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Really Getting Away From It All: The Loneliest National Parks

Jul 26th - 14:45pm | argalite

"Frederick Law Olmstead National Historic Site was closed during part of 2010 due to major preservation project and is not scheduled to reopen until sometime in 2011." Isn't it 2017 now?

Jul 26th - 12:01pm | Anonymous

When the NPS staff outnumbers the vistors at a park unit, it's time close up shop.

Camping In The Parks: Big Creek Campground At Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Jul 26th - 13:50pm | Bobbie

Can you have a camp fire at the tent sites

Olympic National Park Working On Long-Range Mountain Goat Management Plan

Jul 26th - 12:37pm | [email protected]

This "Old NPS Policy"  of attempting to re-create or maintain the dynamic biota which inter-acted during the 1850's or some other period is riddled with flaws:   

Jul 25th - 15:38pm | MIchael DeChris...

Please relocate these beautiful animals. National parks are supposed to preserve wildlife, not destroy it. I can't believe it has been suggested that shooting them from helicopters is the safest solution. Is Sarah Palin your director?

PEER: NPS Superintendent In Sexual Harassment Case Transferred To Larger Park

Jul 26th - 11:43am | SmokiesBackpacker

Mirroring the embarrassment that is our commander in chief, American culture rewards bad behavior through promotion.

Jul 25th - 14:06pm | Scott I

In the NPS system many superintendents have the attitude that they are untouchable and above repremand. While I realize that they are the # 1 authority in their specific park, there is the air that even regional or Washington will not buck a superintendent. Another concern is that it is well known that park service employees will not be fired under almost any curcumstance.

Jul 25th - 12:59pm | Jonathan F

I have been managing large staffs for 30+ years, and durning that time twice I was accused of Sexual Harassment. Both times the clams were found to be unwarranted, and were unwarrented.

Jul 25th - 06:06am | Rebecca Latson ...

WTF!  This kind of thing makes me so angry, and so disappointed, with the NPS.  To what larger park did this cretin get transferred?  Or is that DeSoto National Memorial the place?

Jul 24th - 19:46pm | Glad2bretired

This Superintendent only received a $1000 performance award after being nailed for sexual harassment?  "Zero tolerance" seems to mean that he was entitled to at least a Quality Step Increase for misconduct.  Somebody screwed up.  That's the way it worked when I was employed by the NPS, and by all indications things have only become worse.

Jul 24th - 12:14pm | beschundler

Attitudes and behaviors in the the National Park Service will never change, and discrimination, harassment, and retaliation will not stop until someone at the top begins to punish and discipline those who violate laws, regulations, and federal standards....no matter who they are or what grade level.

Acadia National Park Officials Debating How To Deal With Crowds

Jul 26th - 11:23am | argalite

About one-sixth of federal spending goes to national defense.

Jul 26th - 08:46am | ecbuck

More than HALF of our Federal tax dollars go to the defense department. Not even close. The percentage is in the teens and near historical lows. 

Jul 25th - 21:31pm | Vee

More than HALF of our Federal tax dollars go to the defense department.  If even a small percentage of that was allocated to our parks, we could make all the improvements, upgrades and expansion  we need to without restricting access to anyone at all.  There's plenty of funds.  Your money is being squandered.

National Park Basics For RVing Newbies

Jul 25th - 20:40pm | Rick B.

I can't emphasize enough going to a high school or shopping mall parking lot and setting up your own cone course. Be realistic about road dimensions, turns, and not only drive it, but get out an watch your partner drive it.

Jul 25th - 17:13pm | Ruth

How wide was your trailer? Length?

Op-Ed | Yosemite So Crowded You Can’t Park; But You'll Still Pay To Enter

Jul 25th - 14:26pm | Plchristma

Couldn't agree more. I have visited most of the NPS properties in the West and in the past few years have noted an increased number of photographers trying to take advantage of the optimal lighting conditions to photograph - times when most visitors are not yet up or long headed back to camp/motels, etc.

