It’s International Mountain Day! Not only are mountains majestic, they’re also critical to the water cycle, food production and tourism. If you asked someone to draw a mountain, they’d probably sketch something like the rugged beauty of Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. With its snow-capped peaks catching the sunrise light above the Snake River, it’s one of the most stunning sights in America. Photo by Adam Jewell (www.sharetheexperience.org).
You don’t have to get up to enjoy a spectacular sunrise this time of year at Kenai Fjords National Park. Alaska’s short December days mean the sun comes up around 9:45 in the morning and sets before 4:00 in the afternoon. So bundle up and take your time finding the perfect spot to enjoy it among the coastal mountains of this incredible park. Photo by Jim Pfeiffenberger, National Park Service.
Happy Birthday, Glacier Bay National Park! Designated from a national monument to a national park on this day in 1980, Glacier Bay covers 3.3 million acres of rugged mountains, dynamic glaciers, temperate rainforest, wild coastlines and deep sheltered fjords. From sea to summit, the Alaska park offers limitless opportunities for adventure and inspiration. And the most incredible blue water you’ll ever see. Photo by Cliff LaPlant (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Who is a fan of birds? Whether you are a beginner or a veteran birder, you can find a wondrous variety of birds in Saguaro National Park in Arizona. From birds that are adapted to the extremes of the desert, to birds that prefer the tall pines of the mountains, over 200 species of birds live in or migrate through the park. This owl family looks quite at home in the crook of a large saguaro. Photo courtesy of Jeremy Johnson.
Olympic National Park’s 73-mile long wilderness coast is a rare treasure. This Washington park is home to rocky headlands, sandy beaches and tidepools teeming with life. Offshore sea stacks topped by nesting seabirds and wind-sheared trees add to the already picturesque landscape of Ruby Beach. Sunset photo by Brooke McLean (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Every picture of Glacier National Park in Montana evokes a flood of superlatives. The mountains are majestic, the views are epic and the valleys are picturesque. However, no words can ever really convey the feeling of looking out over this incredible landscape as sunlight shimmers off fresh snow and the cool, fresh wind blows by you. Just the thought makes us want to climb into this photo and explore. Photo by Kate McFadzen (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Happy Thanksgiving! Among the many things we’re thankful for, America’s public lands are near the top of the list. From sea to shining sea, we’re grateful for gorgeous mountains, pristine waters, enchanting forests, sublime deserts, fascinating history, wonderful wildlife and endless opportunities for recreation and connecting with the outdoors. From everyone on Interior’s hardworking team, have a safe and fun Thanksgiving. Photo of Half Dome at Yosemite National Park courtesy of Tom Ashman.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park has the four highest peaks in Texas, an ancient fossil reef, desert, dunes, canyons, wildlife and a touch of fall color. In McKittrick Canyon, the maples put on a show this autumn. With lots of trails for hiking and horseback riding, you’ll find the perfect place for your fall pictures. Photo by National Park Service volunteers.
Happy birthday, Zion National Park! Utah’s first national park, Zion protects some of the most scenic canyon country in the United States. It includes 229 square miles of high plateaus, a maze of sandstone canyons and amazing waterfalls with colorful hanging gardens. Check out more fun facts about Zion: http://on.doi.gov/1X0Ju2P Photo of the Watchman by Nina Mayer Ritchie (www.sharetheexperience.org).
There’s no wonder why Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one our most popular national parks for hiking. The rolling mountains along the North Carolina – Tennessee border are gorgeous in all seasons, but the transition to bright fall colors is a sight to behold. In golden sunset light, the beauty of this place is overwhelming. Photo by Jerome Ginsberg (www.sharetheexperience.org).