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Sonntag, 13. Oktober 2019, 23:16

In San Francisco krabbeln gerade tausende Taranteln aus dem Boden

Zitat

Durch ungewöhnlich warme Temperaturen ist die Paarungszeit der Taranteln in der Bay Area dieses Jahr sehr lang.
Wanderer sehen sie auf Straßen und Pfaden.

Taranteln sind nicht gefährlich für Menschen, auch wenn sie wohl einigen Angst machen.
Am Ende des Sommers ist Paarungszeit bei den Taranteln. Die behaarten Achtfüßer krabbeln über verältnismäßig lange Strecken auf Straßen und Parks im Westen der USA, um einen Partner zu finden (männliche Taranteln werden oft danach von ihrer Partnerin gefressen).
Gewöhnlich beginnt die Paarungszeit der Taranteln Ende August und endet in der zweiten Herbstwoche. Doch durch das warme, trockene Wetter in Nordkalifornien hat sich die Paarungszeit in diesem Jahr verlängert, sodass Bewohner der San Francisco Bay Area im Laufe dieser Woche zahlreiche Taranteln entdecken konnten. Wanderpfade im Mount Diablo State Park sollen voll mit den suchenden Männchen sein.
„Eine tolle Zeit. Das sieht man nur einmal im Jahr“, sagte Al Wolf, Direktor der Sonoma County Reptile Rescue, CBS San Francisco.

Auf der Suche nach dem perfekten Partner
Nordamerikanische Taranteln (50 Spezies werden der Gattung der Aphonopelma zugerechnet) können bis zu 1,6 Kilometer weit laufen — was ungewöhnlich lange Distanzen sind, wenn man bedenkt, dass Spinnenbeinchen die Länge von Fingern haben —, um einen Partner zu finden. Die Männchen bleiben allerdings oft nahe bei ihrem Bau.
Wenn eine männliche Tarantel eine potenzielle Partnerin gefunden hat und andere Männchen von ihr fernhalten kann, dann klopft sie an ihre Tür. Denn der Bau einer Tarantel ist mit seidigen Spinnenweben bedeckt, deshalb tappt das Männchen auf die Netze, um das Weibchen herauszulocken.
Wenn das Weibchen herauskommt, dann erhält sie das Sperma des Männchens, das normalerweise schon auf dem Netz platziert ist. Und manchmal, da isst sie das Männchen, wenn es nicht weggeht.
„Wenn das Weibchen hungrig ist, dann wird der Partner einfach gegessen“, schreibt der National Park Service.
Die Männchen sterben aber normalerweise ohnehin einige Wochen später, Anfang November.

Taranteln in Aktion erleben
Männliche Taranteln wiegen weniger als 30 Gramm und werden rund sechs Zentimeter groß. Sie leben alleine und gehen normalerweise zur Dämmerung raus, deshalb sieht man diese Spinnen nur selten.
Neben Kalifornien gibt es auch im US-Bundesstaat Oklahoma und in der Gegend um La Junta, Colorado, eine Tarantelwanderung, bei der Männchen auf der Suche nach Weibchen sind.
Obwohl Taranteln für einige wohl furchterregend aussehen mögen, sind sie nicht gefährlich für Menschen, wie der US Fish and Wildlife Service schreibt. Sie können Gift aussprühen, das Menschen allerdings nichts ausmacht. Ihre stacheligen Härchen können allerdings Hautirritationen verursachen.
„Die Tarantel ist eine sehr nette Spinne. Es sind die kleinen, vor denen man Angst haben sollte. Die großen machen meistens nichts“, sagte Wolf CBS.

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Freitag, 18. Oktober 2019, 21:34

Allowing off-highway vehicles in Utah’s national parks is a mistake

More mechanized traffic in already crowded parks is another Trump administration gift to industry and Utah politicians.

Zitat

Capitol Reef National Park in southern Utah receives more than 1.2 million visitors per year, but only a tiny fraction make it down to the park’s south end along the spectacular Waterpocket Fold. This section is more austere than the busy area along Highway 24, and it’s far quieter as a result. Even during peak season, you can linger by the dirt road here for hours without seeing another vehicle.
That’s likely to change Nov. 1, when the National Park Service is slated to begin allowing off-highway vehicles, or OHVs, to use roads in national park service units in Utah. The nation’s other national parks will remain off-limits to the vehicles.
Palmer “Chip” Jenkins, the agency’s acting intermountain regional director (yes, another “acting” official in the Trump Interior Department) ordered the change in late September without seeking public comment. The order was not illegal — it’s an administrative decision — but it is unusual. The OHV plan for Glen Canyon Recreation Area, for example, took the Park Service nine years to craft. Jenkins’ recent order is purportedly intended to “align” the parks with Utah law, which allows “street-legal” OHVs on many public roads. But it appears to be another instance of the Trump administration bending to industry and Utah’s conservative politicians at the expense of some of the last OHV-free places in the West.
To understand how this might change the parks, just look at San Juan County, Colorado, its rugged mountains crisscrossed with hundreds of miles of roads left from over a century of mining.
In the early 2000s, San Juan County’s leaders moved to open virtually all county roads to OHVs, relying on arguments similar to those bandied about by advocates today: Those roads were already traveled by thousands of vehicles each summer; OHV riders would be subject to the same traffic laws as other cars; they wouldn’t be allowed to go off-road; and “quiet users” could escape the uptick in traffic, noise, dust, and other impacts by simply getting a half-mile or so away from the road.
Since then, traffic hasn’t just ticked up on San Juan County’s backroads, it has exploded, and statistics indicate that most of the growth has consisted of OHVs. A traffic count done last year found that nearly 159,000 vehicles, about half of them OHVs, entered the Alpine Loop — the network of backcountry roads that include San Juan County’s.
It’s been good for the economy, but comes at a cost. Law enforcement officers are spending more time trying to keep people on designated routes and in compliance with traffic laws. The new “side-by-sides, or UTVs, are built to go much faster than a highway-ready SUV on rugged terrain, and they often do. OHV crashes, often resulting in serious injury, are not uncommon. And each summer several riders surrender to the temptation to illegally leave the road and rip across the tundra, causing irreversible damage. These vehicles, after all, were designed to go off road. Unlike regular vehicles, OHVs tend to travel in herds, spewing exhaust and kicking up dust, their collective buzzing reaching far beyond the roads on which they travel, making it more difficult to escape the mechanized din.
It’s likely the same phenomenon would occur in national parks that allow OHVs. Traffic will burgeon in parks that are already grappling with overcrowding and traffic jams. The less-visited backcountry areas, however, will be hit hardest. OHVs will be able to kick up clouds of dust on the now-quiet roads of Canyonlands’ Maze District and buzz past mountain bikers on the White Rim Trail. And they’ll soon be able to hook up with the Burr Trail on the aforementioned road through Capitol Reef’s southern end, where there’s very little to stop bad actors from careening across the fragile cryptobiotic soil.
So why would Jenkins allow such a thing? Because the industry and Utah’s politicians asked for it, claiming that the park’s ban amounted to discrimination. In July, motorized access groups wrote to Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, demanding that he drop the ban. Utah State Rep. Phil Lyman, R, who led an OHV protest ride down a road closed to motorized vehicles in 2014, followed with a similar letter: “It offends me that … the National Park Service has adopted regulations that discriminate against OHV owners.” That sentiment was echoed in an Outside magazine op-ed by Wes Siler, who said that the OHV ban was a form of “gatekeeping,” of pushing out the “kind of people who ride ATVs.”
Extend that logic to other public-lands regulations and its absurdity becomes apparent. Mountain bikes are banned from wilderness areas, for example, not because anyone wants to keep a certain “kind of people” off the trails, but because of the machines’ impacts on “untrammeled” lands. The same goes for OHVs in the parks.
Kate Cannon, superintendent of the Southeast Utah Group of the National Park Service, was quick to respond to Jenkins’ order, writing, in part, “The use on park roads of OHVs … poses a significant risk to park resources and values which cannot be appropriately mitigated, and which cannot be sustained without causing unacceptable impacts. The use of such vehicles is, therefore, not consistent with the protection of the parks and monuments.”
Opening the parks to these vehicles is also not necessary. Thousands of miles of designated OHV routes snake their way across the millions of acres of public lands surrounding Utah’s national parks. Isn’t that enough?

