Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Temporary Closures In Lumpy Ridge Area To Protect Nesting Raptors In Rocky Mountain National Park

Each year to protect raptor nesting sites, Rocky Mountain National Park officials initiate temporary closures in the Lumpy Ridge area of the park. To ensure that these birds of prey can nest undisturbed, specific areas within the park are closed temporarily to public use during nesting season and monitored by wildlife managers. All closures began on March 1 and will continue through July 31, if appropriate. These closures may be extended longer or rescinded at an earlier date depending on nesting activity.

Closures include Checkerboard Rock, Lightning Rock, Batman Rock, Batman Pinnacle, Sundance, Thunder Buttress, The Parish, and Twin Owls, Rock One. These closures include the named formations. Closures include all climbing routes, outcroppings, cliffs, faces, ascent and descent routes and climber access trails to the named rock formations. Please check the park’s website at www.nps.gov/romo/planyourvisit/area_closures.htm for updated information on raptor closures.

The National Park Service is committed to preserving birds of prey. The same cliffs that are critical for raptors also appeal to climbers. The cooperation of climbing organizations and individuals continues to be essential to the successful nesting of raptors in the park.

The closures do impact the Lumpy Ridge Loop or the trail to Gem Lake.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Monday, February 25, 2019

American Long Distance Hiking Association: Colorado Rockies Ruck

The American Long Distance Hiking Association will hold a "Colorado Rockies Ruck" on March 9th at the American Mountaineering Center in Golden, Colorado. During the all-day event long-distance experts will share tips and advice on ultralight travel, specifics on the Colorado Trail, nutrition, apps and maps, pack shakedowns, as well as information on lightning, snow and bears. The cost for the event is $35 for non-members, which includes breakfast, lunch and beer! For more information, please click here.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, February 22, 2019

THE GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS - Sodden & Verdant

Several months ago I published a short film by Christopher R. Abbey on what it's like to climb 14,505-foot Mt. Whitney, the highest point in the lower 48. Roughly two weeks ago Mr. Abbey published another excellent film that chronicles his three-day backpacking trip in the Mt. Sterling area of the Great Smoky Mountains. Hope you enjoy:





Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Senate Moves to Protect More than 2 Million Acres of National Parks and Public Lands

More than two million acres of public lands are poised to receive new or enhanced protection with last week's Senate passage of the Natural Resources Management Act (S.47). National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) led outreach efforts for years in support of many of the bill’s provisions and commends the bipartisan Congressional leadership who worked to strengthen protections for national parks, wilderness areas, waterways and wildlife across the country.

The legislative package authorizes designation of two new national park sites and six National Heritage Areas to tell new American stories; permanent protection against new mining claims on lands including the doorstep of Yellowstone and North Cascades national parks; permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF); and directives for the Department of Interior to study sites that could further enhance and diversify the national park system.

“The Senate’s action today, including protecting two million acres of national park and other public lands, is further proof that these issues can, and should, be bipartisan,” said Theresa Pierno, President and CEO of National Parks Conservation Association. “NPCA has worked alongside communities, businesses and elected officials for years to protect Yellowstone’s doorstep from industrial mining, connect parks and wild lands in the California desert and increase preservation of centuries-old Native American structures in Georgia. We commend the many members of Congress who were champions for their constituents and the places and issues that they, and all Americans, care so deeply about.”

The Natural Resources Management Act includes permanent mineral withdrawals to approximately 30,000 acres of National Forest System lands, adjacent to Yellowstone National Park. This landscape has been targeted by two proposed industrial-scale gold mines. NPCA worked more than three years alongside the Yellowstone Gateway Business Coalition to defend their communities and garnered support for the withdrawal from tens of thousands of members and supporters.

In the California desert, lawmakers approved the long-awaited expansion of Joshua Tree and Death Valley national parks, new wilderness designations that promote landscape connectivity, protections for fragile waterways and increased habitat for wildlife including desert tortoise, mountain lion, and bighorn sheep. NPCA worked in partnership with local communities, elected officials, and stakeholders on California desert legislation since 2009 and will continue efforts to connect, protect and enhance this vital landscape and tourism economy.

