Hindsight

Now that I have been home for a couple weeks, I have been able to truly realize how this trip influenced me. I learned more than I can explain from this trip and am beyond grateful for my opportunity to be part of this experience. I got to see beautiful landscape unlike anything I ever have, I saw wildlife in its natural habitat, learned of many controversial issues within Yellowstone, got to explore different communities, talk to various stakeholders and residents, and I made a group of friends I continue to keep in touch with now. I am a nursing major and this course is so different than any other courses I take for my degree. With this course, I feel more motivated than ever to want to learn and become involved in my school and community. I also learned how important the environment is and I have been trying to be more coexisting with nature than ever before. I have always loved the outdoors, but this class has set me up to be successful in my personal efforts to be eco-friendly, but help promote community environmental efforts as well. I am excited to see how I continue to utilize the information and life lessons from my trip in...

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy 2014-05-29 13:09:27

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy  2014-05-29 13:09:27

Wildlife behind our hotel in Gardiner Hiking in the Grand Teton National Park Elk Refuge...

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy 2014-05-29 03:12:43

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy  2014-05-29 03:12:43

Trout painting like this were often found in stores of both Jackson and Gardiner Town of Gardiner, Montana Fish within concrete outside of Park’s Fly shop in Gardiner, where we completed an interview Historical displays of Cook...

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy 2014-05-29 02:57:31

Pack 7: Yellowstone Trout Controversy  2014-05-29 02:57:31

Grand Canyon of Yellowstone Jenny Lake View hiking Black Bear Stream while hiking Grand Tetons Bison family Elk...

Thoughts on Gardiner and Jackson

Both Gardiner and Jackson maintained aspects of a small town with residents and people who were employed there, even whilst both their economies were driven by the tourism generated by Yellowstone (an entrance to the northern area located on Gardiner’s edge) and the Grand Teton mountain range also known as the “Tetons,” which contained numerous skiing resorts open during winter (one would pass through them after going through the town Jackson on route to the southern portion of Yellowstone National Park).  Thus both experienced a certain amount of interaction with wildlife; we determined that Gardiner, being enclosed to a greater extent than Jackson and less spread out, made it more impacted in interactions with wildlife such as Elk and Mule Deer were seen within the town.  The town of Jackson was more commercialized, but both proved to have citizens who kept in contact with others and were willing to give energy into the community.  Both towns had similarities such as the obvious tourist-led economy with spikes in tandum with tourism, shops within the center of town with residents around them, with many houses and property only temporarily lived in 1/3 of the year.  We can draw comparisons to phenomena in different seasons of activity in Farmville based off the school year at Longwood University and Hamden Sydney College. Several people we met in Gardiner only came there to work during these times, yet there were clues as to the supposed small town feel as well, and the people were very friendly and welcoming.  Jackson had a history of being mostly farmland until 1910 when it began to be settled and quickly commercialized; I talked to one bartender there at a local bar the first night after we arrived and he talked about Yellowstone’s 640,000,000 year volcanic activity, emphasizing how it was 10,000 years overdue.  An interview with a man in Gardiner showed evidence of the invasive species problem with lake trout when he described it like a disaster.  Both places showed evidence of either small town community vibes, or local traditions and practices while embracing their tourism...