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Sonntag, 20. Oktober 2019, 22:56

Human noise becomes harder to ignore at national parks, research show

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Researchers have identified an invisible threat posing an increasing challenge for national parks such as Rocky Mountain National Park, and across Colorado and the rest of the country.
Anthropogenic noise is defined as noise due to human activity. Noise made by machines and people are heard in 37% of recordings collected from Park Service lands around the country.
The problem with a large amount of noise is the disruption of peace for people visiting the parks, along with animals who live in them. For many animals, being able to hear their surroundings and determine their safety is key to their survival from potential threats. Some species even rely on listening for the song of a potential mate.
To tackle this problem, a team of scientists from Colorado State University and the Park Service have spent the past decade studying the results of anthropogenic noise on national parks. The team found in its study that recreational watercraft and trains create the loudest source of noise, but the greatest noise-causing items are vehicles and aircraft.
Researchers analyzed 46,789 hours of audio from 66 parks, producing a firm understanding of the frequency of noise, the type of noises heard, and how loud the noises were. The sounds were analyzed in CSU’s listening lab.
“Listening lab is where undergraduate students listen to the data in detail and identify these sources of noise,” explained Emma Brown, who works in the Natural Sounds and Night Skies division of the Parks Service and worked on the study.
“Without the laboratory, I don’t think this research could have been possible. All that undergrad time invested really allows a paper of this magnitude to come together.”
The study was led by Rachel Buxton, a postdoctoral fellow doing research with CSU and the U.S. National Parks Service.
When discussing why the research was important to her, Buxton said “It’s a really good example of science being done to inform management and inform how we can make things better. We know noise pollution is an issue in our parks, but we don’t know where it is, and we don’t know what is causing it. We need to know those things because we have thetechnology to tackle these issues.”
A large cause of anthropogenic noise seems to result from human voices. Since then, quiet zones have been a suggested solution to the noise issue. These zones require people speak in conversational level voices and turn their cellphones off.
The Park Service continuously works to improve parks sound environment and find innovative solutions to noise, scientists said.
George Wittemyer of the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology at CSU wrote in an e-mail, “There are a surprising variety of attempts to manage noise at national parks. This includes trying to require busing in sensitive areas (reduce traffic), encourage aviation to be focused in limited areas of park and specific times, managing the amount of snow machines in areas based on noise exposure, and encouraging quiet voices in spectacular locations.”
When it comes to the future, Buxton hopes people will begin appreciating the national parks for their acoustic properties and be mindful of their audio footprints.
“You go to Yellowstone and think about the geysers and taking in the beautiful landscape,” Buxton said. “The birds singing and the wolves howling in the distance. It’s a really important aspect of the park as a visitor.”

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Also: einfach mal die Fresse halten! (:fluecht:)
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Dienstag, 22. Oktober 2019, 20:39

This Map Shows the 50 Most Underrated State Parks in the U.S.

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When it comes to planning a trip to a natural paradise, almost everyone gravitates towards National Parks. We understand why. Places like Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming, Badlands in South Dakota, Grand Canyon in Arizona or Yosemite in California are gorgeous. Few places can match the beauty of a place like North Cascades National Park in Washington.
But everyone gets so excited over U.S. National Parks that we forget about the State Parks. Many of these places offer just as much natural beauty. Most offer plenty of chances at recreation with areas for mountain biking, rafting and kayaking. Most have miles of trails for hikers and plenty of campsites to sleep under a spectacular night sky.
Recently the blog SavingSpot scoured the Internet to come up with a map showing the 50 most underrated of these parks in the U.S. Check it out. You might want to put some of these spots on your bucket list. These are some of the best hidden gems in North America!

Here is the list for easy reading:
· Alabama: DeSoto State Park
· Alaska: Kachemak Bay State Park
· Arizona: Buckskin Mountain State Park
· Arkansas: Lake Ouachita State Park
· California: Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park
· Colorado: Mueller State Park
· Connecticut: Hammonasset Beach State Park
· Delaware: Trap Pond State Park
· Florida: Mike Roess Gold Head Branch State Park
· Georgia: Providence Canyon State Park
· Hawaii: Kōkeʻe State Park
· Idaho: Farragut State Park
· Illinois: Pere Marquette State Park
· Indiana: Shades State Park
· Iowa: Maquoketa Caves State Park
· Kansas: Kanopolis Lake State Park
· Kentucky: Levi Jackson Wilderness Road State Park
· Louisiana: Chicot State Park
· Maine: Camden Hills State Park
· Maryland: New Germany State Park
· Massachusetts: Nickerson State Park
· Michigan: Ludington State Park
· Minnesota: Frontenac State Park
· Mississippi: Paul B Johnson State Park
· Missouri: Johnson's Shut-Ins State Park
· Montana: Lewis & Clark Caverns State Park
· Nebraska: Platte River State Park
· Nevada: Spring Mountain Ranch State Park
· New Hampshire: Pawtuckaway State Park
· New Jersey: Wawayanda State Park
· New Mexico: City of Rocks State Park
· New York: Verona Beach State Park
· North Carolina: Lake James State Park
· North Dakota: Icelandic State Park
· Ohio: John Bryan State Park
· Oklahoma: Beavers Bend State Park
· Oregon: Oswald West State Park
· Pennsylvania: Caledonia State Park
· Rhode Island: Fishermen's Memorial State Park and Campground
· South Carolina: Edisto Beach State Park
· South Dakota: Palisades State Park
· Tennessee: Henry Horton State Park
· Texas: Davis Mountains State Park
· Utah: Goblin Valley State Park
· Vermont: Smugglers Notch State Park
· Virginia: Grayson Highlands State Park
· Washington: Moran State Park
· West Virginia: Babcock State Park
· Wisconsin: Kohler-Andrae State Park

