Happy 100 Year Anniversary to America's National Parks…

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I just celebrated my birthday bitching about how much I hate my 40’s. I might not be ok with aging, but there is someone who is. No, I’m not talking about thedancing 106 year old woman who met the President and Mrs. Obama; I’m talking about the US National Park System.

America’s National Parks Have Turned 100!

For you trivia geeks – here’s a few important facts:
There are 59 National Parks in the US. Twenty-seven states have national parks. California has the most (9), followed by Alaska (8), Utah (5), and Colorado (4). The largest national park is Wrangell–St. Elias in Alaska: at over 8 million acres, it is larger than each of the nine smallest states. The next three largest parks are also in Alaska. The smallest park is Hot Springs, Arkansas, at less than 6 thousand acres. The total area protected by national parks is approximately 51.9 million acres. The most-visited national park is Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina and Tennessee, with over ten million visitors in 2014, followed by Arizona’s Grand Canyon, with over 4.7 million. In contrast, only 12,669 people visited the remote Gates of the Arctic in Alaska in the same year. Fourteen national parks are designated World Heritage Sites.

I thought I’d celebrate the National Parks Centennial by sharing a few of my favorite pictures of parks that I’ve visited through the years (at least since I’ve had a decent camera). Plus, you’ll find my personal park trivia tidbits at the end! Be sure to share yours too!

Badlands National ParkBadlands National Park South Dakota

Arches National ParkArches National Park Utah

Denali National ParkDenali National Park Alaska

Bryce National Park Wall StreetBryce National Park Utah

Volcanoes National ParkVolcanoes National Park Big Island Hawaii

Wrangell St Elias National ParkWrangell St. Elias National Park Alaska

Grand Canyon National ParkGrand Canyon National Park Arizona

Death Valley national parkDeath Valley National Park California

Haleakala National ParkHaleakala National Park Maui Hawaii

Zioan National ParkZion National Park Utah

Theodore Roosevelt National ParkTheodore Roosevelt National Park North Dakota

Kenai Fjords National ParkKenai Fjords National Park Alaska

My Park Trivia

Parks I’ve been to in my lifetime (* means I only visited as a child):

Arches NP,  Badlands NP,  Bryce Canyon NP,  Canyonlands NP,  Death Valley NP,  Denali NP,  Glacier NP*,  Grand Canyon NP,  Great Smokey Mountains NP,  Haleakala NP,  Hawaii Volcanoes NP,  Kenai Fjords NP,  Mammoth Cave NP,  Mt. Ranier NP*,  Petrified Forest NP,  Shenandoah NP,  Theodore,  Roosevelt NP,  Wrangell St. Elias NP,  Yellowstone NP*,  Yosemite NP,  Zion NP

New Parks I’m planning to go to in 2016!

Acadia NP – Maine
Lassen Volcanic NP – California
Redwoods NP-  California
Rocky Mountain NP – Colorado
Great Sand Dunes NP – Colroado

What’s YOUR Park trivia? How many parks have you been to and how many are you going to in 2016? Share in the comments below!

 

Sherry Ott
Sherry Ott is a refugee from corporate IT who is now a long term traveler, blogger, and photographer. She’s a co-founder of Briefcasetobackpack.com, a website offering career break travel inspiration and advice.

Additionally, she runs an around the world travel blog writing about her travel and expat adventures at Ottsworld.com.com.
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