Someone gave us an excellent book about the National Parks by quilter Donna DeSoto. Published in 2016, it suffers from what all books must contend with, new additions. Since this book came out there have been 4 new National Parks created. Before writing this, I asked Ruth who gave us this book, and she could not remember. Neither can I so I can’t now thank whoever was so thoughtful.
The information in this paragraph will change. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, all national park camping, campgrounds, and visitor centers were closed and remain so. Some roads in the national parks are closed to motorists but not to pedestrians and bikers. All trails and backcountry campsites are opened with reduced services. Some are opening in phases, but which and where changes daily. With the travel season approaching, decisions will have to be made. Grand Canyon, Death Valley, and Yellowstone remain closed. Since openings are fluid, check, of course, before setting out. If the virus returns, all national parks will probably remain closed until abatement
The information in this paragraph is reliably true. There are 419 national park sites in the United States and 62 national parks. Since Inspired By The National Parks was published 4 years ago, there are 3 new parks. Indiana Dunes and White Sands in New Mexico became National Parks in 2019. The Great Sand Dunes in Colorado, the tallest dunes in North America, was established in 1932 as a National Park according to Donna DeSoto in her book, but it didn’t actually become a National Park until 2004. The Gateway National Park that includes the Arch in St. Louis and the new museum under it was upgraded from a national monument to a national park in 2018. California remains the state with the most national parks with 9 including one of the newer ones, Pinnacles, which was created in 2013 when Barak Obama was President. It’s near Salinas, CA, has 2 entrances, and is wonderful. I wrote about it under the title “California Beats Alaska” the year that it opened. Ruth and I have been to all of the California National Parks except for the Channel Islands, but we have been to only 2 of the fairly hard to get to 8 national parks in Alaska. The vast majority of national parks are in the western USA, including the oldest one, Yellowstone, created in 1872. Only 13 are east of the Mississippi, including the one we have most recently visited for the first time called Congaree in South Carolina. I wrote about it with the title “Exceptional Congaree” on 10/27/17.
I look forward to Birthplace of Rivers in West Virginia and the proposed Maine Woods National Park. Sixteen new National Monuments have been proposed. Four of them are in California, including one expansion. Eight National Monuments have either been upgraded or delisted. Since our national Congress is in charge of changes, things don’t happen rapidly.