Reflection of our Time in Jackson, WY

Reflection of our Time in Jackson, WY

First arriving to Jackson at the foot of the Tetons was absolutely amazing. Jackson airport was small; however, it fit right into the community. Thanks to the pre-departure demographic assignment as well as the in class lectures in Farmville I had a good sense of what to expect when arriving to Jackson. The town was pretty small as I knew there were only about 10,000 residents, but I did not expect to see such a developed and thriving little town. I was very curious not only how this town generated so much revenue but rather what stakeholders actually populated the Jackson community. The view was absolutely beautiful as it was surrounded by the great grassy plains of the National Elk Refuge and awe inspiring mountains along its perimeter. Inside all these great land features sat the town of Jackson. The town was actually bigger then what I expected. There were many gift shops and expensive stores right there in town center. The town center was basically the very middle of the town with little roads comprised with a variety of restaurants and lively bars in which each had its own theme. Restaurants varied from fast food to fine dining places that turned into bars at night. As I walked the town at night it was lit up with lights from the busy shops and the sound of the wind whistling through the streets. I later came to find out there were actually three ski resorts in this little town after going around talking to residents about this interesting little place. The town seemed to be very economically stable and many tourist attractions such as fly fishing and whitewater guides, ATV rentals, horseback riding tours, as well as wildlife watching tours. There were also many hotels and what seemed to be a lot of construction for such a smaller community. There were many roads that were under construction in the town for what seemed to be the cause of expanding them to accommodate for more traffic. After visiting many stores and seeing all the attractions the town acquired it was easy to assume that this town was heavily affected by tourists. There were many brochures and flyers around town advertising tourist activities. Much of the population was white; however, there were many ethnicities present such as Hispanic and Asian when I was walking around town. After conducting some interviews with stakeholders around town they emphasized the significance of tourism on Jackson and its businesses. All the stakeholders agreed that Jackson is 100% a tourist town in a sense that tourism is what economically makes up the towns revenue. While all the stakeholders agreed tourism was good and essential for their economy in Jackson; however, they also agreed that the mass amounts of tourists was a direct result of the towns increasing growth. Some stakeholders we interviewed saw this as a positive thing in terms of revenue for the town, but they also explained how the increasing growth is pushing humans further into the natural habitat of the wildlife ultimately taking over their environment. Many stakeholders blamed this for increased wildlife and human interaction and actually were worried that the increased growth will eventually be too overwhelming. I even found out that it was in fact a very expensive place to live in terms of owning property or homes. After talking to many workers in town I examined that most were seasonal and commuted to work from surrounding cities due to the high cost of living in Jackson. One stakeholder we interviewed stated that while she has worked and lived in Jackson for 24 years she knows she will never own a home in Jackson because it is simply too expensive. She also stated that because of this she will eventually have to move on and live somewhere else if she wants to own property or a home in the future. ~Fidel Sources: 1. American FactFinder. Retrieved May 22, 2014, from...

Rhetoric of Public Display: A Supplemental Experience

Rhetoric of Public Display: A Supplemental Experience

Black Bear vs. Grizzly Bear The first visitor center we went to was the Moose Visitor Center located in Grand Teton National Park. The structure of the building was purposefully designed to mimic the great features of the Grand Tetons themselves. The museum was also carefully placed in a secluded area away from the highway and close to the mountains. The surrounding sage bushes and rocks also gave the center that “wilderness” feel. Once inside the center the first thing that any individual saw was the statue of a grizzly bear and her two grizzly cubs. The message that the statue portrays is that grizzlies are friendly creatures that possess the same family characteristics as humans do. However, grizzlies are not a force to be reckoned with. They can be very dangerous creatures that can do extreme amounts of harm to those within their path. There are not only grizzlies that call the park home, but also black bears. The visitor center had a display on black bears and grizzlies, and how you can tell them apart. Black bears can be smaller, but that is not always the case. The way to tell the difference is the concave structure of the snout and the large hump between the shoulder blades of a grizzly. Gray Wolf Wearing Pattern Along with information about grizzlies and black bears there was also information about mountain lions, coyotes, bobcats, lynx, grey wolves, and red fox. There were also fur patches that visitors could touch to get a feeling for what those animals felt like. I would like to make a note that there was a wearing pattern on the fur of the grey wolf. I would like to make an assumption that more people are curious as to how the grey wolf feels since they are so controversial and hard to come across. To go along with controversy there was information about compromise and how that is used to settle controversies within the park. To solve these controversies you need people, and a wide variety of different individuals were presented at the museum. The people ranged from adventurers, travelers, “dudes”, ranchers and settlers, artists, explorers and surveyors, trappers and traders, and finally American Indians. “Dude” Rancher Quote The visitor center was very informative about many different perspectives of Yellowstone and the issues that engulf it. Even within the gift shop were informative books, posters, CDs, and DVDs. There were also children’s games and books that would look like a fun activity to play with, but would provide the child with an educational experience.             How Geysers Work The second visitor center that we were able to take the time to acknowledge was the Old Faithful Visitor Center located within the area where Old Faithful is found, of course. The visitor center was spacious and contained more scientific information than did the Moose Visitor Center. The Old Faithful Visitor Center included informative topics such as hydrothermal features, animals and insects, microbes, and water.           Children’s Area The center also included an area for children so that they could better understand the scientific nature of how Old Faithful operates and more about the animals. The information was simplistic and actually made it easier to comprehend the information that was outside of the children’s area. The museum also provided more interactive features that would help adults and children understand the complex amount of information that was given. Grey Wolf         At the gift shop of the museum there were very many books about different issues within the park, the animals, and even fictional novels. Different prestigious artwork pieces of different wildlife species were available for purchase, and the pieces gave a sense that what was within the picture “spoke” to you. There weren’t as many children’s books and games that would provide an educational experience, but the children’s area of the museum could act as a free substitute.   Each visitor center provided an allure of extremely useful, informative pieces. Whether it was through the sense of touch or sight, or if it was through an interactive experience that would engage the visitor a little more. I believe that each of these centers added as a great supplement to the surrounding features that the museums were placed. They provide additional information that can only enhance the visitors experience within Yellowstone National...