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Sonntag, 27. Oktober 2019, 19:34

Upcoming ATV Access To National Parks In Utah Withdrawn

Zitat

With a three-paragraph statement late Friday afternoon the National Park Service announced without elaboration that it was withdrawing a previous order that national park units in Utah beginning November 1 open their dirt and paved roads to ATV vehicles that were registered and licensed for road travel in the state.
It was back on September 24 when acting-Intermountain Regional Director Chip Jenkins issued that directive to the superintendents of Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion national parks.
But there was pushback from Kate Cannon, superintendent over Arches and Canyonlands, and local officials in the Moab area, who were concerned about the potential impacts of ATVs.
“[In the past,] we acted through our own regulations to preclude the entrance of those vehicles into the parks, and that has stood for the last 11 years,” Cannon told an audience recently at a public meeting in Moab. “Now, there’s a proposal that that be changed, and we’re working right now to avoid that happening.”
National Park Service officials would not comment directly on their decision Friday, other than to distribute a release stating that, "(A)fter further consultation between the National Park Service and the Department of Interior, including the Secretary of the Interior, the NPS today directed that all ORV closures at national park sites in Utah currently in place will remain in effect."
"Utah state law allows certain street-legal, registered off-road vehicles on state roadways, but several National Park Service units in the state restrict their use," the Park Service release added. "This September, the National Park Service issued guidance to eliminate those closures. The memorandum released today rescinds that direction."
The news was quickly heralded by National Parks Conservation Association and Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance staff.
“Utah’s national parks and monuments are renowned for their wild landscapes, which inspire visitors and continue to deserve the highest levels of protection,” said Kristen Brengel, NPCA's vice president of government affairs. “Park advocates and community leaders from across Utah and beyond recently came together and spoke with one voice, in the name of maintaining such protections surrounding off-road vehicle use. The Interior Secretary and Park Service clearly agree and are continuing the more than century-long mission of protecting unique and fragile resources that this generation, our children and grandchildren will enjoy.”
National park superintendents have worried that ATVs, which are designed to be driven off-road, would do so, and have long said there were not enough rangers to adequately police them. Too, there have been concerns over noise and pollution from the vehicles.
“The Park Service made the right decision to keep off-road vehicles out of Utah’s national parks and monuments,” said Steve Bloch, legal director for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance. “There are tens of thousands of miles of roads and dirt trails throughout Utah where these vehicles can be driven. Trying to shoehorn that use into the parks and monuments didn’t make sense and inevitably would have resulted in damage to the very things that make these places so remarkable and what visitors come to experience.”
When Jenkins issued the directive, his staff said it had long been in the works.
Vanessa Lacayo, a spokesperson for the Park Service's Intermountain office, told Traveler in September that the change in policy could be traced back to 2008 when the Utah Legislature passed a law that allowed licensed and registered ATVs access to all state and county roads. Since that law was passed, she said, the Park Service has been in talks with the Interior Department's solicitor's office, park superintendents, Utah officials, and ATV groups to see how those vehicles could be allowed in Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion national parks, along with the national monuments in the state.
We’ve been having these conversations with our solicitor’s office, with our parks, for several years now. And ultimately that’s kind of where we landed," Lacayo said of the decision to open the parks to ATVs. "In order to be legally defensible, we have to default to 36 CFR 4.2, which aligns us with the state on this issue.”
While 36 CFR 4.2 does direct federal agencies to bow to state vehicle laws, the Park Service seemingly overlooked the controversial nature of ATVs and the requirements of 36 CFR 1.5, which states that, "(E)xcept in emergency situations, a closure, designation, use or activity restriction or condition, or the termination or relaxation of such, which is of a nature, magnitude and duration that will result in a significant alteration in the public use pattern of the park area, adversely affect the park's natural, aesthetic, scenic or cultural values, require a long-term or significant modification in the resource management objectives of the unit, or is of a highly controversial nature, shall be published as rulemaking in the Federal Register."
With Yosemite National Park Superintendent Mike Reynolds announced as the next director of the Intermountain Region, Jenkins had returned to his home park, Mount Rainier. The acting regional director was Kate Hammond, the deputy, but she was out of office Friday.
"We don't have more information to share outside of what we included in the press release," said Lacayo.
Phil Brueck, a former deputy superintendent of Canyonlands and Arches, called the decision "the right one for the future of our national parks.”
According to NPCA staff, more than 30 Utah businesses submitted a letter to the Interior Department opposing the proposed change to allow off-road vehicles into the state's national parks and monuments. In addition, the Grand County Council, City of Moab, and Town of Castle Valley passed a joint resolution opposing the proposed change.
Outside of the five national parks in the state, other National Park System units that would have been affected by the change included Dinosaur, Hovenweep, Natural Bridges, and Cedar Breaks national monuments.

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Mittwoch, 30. Oktober 2019, 22:25

Missing: A boulder weighing 1 ton. The park would like it back, please

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In a baffling act of thievery, a 1-ton boulder was somehow snatched from the side of a highway in Arizona's Prescott National Forest about two weeks ago. Now, Forest officials are reaching out to the public for help recovering the hefty loot.
The stately black boulder, commonly called "Wizard Rock" by locals, was a special staple of the community, said Prescott National Forest in a news release.
"It's unfortunate when we lose a treasure such as the Wizard Rock," said Sarah Clawson, district ranger for the Bradshaw Ranger District, in a statement. "Our hope is that it will be returned to us, and these recent recurring events will become an educational opportunity."
Removal of minerals from National Forest land without a permit is illegal, so the boulder bandit is facing a maximum fine of $5,000 or six months in jail, and possibly both.
U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement is asking the public to come forward with any information related to the removal of the beloved rock, which has been a roadside attraction on Highway 89 for many years.
The park says that people often stop to admire the rock, take pictures, and bring others to appreciate it.

