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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 1998
    Location
    Las Vegas, Nevada
    Posts
    10,056

    Thumbs up Welcome to the Celebration

    Pat Mount (PMount) suggested that we create such a forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Pmount
    Donna's question on my current field trip report made me wonder if there would be a forum or place to highlight NPS info, especially this year. I am thinking that many of the roadtrippers, especially foreign travellers are interested in the parks.
    On August 25, 2016, the National Park Service turns 100! More details about the year-long anniversary party can be found here.

    RTA Members are encouraged to post news items about their favorite parks here.

    Mark

  2. #2

    Default Centennial Awards - to date

    Unfortunately there is no master list of Centennial awards, of which I know. So far I have had to ask at each site, some are showing it on their websites and others in the newspapers that are handed out when you enter a park. I think supplies are limited and they don't know the demand so each park is promoting it in their own way. No one in our club, National Park Traveler Club, has reported any other hiking challenges around the country.
    So far this what I have discovered;
    California
    Joshua Tree NP - Hiking Challenge of 5, 10, 25, 50 or 50 miles recorded in a booklet they provided, upon request.
    Arizona
    Organ Pipe Cactus NM - I Hike for Health pin for hiking 5 miles.
    Coronado National Memorial - I Hike Health pin for hiking 3 miles.
    Chiricahua NM - I Hike for Health pin for hiking 5 miles.
    Ft. Bowie NHS - I Hike for Health pin for hiking 3 miles, the distance in and out.
    Texas
    Big Bend NP - 3 hikes, specified for 3 patches. Sheet handed out at visitor centers, must be turned in at Panther Junction Visitor Center for patches.

    In 3 weeks we will be heading north through AZ, UT, ID, MT, OR and CA to visit a multitude of park sites. I will post the trip report after the fact, but will post Centennial activities on this thread I find along the way.

    We'll be heading back east the end of July to be in the Mid-Atlantic area around August 25, the Centennial date and more Centennial awards and events.

    Just this week, National Park Week, the NPS has released a Junior Ranger booklet which is a nation-wide program and earns you a wooden badge specific to the Centennial. Some parks have been handing it out in advance. I picked up a copy in New Mexico at the El Malpais NM Visitor Center. The ranger told me they didn't get as many visitors as other parks so they felt they could share in advance. The back of the booklet states that it is designed for 4th graders, but all are welcome to complete. So, this Senior/Junior Ranger will be working on the booklet!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Pat, thanks for the information about this, both here and in your own trip forum. You intrigued me with the I Hike thing when you started to talk about it, because my husband and I enjoy hiking.

    Our local national monument, Cabrillo, currently has nothing listed about the I Hike. They do have a "dusty socks hiking club" which has a hike coming up this Monday at 10 am (cannot do; I'm still working!). I also checked some of the places we are going this summer, and there's nothing listed. So I guess we'll have to check in at a visitor center and ASK. Not a problem, as visitors centers are usually our first stop at NM's and NP's.

    I've noticed locally that we've had a number of commercials on the channels we watch, for the parks. The State of Utah has one about their "five major parks". Of course the major news conglomerates online, such as Yahoo and MS, have both featured articles about the "10 Best Parks" and "10 Less-Visited Parks You Shouldn't Miss", etc.

    This is a great idea for a forum. Thanks to both of you, for the idea and the implementation.


    Donna

  4. #4

    Default Free Entrance Days - 2016

    Each year NPS designates certain days as fee-free days. This year they included two entire weeks.

    Mark your calendar for these entrance fee–free dates in 2016:
    January 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
    April 16 through 24: National Park Week
    August 25 through 28: National Park Service Birthday
    September 24: National Public Lands Day
    November 11: Veterans Day

    Active Duty military [corrected based on Donna's following post] can get a $80 park pass free each year they are on active duty.
    4th graders and their families can receive the same pass this year, through 8/31 at www.everykidinapark.gov

    Pat
    Last edited by Pmount; 04-19-2016 at 09:15 PM. Reason: Error stating Veteran's

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Ummm.....small correction here. Veterans, as well as retired military members, must pay the same $80 fee if they are 61 years of age or younger, like anyone else. No perks are recognized by the National Park Service for retired members, their dependents, or veterans. Once the veteran or retired military member reaches 62, they qualify for the Senior Pass.

