The year-long party is still going on and you can join in at any time. What party you ask? Why the one the National Park Service is throwing. To join in you may need some new duds like boots and shorts, but don’t let that stop you; you can always come as you are!
You ask who is the party for? Well the National Park Service (NPS) of course, it turned 100-years-old on August 25, 2015. The National Park Service has a lot to see and do if you are willing to expose yourself to nature. You might want to bring a friend.
Now you can join in at any of its locations, to experience a side of yourself which you may not have known before. There are 58 National Parks in all 50 states, and in American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, and the US Virgin Islands. California alone has 27 National Parks, 36 National Landmarks, and 144 National Historic Landmarks. This party will have a combined attendance of 37,000,000 visitors to these National Parks and Landmarks. Now that is a RAVE event.
Ok, I get it, you don’t like crowds, looking like you look dressed in those shorts and tee shirt I would not want to be seen by any large crowds either. Here’s the thing, most of the crowds are going to be seen in a short list of favorites spots just a handful of big-name parks, compared with the more than 400 units in the Park System probably ones you’ve never heard about – But If you are considering a short hike or day backpacking trip to commune with nature, you probably are unaware of that extensive list of parks, those other locations that are usually overlooked.
Forget about searching out those high-profile trails with the infinitely Instagrammable vistas, there are often less-showy units that allow you a quieter, more personal interaction with the Park System. Some allow you to hike through seasonal flower-filled meadows and watch condors soar through rock formations on the hills without the noise of other hikers. Rather than to have to wait in a long line or cars to enter the high-profile Parks, rather you can spend a full day hiking in some smaller National Park without passing another hiker.
For you newbies, that want to start, and are not interested in extensive trail network, you rather a park that you can consider a quick day-stop on the way to something more substantial like the local bar or fast food places, these can be found too, If you know where to look. So where are these gems found? The National Park Foundation has a helpful list of often-overlooked parks called The Places Nobody Knows. Designed to help you find those hidden, unthought-of gems along the way – especially if you think you already know what’s happening in the park.
So now’s the time to plan that party, or take that walk, or hike in nature, that big outdoor trip (be it ever so small) that you promised yourself one-day, to do, so experience nature on your terms.
Need more inspiration? Find a Park