Ocmulgee National Monument will also be re-designated as Ocmulgee Mounds National Historical Park, quadrupling the national park site from 700 to nearly 3,000 acres. The Department of Interior will also be authorized to explore options for preserving additional historic, cultural and recreation sites of the Ocmulgee River corridor between Macon and Hawkinsville. NPCA worked for years in support of the opportunity, including the development of a 2017 study on the significant increase in economic activity that the expanded park would bring to middle Georgia communities.

“This area is recognized as one of the most important archaeological landscapes in the country,” said Chris Watson, NPCA’s Senior Southeast Program Manager. “This expanded national park designation recognizes Ocmulgee’s exceptional characteristics, such as its documented human presence that dates back nearly 17,000 years and preserves the regions treasured wildlife, history and culture. Already one of the most visited attractions in Central Georgia, the enlarged park will serve as a significant economic engine, bringing increased visibility to the region. The park also holds strong ancestral connection for the Muskogee Nation of Oklahoma, and we are honored to be working with them to help preserve these lands.”



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Indiana Dunes becomes the 61st National Park

The spending bill signed by President Trump on February 15, 2019 included a provision that changed the name of Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore to Indiana Dunes National Park. This change takes place immediately. The bill also changes the name of the Miller Woods Trail to the Paul H. Douglas Trail in honor of the late Illinois Senator who helped lead the fight along with Save the Dunes and other citizen groups to create the national lakeshore in 1966.

Park Superintendent Paul Labovitz commented, "103 years in the making, what a terrific tribute to the neighbors, partners, visitors and National PARK staff. We are so appreciative to the entire Indiana delegation for their recognition and support of this national treasure."

The park staff looks forward to celebrating this name change in the near future and to working with local communities and partners on spreading the word about the nation’s 61st national park. The work will continue to protect this very special place in Northwest Indiana and to provide outstanding service to the visiting public.

My new book, Ramble On: A History of Hiking, includes a passage on how the Prairie Club, a hiking club based out of Chicago, fought to protect the dunes which were being industrially mined for sand, which was used to make concrete. Among an array of actions and tactics, the club even hosted the “Pageant of the Dunes” in 1917, a massive outdoor play that helped to raise awareness of the issue.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

HikingintheSmokys.com Adds Four New Hikes to Website

A couple of weeks ago Kathy and I paid a visit to the Great Smoky Mountains to take advantage of some nice spring-like weather, and to do a little hiking. As a result, we were able to do a couple of new hikes, which have just been added to our website. Here's a quick rundown of the new hikes:

Spruce Flats Falls - This hike has been on my radar for several years now, and I finally got a chance to check it out. It didn't disappoint - in fact, I would say it has to be one of the most scenic waterfalls in the park. Though it isn't marked on the official park map, the trail is well defined and very easy to follow.

Avent Cabin - This is another destination that isn't marked on the official park map. This hike visits the former art studio of Mayna Treanor Avent, who was a nationally renowned artist. Her works have been exhibited across America, including the Smithsonian Institute's National Portrait Gallery.

Ogle Place - This short loop hike along Cherokee Orchard Road visits the Ogle Farmstead. Along the route you'll visit the cabin that was built by Noah “Bud” Ogle in the 1880s, his barn, as well as his "tub" mill.

Gatlinburg Trail - If you're looking for an easy hike just outside of Gatlinburg, the Gatlinburg Trail is a great choice. The trail follows along the West Prong of the Little Pigeon River for a large portion of the hike. It also visits the remnants of an old homestead.

