Trump taps well of protest with calls for more drilling in national parks

President-elect Donald Trump aims to open up federal lands to more energy development, tapping into a long-running and contentious debate over how best to manage America’s remaining wilderness. The U.S. government holds title to about 500 million acres of land across the country, including national parks and forests, wildlife refuges and tribal territories stretching...

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Where kissing wolves won’t get you killed

Wolves are vicious animals. They have snarled through history as some of the planet’s greatest predators, pouncing on helpless prey all over the world — Russia, Europe, North America — with no mercy. In northern Norway, they’ve been known to savagely attack — with kisses. Narvik is a small town just an hour-and-half flight from Oslo, Norway’s capital. A historic train —...

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How hiking with my autistic son reminded me of the best of WV

By Scott Finn It started out of desperation. Winter is a hard time for my son, Max. He has autism, which means he hates any break in routine — and winter has a knack for screwing up schedules. And not unlike most 10-year-old boys, Max is a tightly-wound ball of kinetic energy. He literally bounces off the walls during the winter. Sometimes, we get in the car and drive...

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Time for Outdoor Retailers to leave Utah and its anti-recreation politics

Op-ed by Peter Metcalf, CEO and Founder, Black Diamond Inc. Over the past several months Utah’s political leadership has unleashed an all-out assault against Utah’s protected public lands and Utah’s newest national monument, Bear’s Ears. It’s time for Outdoor Retailer to leave the state in disgust. Over 20 years ago, I successfully led the...

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Wisport Whistler 35 II Rucksack

Part of Wisport’s line of the latest generation of survival backpacks, the Whistler 35 II Rucksack was developed in collaboration with Polish Military Forces and offers a great amount of carrying space in one unified and comfortable to carry body. Wide and ergonomically shaped shoulder straps, together with a padded waist belt help to distribute weight evenly and...

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Has a young Dutchman found the solution to all that plastic in our oceans?

Ten miles from the Dutch coast, near the top of a concrete high-rise in downtown Delft, is a palatial glass-walled office better suited to Silicon Valley than a 13th-century city. The building is home to the Ocean Cleanup, a foundation created in 2013 that is hoping to deploy a giant 62-mile-wide filtration device in the Pacific Ocean, the initial step in an effort to...

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Fonta Flora Trail links foothills, mountains near Asheville

It was a sleepy little town where farmers worked the rich land along the Linville River. The Burke County town of Fonta Flora was also once home to a post office, the Rhyne School and Old Sardis Church of 1838. But starting in 1916 the residents were dispersed and displaced to higher ground as the Catawba and Linville rivers and Paddy’s Creek were dammed to create Lake...

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N.H. woman becomes first to accomplish White Mountains hiking feat in single year

A New Hampshire woman has become the first known person to complete a vaunted White Mountains hiking challenge – which takes some hikers a lifetime – within a single year. Sue Johnston of Littleton, NH hiked each of the state’s 4,000-foot mountains in January, and then again in February, and in March, and so on, for a total of 576 peaks in 2016 – plus some...

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The North Face Chilkat 400 Snow Boots

This waterproof leather utility boot rated to -40F offers 400g of PrimaLoft® Silver synthetic insulation for outstanding warmth and protection in the coldest conditions. The North Face Chilkat 400 Snow Boots‘ impenetrable moisture barrier guarantees dryness and the insulation traps hot air for reduced heat loss and increased warmth. The upper is leather and the...

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A Really Big Crack In An Antarctic Ice Shelf Just Got Bigger

Right now, a big chunk of Antarctic ice is hanging on by a frozen thread. British researchers monitoring the crack in the Larsen C ice shelf say that only about 12 miles now connect the chunk of ice to the rest of the continent. “After a few months of steady, incremental advance since the last event, the rift grew suddenly by a further 18 km [11 miles] during the...

