Outdoor News September 29, 2017 - Explore! Outdoor News September 29, 2017 - Explore!

Outdoor News September 29, 2017

Maine Outdoors

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife protects and manages Maine’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, promotes Maine’s outdoor heritage, and safely connects people with nature through responsible recreation, sport, and science. In support of that mission, the Department has released three humorous videos highlighting key information for recreationists.  They are:Bar Harbor Maine

Today through Sunday is also Great Maine Outdoor Weekend. There are over 100 events scattered across Maine.  The events include a wild edibles walk, a seawatch (migratory waterbirds), a sea kayak tour, a hawk watch, stand-up paddleboard tour, trail races, nature walks, a fall foliage festival, a tree ID hike and much, much more.  Get the details at: www.greatmaineoutdoorweekend.org

vivofit jr.2

On Wednesday, Garmin announced the vívofit jr. 2 activity tracker for kids with Disney, Star Wars and Marvel-themed bands and mobile app adventures. The bands feature designs of kids’ favorite characters including Minnie Mouse, BB-8TM and Marvel Avengers, each band theme offers a corresponding mobile app adventure where children can complete missions to advance in the journey and unlock new character step icons, with the help of their parents, by achieving 60 minutes of activity every day. The idea is to leverage kids favorite characters, encouraging children to be active, and ultimately shaping habits for lifelong health and fitness.

vivofit jr.2“The vívofit jr. 2 is all about making fitness fun for kids, instilling at a young age the joy of leading an active lifestyle,” said Cliff Pemble, Garmin president and CEO. “We are honored to team up in such a unique way with Disney, tapping into the brilliance of their creative storytelling experts. Through collaborating across the brands of Disney, Star Wars and Marvel and infusing their characters and stories into our product and mobile app, we’re able to offer kids and their parents a gamified approach to fitness like no other.”

The activity tracker features a customizable color screen, a 1+ year battery life and comes with one of two band options: a stretchy band for smaller wrists or an adjustable band for older kids. The always-on color screen shows the time, the date, and reminds kids to stay active with a move bar. In addition to tracking steps and sleep, the device measures active minutes, inspiring kids to meet the recommended 60 minutes of daily activity. Once this 60-minute goal is reached, kids can advance in new adventures, motivating them to do their best. You can order the $99 item from Garmin’s website. The website says that processing time is five to eight weeks, so you should be able to get one before Christmas.

National Park News

Cape Hatteras National Seashore:  Visitor services and facilities at the seashore including all campgrounds, reopened yesterday after hurricane Maria passed the area. Beach access ramps will reopen as assessments are completed. The status of beach access ramps will be posted throughout the day on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Facebook page at www.facebook.com/capehatterasns.
Glacier National Park: Currently 20.5 miles of the Going-to-the-Sun Road are open for travel. Visitors can drive 2.0 miles from the West Entrance to Foot of Lake McDonald, and 18.5 miles from the St. Mary Entrance to Logan Pass.The section of the road between Foot of Lake McDonald and Logan Pass is closed due to a fire. On the west side, the road is closed between the Apgar Loop Road Junction at the foot of Lake McDonald and Logan Pass due to fire danger.
Virgin Islands - National Park Service PhotoCaribbean Parks: All employees have been accounted for. Virgin Islands National Park, St. John – CLOSED. Information Technology Specialists delivered telecom equipment and are working to restore communications, through a satellite connected phone line.  Virgin Islands Coral Reef National Monument, St. John – CLOSED. Christiansted National Historic Site, St. Croix – CLOSED.  Local park employees began cleanup efforts Tuesday at Chistiansted. Buck Island Reef National Monument, St. Croix – CLOSED. Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve, St. Croix – CLOSED. San Juan National Historic Site, Puerto Rico – CLOSED.  An Incident Command Post has been established at the park’s Discovery Center.  Staff are exploring options with federal agencies and community leaders.  Docking arrangements for MV Fort Jefferson have been made, and staff are preparing for the ship’s arrival. Additional updates on the status of these parks can be found at http://go.nps.gov/hurricane.
Everglades: Everglades National Park has reopened the Homestead visitor entrance, the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center, and the Anhinga Trail. Park Rangers have resumed offering the Anhinga Amble and Glades Glimpse programs to visitors daily. As restrooms and water are currently only available at the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center, visitors are strongly encouraged to bring a water bottle that can be refilled before proceeding to Royal Palm. 
Yosemite: A rockfall of undetermined size occurred in Yosemite National Park Wednesday afternoon. The rockfall came down from El Capitan, near the “Waterfall Route”, on the East Buttress of El Capitan. There is one confirmed fatality and one injured person. Yosemite National Park remains open and visitor services are not affected.
All Open Parks: Entrance fees will be waived tomorrow in observance of National Public Lands Day.

