On Friday, in an effort to promote President Obama’s upcoming trip to visit Yosemite National Park and the Carlsbad Caverns National Park and the upcoming centennial of the National Park Service, professional mountain climbers took over the White House Instagram account to share what makes the national parks so special to them.
“Hi, I’m Kevin Jorgeson (@KJorgeson), and I’m here with some of my friends from the climbing world to take over the @WhiteHouse account before President Obama arrives at Yosemite National Park, my home away from home,” climber Kevin Jorgeson captioned the above Instagram photo.
“Last January, I realized my six-year dream of climbing the Dawn Wall of El Capitan with my partner, @TommyCaldwell. From a young age, my parents got me into the outdoors via camping, rafting, fishing, and hiking.
Now, as a climber, I spend the majority of my life in the outdoors pursuing my passion. For all climbers, I want to thank President Obama for protecting more land and water than any other president in history.”
“Yosemite Valley has been a special place for me,” climber Alex Manelis wrote in the above Instagram. “I learned most of my climbing there and have experienced the good and the bad … I’ve always liked this place because it’s not seen by many of the visitors that stay on the valley floor. If you put in the effort and make the longer hikes, it opens a world of possibilities for seeing amazing things in the park.”
The climbers are sharing the photos on Instagram using the hashtags #NPS100, #FindYourPark and #ElPrezatElCap to celebrate the fact that Obama will be visiting the famed El Capitan summit in Yosemite when he visits.
“Under President Obama, the @WhiteHouse has been an important ally to those of us who work outdoors, helping us to preserve wild places in the United States for everyone’s use,” climber Sasha DiGiulian wrote on the above Instagram post. “More than 305 million people from all over the world visited national parks last year. Clearly conservation and outdoor recreation help drive our economy in so many ways.”
Prior to the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, Obama is visiting a number of the parks to highlight how, in the seven years of his presidency, he has protected more than 265 million acres of land and water across the United States, more than any president in United States history.
“I want to make sure that the whole world is able to pass on to future generations the God-given beauty of this planet,” Obama is quoted as saying in the Instagram video above.
Per reports, President Obama and his family plan to arrive in Yosemite on Friday evening. He will speak to the press from the park on Saturday.
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