National Parks Guide

US National Parks and Monuments Travel Guide: US-Parks.com

These magnificent parks are located all over the U.S. with over 50 Parks to explore! From the spectacular geysers of Yellowstone National Park to the largest concentration of arches at Arches National Park, the United States has an abundance of beautiful parks for your enjoyment.

Atlantic coast shoreline, mixed hardwood and spruce/fir forest, mountains, and lakes, as well as several offshore islands.

The idea of a "national park" must have jarred strangely the nineteenth century intellects upon which the words of a Montana lawyer fell as he spoke from the shadows of a campfire in the wilderness of the Yellowstone one autumn night 70 years ago. For Cornelius Hedges addressed a generation dedicated to the winning of the West. He spoke at a time when stout hearted pioneers had their faces determinedly set toward the distant Pacific as they steadily pushed the frontier of civilization and industrialization across prairie and mountain range to claim the land for a Nation between the coasts.

His plan was presented to men cast of that die-men whose courage and enterprise characterized the era in which they lived. But Cornelius Hedges had looked deeply into American character and was not disappointed. He counted upon the altruism which marked that character, and planted in it the ideal which instantly took root and has since flowered as one of America's greatest treasures: the national park system. Thus was a new social concept born to a Nation itself reborn.

From Bryce Canyon National Park with its' abundance of hoodoos and canyons, to Everglades National Park offering everything from bird watching to boating, there is more than enough to keep any outdoor enthusiast exploring for a lifetime.

National Parks

Acadia National Park
Atlantic coast shoreline, mixed hardwood and spruce/fir forest, mountains, and lakes, as well as several offshore islands.

Arches National Park
Arches National Park preserves over two thousand natural sandstone arches, including the world-famous Delicate Arch, in addition to a variety of unique geological resources and formations. In some areas, faulting has exposed millions of years of geologic history.The extraordinary features of the park, including balanced rocks, fins and pinnacles, are highlighted by a striking environment of contrasting colors, landforms and textures.

Badlands National Park
Located in southwestern South Dakota, Badlands National Park consists of 244,000 acres of sharply eroded buttes, pinnacles and spires blended with the largest, protected mixed grass prairie in the United States.

Big Bend National Park
Big Bend merges natural environments from desert to mountains. It is a place where south meets north and east meets west, creating a great diversity of plants and animals.

Biscayne National Park
The 10,000 year human history of the place reflects its temperamental nature. Some days, Biscayne Bay's shallow waters are glassy smooth, other times, the wind whistles and whips, creating white waves.

Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park
The Black Canyon of the Gunnison's unique and spectacular landscape was formed slowly by the action of water and rock scouring down through hard Proterozoic crystalline rock.

Bryce Canyon National Park
At Bryce Canyon National Park, erosion has shaped colorful Claron limestones, sandstones, and mudstones into thousands of spires, fins, pinnacles, and mazes.

Canyonlands National Park
Canyonlands National Park preserves a colorful landscape of sedimentary sandstones eroded into countless canyons, mesas and buttes by the Colorado River and its tributaries.

Capitol Reef National Park
The Waterpocket Fold, a 100-mile long wrinkle in the earth's crust known as a monocline, extends from nearby Thousand Lakes Mountain to the Colorado River (now Lake Powell). Capitol Reef National Park was established to protect this grand and colorful geologic feature, as well as the unique historical and cultural history found in the area.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park
Established to preserve Carlsbad Cavern and numerous other caves within a Permian-age fossil reef, the park contains 100 known caves, including Lechuguilla Cave the nation's deepest limestone cave at 1,567 feet (478m) and third longest.

Channel Islands National Park
Comprised of five in a chain of eight southern California islands near Los Angeles, Channel Islands National Park is home to a wide variety of nationally and internationally significant natural and cultural resources. The park consists of 249,354 acres, half of which are under the ocean. Over 2,000 species of plants and animals can be found within the park.

Congaree National Park
The monument rests on a floodplain of the Congaree River and is not a true swamp. This remnant preserves the largest intact tract of old-growth bottomland hardwood forest in the United States.

Crater Lake National Park
Crater Lake is widely known for its intense blue color and spectacular views.

Cuyahoga Valley National Park
Cuyahoga Valley National Park protects 33,000 acres along the banks of the Cuyahoga River. The winding Cuyahogathe "crooked river," as named by American Indiansgives way to rolling floodplain, steep valley walls and ravines, and lush upland forests.

Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park has more than 3.3 million acres of spectacular desert scenery, interesting and rare desert wildlife, complex geology, undisturbed wilderness, and sites of historical and cultural interest.