Arizona Parks the Best Managed

On Tuesday, Arizona State Parks and Trails won the Gold Medal for best managed state park system in the nation from the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). The award was announced during the national NRPA conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Lost Dutchman State Park“This is a tremendous achievement that benefits everyone in our state – from residents to tourists,” said Governor Doug Ducey. “Winning the Gold Medal is a testament to the hard work, collaboration and innovation that Arizona State Parks and Trails demonstrated to get us to this point.”

“This Gold Medal win is not just about the staff of Arizona State Parks and Trails,” said Sue Black, Executive Director of Arizona State Parks and Trails. “This is about everyone in Arizona who contributes to our success or gets to enjoy our beautiful parks. It’s a huge honor to be considered the best-managed state park agency in the country, and we hope everyone will get out and see these amazing parks first-hand.”

The Gold Medal Award honors state park systems throughout the United States that demonstrate excellence in long-range planning, resource management and innovative approaches to delivering superb park and recreation services with fiscally sound business practices.


Slacklining in Boulder, Colorado

Slacklining is defined as a recreational activity or sport that involves participants balancing on a strip of webbing that is fixed above the ground between two trees. Boulder, Colorado has released a new rule that applies to slacklining in the city’s parks.  The rule is intended to allow for beginner and general recreational slackline users. This does not accommodate potential needs of extreme or elite slackline users.  In summary:Slacklining

  • Slacklining is only allowed on designated trees. 
  • Slacklining is only permitted during park hours.
  • Participants and spectators assume all risk associated with the activity.
  • All slacklines may be affixed on a temporary basis and may not be left unattended. Unattended equipment will be removed and considered abandoned property.
  • Tree protection material must be placed between the tree and the line that is fixed to the tree. Material must be at least ¼” inch thick and at no time should any cabling, wires or lines be in direct contact with the bark of the tree.
  • The slackline may not be elevated to a height of more than four feet at the center of the span when the user is on the line and weighting it.
  • The slackline may not obstruct the intended uses of the park, sidewalks, buildings, roads, streets, playgrounds, bikeways, water features, sport courts, bike racks, handrails, art objects, fences or light poles.
  • When the slackline length exceeds 50 feet, visible safety tags or flags must be used to alert park users that the line is in place.
  • Trees and/or landscaped areas showing damage from slacklining activities may be restricted.
  • Slacklines may not be affixed to any other infrastructure including but not limited to buildings, bike racks, handrails, art objects, fences or light poles.
  • Activities such as stunts or tricks involving flips are not permitted.
  • Slacklines must be removed for any park permit use or regular maintenance such as lawn mowing or tree pruning.


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Video of the Week

Gold fever is an interesting excuse to get outdoors and exploring.  One great place to start such an adventure is Lost Dutchman State Park in Arizona, 40 miles east of Phoenix.  The 320-acre park offers camping and day-use parking along with a trailhead connecting to trails of the Tonto National Forest.  Those tails access the Superstition Mountains where the Lost Dutchman Mine is rumored to exist.  This week’s video from Arizona State Parks, gives a hint at the adventures one could create there.


This newsletter is compiled by Jerry Haugen and brought to you by
Global Creations EXPLORE!  The eMagazine for Adventure and Exploration

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