During our visit we also took the opportunity to hike the Bullhead Trail, which was heavily damaged during the November 2016 wildfire. As a result of many downed trees the park was forced to close the trail for almost two years. After removing enough of the deadfall to make the route safe, the park finally reopened the trail to the public in late-October of 2018. Although there are several burn scars along the route, the wildfire has created huge panoramic vistas in several places. As a result of all the changes, we have updated the two hikes on our website that utilize the Bullhead Trail. The shorter hike ends at a large cairn built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the mid-1930's, now known as "The Pulpit". The longer hike goes all the way to the top of Mt. LeConte. As you can see from the new photos on these pages, I have to think that this trail might become the most popular route to the summit in the coming years.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Monday, February 18, 2019

Hiker Trapped in Quicksand Requires 2-Day Rescue During Winter Storms at Zion National Park

On the afternoon of 2/16/2019 Zion Dispatch received a report of a 34 year old male visitor from Arizona whose leg was stuck in quicksand. He was located approximately 3 hours up the Left Fork of the North Creek, also known as The Subway route from bottom-up. His leg was buried up to his knee and he was unable to free himself. He had hiked the Left Fork Trail with a companion, also from Arizona, when he became stuck. He and his companion tried to free his leg and were unsuccessful. His companion left him with warm gear and clothing and hiked to call for help. It was approximately 3 hours until she got cell phone service and was able to call 911.

Zion Search and Rescue team immediately assembled and began hiking to locate the male. Rangers located the companion close to the trailhead and tended to her as she was exhibiting signs of hypothermia, from hiking the three hours to call for help.

After several hours, rangers located the male who was stable but suffering from exposure, hypothermia, and extremity injuries Rangers tried for 2 hours to free the male’s leg from the quicksand in the middle of the creek.

Late into the night, Rangers were able to free the male from the quicksand and began efforts to rewarm him and treat his leg. Rangers spent the night with the patient in frigid conditions with four additional inches of snow overnight.

The next morning, the Utah DPS helicopter responded from Salt Lake City. The ongoing winter storms in the area decreased visibility for aircraft all morning. Only after a small break in the weather occurred in the afternoon, the DPS helicopter was able safely extricated the patient with a hoist rescue operation. The patient was transported to an awaiting ambulance and transported to the hospital.

Winter conditions at Zion National Park can be extreme, especially in the higher elevations. Colder temperatures, shorter days, snow, ice, and cold run-off can make easy hikes difficult and strenuous ones treacherous. Visitors are advised to use extreme caution during poor weather events at Zion. “Presidents Day Weekend is often dry, warm, and sunny,” says Aly Baltrus, Zion’s Public Information Officer. “This year was as predicted- cold and wet.”



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Today is the Final Day to Take Advantage of a 70% Discount On "Ramble On: A History of Hiking"

Today is the final day of the limited time sale on the eBook version of my new book, Ramble On: A History of Hiking. As mentioned on Friday, the eBook version of my book can be purchased for only $2.99 on Amazon, a 70% discount off the regular price of $9.95. This limited time offer ends tonight. For more information on the book, and to purchase, please click here.

Additionally, if you like the book, I would really appreciate if you could provide a review on my Amazon page.

Thank you very much!



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Record Visitation At Rocky Mountain National Park In 2018

Rocky Mountain National Park received its highest annual visitation ever in 2018. The park received a total of 4,590,492 visitors last year, which was a 3.5 percent increase over visitation in 2017. This number represents a slight increase from previous record visitation in 2016, of 4,517,584. Visitation for 2018 represents a 42 percent increase since 2012.

Determining visitation numbers is a difficult and imprecise effort. Visitation statistics are reliably accurate estimates and help park managers see overall trends. Fall visitation, particularly on weekends, continues to increase at Rocky Mountain National Park. Winter weekend visitation also continues to increase. The top ten busiest days in 2018 in order from first to tenth were: September 22, September 10, September 2, July 22, September 15, September 3, September 23, September 16, July 1, and August 11.