Denali National Park and Preserve
Denali National Park and Preserve features North America's highest mountain, 20,320-foot tall Mount McKinley. The Alaska Range also includes countless other spectacular mountains and many large glaciers. Denali's more than 6 million acres also encompass a complete sub-arctic eco-system with large mammals such as grizzly bears, wolves, Dall sheep, and moose.

Dry Tortugas National Park
Seven islands, composed of coral reefs and sand, are called the Dry Tortugas. Along with the surrounding shoals and waters, they make up Dry Tortugas National Park. The area is known for its famous bird and marine life, and its legends of pirates and sunken gold. Ft. Jefferson, the largest of the 19th century American coastal forts is a central feature.

Everglades National Park
Spanning the southern tip of the Florida peninsula and most of Florida Bay, Everglades National Park is the only subtropical preserve in North America. The park is known for its rich bird life. It is also the only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles exist side by side.

Gates Of The Arctic National Park and Preserve
By establishing Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve (GAAR) in Alask, Congress has reserved a vast and untouched area of superlative natural beauty and exceptional scientific value - a maze of glaciated valleys and rugged mountains covered with boreal forest and arctic tundra vegetation, cut by wild rivers, and inhabited by far-ranging populations of caribou, Dall sheep, wolves, and bears.

Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve provides opportunities for adventure, a living laboratory for observing the ebb and flow of glaciers, and a chance to study life as it returns in the wake of retreating ice. The park has snow-capped mountain ranges rising to over 15,000 feet, coastal beaches with protected coves, deep fjords, tidewater glaciers, coastal and estuarine waters, and freshwater lakes.

Glacier National Park
Glacier preserves over 1,000,000 acres of forests, alpine meadows, and lakes. It is home to over 70 species of mammels and 260 species of birds. The spectacular glaciated landscape is a hikers paradise.

Grand Canyon National Park
One of the most spectacular examples of erosion anywhere in the world, Grand Canyon is unmatched in the incomparable vistas it offers to visitors on the rim.

Grand Teton National Park
Grand Teton National Park protects stunning mountain scenery and a diverse array of wildlife. Rising over 7000 feet above the valley known as Jackson Hole, the Teton Range dominates the parks skyline. .

Great Basin National Park
Great Basin National Park includes streams, lakes, alpine plants, abundant wildlife, a variety of forest types including groves of ancient bristlecone pines, and numerous limestone caverns, including beautiful Lehman Caves.

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve
Nestled in southern Colorado, North America's tallest dunes rise over 750 feet high against the rugged Sangre de Cristo Mountains. The wind shaped dunes glow beneath the rugged backdrop of the mountains.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park
World renowned for the diversity of its plant and animal life, the beauty of its ancient mountains, the quality of its remnants of Southern Appalachian mountain culture, and the depth and integrity of its wilderness sanctuary, the park attracts over nine million visitors each year.

Guadalupe Mountains National Park
This mountain mass contains portions of the world's most extensive and significant Permian limestone fossil reef. Also featured are a tremendous earth fault, lofty peaks, unusual flora and fauna, and a colorful record of the past. Guadalupe Peak, highest point in Texas at 8,749 feet; El Capitan, a massive limestone formation; McKittrick Canyon, with its unique flora and fauna; and the "Bowl", located in a high country conifer forest, are significant park features.

Haleakala National Park
The Park preserves the outstanding volcanic landscape of the upper slopes of Haleakala on the island of Maui.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park encompasses diverse environments that range from sea level to the summit of the earth's most massive volcano, Mauna Loa at 13,677 feet.

Hot Springs National Park
Congress established Hot Springs Reservation on April 20, 1832 to protect hot springs flowing from the southwestern slope of Hot Springs Mountain. This makes it the oldest park currently in the National Park System.

Isle Royale National Park
Wolves and moose, the wild North Woods forest, everchanging weather and a cool climate, and the crystal clear waters and rugged shoreline of Lake Superior characterize Isle Royale National Park.

Joshua Tree National Park
Two deserts, two large ecosystems whose characteristics are determined primarily by elevation, come together at Joshua Tree National Park. The Colorado Desert encompasses the eastern part of the park and features natural gardens of creosote bush, ocotillo, and cholla cactus. The higher, moister, and slightly cooler Mojave Desert is the special habitat of the Joshua tree.

Katmai National Park and Preserve
Katmai is famous for volcanoes, brown bears, fish, and rugged wilderness and is also the site of the Brooks River National Historic Landmark with North America's highest concentration of prehistoric human dwellings (about 900).

Kenai Fjords National Park
The Kenai Fjords reflect scenic icebound landscapes in which salt spray mixes with mountain mist. Located on the southeastern Kenai Peninsula, the national park is a pristine and rugged land supporting many unaltered natural environments and ecosystems.

