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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 11, 2013 | By Ari Bloomekatz
A 65-year-old retired physicist and park volunteer with a passion for nature died this week when he tried to board a boat and fell, seriously injuring his head, officials said Thursday. Joe Wysocki began volunteering at Channel Islands National Park in the mid-1990s as a naturalist. Wysocki was "highly valued for his skills as an audio visual technician and camera operator for the park's distance learning program Channel Islands Live," officials said. Wysocki's fall was described as an accident that occurred Wednesday about 3:15 p.m. at Anacapa Island, where "Wysocki fell off the landing dock ladder as he was boarding the National Park Service (NPS)
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BUSINESS
March 10, 2014 | By Hugo Martin, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
The government shutdown in October was largely to blame for a 3% drop in visitors to America's national parks in 2013, according to a report released Monday by the National Park Service. The country's 401 parks, historic sites and recreation areas drew 273.6 million visitors in 2013, about 9 million fewer than the previous year, according to the report. The 16-day government shutdown, sparked by a budget dispute in Washington, was responsible for reducing the visitation numbers by about 7.9 million visitors, the report said.
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NEWS
April 5, 2012 | By Catharine M. Hamm, Los Angeles Times Travel editor
If you're a Civil War buff or you're planning a trip to a Civil War site, a new  National Park Service website can help you. Even if you're not going anywhere, the website is fascinating to browse, from its lists of places to visit to its facts to the people who played major roles in the war. I'm not sure it's as popular as the recently released 1940 Census data that slowed traffic on that site to a crawl this week,...
OPINION
March 2, 2014 | By The Times editorial board
El Capitan isn't going anywhere and neither is Bridalveil Fall, but a lot of the man-made structures on the floor of Yosemite Valley will be shifted around under the final version of the National Park Service preservation plan for the Merced River. The plan, which will be reviewed at a public meeting on Thursday, does a far better job of preserving recreational activities in the valley than the draconian draft from a year ago that would have banned such environmentally friendly pastimes as bicycle and raft rentals.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 30, 2010 | By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Robert S. Chandler, who dealt with complex problems as superintendent of many of the country's largest national parks and took the lead in implementing the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area in the late 1970s and early '80s, has died. He was 74. Chandler, a resident of Tehachapi, Calif., died Dec. 23 of multiple myeloma at a hospital in Bakersfield, said his son, Alan Chandler. In a 38-year career with the National Park Service that began in 1958 and included serving as superintendent of the Grand Canyon, Olympic and Everglades national parks, Chandler was known as an effective leader who worked with local communities and state and government officials on tough issues.
NEWS
August 24, 2012 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times Daily Travel & Deal blogger
The National Park Service , the agency that overseas 397 national parks, battlefields, monuments, historic sites, seashores and even scenic byways, turns 96 on Saturday. Some parks are older than that -- Yellowstone, the nation's oldest park, was created in 1872 -- and some are much younger. Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve , for example, is little known even though it stretches 8.4 million acres in Alaska's Brooks Range. It became a national park and preserve in 1980.
NATIONAL
April 2, 2010 | By Richard Simon
The National Park Service is launching a study of sites in California and other states associated with the life and work of labor leader Cesar E. Chavez for possible designation as a national historic landmark or addition to the national park system. "The life of Cesar Chavez and people like him who have worked to make this country a better, more perfect union deserve to be recognized as part of the history of America," Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said Thursday. "As stewards of the history of this great nation we look forward to working with the Chavez family, the United Farm Workers and communities throughout California and Arizona to determine how best to preserve this great legacy."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 9, 1994
A proper response must be made to Michael McCalley's charge that the National Park Service is a "Gestapo-like organization" (letter, May 2). I have never encountered or observed a park ranger treating visitors without professional respect and helpfulness, in any of my visits to over 40 national park units in the last five years. I have seen park visitors bring their own problems to a park and deliberately break clearly posted park rules, commit damage to the environment, or bring harm to property or others.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 2, 2011 | By Julie Cart, Los Angeles Times
One day deep in the administration of George W. Bush — a time of tumult among environmentalists and conservationists — Roger Kennedy found himself shaking his head and sighing. The Endangered Species Act was in the cross hairs of a Republican Congress and his beloved National Park Service, which Kennedy directed from 1993 to 1997, was under assault. Kennedy was disgusted by the partisan bickering. When had stewardship of the environment become a political football, he asked, posing a rhetorical question to a reporter.
OPINION
November 6, 2005
Re "Parks vs. profits," editorial, Nov. 3 National parks shelter spectacular examples of natural and cultural history. Diverse landscapes, such as the red rock canyons of Zion and the alpine lakes of Glacier Park, offer myriad opportunities for recreation and study. Misguided efforts by Deputy Assistant Interior Secretary Paul Hoffman and Rep. Richard Pombo (R-Tracy) to change the National Park Service's management policies and to jettison park units countermand public opinion and defy common sense.