Park managers continue to address the effect this level of visitation is having on visitor and staff safety, resource protection, visitor experiences and operational capacity. Beginning in 2016, during the summer and early fall, park staff restricted vehicle access in three specific areas, the Bear Lake Road corridor, the Wild Basin area, and Alpine Visitor Center when parking areas fill and heavy congestion warrants. These restrictions occurred most days in July and August, in addition to weekends in June and September. Other areas of the park are experiencing high visitation as well, particularly when restrictions are in place. Addressing day use for the long term requires a holistic park wide approach. Therefore, park staff are developing draft concepts to address the multitude of day use challenges. These concepts will be shared with the public later this year and will involve a stakeholder-engaged planning process.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, February 15, 2019

Annoucement: 70% Discount On "Ramble On: A History of Hiking"

A few weeks ago I announced that my new book, Ramble On: A History of Hiking, would be published in eBook format. Today I wanted to announce that for a very limited time the eBook version of the book will be on sale. Beginning right now you can purchase the eBook version for only $2.99 on Amazon, a 70% discount off the regular price of $9.95. You can take advantage of this limited time offer through the weekend. For more information on the book, and to purchase, please click here.

Additionally, if you like the book, I would really appreciate if you could provide a review on my Amazon page.

Thank you very much!



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Key Milestones in Hiking

The following timeline was adapted from my book, Ramble On: A History of Hiking:

Over the last several decades the sport of hiking has become one of the most popular outdoor activities in the world. According to the latest National Survey on Recreation and the Environment, 33.9% of all Americans above the age of 15 participated in hiking during the period between 2005 and 2009. This trend, however, leads to the burning question; when did people begin taking to the trail for pleasure? Since the dawn of humankind men and women have walked the earth to hunt, gather wild edible plants, explore, trade goods with neighboring communities, and migrate to other regions. At some point in our long evolution we as humans realized that there doesn’t have to be a utilitarian reason for walking. Somewhere along the line we discovered the joy of traipsing through the woods, observing the beauty of a wildflower, seeing wildlife in their natural habitat, marveling at the roar of a waterfall, or contemplating the awe-inspiring views from the top of a mountain. Is this a recent phenomenon, or is this an innate characteristic of human beings? No matter the answer to that question, here are the key milestones in the history of hiking that has led to its popularity today:

~3300 BCE: In 1991 two German tourists found the mummified remains of “Otzi the Iceman” in the Ă–tztal Alps along the Austrian–Italian border. Although scientists aren’t entirely sure what this late-Neolithic man was doing at an elevation hovering just over 10,500 feet, there are some that speculate that he may have been an early mountaineer. More importantly, the remnants of the rucksack that he carried on his back is the oldest rucksack ever found.

125: The 2nd century Roman Emperor, Hadrian, hiked to the summit of Mt. Etna on Sicily to see the sunrise, making this earliest recorded hike for pleasure.

1642: Darby Field makes the first recorded ascent of Mt. Washington, which would become the focus of the first tourist destination in the United States in the late 1700s.

1760: The Industrial Revolution begins in Great Britain, and is generally recognized as lasting until the start of World War I. The Industrial Revolution gave rise to the labor movement, automobiles, environmentalism, club culture, and even art. As a result, it is arguably the single most important event to spur the development of hiking and walking for pleasure.

1778: Thomas West, an English priest, publishes A Guide to the Lakes, a detailed account of the scenery and landscape of the Lake District in northwestern England. The guide helped to popularize the idea of walking for pleasure, and is credited as being one of the first travel guides.

1786: The modern era of mountaineering is marked by the first ascent of 15,771-foot Mont Blanc in France, the tallest peak in the Alps.

1799: Williams College (of Massachusetts) President Ebenezer Fitch ascends Mt. Greylock with two other companions.

1819: Abel Crawford, along with his son Ethan, blaze an 8.25-mile trail to the summit of Mt. Washington in New Hampshire. The path is recognized as the oldest continually used hiking trail in the United States, and is likely the first footpath in the entire world to be built specifically for recreational hiking.

1830: A crew of 100 students and professors from Williams College blaze the Hopper Trail to the summit of Mt. Greylock. Later that same year students constructed a 37-foot wooden tower atop the mountain. This tower, and its replacement, were maintained into the 1850s, and were used for sightseeing and scientific observations.

