With long, cold, snowy months descending on the northern half of the country, it's not a bad time to cast your eyes to the south and national parks where you can find warm weather, sandy beaches, and plenty of sunshine.
Virgin Islands National Park
Thinking about heading to Virgin Islands National Park this winter? Check out the list of activities Friends of Virgin Islands National Park has lined up:
A marina proposed for Coral Bay at St. John in the Virgin Islands that could accommodate more than 200 vessels has drawn the concern of Friends of Virgin Islands National Park, which is worried the development will impair not only the marine resources but also the surrounding land that could be covered with shopping and dining businesses as well as waste-water treament facilities.
Coral reefs are some of the richest habitats in the world, providing home and grocery for scores of marine species. Too, they serve as storm buffers for the islands and mainlands they rim, and delight countless snorklers and scuba divers who explore them. A new children's book focuses on coral reefs, and how they're established.
With so many units of the National Park System tied to water, it shouldn't come as a surprise that the Junior Ranger program has a category for Underwater Explorers.
Springtime is a great time to take photos in the national parks, but are you prepared for that task? Rebecca Latson has some suggestions for what you need to consider before heading off into the parks.
Essential Park Guide: Winter Doesn’t Have To Mean Cold, Snow And Ice During Your National Park Adventure
Cold, snow, and ice aren’t the only backdrops to a winter’s visit to the National Park System. There’s a flip side to the Glaciers, Yellowstones, and Mount Rainiers of winter park vacations. They’re found in the Caribbean, south Florida, and even Nevada and Arizona.
It was a (hopefully not) one of those once-in-a-lifetime visits to a far off national park, and I was flat on my back. That, however, was not all bad at Virgin Islands National Park on the Caribbean island of St. John, where basking under the February sun on the sugar-sand beaches in between snorkeling adventures is de rigueur. Preferably with a cool drink in hand and a rattan mat beneath you.
There are the obvious impacts tied to the closure of the National Park System due to the partial government shutdown: guests forced to leave the parks, gateway communities losing business, concessions operations in flux.
A host of federal agencies are working to collaborate on efforts to protect coral reefs in the Caribbean.