How We Ranked The Parks/Our Advisers
How We Ranked The Parks
Last August, Child magazine conducted interviews with experts to develop a survey that would help determine the most family-friendly national parks. The 41-question survey addressed issues such as park safety, child-appropriate hiking trails, Junior Ranger and other children's programs, fitness activities for families, the variety and availability of lodging, and interesting natural features like volcanoes or geysers. The survey was sent to the 56 national parks as defined by the National Park Service. (Some places you may think are national parks are really national recreation areas or historic sites.) After receiving the completed surveys, we graded the responses, featuring the top 10 in the May issue of Child magazine and the 10 runners-up here.
The following national park experts helped to develop the survey for this story: Fran P. Mainella, director of the National Park Service in Washington; Kent Taylor, executive director of the National Park Society in Colorado Springs; Constance Jones, senior editor of Fodor's Road Guide USA: National Parks of the West in New York City; and Sarah Scott, a naturalist and wildlife enthusiast in Jackson Hole, WY.