    Active duty military and their dependents, however, are the ones that qualify for the free Annual Pass - - the one that costs $80.

    This is something we've asked about at the entrance kiosks, many times, since my husband is retired military and I'm a veteran. We pay the same as everybody else in the national parks.


    Donna

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DonnaR57 View Post
    Ummm.....small correction here. Veterans, as well as retired military members, must pay the same $80 fee if they are 61 years of age or younger, like anyone else. No perks are recognized by the National Park Service for retired members, their dependents, or veterans. Once the veteran or retired military member reaches 62, they qualify for the Senior Pass.

    Active duty military and their dependents, however, are the ones that qualify for the free Annual Pass - - the one that costs $80.

    This is something we've asked about at the entrance kiosks, many times, since my husband is retired military and I'm a veteran. We pay the same as everybody else in the national parks.


    Donna
    Thanks for catching my error - Active Duty is the only designation I should have used for the free annual pass. It must be renewed each year.
    Pat

  7. #7

    Default Pins, patches & Junior Ranger booklet

    April 22, 2016

    Each NPS site is creating their own awards and events to celebrate the Centennial. I thought I would share what I have seen to date.

    Arizona I Hike for Health pins and Big Bend patches


    I Hike for Health & patch forms


    Joshua Tree National Park - Hiking Challenge book


    Fort Davis NHS - TX patch


    Centennial Junior Ranger Activity Book - nationwide and all ages


    As anyone finds out about other activities related to the NPS Centennial I hope you will post that information on this forum.
    Go out and FindYourPark!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    It may be too late in some areas, but PBS stations have been rerunning Ken Burns' "America's Best Idea: The National Parks" in recent days. Ours began this week and aired them over 6 days, each episode between 1 and 2 hours each. In our area, these were on "late" (9 pm or later), so we used our DVR to catch them. We'd seen the series (as we have most of Ken Burns stuff, beginning with his Civil War shows) a couple of times before, and had it on an older DVR that we had to exchange. So far, we've watched two of the episodes, and haven't come up to the founding of the National Park Service, yet.

    The show is on a set of DVD's. I know they run about $60 for the set. The nice thing about the DVD's is that they do not have that irritating station identification in the bottom right hand corner, and the "coming up next" overlay in the bottom left corner.

    My husband and I like to play "name that national park" when they show scenes of a park but don't mention which one it is. It was a reminder, too, that he has been to the Big Island of Hawaii and seen Hawaii Volcanoes NP, while I have not. Hmmm.....future fly/drive??? Before leaving California for good?


    Donna

  9. #9

    Default I HiKe for Health pins

    I was back at Chiricahua NM & Ft. Bowie NHS this past weekend, camping & hiking. Both sites are out of the 'I Hike for Health' pins, but both have re-ordered and are taking names and addresses to mail the pins when they arrive. None of the parks charge for the pins. I always give a donation when I complete a hike or Junior Ranger program. Below is a picture of the pins I took in March.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    Glacier was not running any promotions for hiking -- perhaps because that park has no problem giving away backcountry hiking permits, and some of the shorter day hike trails are freeways-for-hikers.

    Glacier has joined Grand Canyon, Yellowstone/Grand Tetons, and Yosemite in charging $30 for the entrance fees. All entrance fees are good for 7 days, though.

    A suggestion on Glacier (which applies to other parks as well): if you are going to drive Going to the Sun Road, drive it EARLY in the morning or go later in the afternoon. Or use the shuttle. Between 10 am and 3 pm, you will find most scenic pull-out parking lots, trailhead parking lots, and the Logan Pass Visitor Center lot, FULL. On our trip, they had security out in front of Logan Pass lot entrance and exit. For every car that exited the lot, one was allowed in. If you happened by before someone exited, you were waved past and not allowed in. It caused us to do the Road in both directions -- return after 4 pm.

    Also, many of the scenic pullouts are on the south side of the road. Going west-to-east later in the day (when the sun is behind you) makes more sense because of those scenic pullouts.

    Glacier takes height, length and width very seriously. We were told we'd be fine as long as we were willing to fold our mirrors in, in certain places, which we did. Huge vehicles were only allowed between West Glacier and Avalanche Campground on the west side, and between St Mary and Rising Sun on the east side.


    Donna

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