Category: recreation

Let’s talk about a legacy of fun! On October 8, 1964, President Johnson signed an act formally establishing Lake Mead National Recreation Area in Arizona and Nevada. The act redesignated the old Boulder Dam Recreation Area and included Lake Mohave. Now the first National Recreation Area established by Congress covers almost 1.5 million acres of land and water. Boating, hiking, photography, fishing and swimming are all popular at this aquatic playground. We recommend taking a kayak to Emerald Cave to see the unbelievable green waters. Photo by Cheryl Hobbs (

The South Fork of the Snake River flows for 66 miles across southeastern Idaho, through high mountain valleys, rugged canyons and broad floodplains. An incredible resource for outdoor recreation, more than 300,000 anglers, campers, hikers, boaters and birders visit the South Fork each year. The river corridor is also home to an impressive array of wildlife including moose, deer, elk, mountain goats, mountain lions, black bears, bobcats, coyotes, river otter, beaver, fox, mink and 126 bird species, including 21 raptors, meriting a “National Important Bird Area” designation. Photo courtesy of Jim Shane, Bureau of Land Management Artist-In-Residence (@mypubliclands).

The best way to be a part of National Fishing and Boating Week is to get out on the water and have some fun! From national seashores to wild and scenic rivers to countless lakes and reservoirs across the country, public waters are some of the best places to enjoy your favorite marine activities. Lake Powell at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area in Arizona and Utah – set against a dramatic backdrop of red rock canyons and mesas – is the largest man-made lake in North America and is recognized by boating enthusiasts as one of the premier water-based recreation destinations in the world. Photo by Rebecca Wilks (

Congratulations to Ching Fu, the Grand Prize Winner of the 2018 Share the Experience photo contest! His picture of a winter adventure at Bridger Teton National Forest in Wyoming will appear on next year’s America the Beautiful: The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass. In 2018, amateur photographers sent in over 7,700 images inspired by the beauty and importance of America’s public lands. Thank you to everyone who participated and good luck next year! Photo by Ching Fu (

The waters of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System are conserved in their natural, untamed state for this and future generations to enjoy. In 1968, Congress passed the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to protect some of our most cherished rivers. These remarkable waterways support life, fascinating geology, and contribute significantly to the recreation, culture and history of this country. And guess what? Today we’re celebrating these places with the release of the Wild and Scenic Rivers stamps from the U.S Postal Service. Photo of the Tlikakila River at Lake Clark National Park & Preserve in Alaska by D. Young, National Park Service.

Known for its breathtaking scenery, Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area is a fine example of the spectacular canyon country of Colorado’s Uncompahgre Plateau. Red rock canyons and sandstone bluffs hold geological and paleontological resources spanning 600 million years, as well as many cultural and historic sites. 115 miles of streams and rivers support a variety of wildlife, including desert bighorn sheep, mule deer, golden eagle, turkey, elk, mountain lion, black bear and collared lizard. Photo by Bob Wick, Bureau of Land Management.

National parks are more than massive western landscapes. Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio is a calming escape from the nearby urban centers of Cleveland and Akron. When you walk through the woods past waterfalls and wildlife to find your perfect spot along a babbling stream, you’ll know why national parks are national treasures. Every park has a secret to share. It’s up to you to get out there discover them. Photo by Jerry Jelinek (

Are you planning a trip to Grand Canyon National Park this summer? To get the full experience, take a walk along the rim or hike into the canyon. Trails range from easy to strenuous, but all provide spectacular views. Just remember, every step down has to be repeated as a step up on the return trip. The bright line you see here shows the numerous switchbacks and change in elevation. Be sure to pack water, snacks and common sense. Photo by National Park Service.

Chase the sunset to Channel Islands National Park in California. Located over 12 miles off the coast, the park encompasses five remarkable islands and their ocean environment, preserving a wealth of natural and cultural resources. Each of the islands is a fascinating world unto itself with unique wildlife and awesome views. Sunset on Anacapa Island is a highlight for many visitors. Photo by Aaron Echols (

Not far from the glitz and excitement of Las Vegas, Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area in Nevada offers a different kind of thrill. With scenic trails for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding, it’s easy to find a quiet place to enjoy its natural beauty. Photographer Courtney Knaup – a frequent visitor – recently enjoyed a perfect moment of wonder and solitude. “Being out there alone, watching the first light hit the cliffs is always magical. Even more so with a fresh layer of snow.” Photo courtesy of Courtney Knaup.