Swirling sandstone with smooth edges makes for a striking contrast in this remote section of Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Arizona. Home to extraordinary formations, this area, known as White Pocket, is only accessible by ATV’s or 4-wheel-drive vehicles. Please bring plenty of your own water, proper hiking footwear, and a #TeamPublicLands mindset, that will leave this place for others to enjoy. Photo by Jessica Fridrich (www.sharetheexperience.org)
In a few short months, alpine wildflowers will be decorating the scene like this incredible shot of Mount Rainier National Park in Washington. Capturing dawn’s early light means rising well before the body wants to, but you’re rewarded with extreme quiet and time to enjoy the sunrise. Recreate responsibly Photo courtesy of Nathaniel Wise.
Whooo let the kids out? Whoo whoo whoo! A burrowing owl family at the Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge in California emerges from their artificial burrow. The burrows, dug by volunteers and refuge staff, give the owls a perfect place to raise their families. Photo courtesy of Wendy Miller.
When you’re known as “The Jewel of Lake Superior,” you have a lot to live up to.
Apostle Island National Lakeshore in Wisconsin features a combination of spectacular natural beauty and rich cultural history.
The islands are a sacred homeland for the Ojibwe people who live throughout the Great Lakes region. According to their written and oral history, they are the original inhabitants of this area and consider Madeline Island an important part of their past and present day lives. The Ojibwe call Madeline Island “Moningwunakauning” or “Home of the golden-breasted woodpecker.” Photo by Michael DeWitt (www.sharetheexperience.org)
Known for its history, picturesque blue waters, superlative coral reefs, and the vast assortment of bird life that frequents the area, Dry Tortugas National Park is an isolated gem surrounded by a wilderness of ocean.
Dry Tortugas lies at the farthest end of the Florida Keys. The colorful corals, sea grass, and reef fish that call this watery wonderland home, are some of the most vibrant in the world. Photo by National Park Service
If you’re looking for wide open spaces and not many people, we might suggest a camping trip along the Blackfoot River in Idaho. The Bureau of Land Management maintains five campgrounds where rugged ridges and grassy hills slope down to the Blackfoot’s rushing waters. Opportunities abound for fishing, camping and non-motorized boating. Waterfowl hunting is permitted outside of the campgrounds in accordance with Idaho laws. We’re fans of the late summer sunsets, too. Photo by Jeff Cundick, Bureau of Land Management.
Soar over the Aleutian Range, and take in the incredible textures of Becharof National Wildlife Refuge in southwestern Alaska. Adjacent to Katmai National Park & Preserve, this wonderland nurtures one of Bristol Bay’s largest sockeye salmon runs, part of the foundation for the local economy. Some six million sockeye salmon run here annually, supporting a wide array of wildlife while contributing to ancient cycles. At a size difficult to comprehend, the refuge protects 1,157,000 acres and includes an active volcano, unusual geological features, historically significant landmarks, and a federally designated Wilderness. Photos by Jeff Jones, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Lenticular clouds are stationary, saucer-shaped clouds that form when moist air is pushed over large obstructions. As the tallest mountain in the Cascade Range, Mount Rainier in Washington is a great place to see these unique cloud formations. If you don’t care about the clouds, you can still enjoy amazing recreation, wildlife watching and cultural history at Mount Rainier National Park. Photo by Jacklyn Fraizer (www.sharetheexperience.org)
Don’t call it a bunny. This is a black-tailed jackrabbit at Hopper Mountain and Bitter Creek National Wildlife Refuges in California. Common across the western U.S., they’re known for their short black tails, powerful back legs and really long ears. This one does not look amused at your April Fools prank. Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.