Archive List

Having a Bad Day? Consider the Plight of Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park

Ict storm damage at the park.
If you think you're having a tough day at work, perhaps a look at the challenges facing the staff at Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historical Park will provide a little perspective.

Pruning the Parks: Papago Saguaro National Monument (1914-1930)

Proclaimed on January 31, 1914, Arizona’s Papago Saguaro National Monument became the first national monument to be abolished. It was transferred out of the National Park System in 1930, basically because it was being trashed.

Updated: Lake Clark National Park's Redoubt Volcano Begins To Awake, Eruption Thought to be Imminent

Yellowstone National Park drew geologists' attention early this year with a long swarm of small earthquakes. And now a volcano in Lake Clark National Park and Preserve seems to be waking up, with geologists saying an eruption is imminent.

Paul Hoffman Still Defending His Proposed Changes to the National Park Service's Management Policies

Nearly four years ago Paul Hoffman's name became well-traveled as he was defined as the architect of a proposed overhaul of the National Park Service's Management Policies, a drastic overhaul at that. For some reason, he still feels it necessary to defend himself.

Upon Further Review – How Not to Protect Yourself from a Bear

Guardhouse at Fort Yellowstone.
Visitors to Yellowstone National Park—and any other areas where bears are part of the equation—should always follow common-sense rules to avoid a confrontation with a bruin. At times, however, "common-sense" seems to be in short supply, as this true story from the past confirms.
With your summer vacation still months away, now's a great time to consider your national park options. While most know Grand Canyon National Park is a great place for panoramic vistas, it also can be great for hiking. If you're prepared.

Grand Teton National Park Rangers Spending Their Days Rescuing Skiers

Make a wrong turn at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort and you could find yourself in a fairly rugged canyon in Grand Teton National Park. That happened twice this week, forcing four skiers to spend cold nights in the woods until rangers could come to their rescue.

What Interest Is a Civil War Battlefield in Virginia to Vermont?

Nearly 150 years after the battle was waged, the state of Vermont is being asked to return to Virginia -- figuratively, at least -- to assist in the battle over the pending loss of hallowed ground to a Wal-Mart Super Center.

Sharpshooters To Begin Reducing Elk Herds in Rocky Mountain National Park

"Culling." It's a fairly innocuous word. Look it up in the dictionary and one of the definitions you'll find is "to remove rejected members or parts from (a herd, for example)." Use that word in the context of a national park and, well, that could spur some discussion, if not outright controversy since "natural processes" are supposed to rule in the National Park System.

On Interior Secretaries, National Park Stimulus Funds, And Oil Shale

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar spent roughly 30 minutes Wednesday fielding questions from reporters, but he really didn't offer much substance when it came to the national parks. Although, he did make a curious statement about the dire condition of the parks and the stimulus packages being debated by Congress.

Mammoth Cave National Park Remains Closed Due to Ice Storm

An ice storm that transformed into a snowstorm early Wednesday has prompted officials to keep Mammoth Cave National Park closed so crews can deal with downed trees and power lines.

National Park Quiz 39: Winter

This week’s quiz will find out if you are a winterwise park visitor. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll make you explain why the Bergeron-Findeisen process grows snowflakes only because the equilibrium vapor pressure of water vapor with respect to ice is less than that with respect to liquid water at the same subfreezing temperature.

How An Earlier Administration Bolstered The National Parks Through A National Program

The events of this past week and the advent of a new government cannot help but take our minds back to other times in our history, particularly to 1933. It was in that winter, another troubled time in our national history, that Franklin Roosevelt assumed the presidency. As it does now, the United States in 1933 faced severe and unresolved economic problems.

Senate, House Far Apart on Economic Stimulus Funding for National Parks

As of today the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are miles and miles apart over how they view the needs and worthiness of the National Park System when it comes to crafting an economic stimulus bill for the country.

Group Seeks To Intevene In Court Case Concerning Armed Visitors in National Parks

A non-profit legal foundation that long has argued for multiple use of public lands now wants to aid the Interior Department in defending a rule that allows national park visitors to carry weapons.

Ice Storm Closes Roads at Mammoth Cave National Park

An ice storm has prompted Mammoth Cave National Park officials to close all roads in the park as of 4 p.m. local time today.

Rangers Catch Snowmobilers Riding Illegally in Yellowstone National Park's Backcountry

Four Indiana visitors to Yellowstone National Park have been invited to return to Mammoth Hot Springs late next face charges of snowmobiling illegally in the park's backcountry.
Scientists predict that, thanks to a warming climate, within 25 years Glacier National Park will be without its namesake glaciers.

The World's Top Ten National Parks

Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary. Rick Smith photo.
Most Traveler readers know that Yellowstone National Park is considered to be the world’s first national park. Some, though, might not know that more than 130 nations have established parks or protected areas within their boundaries.

Planning to Visit Apostle Islands National Lakeshore? Leave Your Gun At Home

Planning to visit Apostle Islands National Lakeshore? If you fear for your safety in national parks, you'll have to either skip this lakeshore or go it without your firearm and hope for the best.

The Future of the "Gateway Arch" is On the Table—Will You be Part of the Discussion?

Gateway Arch.
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis and the grounds around the "Gateway Arch" could look very different in the years to come, depending upon the outcome of a plan that is currently being developed. This plan could have far-reaching implications and public comments are currently being accepted. Here's what you need to know about this issue.

Rocky Mountain National Park: It Shames the Andes and Alps

"l ain't never seen them, but my common sense tells me the Andes is foothills, and the Alps is for children to climb." So said mountain man Del Gue in one of the memorable lines from Jeremiah Johnson. He was, of course, comparing those mountains to the Rocky Mountains.

Great Basin National Park: It's More Than Simply A Cave

What in the world was Jim Hansen thinking back in the 1990s when, as a U.S. representative from Utah and chair of the House Resources Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Lands, he said Great Basin National Park should be removed from the National Park System?
What's all the shaking about at Yellowstone National Park? Is the park, which is situated atop a huge volcano, about to blow it's top?
Why is Yellowstone National Park such a geologic hotspot? This Quicktime videocast, produced as part of the park's "Yellowstone Indepth" series, offers a primer on the park's geothermal basement.

Yellowstone Geologist Worries About What Goes "Bump" At Night

Who hasn't been jarred awake at night wondering what went "bump!"? Hank Heasler doesn't worry too much about it...unless his cellphone starts chirping.

When Stephen Mather Called, Bob Yard Came Running

He labored in the shadow of the National Park Service’s founding fathers, but Robert Sterling Yard was one of the best advocates the agency ever had.

Secretary Salazar on Guns in Parks: He'll "Take A Look At It"

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was non-committal, though with a decided rightward lean, when asked by a National Park Service employee whether he would challenge the recent rule change to allow park visitors to arm themselves.

Aztec Ruins and the River of Lost Souls

Aztec Ruins National Monument in the fall.
Aztec Ruins and the River of Lost Souls may sound like a title for the next Indiana Jones movie, but these are real places that you can visit—and you won't even need a passport or a hyper-active spirit of adventure. One small disclaimer is in order: The Aztecs had no connection with these impressive remains of a long-departed civilization.

Post-Inauguration Facts and Figures from the NPS – but Don't Expect a Crowd Estimate

Crowd at the 2008 Inauguration.
The Big Day on the National Mall has come and gone, thankfully without major incidents. The National Park Service has compiled a few behind-the-scenes facts and figures, but contrary to published reports, there won't be an official estimate of the crowd from that agency.