2014 was a record-setting year for attendance in the National Park System, where nearly 293 million visitors spent time, a jump of more than 5 million from the record year of 1999, according to official figures. While most of the "name brand" parks were packed, there were still some sites in the system where you could find some solitude.
Olympic National Park
The body of a Washington man who went missing in Olympic National Park just before Christmas has been found and recovered.
At the end of the day, after five days of fruitless searching, Olympic National Park rangers had no leads to follow to find Jim Griffin.
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.
A prominent figure of Seattle, Washington, Carsten Lien grounded his career in business and government with a love for Olympic National Park. Alfred Runte recounts how Lien fought to save the park after observing that it had been logged. The result was a history of the park disclosing the controversy of saving old-growth forests from the Park Service itself. The book is again available as Olympic Battleground: Creating and Defending Olympic National Park. Second edition, reissued.
Students of National Park Service history are well-familiar with the National Park Service Organic Act, particularly the section of it that reads that the agency's primary mandate is, "....to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein..." But there should be a caveat inserted, one that permits the agency to look away from that mandate.
Though only about 4 minutes long, this video took Will and Jim Pattiz a month to film. They chose Olympic National Park because of it’s incredibly rich diversity - glacial mountain peaks, lush rain forests, alpine meadows, high-altitude lakes, wild rivers, wilderness coast, and teeming wildlife were all the excuse they needed.
After 50 years, you would expect that the U.S. National Park Service (NPS), which administers the largest inventory of wilderness in the world, would have the best wilderness management program in the world. But, you would be very wrong.
For the fourth year in a row there will be no public razor clam harvest at Kalaloch in Olympic National Park in Washington state due to declining populations of the shellfish.
Take a look around the National Park System and you'll see historic buildings being moved, citizen science at work, and a wonderful evening gathering around a historical park.