Jul 24th - 19:27pm | justinh

Interesting, Michael. As most everyone knows, more folks will indeed visit a particular place if it's a national park.  But will this disseminate visitation more evenly among the parks?  Beats me, but an interesting thought to consider.

Jul 24th - 11:39am | Alfred Runte

Between 1907 and 1945, Yosemite had a railroad. It ran from Merced to El Portal. At El Portal, passengers transferred to stagecoaches and later motorcoaches for the remaining 12 miles to the valley floor. If in 1945 that railroad had been extended to the valley, on a cog-assisted roadbed, the current overcrowding would not exist.

Jul 24th - 10:17am | ecbuck

People go to places for what they are, not because they are National Parks.  There are plenty of places that are in the National Park System that have relatively little usage and Yosemite would be just as crowded if it were a state park or just Forest Service land.  Burdening the system with additional units wont take the pressure off the crown jewels.  

Jul 24th - 09:35am | Michael Kellett

To clarify: Even with additional parks, careful management of visitation is necessary at famous and crowded sites, such as Yosemite Valley, to prevent a degraded visitor experience and damage to the park itself. Toward that end, the suggestions by the author make sense and should be seriously considered.

Jul 24th - 09:12am | Michael Kellett

We should be glad that millions of people want to visit our national parks. They are connecting with nature, celebrating their cultural heritage, enjoying family vacations, and contributing to the local economy. Would we rather have them playing video games and watching reality TV shows?

Jul 24th - 05:47am | edmond macgregor

  "Submitted by Steve Nelson on July 23, 2017 - 3:49pm. I'm glad I went in 2000 when the crowds were nowhere like this.  I may never see Yosemite again.  Yellowstone looks less and less likely that I will ever see it.

Jul 23rd - 17:38pm | Megaera

Why are we only now getting this spate of articles about overcrowding in the parks?  The popular parks have been way overcrowded for years, and all of this could have been headed off at the pass by good leadership decades ago.  

Jul 23rd - 16:35pm | y_p_w

Cathy944 on July 23, 2017 - 2:36pm.   There was and is no need for the parks to spend money on advertising National Parks.  The Find Your Park campaign in 2016 was a waste of money that could have been used for infrastructure.  This helped to make overcrowding in National Parks even more of a problem!

National Parks: Going To The Dogs!

Jul 25th - 13:57pm | Carmen Barrett

I just can't believe that pet owners are being discriminated against.  I have seen a lot more distruction by humans than dogs.  I fell that if the dog is on a leash then they should be allowed on hiking trails.  The owners know how there dogs act around other people and wildlife.  Most owners will make sure that there dog is safe.  For many people that dog is like

Traveler's View: Psst! Our National Parks Are In Danger

Jul 25th - 08:36am | wild places

The problem with regulations and government agencies in general is there is never an end game. In order to protect their own jobs they feel the need to continue to create regulations and enforcement mechanisms to ensure their own survival. There should be a reward or incentive to make themselves if not obsolete, a fraction of their original size. That is success.

Jul 25th - 02:37am | argalite

That is nothing like a statewide ban.  ecbuck, your list does not include the animals a condor would normally eat, (aside from the bighorn) such as deer, or other large game mammals for example.  When you hunt those animals, hunters leave the gutpile with lead fragments from the ammo.  That is why condors are dying.

Jul 24th - 20:18pm | ecbuck

Maybe the lead ban isn't being enforced and/or adhered to? Do you have any evidence it isn't being inforced.  Any evidence the vast majority of hunters are risking non-compliance?  And if it isn't being enforced, is it an effective regulation?  

Jul 24th - 19:19pm | Glad2bretired

Maybe the lead ban isn't being enforced and/or adhered to?

Jul 24th - 18:49pm | ecbuck

         There will be no ban for lead ammo in the entire state until 2019

Jul 24th - 17:39pm | argalite

How stupid are you? There will be no ban for lead ammo in the entire state until 2019. Check with the state. Condors will not get enough access to lead to be a problem once the ban is in effect. Quit reading your NRA propaganda  

Jul 24th - 17:26pm | ecbuck

My comment is accurate. There have been bans in the Condor Corridor for 10 years ad in the entire state for nearly 5 years.   I have no idea where they get it but what I do know is that the regulations, some of which are as much as 10 years old, have had no beneficial effect.

