Archive List

Utah Man Dies in Fall at Zion National Park

A short fall in Zion National Park has killed a 55-year-old Utah man.

This Park Nourishes Its Forest Service Roots

Walnut Canyon National Monument
This park celebrates its 93rd anniversary today, but the area was first protected in 1904 as part of the San Francisco Mountain Reserve. It's not in California, however, and it was managed by the U.S. Forest Service until 1934.

Sea Turtle Rescues at Cape Lookout

Rescued sea turtle gets a ride
Numerous sea turtles have been caught by unusually cold weather along the North Carolina coast since mid-November. That has led to dozens of rescues of the endangered reptiles in the past week at Cape Lookout National Seashore.

Hikers, Bikers and National Parks

How big is the deal surrounding efforts pushed by the International Mountain Bicycling Association to expand mountain biking in the National Park System? Apparently the American Hiking Society thinks it's pretty big.

Improvements to the Hermit Road at Grand Canyon Make Trips Greener and Safer

Travelers to the Grand Canyon have been enjoying trips along a route known as the Hermit Road for nearly a century. A lot has changed since horse-drawn "touring coaches" began those trips in 1911, and the road has recently reopened following a 9-month project that makes future travel both safer and a bit easier on the environment.

Whatever Happened to That Rule Change To Allow You to Pack Heat in National Parks?

Remember earlier this year all the controversy over a proposed rule change to allow concealed weapons holders to arm themselves in the National Park System? Well, it's still lurking out there.

China Moves to Designate its First National Park

More than a century after the establishment of Yellowstone National Park kicked off the world-wide national parks movement, China has designated its very first "national park."

Bush Administration: Slash and Burn on The Way Out of Office?

As the end of the Bush administration nears, it's natural for many to look back on the past eight years and try to assess the sum impact. In the case of public lands and natural resources, it's relatively easy to castigate the outgoing administration for its seemingly heavy hand on that landscape.

Rescued Yosemite Hiker Has Lots to be Thankful for This Year

Yosemite winter scene
A solo backcountry trip to Yosemite National Park offered a lot more than a hiker bargained for earlier this month. A major mistake could have led to a tragic outcome, and the man has plenty to be thankful for this November.

Curious About What To Consider When Shopping for a New Camera?

As winter fast approaches (or has already hit you if you are from South Dakota and other points snowy) people often start to look at buying cameras. Not coincidentally just about every major camera manufacturer released a raft of new models this fall.

National Park Quiz 30: Gathering

On Thanksgiving Eve our thoughts naturally turn to food. Let’s see how you do on this week’s quiz, which deals with edible plants growing in national parks. (We’ll leave hunting and fishing out of this one, since we plan to put together separate quizzes for these activities.) Answers are at the end.

BLM, NPS Modify Oil and Gas Lease Auction near National Parks in Utah

Some tweaks to a proposed oil and gas lease auction in Utah could spare some potential impacts to Arches and Canyonlands national parks and Dinosaur National Monument, but conservationists say the National Park Service still dropped the ball.

From Job Creation to Everglades Czar, Green Groups Have Lengthy National Parks Wishlist

Lower Falls, Yellowstone National Park. Kurt Repanshek photo.
A coalition of nearly 30 "green groups" has a lengthy to-do list for the incoming Obama administration when it comes to the National Park System. For starters, they say, let's include the parks in the economic stimuli being proposed, expect more from National Park Service leadership, and protect the natural resources.
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Bull Elk Poached in Glacier National Park

The shot was good, but the location wasn't. And the result was that a 16-year-old could soon be facing charges for poaching a bull elk inside Glacier National Park.

The Next Big Wildlife Management Issue for Parks?

White-tailed deer.
A new challenge facing national park managers sounds like material from a Hollywood medical thriller. Unfortunately, it's fact—not fiction—and it has the potential to become a major problem in the years ahead.

National Park Service Chastized For Poor Cultural Resource Oversight

Whoever takes the helm of the National Park Service under the Obama administration will find an agency that has fallen far short in its stewardship of cultural resources across the National Park System.
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Glacier National Park Coffee Shop Honored For Its Mission 66 Style

While Mount Rainier National Park officials tore down their reminder of Mission 66 "parkitecture," at Glacier National Park a coffee shop from that era has been added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Shenandoah National Park Proposing Tweaks To Its Climbing Management Guidelines

If you like to climb in Shenandoah National Park you might just want to pay attention to the park's work on updating its rock outcrop management plan, which includes climbing guidelines.

Bug Spraying Will Briefly Close Cades Cove Loop Road in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Ahh, the lowly wooly adelgid. This nasty import, though small, has been threatening the viability of hemlock trees in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. In an effort to blunt its advance, park technicians will be spraying trees in Cades Cove early next month. As a result, the loop road will be temporarily closed.
Happy Valley -- the one in Saguaro National Park, not Penn State -- is somewhat of an anomaly when you think of the desert Southwest.

Got Quiet? Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve has Plenty

Acoustic monitoring reveals that Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve has one of the quietest soundscapes in America. Remote areas of the park have sound levels so low that they barely register on the recording equipment.

Roughly One-Third of Curry Village to Be Permanently Closed in Yosemite National Park

Geologic reports that point to an inherent instability of the Glacier Point cliff face have led Yosemite National Park officials to permanently close roughly one-third of Curry Village to overnight accommodations.

Lava Beds National Monument is a Geologically and Historically Fascinating Place

Lava Beds National Monument, which celebrates its 83rd birthday November 21, is a strange looking place bursting with fascinating stories. As if the largest collection of lava tubes and caves in the coterminous states weren’t enough to make this park very special, it’s also where Captain Jack and his warrior band fought an amazing battle against an attacking force ten times its size during the Modoc War of the early 1870s.

Study Touts Economic Benefits of Mount St. Helens "National Park"

There's an economic report out touting the benefits that a Mount St. Helens "National Park" would bring surrounding communities. And that begs the question of whether units of the National Park System should be viewed largely as economic engines?
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Upon Further Review - What Visited Your Campsite While You Were Sleeping?

Tracks in sand
One of the classic national park experiences is a Colorado River float trip through the Grand Canyon. As one group discovered, however, memorable moments on such trips aren't limited to running the rapids, and some surprising adventures can also occur when you tie up for the night.

Survey Shows Americans Love Bison But Largely Are Clueless About their Plight

Americans overwhelmingly love bison as an iconic image of the West, but are largely clueless over the ecological plight these animals face, according to a national survey.

Welcome to "Paradise on Earth, California style"

The Gillette Ranch.
Here's some good news as we near the end of 2008—you're part-owner of a spot described as "Paradise on earth, California style." Your on-site managers are working on a plan for the place, and you're welcome to give them your ideas.

National Park Service Prepares to Host Millions of Visitors for the Presidential Inauguration and Parade

With crowds predicted to number three-four million or more, the National Park Service is scrambling to accommodate the largest event in its history.

Zion National Park Has Lured Artists For Decades

Kolob Arch, Zion NP. Kurt Repanshek photo.
As you enter Zion Canyon, it's impossible to avert your eyes from the sandstone ramparts that frame the cleft cut by the Virgin River. They're just that impressive.

Good News and Bad News at Vicksburg National Military Park

At Vicksburg National Military Park, a Centennial Challenge project has replaced many of the monuments that honor the brave men who fought there. Unfortunately, inadequate funding and staffing continue to hamper the park’s ability to adequately care for its historic resources while telling the story of the Vicksburg Campaign, the siege of the city, and the Reconstruction period.