Browsing Tag: natgeo

    Your Guide to San Francisco | National Geographic
    Articles, Blog

    Your Guide to San Francisco | National Geographic

    August 20, 2019

    – [Narrator] San Francisco is a rush. A rush of art, flavors,
    history, and innovation. (funky rhythmic music) It’s all packed into a
    seven-by-seven-mile square, between the Pacific Ocean
    and the San Francisco Bay. The city has long attracted trailblazers and countercultures. The Gold Rush, immigration, beatniks, hippies, the LGBTQ community,
    and the tech industry have all fueled San
    Francisco’s enduring influence on American culture. If you’ve seen a movie
    set in San Francisco, you’ve probably seen Chinatown. The Dragon Gate arch at
    Grant Avenue and Bush Street tells visitors they’re entering
    America’s oldest Chinatown. In the mid-1800s, the
    lure of the Gold Rush and the availability of work
    building the Pacific Railroad, drew large numbers of Chinese
    immigrants to San Francisco. Today you can take in the
    scene on packed Grant Avenue, and head to Stockton Street for the authentic Chinatown experience. You can shop for traditional
    Chinese ingredients, sip a cup of fragrant jasmine
    tea, and eat at some of the best Chinese restaurants in the world. The Golden Gate Bridge might be the most iconic San Francisco landmark, but the massive Golden Gate Park is one of the most visited
    green spaces in the U.S. 20% larger than New York’s Central Park, it covers a thousand square acres in a near perfect rectangle, stretching from the oceanfront west, to the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood. It includes numerous gardens, the historic Conservatory of Flowers, and two world-class museums, the California Academy of Sciences, and the de Young Museum of Fine Art. It also has some pretty unusual
    residents for the big city, a herd of bison. Buffalo have lived in
    the park since the 1890s. And the tradition continues
    today with a small group of six bison that spend their days in a bucolic green pasture
    next to Spreckels Lake. Keep going west and you’ll
    find yourself at Ocean Beach. The top of the five-mile
    stretch of shoreline borders Lands End, a national
    park with otherworldly views on the Northwest coast of the city. You can also explore the modern
    ruins of the Sutro Baths. When they opened in 1896, it was the largest indoor
    swimming facility in the world. But the massive complex of
    saltwater pools, restaurants, games, and even a museum,
    burned to the ground in 1966. After you’ve climbed the crumbling walls, stairs, and tunnels, you can unwind at the historic
    Cliff House restaurant. Originally constructed in 1863, the resort has been rebuilt
    three times over the years. Today you can take in the panoramic views in one of the two restaurants that now occupy the
    neoclassical structure. The lure of the city by the bay goes so much deeper
    than its natural beauty. San Francisco’s diversity,
    artistic spirit, and innovative drive all make
    it a rich source of adventure for any free spirited traveler. (upbeat funky music)

    A Brief History of Yellowstone National Park | National Geographic
    Articles, Blog

    A Brief History of Yellowstone National Park | National Geographic

    August 12, 2019

    (light music) – [Marielena] Yellowstone is epic, strange, and iconic. It is well-deserving of
    its protected status. But how did it come to be the worlds first National Park? (light music) Archeologists have found evidence of human activity in Yellowstone that dates back at least 11,000 years. Oral histories of Salish Native Americans suggest their ancestors were here 3,000 years ago. Today there are still 26
    Native American tribes that are connected to this land. Some of the first
    European visitors included fur traders and trackers
    in the late 1700s. But the first big incentive for settlers came in 1863, gold. (water sloshing) Prospectors flocked to Yellowstone in hopes of finding more. The Northern Pacific
    Railroad Company heard of the wonders of Yellowstone. A big attraction like this
    could help their plans to expand their railroad west. So they sponsored the
    Washburn-Langford-Doane Expedition of 1870. As the first formal
    expedition of Yellowstone, they explored vast regions of the park. Including Tower Fall, Yellowstone Lake, and the geyser basins. Their most memorable achievement, naming Old Faithful. (light music) Painter Thomas Moran as
    well as a photographer and sketch artist were also on the expedition team. Their work introduced
    Yellowstone to the world. And captured the imagination of Congress. Then, on March 1st, 1872, President Ulysses S. Grant signed an act establishing Yellowstone National Park. The country’s very first National Park. (light music) The Park is around two million acres. An expansive wilderness with places that even today few have seen. Filled with wildlife including 285 species of birds. And over 65 species of mammals. (wolf howling) But what’s on top of this park is nothing compared to the giant reserve of magma that lies below. Thermal power is what
    makes Yellowstone tick. Old Faithful remains true to its name. And to this day gushes
    up thousands of gallons of hot water every hour or so. (light music) It’s one of the most famous natural features in Yellowstone. But, it’s not the only one. There are over 10,000 thermal features in Yellowstone. Including hot springs, mud pots, and steam vents. They sit in one giant
    caldera of a super volcano. Some 45 miles across at its widest. 2.1 million years ago Yellowstone erupted and covered over 5,000
    square miles with ash. About 6,000 times the volume of material ejected from Mount St. Helens in 1980. It’s among the largest volcano eruptions known to man. Yellowstone is still active and another eruption is possible. But it probably won’t
    happen in the next thousand or even 10,000 years. In the meantime, Yellowstone hosts millions
    of guests every year. There are now 59 National Parks in the United States. But Yellowstone will always be the world’s first.