1850: The Exploring Circle is founded by Cyrus M. Tracey and three other men from Lynn, Massachusetts. The National Park Service recognizes the club as being “the first hiking club in New England", thus, in all likelihood, making it the first hiking club in the world.

1854: The beginning of the systematic sport of modern mountaineering as we essentially know it today is marked by the ascent of the Wetterhorn in the Swiss Alps by Sir Alfred Wills. His book, Wanderings Among the High Alps, published two years later, helped make mountaineering fashionable in Britain, and ushered in the systematic exploration of the Alps by British mountaineers. These events also marked the beginning of the so-called “Golden Age of Alpinism”.

1857: The world's first mountaineering club, the Alpine Club, was founded in London.

1863: Professor Albert Hopkins of Williams College founds the Alpine Club of Williamstown, whose stated mission was “to explore the interesting places in the vicinity, to become acquainted, to some extent at least, with the natural history of the localities, and also to improve the pedestrian powers of the members”. It was the first hiking club to accept women as members, which likely provided an important template for future hiking clubs.

1867: John Muir begins a 1000-mile walk from Indiana to Florida, which was recounted in his book, A Thousand-Mile Walk to the Gulf. The trek launched a lifetime career of hiking and wilderness advocacy. His conservation efforts, articles and books would help to establish several national parks during and after his lifetime.

1872: Yellowstone becomes the world’s first national park after legislation is signed by President U.S. Grant.

1876: The Appalachian Mountain Club, America’s oldest recreational organization, is founded to explore and protect the trails and mountains of New England.

1876: Newtown, England entrepreneur Pryce Pryce-Jones designs the "Euklisia Rug", considered by many to be the forerunner of the modern sleeping bag. The rug included a wool blanket with a pocket at the top for a sewn-in, inflatable, rubber pillow. Once inside, the camper (or soldier) folded the blanket over and fastened it together, thus keeping themselves “snug in a rug”.

1877: English writer Louis Jennings publishes Field Paths and Green Lanes: Being Country Walks, Chiefly in Surrey and Sussex, which is likely the first trail guide to be published anywhere in the world.

1879: One of the first hiking clubs in England, the "Sunday Tramps", was founded by Leslie White. These early “rambling” (the English word for hiking or walking) clubs sprang up in the northern areas of England as part of a campaign for the legal "right to roam", a response to the fact that much of the land in England was privately owned.

1887: The first external frame rucksack is patented by Colonel Henry C. Merriam.

1922: Australian climber George Finch designs and wears a knee-length eiderdown parka during the 1922 British Everest Expedition. The shell of the coat was made from the waterproofed-cotton fabric of a hot-air balloon, which was filled with duck down. During the expedition Finch and climbing partner Geoffrey Bruce reached a height of 27,300 feet during their summit attempt, which set the record for the highest altitude attained by any human up to that point.

1922: Lloyd F. Nelson submits his application to the U.S. Patent Office for his "Trapper Nelson's Indian Pack Board", which is acknowledged to be the first commercially successful external-frame backpack to be sold in the U.S. The "Trapper Nelson" featured a wooden "pack board" as its frame. Attached to the frame was a canvas sack that contained the hiker's gear, which rested on the hiker's body by two canvas shoulder-straps. Prior to his invention most hikers used a rucksack, which was essentially a loose sack with shoulder straps.

1930: The Green Mountain Club completes construction of the Long Trail, making it the first long-distance hiking trail in the United States.

1937: Italian climber and mountaineering guide, Vitale Bramani, invents Carrarmato, or “tank tread". This new rubber lug pattern provides mountaineering boots with outstanding traction, and allows them to be used on a variety of surfaces. The product is launched under the brand name "Vibram".

1937: America's first “grand” trail, the Appalachian Trail, was completed in August of 1937. A forester by the name of Benton MacKaye conceived the idea in 1921.

