Archive List

Cape Hatteras National Seashore Identifies Pre-Nesting Closure Areas For Piping Plover

Though it's been a mostly quiet winter on the coast of North Carolina, things might get a bit testy in the coming weeks as Cape Hatteras National Seashore releases its pre-nesting closure plans to protect piping plovers, a threatened species.
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CAHA-Pre-Nesting Closures 2009.pdf210.9 KB

National Park Mystery Plant 1: Will This “Lime-Green Cancer” Derail Everglades Restoration?

This virulently invasive plant, sometimes called the “lime-green cancer” and "the most dangerous plant in Florida," already infests some areas of Everglades National Park. If not controlled soon it might wipe out decades of ecosystem restoration efforts. Do you know what this nightmare plant is?

Why is Clear-cutting Allowed in Japan's Iconic Park, Daisetsuzan?

What would you think if logging were permitted in Yellowstone National Park, or if a rock quarry were allowed in Yosemite National Park, or if uranium mining was under way in Grand Canyon National Park?

Spammers Are Targeting National Parks Traveler

In recent weeks there has been an increase in attacks on National Parks Traveler by spammers. While our CAPTCHA system prevents most computerized attacks, it can't stop those performed by individuals.

Tredegar Ironworks: A Civil War Icon Preserved at Richmond National Battlefield Park

When the Confederate Army needed artillery, ammunition, or other weaponry, it turned to the Tredegar Ironworks in the heart of Richmond, Virginia. While many of the original buildings were lost to war and time, some remain. One, in fact, serves as a visitor center at the Richmond National Battlefield Park

A National Park Service Regional Director Shares His Priority List for 2009

Earlier this year the Traveler offered up a post on what priorities we hoped the National Park Service would address in the coming year. Mike Snyder, director of the agency's Intermountain Region, has his own list of issues his region has in its sights this year.

What Would Wildlife Say About Concealed Carry in National Parks?

Much of the debate over the rule change that allows national park visitors to arm themselves has been filled with vitriol. But no one, it seems, has considered the wildlife's point of view.

Pine Beetle Outbreak Leads to Fewer Campground Sites in Rocky Mountain National Park

A massive outbreak of mountain pine beetles, which are efficient killers of lodgepole pine trees, is forcing Rocky Mountain National Park officials to reduce campground sites this summer as they work to mitigate the beetles' impacts.

The Confederate Victory at Brices Cross Roads Did Little to Help the Confederate Cause

Brices Cross Roads National Battlefield Site celebrates its 80th birthday today. The battle fought there in June 1864 yielded a Confederate victory that was tactically brilliant but strategically wanting.

NPCA, PEER Voice Concerns Over Proposed Mountain Bike Rule Change In National Parks

Mountain bike accessibility in national parks could expand exponentially under a rule change proposed by the Bush administration, according to the National Parks Conservation Association.
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NPCA Bike Comments 2.17.09.pdf160.61 KB
PEER-Mtn Bike Comments.pdf13.04 KB

Cape Hatteras National Seashore Announces Opening Dates for Campgrounds

Winter is still raging in some parts of the country, but that doesn't mean a respite isn't in the offing. Proof of that is news of the opening dates of the campgrounds at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

Second Century Commission on National Parks Wants To Hear From You

The National Parks Second Century Commission has been traveling around the country since late last summer looking into the needs of the National Park System. Now the commission wants to hear your thoughts about the parks' needs.

"There I Grew Up" – This Park Offers Presidential History in a Unique Package

Lincoln Living Historical Farm
This park includes a unique visitor center and an excellent living history program, but before it was added to the National Park System, it was primarily known as a memorial to the mother of one of our most famous presidents. Mom still gets plenty of respect, but her son is now the focus in a small park that has lots to offer.

Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve is One of the National Park System’s Best Kept Secrets

Timucuan Ecological & Historic Preserve scarcely appears on the national radar screen, and that's a shame. This million-visit park is a real gem.

Can You Find the Desert Five-Spot In Death Valley National Park?

Desert Five-Spot, Jimmie Affholder photo.
With all the talk of late about the prospects for a colorful, and plentiful, bloom in Death Valley National Park, let's start talking flowers in earnest. For instance, have you ever seen a Desert Five-Spot in the park?

