Mount Rushmore National Memorial under construction.
The workers had to endure conditions that varied from blazing hot to bitterly cold and windy. Each day they climbed 700 stairs to the top of the mountain to punch-in on the time clock. Then 3/8 inch thick steel cables lowered them over the front of the 500-foot face of the mountain in a "bosun chair." Despite the dangers, no one was killed during the project.
Otters in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska.
The sea otter population of Glacier Bay has increased dramatically in the past 20 years. Ecologists consider sea otters a keystone species here. Otters consume vast quantities of clams, urchins, crabs, and other invertebrates and their presence creates ripples through the ecosystem. NPS photo.
Every day someone like you becomes a wildland wildfire fighter, a teacher, a trail-builder, a museum curator, or a park ranger. Discover your opportunities in national parks. Come to play. Come to learn. Come to serve. Develop your environmental leadership skills. Find a job. Be the next generation to preserve and protect these great places.
With more than 80% of Americans living in urban areas, urban parks are more important than ever. The father of American landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted, said of urban parks:
It is one great purpose of the Park to supply to the hundreds of thousands of tired workers, who have no opportunity to spend their summers in the country, a specimen of God's handiwork that shall be to them, inexpensively, what a month or two in the White Mountains or the Adirondacks is, at great cost, to those in easier circumstances.
Readout of Secretary Salazar and BLM Director Abbey's Visit to Fire Incident Command Post in Arizona
Office of the Secretary
Salazar Receives Briefing and Thanks Firefighters and Volunteers
SPRINGERVILLE, AZ – Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today spent time with the men and women battling the wildfires in Arizona.
Secretary Salazar attended the morning Cooperators Briefing with Incident Commander Norm Walker, Apache Chief Deputy Police Mike Hogan, Area Commander Jim Loach of the National Park Service, and local tribal leaders where he received an update on the efforts to contain the fires and the work by federal partners on the ground – including DOI, the U.S. Forest Service, the National Weather Service and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) – to support state and local responders.
Along with Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Director Bob Abbey and US Geological Survey Director Marcia McNutt, Secretary Salazar then toured the Fire Incident Command Post in Springerville where they are coordinating activities to fight the Wallow Fire. Secretary Salazar spent time with the volunteers and fire fighters there and emphasized that the key priority is for safety, both for the wildland fire fighters and the public.
The Department of the Interior plays a key role in the federal government's wildland firefighting organization. Over 3,400 personnel from Interior are currently supporting fire suppression efforts nationwide with 980 personnel responding to the Wallow fire.
Earlier this year, Secretary Salazar visited the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) in Boise, Idaho, to discuss the 2011 fire season and the Department's ongoing commitment to developing a cohesive national strategy to better address the mounting risks of wildfire around the nation.