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Public-Private effort secures high-stakes land in Grand Teton National Park

On December 12, 2016 the National Park Service purchased 640 acres within Grand Teton National Park from the State of Wyoming. The Antelope Flats purchase was made possible by the successful completion of an eight-month fundraising campaign by Grand Teton National Park Foundation and the National Park Foundation that raised $23 million in private funds. These funds were...

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National Park Service Sets Cultural Resources Climate Change Strategy

The National Park Service (NPS) today released its strategy that connects cultural resources and climate change. The Cultural Resources Climate Change Strategy (CRCC Strategy) is a landmark statement for the NPS and its historic preservation and climate change partners about how to anticipate, plan for, and respond to the effects of climate change on cultural resources....

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Happy trails lead to pristine beauty at 5 Hikes for 50 Years Challenge

Travel takes on lots of perspectives, depending on your mode of getting around. From high above in a plane, out the window of a moving car or train or perhaps from a bicycle perch, each grants its own scope of exploration. For an up close, intimate look at your surroundings, nothing beats hiking and connecting with your environment step by step. And nothing could be more...

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What you need to know before hiking the John Muir Trail

The John Muir Trail passes through what many backpackers say is the finest mountain scenery in the United States. This is a land of 13,000-foot and 14,000-foot peaks, of lakes in the thousands, and of canyons and granite cliffs. The John Muir Trail is also a land blessed with the mildest, sunniest climate of any major mountain range in the world. The trail is 211 miles...

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National Park Service to Update Smoking Regs to Include E-Cigarettes

The National Park Service (NPS) proposed revisions to the regulations that address smoking in national parks. The proposed revisions would change the regulation that defines smoking to include the use of electronic cigarettes and other electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS). The proposed revisions would also allow a superintendent to close an area, building,...

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Breakthrough technology turns coal plant CO2 into baking soda

When it comes to mitigating the impact of modern civilization on our planet’s environment, many scientists and engineers have been focused on ways to clean up excess carbon dioxide, which contributes to climate change. India-based company Carbon Clean Solutions is making headway in that area, with its unique method for turning CO2 into harmless baking powder. The method...

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Ticks that carry Lyme disease found in Eastern US national parks

Lyme disease has been spreading across the United States over the past several decades, and a new study has confirmed that ticks carrying the disease are present in eastern national parks. According to the study published in the Journal of Medical Entomology, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Park Service (NPS)...

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Congressional Republicans declare open season on federal lands

House Republicans have changed the way Congress calculates the cost of transferring federal lands to the states and other entities, a move that will make it easier for members of the new Congress to cede federal control of public lands. The provision, included as part as a larger rules package the House approved by a vote of 233 to 190 during its first day in session,...

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Warming crushes global records again in 2016

2016 has crushed the record for hottest year, set way back in 2015, which itself smashed the previous record for hottest year that was set in 2014. Such a three-year run has never been seen in the 136 years of temperature records. It’s but the latest in an avalanche of evidence this year that global warming will either be as bad as climate scientists have been warning...

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Blairstown named N.J.’s 1st Appalachian Trail community

The first Appalachian Trail Community in New Jersey is here. The Greater Blairstown Area is now an official community along the 2,180-mile Appalachian Trail. That puts Blairstown on trail guidebooks, hiking maps and on the trail’s website. Eventually, the designation could have a financial benefit for the town, Warren County’s Public Information Director Art...

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Citizen Scientists Invited To Document Biodiversity on Kaibab National Forest

The U.S. Forest Service wants visitors to the Kaibab to snap photos of plants and animals and submit them to an online database. The project will run throughout 2017. Mark Christiano, GIS coordinator, says participants need to download a free app called iNaturalist. “It automatically collects a lot of the data for us,” he explains. “So for example, you’re not just...

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Park didn’t heed Gatlinburg firestorm ‘call to action’

Officials should have doused a 1.5-acre fire in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park days before high winds created a megafire that swept into Gatlinburg, former U.S. Forest Service firefighters said . At the very least, said retired employees with almost 200 years of firefighting experience, officials in the National Park should have summoned every resource available...

