The Ultimate Distraction: Wifi in National Parks


Megan Winters

In recent years, the topic of wi-fi being added to national parks has been discussed. This is a horrible idea, and the issue needs to be addressed.

People from all over the world travel to see the natural beauty of national parks every day. From the magnificent geysers in Yellowstone, and the towering mountains in Grand Teton to the Great Smoky Mountains and our very own luscious waterfalls in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, the sheer beauty must be taken into its full effect, and this cannot be done if the visitors have their noses stuck in their phones the whole time.

In your daily life, how often are you using technology? You check your phone for social media, use a laptop for school, and turn on the TV for some entertainment. Our entire society is based on the use of technology. This isn’t to say that it’s not helpful or even essential to the life we’re leading, but unplugging for a few days doesn’t hurt.

If you are buried in your phone, not only will you miss the natural beauty that the world has to offer, you will also miss the wildlife. Traveling to a national park is a chance to see wildlife that you wouldn’t normally come across in your day-to-day activities. Spotting a moose in the Tetons or an elk at the Grand Canyon can make your trip mean so much more.

Outdoor enthusiast Brigid McKenna explains why access to the internet in national parks in a bad idea. “I don’t think wi-fi is necessary for national parks because you are there to experience nature.”

LHS freshman Rosie Lipka shares a similar opinion. “It’ll give people the opportunity to be distracted from the beautiful scenery.”

“National parks are meant to allow others to enjoy nature and really take it in,” says freshman Lydianna Trudel. “Wifi and cell phone usage is a distraction.”

In a poll of 38 people, 61% agreed that wi-fi should not be accessible, but 39% disagreed.

In the fast-paced, ever-changing world that we live in, wi-fi in national parks is not a necessity. National parks are meant to be admired, explored, and enjoyed, and this cannot be done if the only thing visitors are focused on is their Snapchat story.