Get Outside, our National Parks turn 100!
On Aug. 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Organic Act establishing the National Park Service (NPS), a guarantee that the country’s national parks would be protected and preserved by the federal government. This year the National Park Service celebrates 100 years of parks in America. Thanks to their vision of nature and wildlife preservation, we now enjoy a vast network of 409 parks, forests, monuments, battlefields and coastline, places for people to go and enjoy the great outdoors.
Eagle’s Nest and Hante Adventures has had the unique opportunity to travel to many of our nations’ jewels. Last summer a handful of lucky young people travelled to the Pacific Northwest and Olympic National Park. “It was awesome! There were trees and they were really big, like seriously huge” says one of our 15 year-old adventurers. “I was inspired by the glaciers we saw there and did some research on them when I got home.” The lasting effects of wilderness experiences like these are important today in our increasingly diverse and urban nation, and all Americans should feel as if they own a piece of heritage in the treasures of National Parks.
“The terrain and wildlife were so varied, and we travelled from ridgeline to redwood forest to glaciers all over a few days.” explained another adventurer. “The experience makes me want to be a park ranger, even with the hat!”
For many, the national parks still evoke images of the great American road trip, a family jumping into their station wagon or SUV and heading out to Yosemite, Acadia, Yellowstone or Grand Teton. For Hante participants it is the chance to get into nature and discover that wildness is a necessity; the mountains are going home.
If you missed out on the chance to experience the PNW, good news, Hante Maine is looking for more young adventurers and will be traveling to Acadia National Park this summer! “I have been to Acadia NP before, it was so beautiful and I thought I would never have the chance to go back,” says a future Hante Maine voyager, “The parks are so well maintained, and I feel fortunate to experience the same things as people who lived 100 years ago did.”
The above mentioned young adventurers all believe that “the National Park Service is the best thing about America!” Last year, 292.8 million people visited park service sites, and in 2016 you can expect 16 days of free entrance into all of the parks! Mark your calendar for these entrance fee–free dates in 2016:
- January 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
- April 16 through 24: National Park Week
- August 25 through 28: National Park Service Birthday
- September 24: National Public Lands Day
- November 11: Veterans Day
“Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul alike.” John Muir- The Yosemite (1912)
Cara Varney, Development Assistant