National Parks – America’s Greatest Idea

By Wilderness Adventures May 31, 2012

The National Parks fuel the American Soul thanks to their ability to provide shared ownership of natural treasures, foster a connection to the natural world and provide a legacy that we can pass down to our children. Like democracy, they are a uniquely American concept that has spread throughout the world thanks to a long history of strong leaders such as Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt who believed that the core of America’s strength (and essence) lay in its connection to the natural world. Passing down these sacred spaces of extreme beauty and inspiration is one of the greatest gifts we can give our children.


Shared Ownership

One of the themes that the Ken Burns’ PBS National Parks documentary explores is the unique idea of shared American ownership over some of our most spectacular pieces of property. The argument is that in any other western society throughout history, the best bits of land were always occupied by the aristocracy whereas, in contrast, strong leaders and conservationists in the US had the foresight and fortitude to set aside places like Yosemite and Yellowstone to be preserved and also enjoyed by the population as a whole. The notion is that the parks are ours as Americans, and that that’s a very special thing.


Connection to the Natural World

Thanks to our agrarian and pioneering history, participation in the citizenship of this country is inextricably linked with a connection with the out of doors. Few places inspire the sense of wonder and appreciation like the National Parks. Wilderness Ventures has been leading outdoor adventures in the most-enchanting natural landscapes on the planet since 1973. Thanks to our tremendous foresight, we hold operating permits in the most stunning protected lands in the US, including several National Parks.



We believe that the National Park system is crucial for inspiring the next generation of young leaders with a conservation ethic, a connection to the out of doors and a sense of ownership over their destiny and their landscape. On a Wilderness Ventures experience, young people have the opportunity to grow and enjoy Denali National Park, Grand Teton National Park, Volcanoes National Park, Mount Rainier National Park, North Cascades National Park, Olympic National Park, Redwood National Park, Yellowstone National Park and Yosemite National Park. Combine these stunning National Parks with our exclusive permits in the nation’s most inspiring Wilderness Areas and National Forests, and we are able to offer a comprehensive and inspiring experience like no other.


Much like a Wilderness Ventures trip, The National Park system creates a sense of shared ownership and a connection to the natural world for our country’s next generation of inspiring (and inspired) leaders. For more thoughts about the significance for the National Park system, read from documentarian Ken Burns. For more information about our life-changing teen adventure programs, visit or call 800-533-2281. We look forward to speaking with you about the best summer of your life amidst our country’s national treasures.