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National Park Quiz 90: Cold

Cold Shivers Point. National Park Service photo.

January cold has lots of people holed up inside, hugging the wood stove. To help you while away the hours until warmth returns to the land, the quizmeister has whipped up a little cold-related quiz (liberally defined). Answers are at the end.

1. True or false? None of the 394 National Park System units has the word "cold" as part of its official name.

2. True or false? Many of the cold-stunned sea turtles found along the shorelines of coastal national parks like Cape Hatteras National Seashore and Cape Canaveral National Seashore can be rewarmed and returned to the ocean.

3. True or false? The Colorado River water flowing into Grand Canyon National Park below the Glen Canyon Dam is colder than the Colorado River water flowing into Lake Powell because it is epilimnion water from Lake Powell.

4. If your boat capsizes and leaves you immersed in cold water far from shore, all of the following will tend to increase your chances of survival EXCEPT: (Choose the one that "does not belong.")
a. wearing a PFD
b. clasping your knees to your chest
c. pulling yourself partially out of the water
d. swimming toward the shore

5. Which individual would be most likely to suffer from hypothermia after lengthy exposure to cold while visiting a national park?
a. an average-sized teenage boy
b. an average-sized teenage girl
c. an overweight 40-something woman
d. a slender 76-year old man

6. According to survey results widely reported in the print and broadcast media, as many as half of the ______ in Everglades National Park may have been killed by episodes of unusually cold winter weather ("cold snaps") in South Florida.
a. freshwater fish
b. Burmese pythons
c. wading birds
d. sawgrass

7. A water body called Cold Boiling Lake is located near Bumpass Hell in
a. Lassen Volcanic National Park
b. Death Valley National Park
c. Yellowstone National Park
d. Katmai National Park

8. During the Cold War, a secret missile base was located within the borders of
a. Isle Royale National Park
b. Pinnacles National Monument
c. Everglades National Park
d. Point Reyes National Seashore

9. If you want to hike the Cold Springs Nature Trail in the afternoon and then spend the night at the 40-site Cold Springs Campground on Mineral King Road, you need to plan a visit to
a. Sequoia National Park
b. Glacier National Park
c. Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area
d. Lake Mead National Recreation Area

10. The Battle of Cold Harbor, the last major battle won by Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, occurred in June 1864 at a site now preserved as a component of
a. Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park
b. Richmond National Military Park
c. Petersburg National Battlefield
d. Colonial National Historical Park

Extra Credit Question:

11. Which Pennsylvania national park preserves a cold-blast furnace on the site of an historic "iron plantation"?

Super Bonus Question:

12. The accompanying photo of Cold Shivers Point was taken in a national park that also has a landform called Independence Monument. Name the park.


(1) True. The word "cold" doesn't appear anywhere in the names of the 394 National Park System units.

(2) True. Cold-stunned sea turtles, which sometimes show up along shorelines after water temperatures abruptly drop below about 50 degrees F, may die of the cold and are also vulnerable to predation and fatal illnesses. However, many rescued turtles can be warmed up and returned unharmed to warmer ocean waters.

(3) False. The water is relatively cold (mid-50s to low 60s) because it is released from Lake Powell's lower, denser, colder layer (hypolimnion). The lake's epilimnion water is the upper, warmer layer.

(4) d -- Minimizing body movement helps to slow heat loss. Since swimming hastens heat loss, don't swim in this far-from-shore situation unless you need to reach a nearby floating object.

(5) d -- The elderly are most susceptible to hypothermia (core temperature falling below 95°F) because they are more likely to have some combination of decreased heat production, increased heat loss, vasodilation, or drug-induced impairment. (Some elderly individuals have died of hypothermia after prolonged exposure to temperatures as warm as 65°F.) Thin people and small children are also at greater risk because they have a large skin area relative to their mass.

(6) b -- These survey results are suggestive, not definitive. Expert opinion about the impacts on cold snaps on the Burmese python population of the Everglades remains divided.

(7) a -- Although the water in Lassen Volcanic's Cold Boiling Lake doesn't boil or bubble, there is bubbling going on in a detached, muddy pool on the west side of the lake. A National Park Service-installed sign at the site tells you that you might have to look carefully to see it.

(8) c -- Nike Hercules Missile Base HM-69 was built in Everglades National Park in 1963 after the Cuban missile crisis heightened tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union. The base, which was decommissioned in 1979 and declared a National Historic District in 2004, is now a destination for ranger-led tours.

(9) a -- The Cold Springs Campground is situated on a wooded site across from the Mineral King Ranger Station in Sequoia National Park. The Cold Springs Nature Trail, an easy loop, begins at the campground.

(10) b -- The extraordinarily bloody Battle of Cold Harbor was fought in early June 1864 about 10 miles northeast of Richmond at a rural crossroads site now preserved as a component of Richmond National Battlefield Park.

(11) Pennsylvania's Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site preserves the cold-blast furnace of an "iron plantation" that operated from 1771-1883. The furnace, which was charcoal-fired and produced low-grade iron (pig iron), was considered a "cold-blast" furnace because the air blown into it was not pre-heated.

(12) Cold Shivers Point and the 450-foot high Independence Monument are both in Colorado National Monument.

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.


Technically, yes. But Agua Fria National Monument in Arizona, translated means "cold water." Si?

Arizona's Agua Fria National Monument is an interesting site, for sure, but it's not in the National Park System. It's a Bureau of Land Management Property.

I'm gonna cry FOUL!

I would have had 12 correct except the question specified a "national park" so I dismissed Colorado NATIONAL MONUMENT from my thinking.


Gosh, Lee. Your story has touched my heart. Whoops; I forgot. The quizmeister does not have a heart.

Well, even without a heart, he, she, or it does produce some fun stuff. I always thought I was pretty well informed on park issues and trivia and everything else, but some of your quizzes and other challenges keep proving me wrong. So that had something to do with my being so touchy.

On the other hand, I keep learning new things. I guess maybe even I'm not too old.

Many thanks for all your HARD (hearted) work!

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