By Eilene Lyon
I’d like to share some images from the parks I’ve visited over the past five years. Some are not National Parks, but have other designations such as National Monument, National Preserve, National Recreation Area, etc. But all are protected as public land for ALL Americans (and people from other countries are welcome to visit, of course!). Some, particularly Bears Ears National Monument, are threatened under our current administration. Be sure to tell your representatives in Congress how you feel about protecting these landscapes and our history. Clink on the links to learn more about issues affecting these places.
Let’s start with Yosemite National Park (above, 2017). Such an iconic park, but I will probably never visit again. Why? It’s being loved to death and there are already too many people flooding in, even in early November when I was there. I will admire it in the future from photographs and appreciate knowing it exists. That’s good enough for me.
The Grand Canyon (2014). I couldn’t pick just one photo to represent this “bucket list” trip down the Colorado River. Talk about being in another world! While you’re down in the canyon, honestly, the rest of the world ceases to exist. The first photograph shows the confluence of the Little Colorado and the Colorado rivers. The water is Caribbean blue because it flows from springs – the Little Colorado is actually dry in the summer. This area was recently threatened with development, but fortunately, the Navajo Tribal Council voted against it (almost unanimously).
Grand Canyon (2014). This image shows the falls of Thunder River. It’s a strenuous hike up a side canyon, but worth the effort. The water gushes right from the middle of the red sandstone cliff.
This is one of the two replica locomotives at the Golden Spike National Historic Site (2016). They normally run both engines during regular reenactments, but they were short on engineers that day. I hadn’t previously been aware that early trains were so brightly painted, but it was common until later in the 19th century. From there, you can also drive out to the north edge of Salt Lake and view Spiral Jetty, one of the first and best known pieces of modern landscape art (below). It used to be underwater occasionally, but heavy water usage and drought have left it high and dry.
This is the grave of Meriwether Lewis near where he died along the Natchez Trace Parkway (2017). He was serving as governor of the Louisiana Territory at the time. They actually exhumed his body to be sure it was really him in the grave.
I’ll be posting more soon. Again, remember to let your congressional delegation know if you want these places preserved for the future. Apathy = Complicity.