Coming up this weekend is National Public Lands Day (NPLD), the largest single day volunteer event for our public lands here in the US. In line with NPLD the Park Service will not be charging entrance fees on Saturday September 24th. So If you’re interested in volunteering your time to help out on NPLD click HERE. Or if you’re interested in saving a few bucks and enjoying a day out mark this weekend on your calendar. More information on free days from the National Park Service here.
photo from National Parks Traveler
As we all know as backcountry use increases the land managers unfortunately add restrictions such as quotas and fees in order to manage our wild lands. Denali National Park has had a fee involved with climbing Mt. McKinley and Mt. Foraker since 1995. Since then this cost has increased and recently the park and the public have come to an agreement; $250 if you’re 24 years of age or younger and $350 for anyone over the age of 24. Check out a full article on the situation from National Parks Traveler:
“The idea of Wilderness needs no defense. It only needs more defenders.” Edward Abbey
Sorry about the line up of videos but had to post these three beauties; cool old school Yosemite ski touring videos from Ned Gillette.
A little touring:
Then some racing:
And finally a short lesson:
view up to Muir Hut on Muir Pass 2006
Sorry we don’t have a current photo of the Sequoia backcountry but the one above is from the last huge winter we had. This is the view from the north looking south up at Muir Pass. You can see the Muir Hut poking out a bit as well. I’m guessing this is about what it looks like back there now. The creeks will be cranking and snow bridges will be sketchy as well, more so in the afternoons, so plan ahead and take on any crossings in the morning. This particular summer the water crossing at the outlet of McClure Meadow was 4 feet deep in the morning and McClure Meadow was a lake!
Here’s a list of a bunch of links that may be handy. Some of the Forest Service and National Park Service trail, road, and campground openings and conditions. Looks like they have tried to update them recently. If you’ve been out in the backcountry shoot these folks an e-mail with any info you’ve got on conditions. It is greatly appreciated since many of these agencies are understaffed especially in the Wilderness departments.
Road and Campground Opening Dates
Inyo National Forest:
Mono Lake Mammoth Bishop Lone Pine/Mt. Whitney
Yosemite National Park Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
One other spot to check for High Sierra information is the High Sierra Topic forums. They have a thread that may or may not be updated but worth a look for some first hand info.
One of the benefits of living in the western United States is the year round access to so many of the National Parks (and forests for that matter). The Center for Park Research, an offshoot of the National Parks Conservation Association, has released their findings from 10 years of research on the conditions of the cultural and natural resources of the parks. Their findings “paint a grim picture” for the future of these resources we enjoy spending so much time in. Here’s a great article from Adventure-Journal.com by Michael Frank:
and another on the same subject from The Salt Lake Tribune, by Brett Prettyman
Want to know more about the NPCA’s report? Check out their website HERE. Or click on the image below to get the entire 68 page report in PDF format.
"The State of America's National Parks"
Check out this short clip of these two talented ladies motoring the Big Ditch rim to rim to rim:
And a link to the article and interview of Krissy Moehl from the Huffington post