Saturday, October 5, 2013

Saturday Short Subjects: Yosemite Turned 123…

and no one celebrated.

Because the park was closed due to the government shutdown.

Yosemite National Park survived the massive Big Rim Fire that started on August 17. [The wildfire burned an area estimated to be 402 square miles. The cause is still under investigation. Best estimates are that it will be fully contained tomorrow, October 6.]

Yosemite, in the high Sierras of California, became a national park by act of Congress on October 1, 1890. It is known for striking granite vistas, waterfalls, and majestic giant sequoias, celebrated in the dramatic black and white images of California photographer Ansel Adams.

Normally I would include a link to the National Park Services page on Yosemite for more information, but even the website is down.

Many people dream for years about a trip to Yosemite (or any of the other 58 national parks) and make reservations months in advance. Now they are locked out. Yosemite is on my dream list, and I know how I would feel. 

Tourism is taking a big hit.

So are the federal coffers. According to the LA Times, each day of the shutdown the National Parks is losing an estimated $32 million in park entrance fees and other revenue

Today’s headlines tell of an exhausted Congress planning to take Sunday off (while still being paid I might add).

I’m made as hell. Are you?

PS Thanks to Google, you can check out 5 of the national parks in California on Street View here and enjoy a virtual tour of the Grand Canyon here.

Sorry, but that’s about all I can offer.

Why Saturday Short Subjects? Some readers may recall  being dropped at the movie theater for the Saturday matinee — two action-packed feature films with a series of short subjects (cartoons or short movies, sometimes a serial cliffhanger) sandwiched in between. Often the short subjects were the most memorable, and enjoyable, part of the morning. That explains the name. The reason behind these particular posts is that we are all short on time. My Short Subject posts should not take me as long to write or you as long to read (or try).

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