Fuel A Spring Bloom?

Rain and snow have pelted Death Valley National Park somewhat frequently this winter, which raises the question of whether there will be a tremendous spring bloom in the park?

Lodging Discounts Available At Furnace Creek at Death Valley National Park

Got time for a mid-winter break? Over 60? Then the folks at Furnace Creek Inn and Ranch in Death Valley National Park have a slight break on lodging to offer you.

Deadly Threats You Never Heard of Lurk in Our National Parks

Some deadly diseases you’ve never heard of lurk in our national parks. It's extremely unlikely that you'll ever be infected, but the odds are not zero. And if you are among of the unfortunate few, may the Good Lord have mercy on you.

Resolved: I’ll Visit at Least These Five National Parks in 2009

In the past, my national park visiting has been too intermittent and unfocused for comfort. But this year my New Year’s Resolutions are going to provide a sense of purpose and direction. Five parks is a very doable agenda. My list includes three Sure Things, a True Confession, and one Unfinished Business.

Snow Falls in Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park hasn't been immune from the cold, snowy weather of late, as this photo of the Furnace Creek Inn shows.

Musings from Death Valley National Park

Badwater, Death Valley National Park. Kurt Repanshek photo.
Having not played golf in at least 15 years, I couldn't tell if the elevation of the Furnace Creek Golf Course was responsible for my lackluster drives, or whether they were the product of operator failure.

Trails I've Hiked: Golden Canyon, Death Valley National Park

You won't find many long-distance hikes in Death Valley National Park, which probably is a good thing considering how hot it can get during the summer months. But for those looking to stretch their legs, the trail through Golden Canyon is viewed by many as the "to-do" hike in the park.

New Solar Power System Puts This Park in the Forefront of Alternative Energy Use

The photovoltaic solar system at Furnace Creek in Death Valley N.P. Photo courtesy of Xanterra Parks & Resorts.
If you had to select a national park in the United States where solar power could reduce consumption of electricity from traditional energy sources, which one would you choose? In one Western park a major system is already up and running.

Thanks to the California Desert Protection Act, Death Valley National Park is the Biggest Park in the Coterminous U.S.

On October 31, 1994, the California Desert Protection Act redesignated Death Valley from National Monument to National Park and added 1.3 million acres to the new National Park’s holdings. In one fell swoop, Congress had transferred bragging rights for “biggest park in the 48-state U.S.” from Yellowstone to Death Valley.

The Abandoned Keane Wonder Mine at Death Valley National Park is Too Dangerous to Visit

Citing serious safety hazards, the National Park Service has barred public access to the abandoned Keane Wonder Mine site at Death Valley National Park. The old mine site, which has already claimed one visitor’s life, is loaded with hazards of many kinds.

Greening the National Parks: Environmental Achievement Awards Highlight Sustainable Design, Energy-Efficiency, and Recycling

To encourage eco-friendly operations, the National Park Service presents Environmental Achievement Awards each year to parks and concession companies that have excelled in incorporating high environmental standards into their operations. The 2007 awards were presented to Blue Ridge Parkway, Yosemite National Park, Delaware North Companies Parks and Resorts, and Xanterra Parks & Resorts.

Federal Judge Refuses to Let County Cut Highways in Roadless Section of Death Valley National Park

A desire by county officials in California to open roads in roadless areas of Death Valley National Park has been doused by a federal judge, who says the officials missed their opportunity years ago.
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Death Valley Ruling.pdf142.53 KB

Battling Invasive Species in Arches National Park

Our national parks are places of incredible beauty and rich history. But they also are under siege. Across the National Park System, the landscape is being invaded by non-native species that are not just out of place, when you consider what should be growing, but in some cases are actually driving out the natives.

National Park Quiz 10: Speak of the Devil

Is your toponymic acuity devilishly good? This week’s quiz will find out. Answers are at the end. It would be a sin to peek.

National Park Quiz 5: Biggest This or That

Bigger is not always better, but it certainly can be interesting. Many national parks claim bragging rights to the biggest something-or-other. Can you sort them out? Take this week's quiz and see how you measure up. Answers are at the end. No peeking.

National Park Quiz 2: Straddlers

Folks had fun with the little quiz we published last week, so we’ve decided to publish a national park system quiz in Traveler every week. Most will be themed. The first one was about centers, and this one is about straddlers. Straddlers are parks that straddle state lines, rivers, mountain ranges, or anything else a park can straddle. There's an extra credit question that's a little off the wall. Answers are at the end. Don’t peek.

Is Death Valley National Park A Burial Ground For Manson Murder Victims?

It's not too often that a national park plays a role in a murder investigation, particularly not one out of the "cold file" bin. But authorities think Death Valley National Park just might be holding the remains of victims of the Manson Family.

National Park Quiz 1: Are You Centered?

Do you know where the national parks are located? This little quiz will test the accuracy of your National Park System “mental map.” The answers are at the end. No peeking!
Mustang: The Saga of the Wild Horse in the American West Though most Americans hardly ever glimpse them, wild horses are synonymous with the American West. From John Wayne Westerns to The Electric Horseman, the iconic horse gallops across our memories, wild and free. But how did they arrive in the West? And how have we coexisted with horses?

Winter Visits to the National Parks

Planning a national park visit during the winter months is not as easy as it might seem. Do you pack your long johns, or your swimsuit?
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