Gateway Arch National Park vs New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

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The United States is home to many beautiful and diverse national parks, each with its own unique features and attractions. Two of the most popular parks are Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Both parks offer breathtaking views and exciting outdoor experiences, but they couldn’t be more different from each other. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at these two parks and compare their offerings.

Gateway Arch National Park, located in St. Louis, Missouri, is a testament to America’s westward expansion and is home to the iconic 630-foot Gateway Arch. The Arch symbolizes the spirit of the American West, and visitors can take a tram to the top for a stunning view of the city. In addition to the Arch, the park offers boat tours, walking trails, and a museum that explores the history of the American West.

On the other hand, New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is located in West Virginia and is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. This park is known for its stunning natural beauty, including the New River Gorge Bridge, which is one of the highest bridges in the world. Visitors can hike, camp, and raft in the park, and there are also plenty of opportunities for rock climbing, fishing, and hunting. Whether you’re a nature lover, thrill-seeker, or just looking for a peaceful escape, New River Gorge has something to offer.

Hiking Trails in Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Gateway Arch National Park, located in Missouri, offers several hiking trails for visitors to explore. The park features the famous Gateway Arch monument and offers scenic views of the Mississippi River. One of the easiest hikes is the Riverfront Trail, which offers a leisurely stroll along the riverbank with views of the Arch. On the other hand, one of the most challenging hikes is the Arch Trail, which takes visitors to the top of the Arch for panoramic views of the city. This hike involves a strenuous climb up stairs and is not recommended for those with a fear of heights.

New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, located in West Virginia, features over 70,000 acres of rugged wilderness and stunning scenery. The park offers a variety of hiking trails for all levels of difficulty, including the easy Rim Trail and the challenging Endless Wall Trail. The Rim Trail offers scenic views of the New River Gorge and is a popular choice for families and first-time visitors. The Endless Wall Trail, on the other hand, is a strenuous hike that takes visitors along the cliffs of the New River Gorge, offering breathtaking views and a true test of endurance. Both trails offer unique experiences and are perfect for those looking to explore the natural beauty of the park.

Most Popular Hiking Trails in Gateway Arch National Park

Name Length Elevation Type Difficulty Visitor Ratings
St. Louis Riverfront Trail 21.35 mi 360.80 ft loop Easy 4/5
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial 1.60 mi 68.88 ft loop Easy 4/5

Most Popular Hiking Trails in New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Name Length Elevation Type Difficulty Visitor Ratings
0.00 mi 0.00 ft /5

Wildlife in Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve are both popular national parks in the United States, but they offer vastly different experiences. Both parks are home to a variety of wildlife, but the types of animals, birds, and plants you’ll see depend on the park you visit.

At Gateway Arch National Park, visitors can expect to see a variety of birds, including bald eagles, falcons, and gulls. The park is also home to a number of squirrels, rabbits, and other small mammals. The park’s riverfront location provides habitat for various fish species, such as catfish and bass, and is a popular destination for bird watching and fishing.

New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, on the other hand, is known for its diverse wildlife, including black bears, deer, and wild turkeys. Visitors can also spot a variety of reptiles, such as rattlesnakes, and a range of bird species, including hawks, eagles, and songbirds. The park’s lush forests and rocky cliffs provide habitat for a wide range of plants, including wildflowers, ferns, and mosses. The park is a popular destination for hiking, camping, and rock climbing, and offers opportunities to see wildlife in its natural habitat.

In conclusion, both Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve offer unique experiences for nature enthusiasts. Visitors to Gateway Arch National Park can expect to see a variety of birds, fish, and small mammals, while those visiting New River Gorge National Park and Preserve can look forward to seeing black bears, deer, wild turkeys, and a range of reptiles and plants.

Below are lists of the most commonly spotted wildlife at Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. However, you can see a full list of wildlife at each national park here.

Gateway Arch National Park New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Beautiful Landscapes in Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve are two of the most beautiful and popular parks in the United States. Gateway Arch is famous for its 630-foot tall stainless steel arch that serves as a symbol of the westward expansion of the United States. The park offers stunning views of the Mississippi River and the city of St. Louis. Visitors can take a tram to the top of the arch for a panoramic view of the city and the river.

New River Gorge is known for its towering cliffs and stunning views of the New River. The park offers scenic hiking trails, as well as opportunities for rock climbing and whitewater rafting. One of the most popular attractions in the park is the New River Gorge Bridge, which is the longest steel arch bridge in the western hemisphere. Visitors can take a scenic drive on the bridge or hike along the trails that run along the river. The park also offers stunning views of the surrounding Appalachian Mountains, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

Things To-Do and Activities in Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve are two of the most popular parks in the United States and offer visitors a variety of outdoor activities. While both parks offer scenic hiking trails and opportunities for camping, they differ in their most popular attractions.

At Gateway Arch National Park, visitors flock to see the famous 630-foot tall Gateway Arch, a symbol of American westward expansion. The park also offers riverboat cruises, a museum and a movie about the construction of the Arch.

New River Gorge National Park and Preserve, on the other hand, is a mecca for rock climbers, offering over 1,400 climbing routes. The park also has scenic drives, including the beautiful overlook at Hawks Nest State Park, and opportunities for white-water rafting on the New River.

Both parks offer unique experiences and a chance to connect with nature. Whether you are interested in history, adventure or simply want to relax, Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve are both worth considering for your next outdoor excursion.

Best Time to Visit Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

Gateway Arch National Park is located in St. Louis, Missouri and is known for its 630-foot stainless steel monument that symbolizes the city’s role as the “Gateway to the West”. The park experiences a warm and humid continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. Summer temperatures can reach up to 90°F, while winter temperatures drop to around 20°F.

On the other hand, New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is located in West Virginia and has a humid subtropical climate with hot summers and cool winters. Summer temperatures can reach up to 85°F, while winter temperatures drop to just above freezing.

Both parks are beautiful and offer unique experiences, but the best time to visit depends on what visitors are looking for. If visitors are interested in outdoor activities such as hiking or kayaking, the best time to visit New River Gorge is from spring to fall, when temperatures are mild and the foliage is lush. However, if visitors are interested in visiting Gateway Arch National Park and want to avoid the heat, the best time to visit is during the spring or fall, when temperatures are more moderate. Winter can also be a great time to visit Gateway Arch National Park, as it offers a different, more peaceful experience with fewer crowds.

Family Friendliness of Gateway Arch National Park and New River Gorge National Park and Preserve

The Gateway Arch National Park in St. Louis, Missouri is a popular destination for families. The park features a 630-foot-tall stainless steel arch that is both impressive and educational. Kids can learn about the history of the Westward Expansion, the role the Mississippi River played in it and the challenges faced by pioneers. The museum inside the Arch offers interactive displays and hands-on activities, making it a fun and engaging experience for kids of all ages. The park also has a scenic riverfront park and a tram ride to the top of the Arch, which offers breathtaking views of the city.

In contrast, the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve in West Virginia is a bit more rugged, but still very family-friendly. The park is known for its stunning natural beauty and outdoor recreational opportunities, including hiking, camping, fishing, and rafting. The New River offers a unique combination of adventure and education, as families can explore the history and geology of the area and see first-hand the impact that humans have had on the environment. The park offers ranger-led programs and guided tours, as well as picnic areas, campgrounds, and scenic overlooks.

Overall, both parks are great options for families, but the Gateway Arch National Park is better suited for younger children, while the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve is better for families with older children or teens who are interested in outdoor adventure and learning about the environment.

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