Beware the Everglades Vultures — Or Not?

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Black Vultures can pose problems for unsuspecting visitors in the Everglades

When I first began to plan this road trip I actually laughed out loud when I read reports about the vultures that were eating the rubber off of cars in the Everglades. I thought that someone was pranking me, even though there was a huge warning about the mischievous birds on the official National Park Service website. So I did what I usually do when I need the most accurate information – I went local. And indeed several of my Florida hiker friends indicated that this was a big problem, and more than a few folks shared their tales of woe with me about having to replace their windshield wiper blades after an Everglades day trip. Continue reading

Florida State Parks Offers Great Deal for Veterans

Charles with his Florida StatePar Pass

Charles with his Florida StatePar Pass

If a trip to Florida is in your future and you are an honorably discharged veteran, then the good folks at Florida State Parks have a money-saving deal for you. All veterans – no matter when they served – get a 25% discount on a Florida State Parks Individual Annual Pass or a Family Annual Pass; while veterans with a service-connected disability are eligible to receive a free lifetime Military Entrance Pass (which offers the same benefits as the Family Annual Pass). Continue reading

A Kitschy Baker Attraction

The Baker Thermometer -- an icon along Interstate 15

On our way back from Las Vegas, I mentioned to Charles that I’d like to stop at the Baker thermometer to get some photos. Granted we did stop there on the way out for gas, but I was recovering from a painful dental visit and I had forgotten about the needed photos. Charles of course remembered that and promptly replied, “We were just there last week in the heat of the afternoon when the thermometer read an impressive 103. That would have been the good shot. It’s only 10 in the morning and it’s not even going to be 100 degrees when we get there.” Continue reading

National Park Etiquette

Grand Canyon National Park

After spending several weeks in our national parks doing some final research for my next book, I’ve encountered what can only be called some “less than stewardly behavior “ by my fellow national park visitors. Although this isn’t the be-all-and-end-all list on national park etiquette, it’s a good starting point. And since today is National Public Lands Day, I thought it’d be a good time to share it with the world. Continue reading

Five Fun Accessible National Park Finds

Accessible trail to the base of Lower Yosemite Falls

OK, I admit it, I’m a national park junkie. I love visiting them and writing about them; in fact, I’m currently working on my third national park title. One of the great things about our national parks is that even though many of them are rugged, they still offer accessible options for wheelchair-users and slow walkers. And so with the 99th anniversary of the National Park Service (NPS) coming up on August 25, I thought I’d share some of my favorite accessible sites in America’s national parks Continue reading

New Accessible National Park Title Released

Barrier-Free Travel; Olympic and Mount Rainier National Parks For Wheelers and Slow Walkers

I’m thrilled to announce that the second book in my Barrier-Free Travel series is now available. Barrier-free Travel; Olympic and Mount Rainier National Parks for Wheelers and Slow Walkers is a must-have resource if Washington state is on your bucket list. Continue reading