Aviation in Your National Parks

Did you know the National Park Service uses aviation for many purposes on a daily basis? And that the NPS has a history steeped in aviation…from preserving and protecting some of our most important historical sites focused on aviation to historic aviation "firsts" in the United States? Explore this website and learn more about the rich history and use of aviation in your national parks.

A blue sky background with two people on each side, a large building in center and planes in sky
Aviation History

Explore aviation history as it relates to the NPS. From the people to the places, these incredible stories are aviation's foundation.

The space shuttle lifts off of the back of a large plane
Aviation in Space

From the moment man first flew, there was no stopping the ascent into the universe. Read the amazing stories that powered man into space.

Four parallel runways surrounded by water
Historic Fields and Airports

Read about the legacies of historic airfields and airports and of their significance in aviation history.

Pilot with his plane on a gravel runway
A Day in NPS Aviation Operations

Each day is different. A NPS crew could assist with a wildland fire, a trail project, search and rescue or a law enforcement operation.

A trio of missiles stand upright and ready to fire from concrete pads
Rocket Propulsion

Read the stories of how rocket propulsion has taken aviation into and well beyond the upper levels of the atmosphere.

A silver plane with a red tail and elevator
Military Aircraft

Learn about some of the different military aircraft that have served the United States Army Air Corps, Air Force, Navy and Marines.

Several floatplanes sit fixed to a dock on the water.
NPS Aviation Program

Learn more about the programmatic aspects of the National Park Service Aviation Program.

Several people in blue and yellow shirts listen to a man talking to them in front of a white trailer
Aviation Resources

Explore some of the important resources that assist NPS aviation in accomplishing its mission.

Two airplanes with large wheels sit on a beach in front of several trees
Aviation Information

View some of the important and valuable information links that help NPS aviation carry out its mission.

A crew member wearing a helmet peers out of a helicopter down on a mountain
Aviation Policy

Policy, regulations and guidelines are staples of NPS aviation operations on a daily basis. Learn more about them here.

Four people help load an airplane with cargo
Aviation Planning

From daily operational missions to long-term strategic guidance, planning is crucial to the NPS aviation mission.

Large flames shoot up from the ground
Incident Support & Coordination Centers

Valuable tools for incident management, whether for aviation or another large-scale incident.

Helicopter with large clouds of smoke in the background
Wildland Fire Support

NPS aviation is integral to wildland firefighting. Aircraft deliver water, move firefighters and provide eyes in the sky.

A man holds the controls for a stationary UAS while another man stand nearby.
Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS)

Learn how NPS is using UAS to decrease risks on operational missions, reduce costs and provide additional aviation resources.

Several people seated at an oval table in front of a white board and windows in back
Training & Education

Education resources for aviation-related missions.

A fixed-wing aircraft with large wheels sits on a gravel beach near the water.
Safety Information & News

Up-to-date information and news from reliable and trusted sources for aviation-related missions.

A chalk-outlined plane on a small chalk board
Discover Aviation

Whether you're an educator or just have a novice interest in aviation, our education resources have the info you need.

pilot prepping for flight
Aviation Educator Resources

A broad variety of resources containing aviation education information and membership organizations from both private and public entities.

Pilot preparing an external load at Cedar Grove
Types of Aviation Jobs

Seasonal and full-time positions with the NPS that relate to aviation and their basic duties and qualifications.

A helicopter crew member stands in the foreground with two other people and a helicopter in the back
NPS Aviation Careers

Interested in a career in aviation with the National Park Service? Learn more about what it takes and available jobs.

A wall server with red tabs sticking out on the front
Online Tools & Databases

Some of the more important tools and guidance that we use to help us carry out our mission.

A wooden gavel sits on a desk and small round base
Laws, Procedures & Manuals

The legal references and regulations that govern aviation management and incidents.

A big building with several large columns
State & Federal Government

Links to various state and federal agencies that support the NPS aviation mission.

Last updated: December 18, 2017