Prescott has a history of rock robbery
Prescott National Forest has been the victim of boulder pilfering in the past, though sometimes with a happy ending.
In the past four months, the park says, there have been two other illegal boulder removals in the forest. Park officials speculate that the rocks ranging from 750 to 2,000 would have had to be removed with heavy equipment.
In 2009, though, an 80-pound heart-shaped rock was snatched from Granite Mountain Wilderness. After reading a story in the local paper about how much the rock meant to local residents, the thief returned it.

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Sonntag, 10. November 2019, 23:00

Battlefields around the world are finding new purpose as parks and refuges

Zitat

The horrors of war are all too familiar: lives lost, homes destroyed, entire communities forced to flee. Yet as time passes, places that once were sites of death and destruction can become peaceful natural refuges.
One of the deadliest battles fought on U.S. soil, for example, was the Battle of Gettysburg. Tens of thousands of men were killed or wounded in three days of fighting. Over 150 years later, millions of visitors have toured Gettysburg Battlefield.
Across the U.S., 25 national battlefield and military parks have been established to protect battlefield landscapes and memorialize the past. Increasingly, visitors to these sites are attracted as much by their natural beauty as their historical legacy.
Our new book, “Collateral Values: The Natural Capital Created by Landscapes of War,” describes the benefits to society when healthy natural habitats develop on former battlefields and other military landscapes, such as bases and security zones. Environmental scientist Gary Machlis coined the phrase “collateral values” – a spin on the military expression “collateral damage” – to describe the largely unintended and positive consequences of protecting these lands.
These benefits include opportunities for picnicking, hiking and bird watching. More importantly, former military lands can support wildlife conservation, reduce water and air pollution, enhance pollination of natural and agricultural areas and help regulate a warming climate.

From battlefields to parks
In addition to federally protected sites, hundreds of battlefields in the U.S. are preserved by states, local governments and nonprofits like the American Battlefield Trust. Collectively, these sites represent an important contribution to the nation’s public lands.
Preserved battlefields include old fort sites, like the 33 that have been designated public lands in Oklahoma and Texas, marking wars fought between European settlers and Native Americans. They also include coastal defense forts built in the first half of the 1800s along the Atlantic and Pacific seaboards. While some battlefield parks are quite large, others are small sites in urban settings.
Internationally, the United Kingdom has an active program to preserve its battlefields, some centuries old. Other Western European countries have preserved World War I and World War II battlefields.
For example, one of the most brutal battles of WWI was fought in Verdun, France. That trench warfare site is now 25,000 acres of regenerated forest that attracts more than a quarter-million visitors annually. It protects a biologically rich landscape, including wetlands, orchids, birds, bats, newts, frogs, toads, insects, mushrooms and “survivor trees” that still bear scars of war.

Borders: The Iron Curtain
The largest, most ambitious plan in Europe for transforming a military border centers on the Iron Curtain – a line of guard towers, walls, minefields and fences that stretched for thousands of miles, from Norway’s border with the Soviet Union above the Arctic Circle down to the Mediterranean coastal border between Greece and Albania.
Communist Russia and its allies claimed they had to build a system of military barriers to defend against the NATO alliance of Western European countries and the U.S. But keeping their own citizens in was equally as important. Hundreds died trying to escape.
The collapse of the USSR in 1991 ended the Cold War, and the utility of the Iron Curtain and associated military facilities. With the fall of the Berlin Wall that divided the city into halves, a reunified Germany began to develop its section of the Iron Curtain into a system of conservation areas and nature trails, known as the European Green Belt initiative.
One great challenge of this project was balancing the values of conserving nature while preserving the tragic historical legacy of conflict. Most efforts to build collateral values on former landscapes must grapple with this trade-off.
ron Curtain Greenway: Europeans are creating a system of parks and natural areas stretching across the continent, all connected by the greenswards that have grown along the former Iron Curtain. European Green Belt Association, CC BY
Other militarized borders around the globe are also becoming conservation sites. For example, the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea has been strictly off-limits for people for decades, allowing it to grow into the most important, albeit unofficial, biodiversity reserve on the Korean peninsula.
Similarly, forests have grown up in the extensive minefield created along the Iran-Iraq border during those nations’ war in the 1980s. These forests support Asian leopards and other rare wildlife species. There are proposals to formally protect them as nature reserves.

Hope after tragedy
As open space becomes scarce in many parts of the U.S., Civil War battlefield parks have become havens for grassland birds like this grasshopper sparrow. NPS/Sasha Robinson
The ecosystems of protected areas, such as parks and preserves, provide vital benefits for humans and nature. Unfortunately, the world is in danger of losing at least one-third of its protected areas to development and other threats. Recognizing the collateral values that have developed on protected former battlefields and border zones may help reduce degradation and loss of these lands.
One recent study estimates that nearly 1 million square miles – 5% of the Earth’s dry land surface – is currently designated as military training areas. These zones could be protected with relatively little investment when combined with social, cultural and political goals, such as memorializing historical events, and could become ecologically valuable places.
No one should forget the brutality of the conflicts that gave rise to these landscapes. However, given the scale of threats to natural habitats around the world, conservationists cannot ignore opportunities to cultivate and preserve natural places – even those that arise from the horrors of war.

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268

Freitag, 15. November 2019, 22:52

Die gefährlichste Strasse der USA

318 Kurven auf 11 Meilen

Zitat

Der Dragon Tail im US-Bundesstaat Tennessee feiert sich selbst als die kurvenreichste und gefährlichste Strasse der USA. Dabei ist das Kurvengeschlängel längst nicht nur bei Motorradfahrern beliebt, sondern wird auch von Autotestern eifrig genutzt.

Was dem Motorsportfan seine Nordschleife des Nürburgrings ist dem Amerikaner der Dragon Tail im Nordosten des Bundesstaates Tennessee an der Grenze zu North Carolina. Hier wartet auf nur elf Meilen (17,7 km) eine Bergstrecke durch die Appalachen mit insgesamt 318 Kurven. Das sind fast 18 Kurven pro Kilometer – und ist auch in den europäischen Alpen kaum zu finden.
Am Wochenende ist hier nicht nur in der Sommersaison die Hölle los. Hunderte von Bikern ziehts auf die Landstrasse 129, die den Great Smoky Mountains National Park im Süden begrenzt. Am Ende des Tail of the Dragon warten mehrere kleine Motels. Dabei gibt es nicht nur einen perfekten Blick auf die eigene Maschine oder das Auto vor der Tür, sondern auch auf den Tree of Shame (dt. Baum der Schande), an dem verunfallte Bikes und Teile ikonisch inszeniert sind.

