Your national forests and grasslands are 193 million acres of vast, scenic beauty waiting for you to discover. Visitors who choose to recreate on these public lands find more than 150,000 miles of trails, 10,000 developed recreation sites, 57,000 miles of streams, 122 alpine ski areas, 338,000 heritage sites, and specially designated sites that include 9,100 miles of byways, 22 recreation areas, 11 scenic areas, 439 wilderness areas, 122 wild and scenic rivers, nine monuments, and one preserve. And remember, “It’s All Yours.”
Misty Fjords National Monument
In 1978, President Jimmy Carter proclaimed over 2,200,000 acres as the Misty Fjords National Monument. In 1980, this acreage got reduced to 2,142,243 acres but was now congressionally designated as Misty Fjords National Monument Wilderness and still remains the largest wilderness area on the Tongass National Forest. Due to this designation, it is now strategically managed to continue the preservation of this undeveloped, enduring ecosystem for the enjoyment of present and future generations.
Away from the glow of city lights, the vast dark skies above the Cleveland National Forest offer a perfect venue for stargazing. On clear nights, dozens of people gather at Observatory Campground on Palomar Mountain in southern California and turn their gazes skyward during monthly “Explore the Stars” events. The free star parties are offered one weekend a month from April through October.
Nowhere else is there a rail trail that starts in a remote, beautiful tributary canyon, winds along a nationally designated Wild & Scenic River, and finishes in one of the nation’s only National Scenic Areas.
Located in southern Washington State, in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge, the Klickitat Trail follows the first 31 miles of an old railroad corridor linking the towns of Lyle and Goldendale.
The Giant Sequoia National Monument was designated by President William Jefferson Clinton in April 2000. The Monument now encompasses 328,315 acres. The giant sequoia (Sequoiadendron giganteum) is the world's largest tree. It grows naturally only in a narrow 60-mile band of mixed conifer forest on the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in California. The Giant Sequoia National Monument Management Plan was completed in August 2012.
Looking like a cross between a science fiction landscape and something out of a Dr. Seuss book, the tufa towers of Mono Lake are a strange sight to behold. Emerging from salty, alkaline waters, these bizarre looking limestone formations are best explored by kayak or canoe at South Tufa.