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“Are we being good ancestors?” -Jonas Salk

Updated: Feb 2, 2022

Our ancestors six generations ago got something right that has impacted every generation since. They embraced the idea of preserving natural areas for the enjoyment of all by establishing the first National Park.

By the Act of March 1, 1872, Congress established Yellowstone National Park in the Territories of Montana and Wyoming "as a public park or pleasuring-ground for the benefit and enjoyment of the people" and placed it "under exclusive control of the Secretary of the Interior." The founding of Yellowstone National Park began a worldwide national park movement. Today more than 100 nations contain some 1,200 national parks or equivalent preserves. (

Elk River, British Columbia

I was fortunate enough to spend a week exploring northwestern Montana. Our travels included visits to Glacier National Park, Kootenai National Forest and Flathead National Forest. We hiked, biked, rafted and climbed our way through amazingly beautiful landscapes that would have been recognizable to time travelers from six generations ago.

Let’s to continue to protect and preserve our National and State parks. They are important reminders to what we once were and links to those who came before us. It’s an opportunity for us to be good ancestors as well.

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