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New Year’s Eve at Cataloochee – A Photo Essay

Cataloochee Valley in the Smokies is of course most popular during the green seasons. People come from far and wide to experience the wildflowers in Spring, the myriad of hiking trails in Summer, and the exciting elk rut and colorful foliage in Fall. But Winter too has its appeal. Perhaps the best reason to go to Cataloochee in winter is the solitude. The crowds are...

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Utah’s Zion National Park so popular that even ‘offseason’ has gridlock

Even by Utah standards, few things are as beautiful as snow on redrock, especially in Zion Canyon where visitors can take in this lovely sight this week in the stillness of winter — if they can get there. It may be the middle of the “offseason,” but the canyon, the centerpiece of Zion National Park, has been so packed since Christmas that park officials have...

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Book offers guide to Ozarks hiking trails

Jim Warnock, principal at Arkansas’ Alma Intermediate School, wrote “Five-Star Trails: The Ozarks – 43 Spectacular Hikes in Arkansas and Missouri,” which was published in August. Warnock’s guide offers hiking advice, detailed trail descriptions, GPS coordinates, driving directions and topographical maps. A “recommended hikes”...

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White Pines, Hemlocks, and Sunlight

The Blue Valley Experimental Forest (Blue Valley) lies in southwest North Carolina in the Nantahala National Forest. Located in Macon County, near the point where North Carolina meets Georgia and South Carolina, the experimental forest was established in 1964. At 1,300 acres, it is the smallest of the three experimental forests in North Carolina and the second smallest...

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Pulpit Rock: Hiking to the most spectacular cliff in Norway

If you’ve heard about one hiking trip in Norway, likely it was Pulpit Rock. With its jaw dropping cliff it is no wonder this is one of Norway’s most popular hikes — more than 270,000 hikers complete the trip every year. You will ascend about 330 meters [1,080 feet], but that will all be forgotten once you get to the edge of Lysefjorden and the 604 meter...

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Anza-Borrego Foundation has helped protect the California desert for 50 years

Dropping into Southern California’s Anza-Borrego State Park from a twisting ride down Montezuma Valley Road, you get the sense Anza-Borrego is a world unto itself. A world of ancient fossils and mysterious mirages, lush palm oases and hidden waterfalls, ocotillo forests, remote hiking trails and captivating wildlife from tarantulas and chuckwalla lizards to golden...

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Continental Divide Trail Coalition announces its 2017 Trail Days & Kick-Off

The Continental Divide Trail Coalition will hold its third annual Trail Days & Kick-Off throughout the weekend of April 28 through 30, 2017, in Silver City, NM to celebrate the launch of the 2017 hiking season on the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail, and Silver City as the trail’s first Gateway Community. Continental Divide Trail Days will feature seminars,...

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President Designates New National Monuments in Utah and Nevada

President Obama has designated Bears Ears National Monument in southeastern Utah and Gold Butte National Monument in southeastern Nevada. Representing the best of America’s natural wonders, these designations complete what tribes, members of Congress, state and local officials, and local business and community leaders have sought for decades. The new monuments protect...

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House Republicans want to ‘repeal and replace’ the Endangered Species Act

After attempts to chip away at the law bill by bill, Utah Rep. Rob Bishop says he’d rather scrap the Endangered Species Act altogether. The delta smelt, a tiny, silvery-blue fish hanging on for survival in California’s San Francisco Bay and Sacramento-San Joaquin estuary, is notorious among opponents of the Endangered Species Act. Efforts to help the smelt have...

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Restoring the trampled land of Utah’s national parks

“What is it about the desert?” “For me, it’s always been the wide open spaces. You know, you’re very small, and so therefore any problems that you might have also feel really small. And so it’s really a place to put things in perspective,” park ranger Liz Ballenger said. “It’s restorative.” But there are times when even the desert needs to be restored. The arches and...

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