The Sounds of Zion

Travel Blog  •  Michael Yessis  •  10.11.10 | 9:16 AM ET

Interesting plans afoot at Zion National Park to protect the park’s natural soundscape. The “Soundscape Management Plan,” according to the Salt Lake Tribune, is the first of its kind.

Frank Turina, of Fort Collins, Colo., a planner with the natural sounds program for the National Park Service and project manager for the Zion document, said an area’s soundscape is as valuable as air quality and watershed although, unlike those resources, it is intangible.

“Sound has an inherent value to the park that we want to preserve and protect for the future,” Turina said in a telephone interview.

He said the new plan uses the science of acoustics to specify conditions under which park managers would need to act to protect and preserve the soundscape of Zion. That science gives the plan objectivity and credibility.

“It is a very interesting and new application of old science to protect natural areas in the park,” he said. “This (project) is on the cutting edge.”

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