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The Greatest, Snarkiest and Most Clever Tweets from the National Park Service 

Whoever runs the National Park Service Twitter thread really should get a raise. Every day, @natlparkservice uses animal memes, pop culture references, and subtweets commenting on bad tourist behavior to share important tips about how to behave properly in parks. It’s fun to see a government agency that doesn’t take itself too seriously—and to learn a little bit about some cute and fascinating animals along the way. 12

Here are some of our favorite recent tweets from NPS, featuring references to Titanic, Taylor Swift, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

“If you’re carpooling with wildlife, you’re doing it wrong.”

A Yellowstone tourist recently put a baby elk in their car and took it to a police station, which is not exactly giving wildlife the space they need. If you’re ever out in the wild and see an animal in trouble, call in park authorities or a local conservation group instead of trying to help yourself. Often, human interference, unfortunately, ends with animals being rejected from their herd and euthanized.

“Remember that wildlife in parks are wild and like your ex, can be unpredictable when they’re disturbed or surprised.”

NPS definitely doesn’t know about wild and unpredictable exes from experience (and, for the record, neither do we). But this seems like wise advice, no? 

“If you come across a bear, never push a slower friend down…even if you feel the friendship has run its course.”

Leave it to the National Park Service to find an opportunity to share bear safety by warning hikers not to sacrifice their annoying friends to avoid being lunch. If you’ve got an upcoming trip to bear country, make sure you take every precaution to prevent bears from sneaking into your campsite to sniff around for midnight snacks while you’re sleeping.

“If you swallow a bug… just shake it off. 

It’s not ideal for the bug (it’s you, you’re the problem), but you should survive.”

After Taylor Swift accidentally swallowed a bug on stage, NPS used lyrics from some of the singer’s most popular songs to start a conversation about bugs flying into people’s mouths while hiking. One Twitter user responded that they hit a fence post on an ATV after a bee flew into their mouth, to which NPS replied, “Was the bee okay?”

“Trails often look more flat on the map.”

National Parks are for everyone, but people often overestimate their abilities and run into trouble. If you’re new to hiking, camping, or backcountry adventures, make sure you have a chat with a ranger in the visitor center before you set off on the trail. For starters, you need to make sure you have adequate footwear for the terrain, enough water and salty snacks—especially if you’re hiking in a high or dry desert environment—and a good map and emergency bail-out plan if you can’t complete the trail as planned. It’s always better to be more prepared than to get stuck, without cell service, and wait for help to stumble upon you.

“When a couple of humans who were up to no good, started making trouble in the bison neighborhood…”

Don’t be that Yellowstone tourist who gets too close to the “fluffy cows” and ends up on the news for being gored. Earlier this year, NPS tweeted a “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” style rap to encourage tourists to keep clear of their most iconic wildlife

I’m sorry, Jack, there’s just not enough room”

NPS used a photo of two turtles and one tree branch to make their case that Rose definitely could have made room for Jack on that door in Titanic. And this turtle probably could share the log, too. “To regulate body temperature, turtles can alternate between swimming and basking,” NPS wrote in a follow-up tweet, adding, “(So, we could’ve switched places periodically, Rose?)”

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