Secretary Salazar Calls for Review Of Gun Rules in National Parks

Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has asked the National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to spend three months looking into the environmental consequences of allowing national park visitors to arm themselves.

Bears with a Foot Fetish? Big Bend National Park Offers New Bear Safety Advice

Black bear.
Officials in Big Bend National Park have issued some slightly unusual guidelines for backcountry campers in parts of the Texas park: "Leave shoes outside tents or in bear boxes if camping in High Chisos backcountry sites." Recent experience suggests this is good advice.

National Park Quiz 42: Rocks and Minerals

This week’s quiz will find out whether you are a rock star. Answers are at the end. If we catch you peeking, we’ll give you a sledge hammer and make you turn big rocks into little ones.

Delicate Arch Road at Arches National Park Reopens After Flood-Inspired Improvements

Delicate Arch.
Winter can be a great time to visit Arches National Park, but the off-season is also a good time for maintenance and repairs. The road to Delicate Arch, one of the park's signature attractions, had been closed this month for major work inspired by flooding in 2006, but it's now open again for public use.

Believe it or Not, Yosemite National Park Once had a Zoo

Tourists visiting Yosemite National Park in the 1920s could view mountain lions, a bear, and deer kept in cages and enclosures. Despite drawing heated criticism, this wacky zoo persisted for more than a decade before finally being abolished in 1932.

Grand Teton National Park's Wildlife Brigade – Applications Are Now Being Accepted

A Wildlife Brigade members works a bear jam at Grand Teton NP.
If you've spent much time in Grand Teton National Park during the summer, you've likely been caught in a wildlife jam—or seen visitors doing something really dumb in terms of wildlife safety. Grand Teton is taking a proactive approach to these problems with its Wildlife Brigade, and applications are being accepted for two internships and two volunteer positions for the upcoming summer.

How Will Stimulus Help the Parks? At Great Sand Dunes National Park It Could Mean Reclamation and Restoration

Although the National Park Service didn't receive as many stimulus dollars as it could put to work, that doesn't mean that the $750 million or so won't go to good use across the park system.

Friends of the Smokies to Get First Year Proceeds of Dolly Parton’s New CD

Dolly Parton, official ambassador of Great Smoky’s 75th anniversary celebration, is donating the first-year proceeds from the sale of her new "Sha-Kon-Hey!" CD to Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

With or Without a Stimulus Package, National Parks Can Be Economical Vacation Destinations

With all the economic doom and gloom of late, it'll be a miracle if anyone goes away for a vacation this year. At the very least, folks will be looking for bargains, and that's where the National Park System comes into play.

Major Bike Race Will Affect Yosemite Traffic on February 18, 2009

Scene from a previous Amgen bike race.
If your plans for Wednesday, February 18, 2009 include travel to or from Yosemite National Park, factor in some extra time. The largest cycling event in America, the 2009 Amgen Tour of California, will be passing through the Yosemite National Park vicinity.

Is San Juan National Historic Site Haunted?

San Juan National Historic Site celebrates its 60th birthday today, February 14. This remarkable park, America's only national park in Puerto Rico, preserves some of the finest Spanish Colonial-era coastal forts left in the Caribbean. Many people believe that one of these forts is haunted.

Will Recent Storms in Death Valley National Park Fuel A Spring Bloom?

Rain and snow have pelted Death Valley National Park somewhat frequently this winter, which raises the question of whether there will be a tremendous spring bloom in the park?

Two Rangers Have a Narrow Escape with an Avalanche in Alaska

Avalanche blocking road in Washington State.
Your last trip home from a business meeting may have been a bit wearing, but it was probably lacked the drama of a recent drive by two rangers returning home to Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park in Alaska.

Survey Spots 45 Moose in Voyageurs National Park, Which Puts Total Population Around 80

How many moose reside in Voyageurs National Park? Well, the 2009 winter survey spotted 45 Alces alces, but biologists believe that translates to a park-wide population of at least 80.

NPCA Applauds National Park System's Cut of Stimulus Package, But Says Much Remains to Do

In a short, to the point, and politically understandable statement, the National Parks Conservation Association applauded the National Park System's share of the stimulus package funding. But it added that much more work needs to be done across the park system.