1948: Earl Shaffer becomes the first person to thru-hike the entire Appalachian Trail.

1967: Climber Greg Lowe invents the internal frame backpack. The “Expedition Pack” also featured the first adjustable back system, first side compressors, first sternum strap and the first load stabilizers.

1968: The National Trails System Act is passed by Congress, resulting in thousands of miles of trails being designated as National Scenic Trails, National Historic Trails and National Recreation Trails.

1969: Bob Gore accidentally stretches a heated rod of polytetrafluoroethylene by almost 800%, which forms a microporous structure that was roughly 70% air. The discovery was introduced to the public under the trademark of "Gore-Tex", which became the first breathable, waterproof, and windproof fabric.

1992: Ray Jardine introduces the concept of ultralight backpacking with the release of his book, The Pacific Crest Trail Hiker's Handbook. During his first PCT thru-hike Jardine’s pack weighed just 25 pounds. By his third hike it weighed less than 9 pounds. “Ray’s Way” of thinking has led to several innovations that have benefitted both backpackers and hikers.

This timeline is only a brief overview of the people, events, inventions and social trends that have helped to shape the sport of hiking as we know it today. If you enjoyed this short snippet of hiking history, please check out my book, Ramble On: A History of Hiking, which provides a much more in-depth narrative on the history of hiking.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Monday, February 11, 2019

CPW and Larimer County investigating mountain lion attack at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space

Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers, working with Larimer County Department of Natural Resources, are investigating a mountain lion attack on a trail runner using the West Ridge Trail at Horsetooth Mountain Open Space on Monday, Feb. 4. The victim was able to defend himself from the attack, resulting in the death of the juvenile mountain lion. The runner was then able to leave the open space property and get himself to a local hospital.

“Mountain lion attacks are not common in Colorado and it is unfortunate that the lion’s hunting instincts were triggered by the runner,” Ty Petersburg, area wildlife manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife said. “This could have had a very different outcome.”

The victim of the attack described hearing something behind him on the trail and was attacked by a mountain lion as he turned around to investigate. The lion lunged at the runner, biting his face and wrist. He was able to fight and break free from the lion, killing the lion in self-defense. The runner sustained serious, but non-life threatening injuries as a result of the attack.

As wildlife officers searched the trail area provided by the runner, the body of a juvenile mountain lion was found within feet of several possessions that the victim asked the officers to look for on the trail. The lion has been taken to the Colorado Parks and Wildlife animal health lab for a necropsy.

“The runner did everything he could to save his life. In the event of a lion attack you need to do anything in your power to fight back just as this gentleman did,” said Mark Leslie, Colorado Parks and Wildlife Northeast Region manager.

Mountain lion attacks on people are rare, with fewer than 20 fatalities in North America in more than 100 years. Since 1990, Colorado has had 16 injuries as a result of mountain lion attacks, and three fatalities. Lion populations are doing very well in Colorado, but they are elusive animals and tend to avoid humans. Most people will never see a lion in the wild, but they are there. If you live, work, or play in mountain lion country, it is important to be alert.

What to do if you encounter a mountain lion:

• Do not approach a lion, especially one that is feeding or with kittens. Most mountain lions will try to avoid a confrontation. Give them a way to escape.

• Stay calm when you come upon a lion. Talk calmly and firmly to it. Move slowly and never turn your back on it.

• Stop or back away slowly, if you can do it safely. Running may stimulate a lion's instinct to chase and attack. Face the lion and stand upright.

• Do all you can to appear larger. Raise your arms. Open your jacket if you're wearing one. If you have small children with you, protect them by picking them up so they won't panic and run.

• If the lion behaves aggressively, throw stones, branches or whatever you can get your hands on without crouching down or turning your back. Wave your arms slowly and speak firmly. What you want to do is convince the lion you are not prey and that you may in fact be a danger to the lion.

• Fight back if a lion attacks you. Lions have been driven away by prey that fights back. People have fought back with rocks, sticks, caps or jackets, garden tools and their bare hands successfully. We recommend targeting the eyes and nose as these are sensitive areas. Remain standing or try to get back up!

