OldWestNewWest.com: History & Travel Magazine

Feb 21st
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Join Yellowstone Association Institute naturalist MacNeil Lyons at the REI in Bozeman on March 10, 2011, at 6:30 p.m. for a free multi-media presentation on Springtime Wonders and Recreation in Yellowstone.

Learn how to take advantage of Yellowstone National Park's "shoulder season" through insider tips on which locations are the best for viewing wildlife, what park roads are open, as well as advice on how to travel safely and lightly on the land. Discover what impact your recreational opportunities might have on the resources during this quiet time in the park.
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Cherokee Nation Cultural Tourism will commemorate the American Civil War's 150th Anniversary with an April 16, 2011 tour focusing on how the war impacted the Cherokee Nation.

The tour includes a visit to historic Capitol Square in Tahlequah, Okla., to learn about the destruction by Confederate troops. Guests will also visit the Murrell Home, an antebellum home that survived the fires of the Civil War.
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Cave Without a Name, the sixth longest cave in Texas, has been named a National Natural Landmark.

The landmark status was given to the Texas natural wonder, along with a rare ecosystem in Pennsylvania, and major fossil sites in Kentucky, New York, and Vermont.
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Keep a lookout for them as you drive the road to Scotty's Castle in Death Valley National Park. If you are watchful, you'll see the wagon tracks as they cut across the desert landscape and disappear into the distant hills.

Looking as fresh as yesterday, these tracks were made more than a hundred years ago by wagon trains seeking a shortcut to California. The tragedy of those early wagon trains is written all across the West.
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Helping to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS), a new exhibit showcasing some of the West's most spectacular landscapes is now on display at the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center in Casper, Wyoming.

Captured by noted Bureau of Land Management (BLM) photographer Robert Wick, the images feature NLCS sites in Wyoming as well as locations in California, Nevada, Oregon and Utah.
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The nonprofit Yellowstone Association Institute (YAI) has announced its 2011 summer lineup of Field Seminars, and the 75 programs, including 21 new offerings, range from wildlife behavior and hiking to history, geology, and the wolves of Yellowstone.

"We have many visitors who are fascinated by specific Yellowstone topics, and we developed many of these new programs to address those interests," said Jeff Brown, director of education for YAI. "Our summer courses cover a wide range of topics and help to achieve our goal of generating a stronger appreciation of Yellowstone. They are also some the best values in the region."
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If there's anyone who can offer our readers some great vacation ideas and favorite places to visit in the West in 2009, it's Bob Livingston, senior vice president of  Affinity Media, and publisher of Trailer Life and MotorHome magazines, and the Good Sam Club's member magazine Highways.

So, I asked Bob, an avid RVer, to share with you some of his preferred getaway destinations, places that might be a little less visited and might be even thought of as a secret spot of his.
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The Indian culture on view at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. isn't what many expect. Take the newest exhibit this summer, "Ramp It Up: Skateboard Culture in Native America" in the Sealaska Gallery. It has rare photographs and objects celebrating the skateboard in Native American life.

Bet you hadn't thought of that as an Indian sport.
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Special scenic highway designations have been announced for 15 routes in the West, reflecting either their historic setting or picturesque qualities that travelers should include in their vacation or holiday itineraries.

The new scenic designations in the West, announced by U. S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, are among 42 new designations to the America's Byways collection, including five All-American Roads (AAR) and 37 National Scenic Byways (NSB) in 26 states. This increases the number of America's Byways to 151.
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Ever since Bobby Troup penned the lyrics to his 1946 hit song, "Get your Kicks On Route 66," people have been doing just that.

Actually, the Route 66 mystique began a decade earlier with John Steinbeck's epic novel, Grapes of Wrath. The book and movie were anything but enticing but it launched the Route 66 fascination that continues today.
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Two new roller coaster thrill rides have been added in the West for visitors to enjoy this summer of 2012.

Mr. Freeze: Reverse Blast is now open at Six Flags St. Louis and Six Flags Over Texas located in Arlington, Texas.

Both rides continue to feature the original Mr. Freeze theme, patterned after Batman's cold-hearted nemesis in the DC Comics Batman series.

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Chimney Rock, one of the West's great historical settings and natural wonders, has been proclaimed a national monument by President Barack Obama.

Located in the San Juan National Forest in southwestern Colorado, Chimney Rock offers a spectacular landscape rich in history and Native American culture.

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Tropical storms and other flood events such as rivers overflowing their banks are often termed disasters because of injuries, fatalities and the destruction of homes and businesses. Part of the disaster is the loss of family culture or heirlooms.

"I am so saddened by the stories of people who have lost so much from floods and storms," said National Park Service Director Mary A. Bomar. "They often look into the camera and tell us ‘they're only photos and we're alive' but those emotions can't hide the truth - loss of personal heirlooms is devastating."
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Texas is presenting a variety of distinctive holiday events, many of them available through Jan. 4, 2009, and they range from tree lighting festivals to historic home tours, markets and parades.

One thing is for sure: No snow boots or parkas are required to enjoy festivities around the Lone Star State during the holiday season.
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There are spectacular artifacts and stunning works of native art in the National Museum of the American Indian, located on the Mall in Washington D.C. But if you expect just great examples of art and artifacts, you'll miss the point.

This is a museum on a mission - to create a link between the past and the present and to reveal to the visitor the vibrant lives and cultures of native peoples of the Americas and how they live today. And that fits with our mission here at OldWestNewWest.Com Travel & History Magazine where we explore those links for all who enjoy the West, past and present.
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A five-mile section of trail through the heart of Whiskeytown National Recreation Area in northern California linking Brandy Creek Falls Trail with Boulder Creek Falls Trail is now open, thanks to the hard work of volunteer groups and Student Conservation Association (SCA) summer interns.

The new trail has been under construction since the summer of 2007. A 16-person SCA crew of summer interns worked for nine weeks to construct 2.5 miles of the new trail through the rugged Papoose Pass. A celebration of the completion of the new section was held Aug. 15, 2009.
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Seniors and persons with disabilities using approved recreation passes will continue to receive a 50 percent discount at U.S. Forest Service campgrounds run by private concessions, at least for the rest of 2010.

The decision to keep discounts at their current rate was made by USDA Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell.
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This month we're starting "Scenic Drives" - a new section for OldWestNewWest.com Travel & History Magazine, and you told us it's a feature you really want to see.

Our first best Scenic Drive is an overview of central California's Big Sur Coastline, Highway 1 between Monterey and San Simeon, home of Hearst Castle.
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There's good news and bad news for visitors heading to Grand Canyon National Park for the 2012 summer, and they deal with two basic elements: Water and Fire.

First, potable water is once again available at all filling stations within the Inner Canyon at Grand Canyon National Park.

Second, because of hot, dry and windy conditions at the park, rangers have put in place campfire restrictions.
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A stranded hiker snow-bound in California's Yosemite National Park for 12 days is alive today because of some smart decisions he made after he got stuck - and a little good luck.

Rangers said park visitor Steve Frazier was rescued Nov. 12 after being trapped for nearly two weeks in two feet of snow. Searchers spotted the missing hiker and his camp from the air on their very first pass over the area after seeing an "SOS" that he had stomped out in the snow.
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