Langsam aber gefährlich
Entlang der Strecke sind die Ausblicke traumhaft, die Waldlandschaft mit kleinen Seen und Bächen beeindruckend; doch die meisten Verkehrsteilnehmer haben für derlei Panorama-Schwärmereien keine Zeit. Die Fahrer haben mit den über 300 Kurven zu kämpfen. Es ist keine Seltenheit, dass Fahrer ihre Zwei- und Vierräder nicht immer voll im Griff haben.
Genau darauf warten die zahlreichen Fotografen entlang des Drachen-Schwanzes (deutsch für Dragon Tail). Im Stundenrhythmus stellen sie Bilder online. Besonders beliebt: Piloten im eigenen Grenzbereich, driftende Sportwagen – und Motorradunfälle.
Seit in den späten 80er-Jahren ein wahrer Touristenboom von Sportwagen- und Motorradfahrern einsetzte, sind zahlreiche Menschen ums Leben gekommen. Dabei lässt sich die kurvenreiche Strecke nicht einmal besonders schnell durchfahren. Doch viele Kurven sind uneinsehbar, es gibt kurze Steigungen und Gefälle sowie schwierige Lichtverhältnisse.

Etwas ruhiger unter der Woche
Etwas ruhiger ist es unter der Woche, da der Dragon Tail keine bedeutenden Städte verbindet. Dann kommen den Fotografen auch mal getarnte Prototypen vor die Linse. Die Strecke eignet sich wegen der Kurven, unterschiedlichen Fahrbahnoberflächen sowie Bergauf- und Bergab-Passagen bestens, um das Fahrverhalten von neuen Autos zu testen.
Aber auch flotte Sportfahrer nutzen die ruhigen Wochentage für eine flotte Fahrt. Im Web existieren hunderte von Videos, in denen Piloten in Porsche 911, Ferrari 812 Superfast, Honda NSX, Nissan Skyline oder Mazda MX-5 den Schwanz des Drachens in Rekordzeiten durchpflügen.

Auch beim Easy Rider beliebt
Wer jetzt aber denkt, dass nur Sportfahrer über den Drachenschwanz jagen, irrt sich. Die vermeintliche Kurvenhatz nehmen nicht zuletzt viele Tourenfahrer auf sich, die mit trägen Cruisern von Harley-Davidson mehr Verkehrshindernis als Schrägfahrer im Grenzbereich sind.
Auf sie wartet am rund 600 Meter hoch gelegenen Deals Gap ein eigenes Motorcycle Resort mit Tankstelle und Souvenirshop. Und als wäre das noch nicht genug, steht am Südende der 11 Meilen langen Strecke ein Harley-Davidson-Store inklusive amerikanischem Diner. Vermarktung können sie eben, die Amerikaner.

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Montag, 25. November 2019, 21:04

Parks Canada makes changes to visit Lake O'Hara

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Parks Canada announced last week they will be introducing a random draw system to allocate reservations for the Lake O’Hara day-use bus.
Lake O’Hara, located in Yoho National Park, remains one of the areas most sought after destinations.
“Lake O’Hara’s reservation system has helped to protect this unique alpine environment and maintain a memorable backcountry experience for visitors,” said Jed Cochrane, Visitor Experience Manager for the Lake Louise, Yoho and Kootenay Field Unit.
In 2020, changes are coming to the Parks Canada reservation process for day-use bus access and overnight camping at Lake O’Hara.
Visitors will have a one-month period from February 1 to 29, 2020 to submit an application using the Parks Canada Reservation Service with a non-refundable $10 application fee.
“Applications will be drawn at random and have temporary reservations assigned. Successful applicants will be notified and then have two weeks to confirm their reservation. This approach will improve the reservation experience for visitors and help to ensure all online users have a chance at securing a reservation for a seat on the Lake O’Hara bus.”
Overnight camping reservation changes. Also new in 2020, all overnight camping reservations at Lake O’Hara will be offered only through the Parks Canada Reservation Service.
Beginning at 8:00 a.m. MST on January 24, 2020, the entire Lake O’Hara overnight camping season will be available to reserve on a first come, first served reservation model, same as other offers on the reservation service.

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Mittwoch, 4. Dezember 2019, 20:17

America's National Parks are being overrun by rats, cats and feral hogs

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Millions visit US National Parks each year, many hoping to catch glimpses of animals including bison, mountain goats and alligators.
What they don't expect to see are the rats, domesticated cats, feral hogs and many other non-native animals that also thrive there.
The number of invasive animal species in US national parks has put the protected lands under a "deep and immediate threat," says a new study published in the Biological Invasions journal on Monday.
An invasive species is any organism that lives in an ecosystem to which it is not native to and causes harm. Invasive species are among the biggest threats to native wildlife, according to the National Wildlife Federation.
Non-native species may not have any natural predators. This allows them to breed and multiply quickly and then compete with native populations for valuable food and habitat resources, says the NWF.
Some are even capable of changing the conditions of their new environment, such as altering the soil chemistry or introducing new diseases.

Just a fraction are under control
The report was produced by experts from the US Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation, the US National Park Service and university departments.
The group studied how big the threat of invasive species is to the nation's parks. Of the 1,409 reported populations of invasive species in National Parks, the report says, only 11% are under control.
"From American Samoa to Guam, the northernmost reaches of Alaska, the southwestern deserts, and the Virgin Islands, National Parks protect some of the nation's most important ecosystems, native iconic plant and animal species, cultural resources, and the stories and values that define America," says the report.
Based on the values of the National Parks and the level of threat to their ecosystems, the authors urged the National Park Service to declare the issue a "service-wide priority."
In order to tackle the enormous undertaking of controlling the entire park service's non-native invasions, the study lays out an assessment of how the Park Service should respond.

What to do about it
Many parks have their own methods for responding to invasive species, but the report insists that the threat is too large to be addressed on only a park-by-park basis.
Instead, it says there needs to be a system-wide approach that involves everybody from National Park Service leadership down to their staff and visitors.
Collaboration is key to solving the issue of invasive species because many parks don't have staff trained to deal with invasive species, making it difficult for them to handle the damage caused by the invaders.
To support park staff, the report recommends creating ways for parks to share information more easily with one another. That way, they could exchange solutions, strategies and much-needed expertise.
The report says it is also essential to partner with communities and organizations outside the parks.
Introducing non-native species has been banned in National Parks since 1968, but animals still make their way into the protected lands from the surrounding area. To prevent this, the report recommends working with neighboring landowners and communities.
David Hallac, superintendent of the National Parks of Eastern North Carolina and co-author of the report, told CNN that communicating with outside groups is essential. Hallac previously worked at Yellowstone National Park and Everglades National Park, where he helped to control invasive populations.
"Without a question, the best possible way to manage invasive animals is to prevent them from invading an ecosystem in the first place," he said. "And that can rarely be done alone by an individual park. That's something in which park managers have to absolutely partner with and work collaboratively with communities and adjacent land managers."