Respecting wildlife includes being informed on how to avoid or manage wildlife encounters. To learn more about living with wildlife in Colorado, visit cpw.state.co.us.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Reward Offered For Recent September Poaching Incidents In Rocky Mountain National Park

Up to a $2,000 reward is offered for information regarding elk poaching incidents that occurred in Rocky Mountain National Park in September, 2018. In order to be eligible for a reward, the information must be relevant and lead to an arrest or criminal conviction.

On Wednesday morning September 12, Park Rangers discovered a large bull elk had been shot alongside Trail Ridge Road near Milner Pass. This occurred during the night of Tuesday, September 11, or early morning September 12. This bull’s head had been severed and the carcass remained.

On the morning of September 22, park visitors reported a dead bull elk next to Trail Ridge Road, near the Ute Crossing Trail south of Forest Canyon Overlook in Rocky Mountain National Park. Park Rangers investigated and discovered the large bull elk had been shot during the night of Friday, September 21, or early morning Saturday, September 22.

Rocky Mountain National Park’s wildlife is a resource for all visitors to enjoy viewing and appreciate. The individual(s) who assisted or carried out these poaching incidents robbed future park visitors of this experience.

Park Rangers at Rocky Mountain National Park and Special Agents with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service urge anyone with information on these incidents or other incidents of wildlife poaching in the park to call the National Park Service Investigative Services Bureau at 888-653-0009, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Law Enforcement at 1-720-981-2777, or call Operation Game Thief at 1-800-332-4155.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking

Friday, February 1, 2019

Rocky Mountain National Park Resumes Operations After Government Shutdown - Expresses Appreciation

Rocky Mountain National Park employees are happy to be back at work and are in the process of resuming all normal visitor services and operations. Park volunteers are also happy to be back, as they were unable to volunteer during the shutdown. Earlier this week our priority was processing payroll so our employees could begin receiving pay. Our initial challenges will be to reassess hiring priorities and park projects for this year's operations to limit impacts as much as possible, and work on getting contracts for projects back on board.

We would like to express our sincere appreciation to our Friend’s Group, and cooperating association, Rocky Mountain Conservancy, for staffing the Fall River Visitor Center for the entirety of the shutdown. This visitor center is located outside of the park near the Fall River Entrance. We would also like to express our heartfelt gratitude to our neighbors, local businesses, organizations, and national park enthusiasts near and far who were unwavering in their support. We cannot emphasize enough how a simple expression of "we are thinking of you" meant to park staff during the shutdown.

The National Park Service’s mission is to conserve the scenery, natural and historic objects and wild life and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for future generations. Rocky Mountain National Park staff are proud to be public servants and we take this mission seriously. During the shutdown, park staff took a number of proactive measures to protect resources by having a strong law enforcement presence in the park. Facility staff limited the impacts on toilet facilities and trash receptacles in particular by preemptively sealing containers and closing vault toilet facilities during the second week of the shutdown. On January 12, fee funds were approved to be used to bring back a limited number of custodians to begin cleaning these facilities.

Most people respect their national treasures and understand and abide by rules and regulations, unfortunately some do not. The park did experience illegal activity during the shutdown, including people driving around locked gates through meadows, and an increase in dogs on park trails. Compared to what some other national park sites experienced in resource damage and illegal activity, we were fortunate that the majority of visitors to Rocky Mountain National Park were remarkable stewards during the shutdown, some going above and beyond in their support and care for their beloved national park.

104 years ago this week, Rocky Mountain National Park was established by a group of passionate, forward looking people who wanted to preserve the high-elevation ecosystems and wilderness character of the southern Rocky Mountains. With your help, we will continue to move forward to provide visitor services and preserve and protect resources in this incredible place.



Jeff
RockyMountainHikingTrails.com
HikinginGlacier.com
TetonHikingTrails.com
HikingintheSmokys.com
Ramble On: A History of Hiking