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National Park Quiz 63: Pools

This unpigmented, eyeless crayfish lives in a Mammoth Cave pool. National Park Service photo.

Pool n.

1. A small body of still water.
2. An accumulation of standing liquid.
3. A deep or still place in a stream.
4. A swimming pool.
5. An underground accumulation of petroleum or gas in porous sedimentary rock.
6. A game of chance, resembling a lottery
7. A fund containing all the money bet in a game of chance or on the outcome of an event.
8. A grouping of resources for the common advantage of the participants.
9. An available supply, the use of which is shared by a group.
10. A group of journalists who share their event reports with participating news media.
11. A mutual fund established by stockholders for speculating in securities.
12. A mutual profits agreement for establishing controls over production, market, and prices.
13. Any of several games played on a six-pocket billiards table.

1. True or false? Grand Canyon National Park visitors must travel outside the park if they want to see the renowned blue-green pools below the waterfalls near Supai.

2. True or false? The vernal pools at Cape Cod National Seashore contain more than twice as many fish species as most other water bodies of their size.

3. True of false? The water in cave pools usually contains more nutrients than water in surface pools.

4. True or false? People have died of burns after jumping into scalding-hot pools at Yellowstone National Park.

5. True or false? By the 1920s, Yosemite National Park’s Camp Curry had both a swimming pool and a pool hall.

6. The Park Service had workers drain and clean the ______ during the summer of 2008 after finding two dozen ducks that had apparently succumbed to avian botulism, a disease that is commonly worse during the warmer months.
a. Capitol Reflecting Pool
b. Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool
c. World War II Memorial Pool
d. Rainbow Pool

7. The Lower Emerald Pool Trail, the Middle Emerald Pools Trail, and the Upper Emerald Pool Trail are hiking options available to visitors in
a. Zion National Park
b. Shenandoah National Park
c. Rocky Mountain National Park
d. Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park

8. Strong currents and vicious undertow make it extremely hazardous to swim in the pool below Abrams Falls in
a. Yosemite National Park
b. Great Smoky Mountains National Park
c. Acadia National Park
d. Olympic National Park

9. If you and your hard working spouse decide to pool your resources for a stay at the Ahwahnee Hotel this September, you’ll need to dig down deep, because the room rates at Yosemite’s most expensive hotel begin at about ______ a night during the month of September.
a. $250
b. $350
c. $450
d. $650

10. Author James Lawrence Powell’s new book Dead Pool is a nonfiction account of a lake that was only about half full in 2005 and had “bathtub rings” over ten stories tall encircling it. Which of the following NPS units had a lake of that description within its borders in 2005?
a. Ross Lake National Recreation Area
b. Chickasaw National Recreation Area
c. Amistad National Recreation Area
d. Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Extra Credit Question:

11. An office pool you’ve decided to enter pays $500 bucks to the person who comes closest to guessing the exact date when the entire Going-to-the-Sun Road will be cleared of snow and reopened to visitor traffic after the upcoming winter of 2009-2010. Which of the following dates would make the most logical choice for the reopening of the entire Sun Road?
a. May 15
b. May 23
c. June 27
d. July 11

Super Bonus Question

12. In what sort of pool would a Park Service field biologist search if she were looking for some common periwinkles?


(1) True. These remarkable pools, considered by some to be the most beautiful in the world, are inside the canyon on the 518-acre Havasupai Indian Reservation. Floods and mudslides in recent years obliterated one of the four waterfalls (Navajo Falls) and damaged the pools.

(2) False. Absence of fish is a trademark feature of vernal pools. At Cape Cod, winter rains and snowmelt cause vernal pools to form in the spring (thus the name vernal), but the pools dry up later in the year.

(3) False. Nutrient scarcity is a hallmark feature of cave pools. Being nutrient-deficient, the water in most cave pools is startlingly clear and supports only small populations of individually small organisms.

(4) True. In one heavily publicized incident that happened at Yellowstone in August 2000, three young concession employees went off-trail at night and mistakenly jumped into a 178-degree pool. One died of her burns and the other two survived with burns over 90 percent of their bodies.

(5) True. By the 1920s, Camp Curry (now called Curry Village) not only had a lifeguarded swimming pool and a pool hall, but also a dance pavilion, nightly movies, a soda fountain, a gas station and service garage, and many other amenities, including the famous nightly firefall.

(6) a – The Capitol Reflecting Pool was drained again in June 2009 and is supposed to be cleaned and refilled by the end of August. The ducks removed this time around appeared healthy.

(7) a – Completed in 1925, the Emerald Pools Trail System in Zion National Park features beautiful waterfalls, pools, and striking canyon scenery. Many people consider the short, paved, mostly shaded lower trail to be one of the nicest little family-friendly trails in the National Park System.

(8) b – In recent years there have been several drownings in the pool below Abrams Falls at Great Smoky.

(9) c – To put a finer point on it, in June the Ahwahnee was quoting September room rates starting at $454 per night.

(10) d – Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is focused on Lake Powell, a reservoir impounded by the Glen Canyon Dam. By the winter of 2005, a succession of below-average spring runoffs had reduced Lake Powell to it lowest level on record, about 150 feet below the full pool level (elev. 3,700 ft.) it had reached in 1980. Boat ramps and marinas were left high, dry, and useless. The lake level has since risen significantly, but is still well below full pool.

(11) c – Late June is the safest bet here. In 2009, the Sun Road opened June 26. The earliest-ever opening to motorized traffic occurred on May 16 (1987), and the latest occurred on July 10, 1943 when the road was not plowed.

(12) The common periwinkle (Littorina littorea) is an edible species of snail often found in intertidal pools along the seashore. In the United States, common periwinkles can be found on the east coast from Virginia to Maine and on the west coast from California to Washington.

Grading: 9 or 10 correct, rest on your laurels; 7 or 8 correct, pretty darn good; 6 correct, passable fair; 5 or fewer correct, nothing to brag about.


Finally! The best personal score....10 of 12. Missed the room rates at Ahwahnee and didn't know Abrams Falls are in GSM.

First time I ever got nine. Missed two of the t/f and number 12 had no clue. We just hiked Abram Falls and got a great picture of my son covering the word "don't" on the warning sign about drownings. Beautiful place, but hated the drive on the Cades Cove Loop Road. You get stuck behind people who have never seen a dear and stop for 10 minutes holding up everyone. Then they go 200 yards at stop for 10 minutes to stare at turkeys. Moral of the story: get there early.

Cool Quiz!

I did not do as well as the previous responders, but at least I don't have to take a course over again! LOL. I considered the course "Geology of National Parks" that I took as an undergraduate as one of the most fun courses I ever had. The "Going to the Sun Road" opening was an interesting question. I was in Missoula visiting family in July one year (can't remember exactly when, but in the early 2000's) and to go there was a plan for one of the days. We got up before the sun to go and had to cancel, as there had been 4 foot of snow over night and they closed the road. I was crushed! To date, I have yet to get to Glacier, but I will.

To Anonymous - yes, some do that with Elk in Rocky Mountain NP, too. Luckily, I used to live close by, so I would have some days that it was not an issue. Early to any NP is get to spend more time. :)

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