Why parks matter

The national parks represent the best of America — our rich natural, historical and cultural heritage. But without proper funding, our parks are in peril.

What’s at stake? Priceless memories — and the memories we haven’t yet made.

Let’s remind our leaders why parks matter. Share your park story now or remind yourself to share it later.

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During childhood camping in the Porcupine Mountains and Sleeping Bear Dunes of Michigan - from 1966 when I first saw Glacier National Park and all the years following to the present ... Glacier again in 1972 and again in 1976, this park, along with many …

After unusually early snowfall in September 2014 and a night at Many Glacier Hotel, I hiked in this stunning scenery with a friend from the UK, whilst two friends from Montana did a road tour. It was beyond stunning.....blue skies....snow...clear, clean…

As volunteers in amazing Mt Rainier Park for over 10 years now, we are very aware of the backlog of needed work not funded by the government. Joining the National Parks Conservation Association we hope will be a way for us to further help the park we lov…

My wife and I were hiking the Roller Coaster Trail earlier this year. We were all alonel when suddenly a wild horse came charging past us as we dodged to the side. The horse soon reversed course and proceeded ahead of us. This happened a couple of tim…

In 2015 my son and I visited Zion National Park and Bryce Canyon National Park. This trip had been in our hearts for 4 years. We immediately fell in love with the Southwest, especially Zion. What a truly special place. We hiked most of the trails in …

We have found our National Parks to be a source of motivation, inspiration and learning for our vacations throughout our lifetime. We spent our first anniversary exploring the wonders of Yosemite. That trip became the motivating factor for future trips.…

Saw these beautiful rams on a hike. It was around 9:00am on Castle Trail just off the old ne road.

I love our National Parks! Last summer we visited Joshua Tree, Bryce Canyon, Zion Canyon, Grand Teton, and Yellowstone as a family. We frequently visit our only local National Monument: Cabrillo. But for the past 6 or 7 summers, I have also participat…

After graduating high school, my circumstances allowed me to travel cross-country from New Jersey to the West Coast several times. I would spend several months out West with my camping gear in the car, a map next to me, and go from national park to natio…

We are a roadschooling family who have been travelling the USA, living in our RV, for two years. Our boys have earned Junior Ranger badges at over 100 National Parks and Monuments, with a goal to earn them all. The one pictured is Great Sand Dunes in Col…

  NPCA Staff Pick

When my half-brother's in-laws began having lots of old-age problems, he said he wasn't fooling with all that getting-old crap; he was just going to jump into the Grand Canyon. When some friends and I hiked Tonto Trail in 1988, we spent a night at Indian…

This is a photo of my daughters overlooking Yellowstone Lake. We had just finished lunch at the Yellowstone Lake Hotel. It was very peaceful to stand there and just look at the waters of the lake.

In 2004 I stepped off a boat from Cooper Harbor at Isle Royale National Park. That visit changed my life. I have been back every year since as a student, volunteer, teacher, paddler, backpacker and moose bone collector. The peace I find on the Island …

I retired in April 2014 and some of the folks I worked with gave me a National Park Pass. Over the past 2 years Parks have been a huge part of my retirement. Last week I went to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore/The Outer Banks and volunteered for the …

On a recent visit to Point Reyes National Seashore with my family, we walked down to the Point Reyes lighthouse. It was a crisp winter day, but perfectly clear. The hike down was fairly easy and felt invigorating. While I had seen photographs of the ligh…

September 11, 2014: Early morning after early snow at Many Glacier Hotel, Glacier National Park, Montana. Unbelievably Magical Morning! (With friends from United Kingdom & Montana).

This was taken during sunset on Cadillac Mountain at Acadia National Park in May, 2016. I was visiting Rockport, ME and on my agenda was going to Acadia National Park (two hours away) for a day. After stopping at the Visitor Center, I knew my first stop …

I first started working in the parks when I was 15. An organization called the Youth Conservation Corps hired me for the summer, and there I learned how to build trails and fences and take care of natural resources. This picture is of the view of the f…

  NPCA Staff Pick

This is the sunrise from Cadillac Mountain at Acadia National Park. Anyone who sees the sun rise from here is the first one to see the sun rise on the east coast. I was fortunate to get up early and see the sun rise, above the clouds, on Cadillac Mountai…

We hit the Guadalupe Mountain Trail early on a March morning after driving eighty miles east of El Paso, Texas through a great salt flat as white as snow. We soon met a Bavarian girl on the trail when we all stopped to put on heavy sweaters in a fiercely…

Starting with the Grand Canyon then going on to Dinosaur, Yellowstone, Yosemite, and Zion---all provide special memories for me as I think back to family gatherings over the years. But now with a grandson serving as a park rescue worker I have a renewed…

  NPCA Staff Pick

I grew up on Mt. Rainier's doorstep, and my dad taught me to love and respect everything the outdoors had to offer. With him I visited many of the west's National Parks - from the Redwoods to Yellowstone to Arches and so many more in between. Even afte…

  NPCA Staff Pick

My quest to visit every <a href="http://everything-everywhere.com/north-american-national-parks/">North American National Park</a> recently took me to Gates of the Arctic National Park, one of the most remote and least visited national parks in the US.

We went to Yellowstone for the first time in 1989. There was so much blackness and blank spaces from the 1988 fire. We were shocked to see all the damage and wondered if it would ever look again like the beautiful pictures we had admired for so many year…

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