Public engagement is key to success
While strategies within the National Parks are important, the report says involving and educating the public is also vital.
By reaching out to the public, the Park Service could encourage people to become involved with efforts to control invasive populations and possibly change their behaviors to protect existing wildlife.
The report suggests that the Park Service incorporate education about invasive species into their public outreach and involve public groups in discussions about invasive species management.
"The public can be part of the solution," Ashley Dayer, an assistant professor in Virginia Tech's Department of Fish and Wildlife and co-author of the report told CNN. "From the most basic of making sure we don't have new introductions of invasive species, such as being responsible pet owners and making sure that exotic pets that become pests aren't released."
Dayer also explained that members of the public can help out as citizen scientists and park volunteers.

New technologies could provide innovative solutions
The report's authors also recommend that the National Park Service start using new technologies to detect and prevent invasion.
By combining traditional methods of prevention and eradication with emerging technology, the Park Service could create more efficient and less costly solutions to its problem.
Some parks, such as Yellowstone National Park, are already using technology to manage non-native species. Yellowstone collects and tests water samples for DNA that may be able to tell park staff if there are invasive species present in the water source. This method can also be used to confirm that invasive species have been eradicated from an ecosystem.
Innovative technology approaches could open many new doors for the Parks Service's conservation efforts, but it would have to be done thoughtfully, said Hallac.
"It's got to be done in a way that we think it through very carefully and make sure there aren't adverse unintended consequences," he said.

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Mittwoch, 11. Dezember 2019, 21:29

Expect Improvements and Closures on Eagle Lake Carriage Road in 2020 at Acadia National Park

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In 2020, the Eagle Lake Carriage Road in Acadia National Park will be rehabilitated to improve and stabilize the road surface and associated features. Recreationists should anticipate closures generally from one intersection to another from April 15-November 15, weather and schedule permitting. Those planning to recreate on the Eagle Lake Carriage Road for any activity during this time should consult Current Conditions to determine the exact closures for any specific timeframe.

The work to be performed on the Eagle Lake Carriage Road includes, but is not limited to:
· Rehabilitation of the existing carriage road surface and subgrade, 6+ miles.
· Rehabilitation of existing drainage features including roadside ditches, stone-lined drainage channels, and select culverts.
· Reconstruction of several sections of dry-laid stone masonry retaining walls.
· Stabilization of stone slope protection walls between the carriage road and areas with steeper slopes.

Upon completion of this project, all 45 miles of historic carriage roads in Acadia National Park will have undergone this type of improvement to ensure the preservation of the resource and the experience for future generations. Acadia National Park contains nationally significant cultural resources including the best and most extensive example of a historic carriage road system in the United States.

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Sonntag, 15. Dezember 2019, 20:10

Glacier National Park
Many Glacier Road Construction Scheduled for 2020-21

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A two-year road construction project on Many Glacier Road will begin April 1, 2020. Visitors to the park in 2020 through 2021 are encouraged to plan accordingly.

April 1 through May 17, 2020 and September 21 through December 16, 2020, the Many Glacier Road will be closed to visitor traffic at the park boundary due to large-scale road construction projects.

May 18 through September 20, 2020, large-scale road construction projects will significantly increase travel times to the Many Glacier area. Visitors should expect travel delays up to 40 minutes each way from Babb, MT, to the Many Glacier Hotel. Visitors are encouraged to explore other areas of the park if they wish to avoid significant delays.

Visitors traveling through construction zones Monday through Friday between 10:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. may experience up to a 3-hour delay.

Due to the need to reduce congestion during construction, the entire Many Glacier Campground will transfer to “reservation only” for the duration of the project. All Many Glacier campsites will be available by reservation only for $23 per night on Recreation.gov. Half of the campsites will be available for reservations beginning December 13, 2019. The remaining sites will be released for reservation on Recreation.gov in March 2020. Once construction is complete, a portion of Many Glacier campsites will revert back to “first-come, first-served” per usual.

In anticipation of long delays and congestion in the Many Glacier Valley in 2020 and 2021, backcountry campers are encouraged to select alternative hiking routes that do not begin or end in Many Glacier. Similarly, backcountry campers are encouraged to pick up their permits (advance reservations or walk-in permits) at one of four other permit issuing stations in the park including Apgar, St. Mary, Two Medicine, and Polebridge. Please visit the Backcountry Camping page on the park website for complete information on backpacking in Glacier.

Boaters are encouraged to boat on park waters other than waters around Many Glacier to avoid congestion due to construction. Please visit the Boating page on the park website for complete information on boating in Glacier National Park.

All commercial visitor services at Many Glacier, including lodging, food & beverage, retail, boat tours, and horseback rides, will be operating as normal during construction.

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Montag, 16. Dezember 2019, 21:36

Glacier National Park Loses Its Shuttle Service

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Driving the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park could be more trying next year, as the park has lost its shuttle operator.
Flathead County (Montana) officials voted on December 11 to terminate their agreement with the park to provide the service, which it has provided since 2007. The shuttle service typically runs in July and August, weather permitting.
County officials said their decision was spurred by the fact that the fee the Park Service was paying them hadn't changed since 2007, while visitor traffic has rocketed.
"The agreement does not cover the county's costs to manage the system and does not support an adequate administrative or operational infrastructure," the commissioners said in a release announcing the decision. "The park provides only a nominal administrative fee and a portion of the cost of one permanent employee, leaving county-funded staff to heavily subsidize the current operation and preventing the hiring of additional needed personnel."
While the county has being received $800,000 per year from the Park Service to operate the shuttles, county officials say they need nearly $1.5 million a year to safely operate the system.
According to the county, the funding issue jeopardizes rider safety because the shuttle buses aren't being maintained to manufacturer's standards.
“We take seriously Flathead County’s concerns and thank them for their hard work and dedication to partnering with us to provide the service for the past thirteen years,” said Glacier Superintendent Jeff Mow. “Learning about the challenges our partner faced made us realize that we need to explore new models for our transit-system operations. The cancellation of the agreement provides us with an opportunity to develop the next generation of the system. Now is the time to reset and think about what makes sense for the future.”
The National Park Service established the park’s transit system to reduce vehicle congestion during the years-long rehabilitation of the Going-to-the-Sun Road that began in 2007. That rehabilitation is now complete. The park is currently engaged in a planning effort through its Going-to-the-Sun Road Corridor Management Plan that explores opportunities to expand its shuttle system. This planning effort is an important incremental step in reviewing shuttle system operations and financial sustainability into the future.

