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A visitor to Glacier National Park in Montana lost his car keys while attempting to lure a ground squirrel by dangling the keys out in front of the critter. The squirrel grabbed the keys and ran down a hole with them. The keys were never retrieved, a ranger cited the man for harassment of wildlife, and a locksmith was called to make new car keys. In May of 1994, Tony Moore, 43, of Marietta, Georgia, was gored and seriously injured by a large male bison in Yellowstone, next to the Lake Hotel. Moore and a friend had approached to within 15 feet of the bison to have their pictures taken. While they were standing with their backs to the animal, it charged. Moore's companion escaped, but Moore received a severe puncture wound in his right thigh and was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Jackson for treatment. A visitor setting up camp at Lake Eleanor in Yosemite National Park hit herself on the head with a rock while trying to string up her food to protect it from bears. In 1994, a woman visiting from the Bay Area embarked on a solo hike to the summit of El Capitan in Yosemite. When she became lost and saw a storm brewing, she called 911 from her cellular phone and asked to be rescued. A helicopter found her barely off the trail and one-fourth to half a mile from the top of El Cap. When the 'copter lifted off and the woman saw how close she was to her summit goal, she asked the crew to set her down on top. When the crew declined, she threatened to sue them for kidnapping. A woman, appearing rather distraught, came into the visitor center at Redwood National Park in California to report that she had seen several Irish setters lying along the edge of the highway and she feared they were dead or injured. Rangers explained to her that these were pieces of redwood bark that had fallen off logging trucks. Darryl Stone, now superintendent at Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis, remembered working the entrance station at Yosemite when a woman drove up and asked, "Which way are the geysers?" Ranger Stone directed her to continue 1,000 miles further to Yellowstone and told her there were no geysers at Yosemite. "Yes, there are," she said. "I have a friend who saw them." Stone and the woman went round and round several times before she left, insisting that there were geysers at Yosemite. Later she wrote a letter to the chief ranger complaining that Stone had refused to provide her with the information she wanted. When an elderly couple stopped to film some bears at Dunraven Pass in Yellowstone, a young bear crawled into their car searching for food. Unable to make the bear leave, the exasperated (but well-dressed) couple drove about 17 miles to the ranger station at Canyon Village with the bear in the backseat. When the husband got out to report the incident, the bear hopped over into the front seat so that investigating rangers found the woman in the passenger seat and the bear behind the wheel. In 1993 a woman called 911 from the top of Half Dome using her cellular phone. According to dispatch, she reported: "Well, I'm at the top and I'm really tired." The answering ranger asked if she felt sick. "No," she said, "I'm just really tired and I want my friends to drive to the base and pick me up."The dispatcher explained that she would have to hike down the trail she had ascended. The visitor replied, "But you don't understand, I'm really tired." What happened next? "It turned out we got really lucky," the ranger said,"her phone battery died." Each year visitors to Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona pocket an estimated 12 tons of petrified wood to take home (despite numerous warnings not to take wood and the fact that this criminal violation carries a minimum fine of $275). Some years back, several female foreign visitors, clad only in bikinis, were observed hiding wood in their garments. Another time, rangers received a report that a man had put a large piece of wood in his car. Upon searching his vehicle, they found a 40-pound piece of petrified wood in his trunk. According to rangers, this visitor said he didn't know how it got there. "My four-year-old son must have put it in there," the man said. A group of European visitors came into the Wawona ranger station in Yosemite National Park and said, "Our car is parked at the trail head and it's been blown up by terrorists." Though rangers expressed some doubt, the visitors insisted that a bomb had exploded in their car and that they could see powder residue from the explosives. Investigating rangers indeed found that a door had been torn off and a powder-like substance--pancake flour--was strewn about the car."They were quite embarrassed when we showed them the bear prints," the ranger said. A camper at Long Pine Key in Everglades National Park decided to take a dip in the lake with her dog despite signs saying "No swimming--Danger--Alligators."She swam to an island about 75 yards from the shore, then saw some alligators and refused to swim back. "Didn't you see the signs?" asked the ranger who retrieved her in a canoe. "Sure," she said, "but I didn't think they applied to me." "Park incidents were compiled by writer Debra Shore, a frequent contributor to Outside. "What time do they let the animals out in the park?" --Visitor at Denali National Park "Why did the Indians only build ruins?" --Visitor at the Grand Canyon "What is your best parking area?" --Visitor at Zion National Park "Where's the road to the summit?" --Visitor at Mount Rainier National Park "Don't you think the polluted sky makes a much prettier sunset?" --Visitor at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Grand Canyon National Park: Was this man-made? Do you light it up at night? I bought tickets for the elevator to the bottom--where is it? Is the mule train air-conditioned? So where are the faces of the presidents? Everglades National Park: Are the alligators real? Are the baby alligators for sale? Where are all the rides? What time does the two o'clock bus leave? Mesa Verde National Park: Did people build this, or did Indians? Why did they build the ruins so close to the road? Do you know of any undiscovered ruins? What did they worship in the kivas--their own made-up religion? Why did the Indians decide to live in Colorado? Carlsbad Caverns National Park: How much of the cave is underground? So what's in the unexplored part of the cave? Does it ever rain in here? How many Ping-Pong balls would it take to fill this up? So what is this--just a hole in the ground? Yosemite National Park: Where are the cages for the animals? What time of year do you turn on Yosemite Falls? What happened to the other half of Half Dome? Can I get my picture taken with the carving of President Clinton? Denali National Park: What time do you feed the bears? What's so wonderful about Wonder Lake? Can you show me where yeti lives? How often do you mow the tundra? How much does Mount McKinley weigh? Yellowstone National Park: Does Old Faithful erupt at night? How do you turn it on? When does the guy who turns it on get to sleep? We had no trouble finding the park entrances, but where are the exits?

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