Tag archives for National Park Service

America’s ‘Ghost’ Parks

Wheeler Geologic Area, a wonderland of stone pinnacles and hoodoos (above), was once a top Colorado attraction. Now, only backcountry hikers and those willing to drive 13 miles on a dirt road earn a glimpse of one of America’s more unusual landscapes. President Theodore Roosevelt designated this volcanic tuff formation, about 250 miles southwest of…

Guardian of the Parks: Jonathan Jarvis on the NPS Centennial

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Jonathan Jarvis can say one thing most of us can’t: He has his dream job. As head of the National Park Service (NPS), Jarvis oversees more than 84 million acres of public land in the United States—from its largest unit, Alaska’s Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, to its smallest, Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial, in downtown Philadelphia. As the NPS celebrates its centennial in 2016, Director Jarvis shares his favorite park units, the ups and downs of the job, and his hopes for the next 100 years.

National Treasures: America’s Best Idea

More than 400 sites make up the U.S. National Park Service, which celebrates its 100th birthday in 2016. But here’s what just might be overshadowed in the hubbub: the parks themselves, particularly the lesser known ones. A new National Geographic book pays homage to them all.

Why National Parks Matter

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National parks are like poems: arguably superfluous but in reality vital to humanity. Celebrate National Park Week (April 19 to 27) by visiting one near you.

I Heart My National Park: Great Smoky Mountains

Backcountry management specialist Christine Hoyer has spent the last seven years working at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. An outdoor enthusiast through and through, Christine is fortunate enough to have made her love of the outdoors into a career. When she’s not working in “America’s most visited national park,” Christine can be found hiking, backpacking, and photographing in her favorite place—the Great Smoky Mountains. Here is a look at this diverse park through her unique lens.

A Birthday Wish for America’s National Parks

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Yellowstone became the world’s first national park in 1872, leading the British diplomat James Bryce to declare national parks “the best idea America ever had.” Indeed, it was, and is. But celebrations and plaudits aside, look at what we have done to our national treasures. As we prepare to celebrate the National Park Service centennial in 2016, here’s a birthday wish for the future.

Picture Yourself in a National Park!

National Park Week starts Saturday, April 21st — and we’ve just launched our newest mobile app, “National Parks by National Geographic,” to help kickstart the celebration. You’ll get instant — and FREE — access to Nat Geo guides to the 20 most visited parks. The park service is offering free admission to all 397 parks from April 21-29. Share your park photos with Traveler by using our #parkpic tag on Twitter and Instagram.

#FriFotos: Couldn’t Drag Me Away…

This week’s #FriFotos theme is WILD, so, in a nod to a popular travel destination for DC-area folks, we chose a photo of two wild horses on Assateague Island. Though these feral ponies have domesticated ancestors (rumor is they descended from survivors of a Spanish galleon that shipwrecked off the coast), you’d never guess it…

Thank a Ranger Day

Alison Brick pauses to thank the people behind our National Parks. It’s the heart of summer, and you can almost hear the pounding of tent stakes into the ground and the blowing of embers to start campfires as people make their way outdoors. National and state parks across the country are being appreciated this time…

National Parks in Peril

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It’s been a tough few weeks for the National Park Service. First there was a USA Today article noting an uptick in the theft of artifacts from parks throughout the country. Rangers have reported missing Civil War relics and fossils, and say that with the online market for artifacts steadily growing, it’s becoming nearly impossible…