Parks in the News
Well, with spring soon to arrive, there's good news, and not so good news, regarding the opening of roads through Mount Rainier National Park.
Across the National Park System, the National Park Service has an estimated half-a-billion-dollars of obligations owed concessionaires who run lodges, restaurants, and even some activities. It's a sum that, while agency officials say it's manageable, has seemingly stifled concessions competition in some parks and diverted tens of millions of dollars from others to reduce debts.
Three hurricanes, bright sunshine, and damp salty air can do a number on exterior paint. And seeing as it's been 11 years since the lighthouse at Cape Lookout National Seashore in North Carolina has been painted, the decision to repaint it in the coming weeks shouldn't be surprising.
Work on expanding the parking lot at Delicate Arch in Arches National Park in Utah will be delayed several weeks, park officials said in a release.
Great Smoky Mountains Association Donates Nearly $3 Million In 2014 To Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Good weather and rebounding visitation to Great Smoky Mountains National Park combined to produce a strong year for the Great Smoky Mountains Association, which was able to contribute $2.6 million for park projects in 2014.
Journey to a place where the Milky Way stretches across the heavens. Experience the mystery and wonder of Grand Canyon National Park's night sky with Astronomer Tyler Nordgren and Ranger Rader Lane. Explore its beauty and learn what you can do to help preserve it.
"Add An Acre, Sell An Acre" Proposal Aimed At Keeping Federal Estate From Growing Introduced To Congress
In an effort to keep the federal landscape from growing appreciably, a Republican from Virginia has introduced to Congress a measure that would, in many cases, require land-management agencies to offset every acre added to their oversight by selling an acre.
Though winter has not released its grip on Shenandoah National Park and staff continues to work on clearing the Skyline Drive of snow and ice, facilities in the park will begin opening this month.
The park website at Grand Canyon National Park includes a warning about the potential for icy trails at the top of the home page, under a red and white banner titled "Park Alerts." I think it's safe to assume similar information is dispensed at visitor centers and other locations, so here's a photo that helps illustrate why rangers get gray hair.
It has been more than eight decades since Canadians and Americans came together to forge Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, the world's first cross-border park dedicated to protect unique ecosystems that flourish where the prairie rises up to the crooked spine of the Rocky Mountains. That concept -- an international park -- is gaining renewed attention, both due to last fall's World Parks Congress, as well as next year's centennial of the National Park Service in the United States.
UPDATED: Ailing 706-Pound Leatherback Sea Turtle Comes Ashore At Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Euthanized
An obviously ailing leatherback sea turtle discovered on a beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore in North Carolina had to be put down, due to the unlikelihood that it would survive in captivity and was too sick to be released back into the Atlantic Ocean.
A pair of wolves whose home range is on the Grand Portage Indian Reservation in Minnesota recently used an ice bridge to cross 14 miles over Lake Superior to Isle Royale National Park, where they wandered for five days before returning to the mainland.
Plains bison, an icon of wild landscapes, will be returned to Banff National Park in Alberta, Canada, in an effort to bring the "missing link" back to the park's wildlife ecosystem.
In stark contrast to last winter's weeks' long cold-box-like weather, warming conditions at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore have prompted officials to close their "ice caves" for the season after just nine days.
If your national park interests tend to focus on Civil War sites, you'll have a chance later this month to help out the staff at Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park in Virginia.
Moonless Night Should Provide Perfect Snowshoe And Stargazing Outing At Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site
The prospect of a dark, moonless sky over Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site in New Hampshire has park staff planning a night-time hike to combine snowshoeing and stargazing later this month.
Some wildlife species long forgotten at Cape Cod are returning to the national seashore in numbers both attracting fascination as well as consternation.
Delicate Arch at Arches National Park is one of the icons of the National Park System. It's showcased on Utah's license plates, and a must-see for visitors to the park. But construction this year at the arch's parking area could force you to put off your up-close-and-personal experience with Delicate Arch until another year, say park officials.
With spring, and warmer weather, around the corner, raptors will soon be nesting on the cliffs and crags of Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado and Zion National Park in Utah, and so temporary closures have been put in place in the two parks.
Ever so gently, but steadily nonetheless, development and sea-level rise are slowly squeezing salt marshes at Cape Cod National Seashore. High marshes are being being transformed into low marshes, and low marshes are in danger of being drowned out.
Years ago during a visit to Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky, as impressed as I was with what was underground, I was equally struck by the park's surface and the cemeteries that told a silent story of the generations dating back to Revolutionary War times that had called this place home. Cemeteries going back decades, if not hundreds of years, can be found throughout the National Park System, and represent a moving chapter of the country's settlement.
A lone wolf that seems intrigued by snowmobilers has prompted Voyageurs National Park staff to reroute some snowmobile trails as a safety precaution.
Tired of the chemicals that go into the syrup you pour over your pancakes? Then plan to visit Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore later this month for the annual Maple Sugar Time event.
High school students interested in spending their summer in a national park and gaining valuable skills have at least three parks to consider for jobs with the Youth Conservation Corps. Shenandoah National Park in Virginia, Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, and Joshua Tree National Park in California all are seeking applications for their YCC programs.
By failing to implement higher entrance fees across the 131 parks that charge them, the National Park Service left tens of millions of dollars on the table in potential user fees, a report from the Interior Department's Inspector General claims.
While visitors to Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado generally need to stick to tour routes, there are some ranger-led hikes that will take you to some of the less visited ruins in the park, or for special activities.
You can start planning your camping trip to Cape Hatteras National Seashore in North Carolina now that the park has released the opening dates for the campgrounds.
For cavers, poking their heads into dark places can often lead them into new passages. And at Jewel Cave National Monument in South Dakota, that sort of poking around recently led to more than a mile of charted cave.
Mammoth Cave National Park Superintendent Sarah Craighead has announced that fee increases proposed last year will take effect on March 14. This year, income from park fees will fund renovations at the Mammoth Cave Hotel, she said.