NATIONAL
February 26, 2014 | By Richard Simon
WASHINGTON - She was called the "the most famous woman in Los Angeles. " That was how the wife of famed "Pathfinder" John C. Fremont was described in her Los Angeles Times obituary in 1902. Though she is not as well known today, she could be on the way to gaining a higher profile - one more than 12,100 feet high. Legislation to name a mountain peak in Yosemite National Park as Mt. Jessie Benton Fremont is now before Congress. Related: The ultimate guide to Yosemite The measure, a tribute to Jessie Benton Fremont's efforts to preserve the land that would become the park, comes on this year's 150th anniversary of President Lincoln signing the bill granting Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove, a stand of some of the world's largest trees, to the state of California as a public trust.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 25, 2014 | By Samantha Schaefer
A remote camera snapped more than 350 high-quality images of mountain lion P-13 and her kittens as they fed on a mule deer over two nights in Malibu Creek State Park last week.  The cameras were set up to check on the male and female kittens, P-30 and P-28, who biologists haven't seen since they were tagged when they were about three weeks old, said biologist Jeff Sikich with the National Park Service. The kittens are now 10 months old, and though they have trackers that pinpoint their locations, Sikich said he was interested in how healthy they look.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 1, 2014 | By James Rainey
For 27 straight summers, all that stood between runners and completion of the Badwater Ultramarathon was 135 miles of asphalt, a 13,000-foot elevation gain and late July temperatures that soared to 120 degrees and above. They called it "the toughest foot race in the world. " And not too many people argued. But this summer, the race from the depths of Death Valley to the shoulders of Mt. Whitney has been moved, while the National Park Service conducts a "safety assessment" of the run and other athletic events.
SCIENCE
December 17, 2013 | By Louis Sahagun
You'll know it's springtime in the Santa Monica Mountains when wildlife biologists start alerting curious visitors to keep their distance from the first red-legged frog reintroduction effort ever attempted in Southern California. Biologists are gearing up to transfer fragile batches of California red-legged frog eggs from a tiny, isolated population in the nearby Upper Las Virgenes Canyon Open Space Preserve to separate streams in the Santa Monicas where the species has not been seen in nearly half a century.
NATIONAL
December 4, 2013 | By Soumya Karlamangla
Ten short-finned pilot whales were dead and more than 40 marooned in shallow water in a remote area of Everglades National Park in Florida, and officials warned Wednesday they were not likely to survive. "Most of these mass strandings that occur do not have a successful outcome, and we're lucky if we're able to even save a couple," said Blair Mase, southeast marine mammal stranding coordinator for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The whales are at the western boundary of the park, more than 20 miles from their deep-water habitat and about two hours from the nearest boat ramp.
NATIONAL
November 14, 2013 | By Richard Simon
WASHINGTON - The "closed" signs at the national parks have been down for weeks but states still don't know whether they will be reimbursed by federal taxpayers for their costs of reopening landmarks such as the Grand Canyon and Statue of Liberty during the partial government shutdown. "This a federal responsibility," Utah Gov. Gary Herbert told The Times on Thursday, saying his state stepped in "because of dysfunctionality in Washington" and it's time for the U.S. government to reimburse his state "for the goodwill of the people of Utah.
NEWS
July 29, 1993
Conrad L. Wirth, 93, longest-serving director of the National Park Service. The son of a park administrator, Wirth was born in a city park in Hartford, Conn., and brought up in another one in Minneapolis. He studied landscape architecture at the University of Massachusetts and was in private practice for five years as a landscaper and town planner, and then worked for the National Capital Park and Planning Commission in Washington.
NEWS
April 7, 1990
The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, a unit of the National Park Service, offers the following tips for springtime hiking in the Santa Monica Mountains: * Water is life. Carry plenty of water and drink it. One quart or more for short walks. More for longer hikes. Alcohol is not a good substitute for water. * Sun protection. Wear sunscreen, hat and sunglasses. Long-sleeved shirts are recommended on sunny days. * Never hike alone; use the buddy system.
SCIENCE
November 4, 2013 | By Bettina Boxall
Yosemite National Park is proposing to remove most of the development from Mariposa Grove as part of a $24 million restoration of the famed grove of giant sequoias. Most public parking, the gift shop and the tram operations would be eliminated to improve conditions for the grove's 500 giant sequoias. The paved surfaces and infrastructure are compacting soil, encroaching on sequoia roots and interfering with natural drainage patterns.  “We know the pavement over the roots is not healthy,” said Yosemite ranger Kari Cobb.
SCIENCE
October 31, 2013 | By Julie Cart
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on Thursday called on Congress to move past partisan bickering and fully fund the nation's parks and wildlife refuges, invoking Teddy Roosevelt's call to conservation as a "moral issue. " Delivering her first major address in a speech at the National Press Club in Washington, Jewell chided lawmakers who support the partial government shutdown then criticized the National Park Service for closing cherished monuments. “The real test of whether you support conservation is not what you say in a press conference when the cameras are rolling,” she said, “but whether you fight for it in the budget conference.” Jewell took office in April and faced a 5% across-the-board sequestration cut in the budgets of the agencies she oversees.
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