Friday, October 7, 2011

U.S. National Parks

Do you know about the magnificent land areas that our country has placed special protection on purely for the enjoyment of its people? There are 395 areas (58 of those are National Parks) that have four special characteristics about them: (1) they are an outstanding example of a particular type of resource; they possess exceptional value or quality in illustrating or interpreting the natural or cultural themes of our Nation's heritage; (3) they offer superlative opportunities for recreation, for public use and enjoyment, or for scientific study; and (4) they retain a high degree of integrity as a true, accurate, and relatively unspoiled example of the resource.

If you have not been to a National Park System (NPS), you are truly missing out. Most times I feel like I am in a different land, undisturbed by other visitors, simply enjoying what God has created in His glory. I feel most at peace when I step foot in a NPS. And, as you know, my husband and I challenged ourselves this past summer to visit quite a few quite a few National Parks. In July, I was able to revisit some of my favorite National Parks with very close girl friends. I feel blessed that I have been able to experience the beauty of these unique environments and I hope to continue to the tradition throughout my entire life, hopefully visiting international NPs as well.

I thought I would make a list (you know how I love them!) that I can refer back to and scratch off the areas in the US that I have visited. Please note, I am going to include National Parks (did you know that National Monuments, Preserves,and Forests are also managed by the National Park Service?) only. You should consider some of these parks for your next vacation!

Acadia National Park, Maine visited 9/2011
National Park of American Samoa
Arches National Park, Utah visited 5/2011
Badlands National Park, South Dakota
Big Bend National Park, Texas
Biscayne National Park, Florida
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, Colorado
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah visited 5/2011
Canyonlands National Park, Utah
Capitol Reef National Park, Utah visited 5/2011
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico
Channel Islands National Park, California
Congaree National Park, South Carolina first visited 1/2009, plus many other times
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon -- tentative 2012
Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio
Death Valley National Park, California and Nevada  visited 7/2013
Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska visited 7/2012
Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
Everglades National Park, Florida
Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Glacier National Park, Montana  visited 8/2015
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona visited 12/2009, 5/2011
Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming visited 6/2011
Great Basin National Park, Nevada
Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Colorado
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, North Carolina/Tennessee visited too many times to count
Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Texas
Haleakala National Park, Hawaii
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
Hot Springs National Park, Arkansas
Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
Joshua Tree National Park, California visited 2013
Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska 8/2012
Kings Canyon National Park, California 2012
Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
Mammoth Cave National Park, Kentucky visited 7/2010
Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado
Mount Rainier National Park, Washington visited 8/2009, 7/2011
North Cascades National Park, Washington visited 8/2011
Olympic National Park, Washington visited 7/2011
Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
Redwood National and State Parks, California 2012
Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
Saguaro National Park, Arizona
Sequoia National Park, California 2012
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota
Virgin Islands National Park, U.S. Virgin Islands
Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska 7/2012
Yellowstone National Park, Idaho/Montana/Wyoming visited 6/2011
Yosemite National Park, California 2013
Zion National Park, Utah visited 12/2009, 5/2011


M. said...

You guys haven't been to the Everglades yet? How is that even possible?

Also - you should watch the Ken Burns National Park Documentary! So good!

David Rose said...

Jonathan has; I haven't. (Pathetic, I know!!) We figure there will be time for the FL NPs later... Thanks for the recommendation!

Andrew and Elizabeth said...

I'm super jealous of your upcoming "tentative 2012" escapades...details please...Redwoods are one of my "need to see" places.

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