Jul 24th - 17:17pm | argalite

Here is a quote of your words: "We have 10 years of history of a lead ammunition ban in the Condor Corridor  and nearly 5 years in the entire state of California".... What information were you trying to convey?  Your lack of knowledge?  Just where would the condors get their lead if not though shot and bullets?       

Jul 24th - 15:45pm | ecbuck

"entire" is an adjective.  It describe a noun.  In this case the noun was "state".   "Entire state" (as opposed to just the Condor Corridor) I did not say "entire ban" or "total ban".

Jul 24th - 14:55pm | argalite

Total is another word for entire, is English your second language?

Jul 24th - 14:24pm | ecbuck

There you go again argalite, putting words in my mouth.  I never said "total".  Phase 1 and Phase 2, both currently in effect, are statewide bans and cover the majority of applications.  Along with Phase 1 and Phase 2 there has been a ban in the Condor Corridor since 2007.  Net result?  Nada.  

Jul 24th - 14:14pm | argalite

Please read before commenting next time ecbuck. California does not have a total lead ban in the state yet, as that happens in 2019!  

Jul 24th - 11:55am | ecbuck

I said wrong and explained it You explained nothing.  You mentioned something about "proper regulation" but I never said anything about regulations other than regulations apparently did not stop the Flint, Michigan incident.

Jul 24th - 11:15am | argalite

Ok ecbuck, I said wrong and explained it, so now I have to spoon feed you. Stated again:  Ecbuck is sorely wrong again.  Propbably on many but definitely about proper regulation does keep people safer, otherwise why bother? As for lead, guess we have to wait, don't we?

Traveler’s View: Interior Department Fumbles Zuckerberg Visit To Glacier National Park

Jul 24th - 19:49pm | wild places

I for one don't think they fumbled anything. Mr. Zuckerberg is a private citizen just like you and I. Does the fact that he has money mean he should get special access? Or is it just that he shares your beliefs? For arguments sake lets say it was the CEO of Exon or the company building the Dakota Access pipeline? What would the reaction or opinion have been then?

Jul 24th - 13:26pm | Ranger1

MR Runte_  

Jul 24th - 11:03am | Alfred Runte

Ranger 1 I appreciate your elaboration. Of course, this is what the Park Service has become--another political animal, in Horace Albright's words, "just another bureaucracy," as he feared.

Jul 24th - 08:35am | Ranger1

Mr Runte-

Jul 24th - 08:18am | tahoma

Excellent point. Lori!My conclusion is this is the most unqualified, ignorant, dishonest, and dangerous administration in my lifetime.  Don't miss this morning's Washington Post on the death of expertise:

Jul 24th - 07:08am | Concerned Tax Payer

There should have been no reason for the Super not to meet with Zuckerberg but there would be no reason for the Dr to meet with him othe than to further his politics on cimate change...none. The Park Service has always taken political positions so no big deal...elections always have consequenes.

Jul 23rd - 18:40pm | Lori

in terms of keeping the superintendent and the scientist in their offices to save money rather than meeting with Democrat Zuckerberg, I would like to point out that the visit happened on a Saturday afternoon, not during regular business hours. Draw your own conclusion. 

Jul 23rd - 17:12pm | Vegas Voice

So if you are a billionaire socialist with capitalist tendencies, you should get a private escort around a National Park? Mr Z has already made his mind up about climate change and if he needs help, he could always donate to the National Parks or hire his own scientist to follow him around to show him how right he is.

Photographing Big Bend National Park: A Friendly Guide To Great Images

Jul 24th - 11:18am | Don T

Kathy Adams Clark leverages her years of experience as a nature/landscape photographer to produce an easy to follow tutorial on creating memorable photos from one of America's most impressive National Parks.

Trails I've Hiked: Grinnell Lake By Boat And Boot In Glacier National Park

Jul 23rd - 22:54pm | john david lawrence

just what I needed to know about the shuttle and the hike.  thank you

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide