public lands day


Happy 100th birthday to the National Park Service!

As a part of NPS’s anniversary celebration, admission fees will be waived at parks across the country from August 25 to 28. Other admission-free dates in 2016 include September 24 (National Public Lands Day), and November 11 (Veterans Day).

In case you need further inspiration to get outside, the NPS shared a list of ways to #FindYourPark in 2015, which includes apt advice to “take a sunrise selfie.”

If you can’t make it out to a national park soon, you can view a live stream of Old Faithful, which erupts every 35 to 120 minutes, from your desk. There’s also a live stream of sled dog puppies at Denali National Park. The Yosemite Conservancy has a live stream of Yosemite Falls, one of the tallest waterfalls in North America. hosts a live stream of brown bears at Brooks Falls in Katmai National Park. And, the Statue of Liberty has a camera — the torch cam — sponsored by the Statue of Liberty–Ellis Island Foundation. 

This Saturday (September 29) is National Public Lands Day, the nation’s largest, one-day volunteer and recreation event. Over 170,000 volunteers at over 2,100 sites are slated to participate this year. Volunteers in every state will visit parks, urban green spaces, beaches, wildlife preserves and forests to chip in to help these treasured places that belong to all of us. They will improve and restore the lands the public uses for recreation, education, exercise and connecting with nature.

Additionally, all national parks, monuments, forests, recreation areas, and other federal public lands are waiving all recreation fees in honor of National Public Lands Day. This will give you that chance to finally go see Rocky Mountain National Park, the Grand Canyon, and hundreds of other beautiful publicly owned lands without having to pay an entrance fee! 

photo, h/t mypubliclands


#mypubliclandsroadtrip explores the beautiful towering cliffs and deep canyons of the 280,000 acre Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Arizona. The remote and unspoiled monument offers opportunities to view endangered California condors. Photos by Bob Wick, BLM.

Check out the condor release video from the National Public Lands Day celebration, held each September, at the monument.


Two weeks ago, Tess and I went to Big Quilcene on the Olympic Peninsula and did some trail work for public lands day. We met a lovely group of workers, including Dave and Bob, two guys who have clearly worked together for years on trails. They were hilarious to listen to on the car ride to the trailhead, and the actual work was hard, but not entirely draining. Tess and I had a great time, and the only pictures I got were at lunch - while we were sitting by the creek. The guy in red is Gregg, our team leader. 


Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar invites you to participate in National Public Lands Day 2012 on Saturday, September 29. In the video Secretary Salazar explains that “public lands are uniquely American” and “a great legacy for the United States.” Find a place to volunteer at (by USInterior)
Give your favorite park a pat on the back for National Public Lands Day

Yes, we know the biggest reward that comes from doing good is that warm, fuzzy feeling you get for doing something selfless.

But let’s admit it, it’s kind of nice to get something a little extra.

In the case of National Public Lands Day coming up on Sept. 29, the good deeds range from picking up trash to planting trees to trail maintenance topainting cannons. The reward at most parks (again, besides the warm and fuzzy feeling) is a coupon for a free one day admission to a participating park for the coming year. And don’t worry about having to use it the day you volunteer, the admission fee is waived for everyone (volunteer or not) at most sites as part of National Park Fee Free Days.

And did we mention that many sites will offer their own special reward for volunteers? Think shirt giveawaysmarshmallow roastspanning for goldand demonstrations with National Park Service Dogs. A handful will even make sure volunteers are well fed. Some projects require registration, so check with the site before you go.