America’s National Parks Podcast
Mary Kwart: Wildland Fire Pioneer

Mary Kwart: Wildland Fire Pioneer

August 18, 2021

 

As fires rage across the west in what will likely be the worst year for wildland fires on record, brave people face them head-on, to save our structures and our lives. The fraternity of American firefighters has always been a boys club — today only about 4% are women. And wildland firefighters even more so. In the early 1980s, one woman was among the first to join the Arrowhead Interagency Hotshots, an elite National Park Service crew, stationed at Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks in California. 

The text of today's episode comes from Women’s Voices: Women in the National Park Service Oral History Project and the audio comes from an oral history interview conducted by Lu Ann Jones and Leah Baer of the National Park Service Park History Program earlier this year. 

Sea Turtles of Cape Hatteras National Seashore

Sea Turtles of Cape Hatteras National Seashore

August 12, 2021

Under the light of the moon, shelled creatures emerge from the ocean and make their way onto the sandy shoreline. They drag their bodies through the sand until one by one, they stop. Each migrant reptile will use her back flippers to dig a hole in the sand, depositing up to 100 eggs before covering them again for protection. The new mother will then follow the moonlight back into the safety of the ocean. It's early summer along this seashore, and something spectacular is occurring: it’s sea turtle nesting season along the Outer Banks in North Carolina.

A couple of months later, tiny turtles will emerge from the sand and their shells and begin the seemingly impossible journey back into the ocean, on the same sand their mother did years or even decades earlier. Although they face many challenges, these magnificent creatures are worth protecting. 

This week on America’s National Parks: the sea turtles of Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

Hottest Days, Terrible Tourists, Flash Floods, and Masks (again) | National Park News

Hottest Days, Terrible Tourists, Flash Floods, and Masks (again) | National Park News

August 3, 2021

Hottest days on record, new mask-wearing requirements, Congress has hearings on park crowding, lightning strikes several visitors to the Grand Canyon, and a whole slew of terrible park visitors. 

It’s time for the latest in National Park News.

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La Casa Nevada — Yosemite’s Snow House

La Casa Nevada — Yosemite’s Snow House

July 27, 2021

Situated within the spray of the picture-perfect Nevada Fall stood a pioneer hotel that, for almost 20 years, welcomed guests to Yosemite National Park. Named La Casa Nevada or The Snow House, owners Albert and Emily Snow, like so many innkeepers of the late 1800s provided a valuable service to those wanting to escape city life in search of nature’s stunning beauty and peace. If you were willing to make the trek, there was a moderately comfortable bed and a warm meal waiting for you. But as romantic as that all sounds, life as a Yosemite innkeeper was not for everyone. It was tough, rugged, work in a landscape that required determination not many could withstand. 

National Park of American Samoa

National Park of American Samoa

July 19, 2021

The sun can rise and set on this island nation in the middle of the Pacific. Known for its rainforest paradise and tropical reefs, these islands were originally settled by Polynesians more than 3,000 years ago, and continue to carry traditional Polynesian culture today. Colorful tropical reefs are part of the 4,000 acres of National Park that is underwater, though even reefs are threatened by human-caused climate change. Though we love to travel by RV here at America’s National Parks, this one is only accessible by plane.

This week on America’s National Parks, we take a deep dive into the American Samoa.

News from the Parks | 300 Rock Cairns, 200-foot Cliff Face Breaks, and 1 New Peregrine Falcon

News from the Parks | 300 Rock Cairns, 200-foot Cliff Face Breaks, and 1 New Peregrine Falcon

July 4, 2021

A flash flood tears through Zion, Karens build Cairns in Petroglyph, endangered frogs are gettin’ it on without any assistance in California, Grand Teton gets one BIG Teton of a new dump truck, a drunken kayaker gets 60 days in Jail and a 5-year ban from Yellowstone, a massive bear spray recall, and more. It’s time for the latest in National Park News.

 

Resources Mentioned: https://www.nps.gov/aboutus/news/inde... https://rvmiles.com/major-bear-spray-... Pictured Rocks video: https://fb.watch/6tY-I0B1PF

Sleeping Bear Dunes

Sleeping Bear Dunes

June 28, 2021

If you've never been there, when you think of Michigan, you may not imagine miles of sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and bluffs that tower more than 450 feet above one of the four Great Lakes that border the state.

There are also inland lakes, lush forests, an island lighthouse, coastal villages and picturesque farmsteads. All of these fantastic features can be found in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

The Carriage Roads & Bridges of Acadia National Park

The Carriage Roads & Bridges of Acadia National Park

June 16, 2021

Winding through Acadia’s forests and mountains are 45 miles of historic roadways that are only for pedestrians, bicyclists, horseback riders, and carriages. These roads were carefully designed to follow the contours of the landscape and reach scenic vistas. Though enormously popular for recreation today, until recently it was not well-known who had the most prominent role in the development of these roads: John D. Rockefeller, Jr.

National Park News | Record Crowds, Biden’s Budget, a Grim Anniversary

National Park News | Record Crowds, Biden’s Budget, a Grim Anniversary

June 7, 2021

Yellowstone and Grand Teton shatter April attendance records, Zion sees a four-hour wait for its most popular hike, Biden’s 2022 budget sees the largest appropriation for the National Park Service ever, an Instagramer apologizes, and so much more.

It’s time for this month’s news round-up episode of the America’s National Parks podcast. 

Buffalo Bird Woman

Buffalo Bird Woman

June 2, 2021

In the middle of North Dakota, one of the least visited states in the nation, sits one of the smallest and least visited National Park Service Sites. It’s the place where Earthlodge people, the Hidatsa and Mandan, who lived along the Missouri River and it’s tributaries, hunted bison and other game. The site was a major Native American trade center for hundreds of years prior to becoming an important marketplace for fur traders after 1750. 

 

Today on America’s National Parks, the Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site, and the story of Buffalo-Bird Woman, one of the last Hidatsas born in the Knife River villages, in her own words, as portrayed by Grace Henry in the park film.

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