Added: Evelia Martini - Date: 25.02.2022 20:08 - Views: 38537 - Clicks: 7903
The park service is turning to selfie stations, timed tickets and crowd-monitoring apps to preserve public lands. A rches national park had to close its gate more than times this summer alone when parking lots filled up, creating a safety hazard for emergency vehicles. Yellowstone national park reached 1 million visitors in July for the first time in its history.
At Zion national park, the wait for a hike was a Disneyland-long four hours. And with the visitors came graffiti, trash and reckless behavior. The record-setting crowds of people surging into public lands this summer has set off new challenges for park managers. They are using counterintuitive tricks like encouraging selfies in one place to prevent them in another, and they are rolling out algorithms and autonomous vehicles to manage the throngs of recreation-seekers.
One of the biggest issues facing parks is the many visitors all aiming to get the perfect photograph. At popular spots in Yosemite and near the Grand Canyon, some have even fallen to their deaths in the process, prompting the National Park Service to create a guide for safe selfie-taking. And in , the tourism board in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, made an unusual request to visitors heading toward Grand Teton national park after local trails were overrun with photo-tourists: stop geotagging photographs.
Enter the selfie station: a humble wooden stand in front of a stunning vista, ready to hold a camera for a safe and easy photo experience. Hazelton says some of the stations celebrate quirky parts of history, like the first train robbery west of the Mississippi, while others point people to a lake, vista or nature center they might not otherwise come across. Similar efforts exist in Wisconsin and Minnesota. Another tactic to reduce the strain on parks is to cut the of visitors permitted to enter them in the first place.
The National Park Service oversees a total of protected places that include national seashores, national lakeshores and national monuments, among others. Popular places like the summit of Haleakala on Maui or Muir Woods in California require timed entry slots, available on Recreation. More public lands are turning to such systems to reduce the of visitors in any one part of a park, especially as the pandemic trimmed staffing s. The Recreation. The National Park Service also launched an app this year that points people to other potential public lands outside the parks.
Even so, not everyone likes timed entry reservations. Critics opposing timed entry at Rocky Mountain national park created a petition to fight the system, calling it unfair, unnecessary and undemocratic. In the future, the Park Service is focusing on rolling out predictive technologies that will allow people to anticipate crowds and plan accordingly.
Anzelmo-Sarles says they are taking tools used in urban planning and congestion planning and repurposing them for recreation and parks. That could mean a future where a hiker scans a QR code to check in at a trailhead, sending information back to when the trails are most clogged with people. That way, the next group could be advised to wait an hour or come another time to take the same adventure. It also could mean that traffic is routed to less popular areas of the parks. To cut down on traffic, some parks are experimenting with autonomous cars.
The Wright Brothers national memorial in North Carolina tested out a driverless shuttle this summer, and Yellowstone is also trying a shuttle. That park is expected to run out of space for additional cars by The idea, says Anzelmo-Sarles, is to stop people driving between the sights in the Canyon Village area — the area around the famous Yellowstone river and Tower Waterfall — and get them in the driverless shuttle instead. A study in showed that s declaring such quiet zones or quiet days actually worked: surveys showed visitors were supportive of the practice, and sound level measurements showed substantial decreases on days and places the s were posted.
And maybe if we can appreciate it more, we might be more motivated to protect it. So just really encouraging people to open their ears up and appreciate it as a really incredible resource. This report was made possible in part by the Fund for Environmental Journalism and the Society of Environmental Journalists.
Environment Climate crisis Wildlife Energy Pollution. This land is your land National parks. US national parks are overcrowded. Hundreds of cars line up to enter Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks. Supported by. Katharine Gammon. Tue 31 Aug Topics National parks This land is your land features. Reuse this content.Who wants to go to the park
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