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Samstag, 21. Dezember 2019, 19:49

White Sands National Park!

Aus White Sands National Monument wird der White Sands National Park.
Damit gibt es in New Mexico neben den Carlsbad Caverns nun einen zweiten National Park.


White Sands ist insgesamt der 62. National Park der USA.
*klick *
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Samstag, 28. Dezember 2019, 23:07

Hiker killed by huge falling redwood tree in California national park

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Authorities say a 28-year-old became pinned in a ‘very rare’ incident in Muir Woods, famed for its towering trees, on Christmas Eve A huge redwood tree fell and killed a man visiting Muir Woods national monument park in California on Christmas Eve, authorities said on Thursday.

Subhradeep Dutta, 28, of Edina, Minnesota, died while walking on a marked dirt trail with two other people in the park north of San Francisco famous for its towering trees, according to the Marin county coroner’s office and a spokesman for the park.
Dutta was pinned by the trunk of the 200ft (61-meters) tree and was pronounced dead at the scene. The trunk measured more than 4ft (1.22 meters) in diameter.
A woman injured by falling debris was taken to the hospital for treatment. A man hiking with the group escaped injury.
The tree fell following a series of winter storms over the past two weeks.
“This is a very rare, an isolated event that may have occurred due to wet ground from recent winter storms, around the roots of the tree,” a park spokesman, Charles Strickfaden, said in an email.
“The National Park Service extends its thoughts and prayers to all those involved,” he wrote.
Almost a million visitors visit the park each year. It remained open on Thursday and only the areas affected by debris from the fallen tree were closed to the public.

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Sonntag, 5. Januar 2020, 15:24

All Colorado State Park campgrounds going to a reservation system

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Procrastinators, beware. Starting Wednesday, you'll need a reservation to camp at all Colorado State Parks campgrounds.

Here's what you need to know to nab one of the more than 4,000 campsites and 58 cabins and yurts available through the Colorado State Parks system.

Which state parks have campgrounds?
You can view amenities available at Colorado's 41 state parks at cpw.state.co.us/Documents/ParksBrochureWeb.pdf. Camping reservations were previously required at 23 state parks, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

How far in advance can I reserve campsites?
From six months until the day of your arrival, which means if you wish to reserve campsites for the Fourth of July you still can but don't wait once the window opens. Visit www.cpwshop.com/campinghome.page or call 800-244-5613. Reservations can be made 24/7.

What if I don't make a reservation but want to camp?
You can risk it and pay your fee at the campground. However, you will have to move from your site if you did not make a reservation and someone else with a reservation for that site comes to stay, and there are
no guarantees that another site will be available for you. A reservation is the only way to ensure you will have a
site.

How much are campsites?
Full campground hookup: $32-$41 per night
Electrical campground: $28-$36 per night
Basic campground: $22-$28 per night
Primitive campground: $14-$18 per night
These fees are for camping only and do not include entrance fees.

What if I can’t use my reservation?
You can cancel your reservation for a $6 cancellation fee and the first night's camping fee, depending on the number of days prior to the arrival date that the cancellation is made.
For a $6 change fee, you can change your arrival date to a future date at the same park. All changes may be done on the phone by calling 800-244-5613 or online until the reservation is checked in, which happens no later than 11 p.m. the night of arrival.

What if I do not show up or cancel?
If you do not show up within 24 hours of your scheduled check-in time and you do not notify the park that you will be arriving late, your site may be resold and may not be available when you arrive.

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Dienstag, 7. Januar 2020, 21:28

Mesa Verde National Park

Archäologie Rätselhafte Felsgravuren der Pueblo-Kultur entschlüsselt

800 Jahre alt sind Felsritzungen der Pueblo-Kultur, deren Geheimnis nun ein polnisches Forscherteam lüften konnte

Zitat

Der Nationalpark Mesa Verde im Südwesten der USA ist nicht nur der erste, sondern wohl auch das bedeutendste Unesco-Kulturerbe Nordamerikas. Und gleichzeitig eines der geheimnisumwittertsten überhaupt. Bis heute rätseln Forscher, warum die Ureinwohner am Ende des 13. Jahrhunderts – lange, bevor Kolumbus Nordamerika erreichte – ihre charakteristischen Steinbauten in den Canyons aufgaben.
Einem Geheimnis der Pueblo-Kultur sind nun polnische Wissenschaftler auf die Spur gekommen: Offenbar richteten sich die Ackerbauern bei der Bestellung der Felder nach astronomischen Daten wie den Tagundnachtgleichen und den Sonnenwenden. Ein Archäologenteam von der Universität Krakau hat bislang rätselhafte Felsgravuren als Festkalender entschlüsselt.
Für ihre Untersuchungen konzentrierten sich die Archäologen auf ein Gebiet im Nationalpark Mesa Verde an der Grenze zwischen den US-Bundesstaaten Colorado und Utah. Zwischen den Überresten von 40 kleinen Siedlungen hatten die Forscher zahlreiche bislang unbekannte Felsritzungen und -malereien entdeckt – darunter auch Gravuren mit geometrischen Figuren wie Spiralen – und vermuteten eine Kalender-Funktion dahinter. Denn einige der Ritz-Zeichnungen waren an versteckten Stellen in Felsnischen angebracht und nur bei einem bestimmten Sonnenstand beleuchtet.
„Mindestens in sechs der von uns untersuchten Siedlungen gibt es solche Gravuren, und in zwei von ihnen haben wir direkte Beobachtungen über Stunden oder sogar mehrere Tage durchgeführt“, sagt Radoslaw Palonka, der Leiter des Teams.

Vielsagende Schatten
Dabei zeigte sich in einem Beispiel, dass nur während der Wintersonnenwende am 22. Dezember die Sonnenstrahlen die Gravuren durchlaufen – während die geritzte Fläche für den Rest des Jahres im Schatten oder in der prallen Sonne liegt.
Der Sonnen-Kalender könnte, so Radoslaw Palonka, dazu gedient haben, den richtigen Zeitpunkt für Rituale und Zeremonien zu bestimmen, die ihren Höhepunkt während der Wintersonnenwende erreichten. Noch heute, so Palonka, hat die Sonnenwende für Stämme auf dem Gebiet von Arizona und New Mexico eine große religiöse Bedeutung.

