There are national park units long-accepted for their fall colors, and then there are the surprising destinations that brighten up the landscape. Here are a handful of them for your consideration.
Ozark National Scenic Riverways
A plan to manage the Ozark National Scenic Riverways for the next two decades has been approved by the National Park Service, though some elements might not immediately be implemented.
A much-awaited General Management Plan for Ozark National Scenic Riverways, one that in its draft stages drew calls for the park to be given to the state of Missouri, reflects political pressures, not the best environmental protections for the Riverways, according to one observer.
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.
Is Congress in the mood to return units of the National Park System back to the states in which they are located? An initial indication could come Tuesday, when a U.S. House of Representatives Committee considers legislation that calls for Ozark National Scenic Riverways to be given to the state of Missouri.
U.S. Rep. Jason Smith is misguided in thinking tourism would be helped by transforming Ozark National Scenic Riverways into a Missouri state park.
Traveler's View: Don't Let The Sportsmen's Heritage And Recreational Enhancement Act Undermine National Parks
The U.S. Senate should strip from the Sportmen's Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act an amendment that would bar the National Park Service from better managing motorboat access in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways.
While National Park Service personnel are trying to craft a long-term management plan for Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Missouri's lieutenant government is making a pitch for the state to "reclaim this resource."
Trail improvements, interpretive programming, historic preservation, and even transportation are some of the projects tackled by national park friends groups. With time running out in 2013, consider a year-end tax deductible donation to your favorite friends group to help them through 2014.
A pitched battle is under way over the future of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways, one that goes to the heart of whether national parks are to be managed for the country's best interests, or for unrestricted local interests.