Kobuk Valley National Park
The park povides protection for several important geographic features, including the central portion of the Kobuk River, the 25-sqaure-mile Great Kobuk Sand Dunes, and the Little Kobuk and Hunt River dunes.

Lake Clark National Park and Preserve
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve is a composite of ecosystems representative of many regions of Alaska. The spectacular scenery stretches from the shores of Cook Inlet, across the Chigmit Mountains, to the tundra covered hills of the western interior.

Lassen Volcanic National Park
Lassen Volcanic became a national park in 1916 because of its significance as an active volcanic landscape. All four types of volcanoes in the world are found in the park. Over 150 miles of trails and a culturally significant scenic highway provide access to volcanic wonders.

Mammoth Cave National Park
Mammoth Cave National Park was established to preserve the cave system, including Mammoth Cave, the scenic river valleys of the Green and Nolin rivers, and a section of south central Kentucky.

Mesa Verde National Park
The archeological sites found in Mesa Verde are some of the most notable and best preserved in the United States. Mesa Verde National Park offers visitors a spectacular look into the lives of the Ancestral Pueblo people.

Mount Rainier National Park
The park contains Mount Rainier (14,410'), an active volcano encased in over 35 square miles of snow and ice, and outstanding examples of old growth forests and subalpine meadows.

North Cascades National Park
North Cascades National Park includes jagged peaks, deep valleys, cascading waterfalls and over 700 glaciers. North Cascades National Park Service Complex contains three park units, all of which offers different experiences.

Olympic National Park
Glacier capped mountains, wild Pacific coast and magnificent stands of old-growth forests, including temperate rain forests -- at Olympic National Park, you can find all three.

Petrified Forest National Park
Petrified Forest features one of the world's largest and most colorful concentrations of petrified wood. Also included are the multi-hued badlands of the Chinle Formation known as the Painted Desert, historic structures, archeological sites and displays of 225 million-year-old fossils.

Pinnacles National Park
Rising out of the chaparral-covered Gabilan Mountains, are the spectacular remains of an ancient volcano. Massive monoliths, spires, sheer-walled canyons and talus passages define millions of years of erosion, faulting and tectonic plate movement.

Rocky Mountain National Park
The park exhibits the massive grandeur of the Rocky Mountains. Trail Ridge Road crosses the Continental Divide and looks out over dozens of peaks that tower more than 13,000 feet high. The high point on Trail Ridge Road is 12,183'. .Longs Peak, the highest peak in the park, is 14,259' in elevation.

Rocky Mountain National Park
The park exhibits the massive grandeur of the Rocky Mountains. Trail Ridge Road crosses the Continental Divide and looks out over dozens of peaks that tower more than 13,000 feet high. The high point on Trail Ridge Road is 12,183'. .Longs Peak, the highest peak in the park, is 14,259' in elevation.

Saguaro National Park
This unique desert is home to the most recognizable cactus in the world, the majestic saguaro. Saguaro cacti provide their fruits to hungry desert animals. They also provide homes to a variety of birds. With an average life span of 150 years, a mature saguaro may grow to a height of 50 feet and weigh over 10 tons.

Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park
These two adjoining parks protect immense mountains, deep canyons, huge trees, and stunningly diverse habitats. Sequoia and Kings Canyon share miles of boundary and are managed as one park.

Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park lies astride a beautiful section of the Blue Ridge Mountains, which form the eastern rampart of the Appalachian Mountains between Pennsylvania and Georgia.

Theodore Roosevelt National Park
Theodore Roosevelt National Park is in the colorful North Dakota badlands and is home to a variety of plants and animals, including bison, prairie dogs, and elk.

Voyageurs National Park
The park represents some of the oldest exposed rock formations in the world. The topography of the park is rugged and varied; rolling hills are interspersed between bogs, beaver ponds, swamps, islands, small lakes and four large lakes. Voyageurs is a water based park.

Wind Cave National Park
Wind Cave National Park preserves one of the world's longest and most complex caves and 28,295 acres of mixed-grass prairie, ponderosa pine forest, and associated wildlife.

Wrangell - St Elias National Park and Preserve
The park-preserve includes the continent's largest assemblage of glaciers and the greatest collection of peaks above 16,000 feet. The site is characterized by remote mountains, valleys, wild rivers, and a variety of wildlife.

Yellowstone National Park
Geothermal wonders, such as Old Faithful, are evidence of one of the world's largest active volcanoes. After exploration Congress decided that the area known as Yellowstone needed to be protected and preserved.

Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park harbors a grand collection of waterfalls, meadows, and forests that include groves of giant sequoias, the world's largest living things.

Zion National Park
Protected within the park's 229 square miles is a dramatic landscape of sculptured canyons and soaring cliffs.

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