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Freitag, 10. Januar 2020, 21:14

Road closure at Petrified Forest National Park to last through March

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In collaboration with Federal Highways Administration, Petrified Forest National Park will be providing much needed maintenance on a large section of the park road and several bridges in the park.
The closure is expected last from Jan. 2 through March 28 (subject to change due to inclement weather). Once the road is open work may continue through June with traffic delays no longer than 15 minutes. The road closure starts south of the Blue Mesa Loop and north of the Crystal Forest trail area. Areas closed during this time include: Agate Bridge Overlook Jasper Forest overlook.

How to visit the park
During the road closure, the park is split into two regions. The northern region is only accessed from I-40 and contains the majority of Painted Desert overlooks. The southern region is only accessed from Highway 180 and contains the petrified log field trails and Late Triassic exhibits.

Entering the park from I-40
The following locations are accessible from Interstate 40, exit 311:
All distances are from the Painted Desert Visitor Center Painted Desert Visitor Center, Painted Desert Oasis giftshop and cafe gas station.
Tawa Trail
Tiponi Point (0.7 miles / 1.1 KM)
Tawa Point (1.6 miles / 2.6 KM)
Painted Desert Rim Trail (1.6 miles / 2.6 KM)
Painted Desert Inn and Kachina Point (2 miles / 3.2 KM)
Painted Desert Wilderness Trailhead (2 miles / 3.2 KM)
Chinde Point (2.5 miles / 4 KM)
Pintado Point (2.7 miles / 4.3 KM)
Nizhoni Point (3.9 miles / 6.3 KM)
Whipple Point (4 miles / 6.4 KM)
Lacey Point (4.5 miles / 7.2 KM)
Route 66 (5.3 miles / 8.5 KM)
Puerco Pueblo (10.8 miles / 17.4 KM)
Newspaper Rock (12 miles / 19.3 KM)
The Teepees (13.9 miles / 22.4 KM)
Blue Mesa Loop Road and Blue Mesa Trail (17.3 miles / 27.8KM)
There is no access to the Rainbow Forest Historical District or HWY-180 from I-40 during the road closure.

Entering the park from Highway 180
The following locations are accessible from Highway 180:
Each location is accessed from within the Rainbow Forest Historical District.
Rainbow Forest Museum
Rainbow Forest Lodge giftshop
Giant Logs Trail
Long Logs and Agate House Trail
Rainbow Forest Wilderness (from Long Logs Trail)
Crystal Forest (5.8 miles / 9.3 KM from Rainbow Forest)
There is no access to the I-40 from HWY-180 during the road closure.

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Samstag, 11. Januar 2020, 23:03

Thousands donated Christmas trees to help restore a state park that suffered after Hurricane Sandy

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The sand dunes in a New Jersey state park are in trouble, but thanks to thousands of donated Christmas trees, the system is about to undergo a massive makeover.
Since Superstorm Sandy ripped through 24 states and all of the Eastern Seaboard in 2012, the dune system at Island Beach State Park hasn't been quite the same, said park superintendent Jennifer Clayton.
Although significant efforts have been made to repair and restore the dunes, Clayton said there's an ongoing need to strengthen the system.
The park, just 70 miles from Atlantic City, is home to ospreys, foxes, other wildlife and more than 400 species of plants.
The beach stretches across 10 miles, with a shoreline of dense maritime forests, rolling sand dunes and tidal marshes.
When New Jersey State Parks, Forests & Historic Sites asked its online community to donate their Christmas trees, their goal was collect at least 200. But to their surprise, they now have 2,000.
The trees will hopefully help "mitigate things like climate change, sea level rise and storm surges," Clayton said. She attributes the continuous damage on the dunes to climate change as the staff witnesses more and more holes in the system where bare areas of sand are exposed.
"These donated trees will help to improve our dune system by filling in areas where dune growth is needed the most," the department wrote on Facebook. "The trees help to capture sand that is blown and grows the dune at a much faster rate than they would naturally."
The park was confident they would meet their Christmas tree donation goal. A previous request for tree donations, made immediately after Sandy, was also successful.
Clayton said it's a great feeling to know that the community supports the park system and want the beach to stay healthy.
On Saturday, Clayton said, the department will have about 260 volunteers help move and position the trees to areas on the dunes that need them the most.

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Freitag, 7. Februar 2020, 20:47

Acadia National Park to test visitor reservation system next fall

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The timed-entry reservation system for driving to a few of the most popular places in the park, which is to go into effect in the summer of 2021, is likely to get a trial run this fall.

“We’re exploring the possibility of instituting for two or three weeks in October a dry run of the reservation system for Cadillac Mountain and Ocean Drive,” Superintendent Kevin Schneider told the Acadia Advisory Commission on Monday.
“That would allow us to understand all the dynamics of the system, understand what’s required from us from a staffing standpoint and then make adjustments as we go into 2021.”
Once the reservation goes into effect, it also will apply to the north parking lot at Jordan Pond.
The purpose of the reservation system is to reduce gridlock and illegal, unsafe roadside parking. Visitors would need to make a reservation to drive on Ocean Drive between the entrance station and Otter Cliff Road between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. starting the second Friday in June and going through the Sunday following Columbus Day. The same time period would apply to parking in the north lot at Jordan Pond.
The reservation period would start earlier in the day and go later for Cadillac Mountain because so many people want to be at the summit at sunrise and sunset.
“On an average, beautiful summer morning, there are 450 cars parked at the summit of Cadillac, where we have 150 parking spaces,” Schneider said when the park’s transportation plan was finalized last spring.
“So, there are basically 150 cars parked legally and 300 parked everywhere, many in unsafe locations.”
The timed-entry system will give people with reservations a specific time window during which their vehicle will be permitted to enter one of the three designated areas of the park.
Schneider said Monday that Acadia has contracted with Booz Allen Hamilton, an international information technology consulting company, to operate the reservation system. Booz Allen Hamilton operates the website where people can make camping reservations at national parks, including Acadia.
“We met with their team in January, and their recommendation was to conduct a dry run of the system at a time when the park is getting less busy and not at the very beginning of the season in 2021,” Schneider said.
“There are still a lot of details we need to work out. But we have a provider that has done this in other locations, so that is really helpful.”
Advisory Commission member Howie Motenko told Schneider, “I’m very happy that you are trying something out ahead of time and seeing what’s going to work and being flexible about making changes as time goes on.”
David MacDonald, president and CEO of Friends of Acadia, described the reservation system as “vital.”
“Our membership and our board really want to see the park implement this, and I’m excited that you’ve got a contractor that’s ready to go,” he said.
“We have offered to provide some financial support to make sure the park has the project management to implement this. The degree to which that will be needed remains to be seen.”

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USA 1980 - Florida 1989 - Südwesten 2004 - West-Kanada 2005 - Südwesten 2008 - Florida 2009 - Südstaaten 2009
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