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Articles by Samantha Lee

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On their 100th anniversary, Grist is exploring America’s national parks and the humans who use them. See the full series.

That poet of America’s parks, John Muir, penned numerous lines at the start of the last century that seem like they were directed at an audience in our distracted, gadget-loving age.

“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity,” Muir wrote.

A century later, the tired and nerve-shaken seek head to the wilderness by the carload, except that instead of Muir’s thousands there are millions. Our national parks played host to more than 307 million visitors last year, the most on record. And at least half of them were probably hoping to snap a selfie with a bear.

While we know that you would never do anything so silly and dangerous, we’re here to spread a little park safety awareness for the over-civilized and phone-obsessed among us.

Embrace the outdoors; just not literally

People get far too friendly with all kinds of large, hairy mammals. Last year, five tourists in Yellowstone National Park were either tossed or g... Read more