Monthly Archives: March 2016

Pip, pip, hooray!

traveltoparks ourbestplaces

Two bald eagles have hatched in Sauces Canyon on Santa Cruz Island in Channel Islands National Park. According to the NPS, this is the first successful hatch for this nest after three years of attempts by the adult bald eagle pair.

The first chick hatched March 12 and the second chick “pipped out of the egg shell” on March 14, the NPS said (in the tenor of a proud parent).

Eagles vanished from the islands by the 1960s, victims of the chemical DDT. They were reintroduced in 2005 (a male) and 2006 (a female) and, since then, their numbers have been steadily increasing. There are now 19 known breeding pairs across Channel Islands; one on Anacapa Island, eight on Santa Cruz Island, two on Santa Rosa Island, seven on Catalina Island and one San Clemente Island.

Watch the bald eagle chicks grow on the live bald eagle webcam! The live feed has a mellowing effect and–warning–is highly addictive.


Fee free days for National Park Week

traveltoparks ourbestplaces

From April 16 to 24 all national parks are free! All 400+ of them: gratis. Learn more at the NPS site.

Want to do more than just visit? Learn about other opportunities for getting involved in parks.

Find Your Park.


Cherry blossoms ready to pop

traveltoparks ourbestplaces

I love how excited people get about the famed cherry blossoms in Washington, DC. News outlets cross the country update the ‘peak blooming’ schedule alongside the NPS status reports.

What captivates us so? For me it’s spring renewal, the potential for growth, and the sheer pageantry of those pinkish-white trees surrounding the Tidal Basin. They are also a symbol of friendship, of the capacity to overcome ethnic differences with beauty and dignity.

The Yoshiro cherry trees were a gift from Japan in 1912. On its Cherry Blossom Festival page, the NPS describes the trees this way: “The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life.”

The blossoms are expected to do their thing starting on March 23 and be in peak form for the following 10 days. Cooling in the area could delay the start, so check on the NPS’ Bloom Watch page for updates.

If you’re like me and you can’t make it to DC this time around, peek at the peak on the NPS Cherry Blossom Webcam.

Bonus: Read about the Cherry Tree Rebellion in 1938 when 50 women chained themselves to trees that were in the crosshairs of the Jefferson Memorial construction.