I’ve started watching the Ken Burns’ documentary The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, and today showed the first hour to my Natural Resources Law class.  The film brought to mind two initial thoughts.

First, after watching about John Muir, I considered all the environmentalists/conservationists/outdoorsmen from Wisconsin (where I grew up)–Muir, Aldo Leopold, Owen Gromme, Gaylord Nelson, and, of course, my grandfather Gerald Czarnezki (a proud member of the first graduating class of the conservation education program at the Central State Teachers College at Stevens Point, now UW-Stevens Point).   Of note, Wisconsin passed the Conservation Education Statute that required “adequate instruction in the conservation of natural resources” in order to be certified to teach science or social studies, and the state legislature also required that conservation of natural resources be taught in public elementary and high schools.

Second, it made me want to create a lists of national parks that I want to see for the first time or return to.  The list so far:

  1. Yosemite
  2. Grand Canyon
  3. Kenai Fjords
  4. Glacier Bay
  5. Return to Yellowstone and Grand Teton with family
  6. Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park
  7. Redwood
  8. Glacier

I’ll keep adding to the list, and will likely add more  once I finish the Burns documentary.  Please feel free to suggest some additions.  The Park Service does have an interactive map online.

Updated: I’ve added to my list– 9. Muir Woods, 10. Crater Lake, 11. Zion