Today marks the 50th anniversary of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. Created by Congress in 1968, (Public Law 90-542; 16 U.S.C. 1271 et seq.), it aims to preserve certain rivers with outstanding natural, cultural, and recreational values in a free-flowing condition for the enjoyment of present and future generations. The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act safeguards the special character of these rivers, while also recognizing the potential for their appropriate use and development. It encourages river management that crosses political boundaries and promotes public participation in developing goals for river protection.
For more information including how to locate a local protected river, check out the National Parks page on the Wild & Scenic Rivers Act.
This week I spent some time with my friends Bill Edwards and Greg Green visiting the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary in British Columbia, Canada. It was nice to get out shooting again and it only made me that much more anxious to get out traveling again! This is the longest stretch I’ve been home in the past 40 years or so by a long shot. The variety of birds and their fearlessness when it comes to human visitors was remarkable.
Enjoy, and stay tuned for more new shots from the field as I ease back in to traveling!
World Wetlands Day is celebrated internationally each year on February 2nd. It marks the anniversary of the signing of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance in Ramsar, Iran, on 2 February 1971. This year’s theme is “wetlands for a sustainable urban future” – recognizing the impact and importance of wetlands to cities. As population is booming, wetlands that provide drinking water, counteract flooding, and filter waste are dwindling. World Wetlands Day 2018 serves to highlight the importance of this symbiotic relationship between population centers and the very ecosystem that makes them a liveable environment. Click here more information on World Wetlands Day.
As you may or may not know, the latest tax bill passed by the Trump administration recently included provisions to lift the decades-old ban on oil and gas drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeastern Alaska. ANWR is home to more than 250 animal species, and is a location I’ve returned to many times over the course of my career to capture the tranquil and relatively untouched landscape.
Bare Essentials Magazine was kind enough to include my perspective on this very important matter in the latest edition of their online magazine – check it out! My piece, along with several photographs from various parts of ANWR begins on page 111.
Sponsored by Angama Mara, The Greatest Maasai Mara Photographer of the Year will win a cash prize of $10,000 USD, as well as an unforgettable all-expenses-paid 5-night safari in the Maasai Mara, with accommodation for two at lovely Angama Mara, a private vehicle at their disposal and return flights from Nairobi.
Your entry fees will go to support these important conservation organizations:
In March of 1899, Mount Rainier National Park was founded as the nation’s fifth national park and the first created from a national forest. The pinnacle of the cascade range and an active stratovolcano, Mount Rainier can be seen looming in the distance from the hustle and bustle of caffeinated Seattle. It’s long been a place of study for volcanologists and glaciologists alike.
Coming home from trips to the remarkable places of the world is easier knowing I’m fortunate enough to live in the midst of such incredible places. The verdant Cascade Range is a must-see for anyone traveling to the Pacific North West!
Join me for a workshop at Mount Rainier this August!
This past February, Denali celebrated it’s 100th year as a national park and preserve. Home to the highest peak in North America at 20,310 feet, the park covers 6 million acres of land in Alaska composed of forests, glaciers and tundra.
At a critical time in our history when it comes to protecting our natural places, it’s important to note that Denali was the first national park created to protect wildlife and is home to 209 different species of animals. A natural laboratory for researchers and scientist, the park has been home to various scientific studies for a century now.
Alaska is one of my favorite locations on the globe, so much so that I make it a point to lead workshops in its parks on a regular basis. The scope and scale of the environments here are like no other.
Now is a better time than ever to get involved with our national parks. Click here for a list of events related to the Denali Centennial to see how you can participate!
Over the past couple weeks many people have contacted me about what we, as a community of nature enthusiasts, can do to #Resist. Loosening of environmental regulations and the de-funding of the National Parks Service are just a couple of reasons that concerned citizens are interested in the creation of materials such as cards, info packets, and brochures to get the word out about the natural heritage we could lose.
For decades I have been working with environmental organizations and NGOs near and far in promoting awareness and raising funds to fight for our public lands. I am so heartened that our concerned citizens want to flood their congressional delegations with pro-environmental messages and visuals. While myself and like-minded individuals will never cease in exploring new ways to bring attention to these vital causes, many products and memberships already exist that will both provide donations to the organization of your choice and also serve as a signal to your representative.
And this is just a small selection of organizations you can support! Click here for a list of many of the organizations I’ve worked with over the years, all of which are worthy of your consideration for support!
However, donations only go so far – and nothing counts as much as your voice. Contacting your members of congress via phone or postal letter (far more effective than emails) and attending town hall meetings or other local events where your representatives are in attendance are the most effective ways to make your voice heard.
Contacting your elected officials is easy – Click here to locate their information.
Thank you to everyone who has reached out to me regarding this critical matter. We will continue to fight for our valuable lands and wildlife!
Before heading off to Cuba a few weeks ago, I shot some aerials over southern Florida. Freshwater issues abound in this state. How do you accommodate an increasing and thirsty population and a thriving and powerful agricultural industry while protecting water quality and the fragile ecosystem of the Everglades, as well as other increasingly endangered wild areas of the state?
I took to the skies to capture some shots of the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Australia. The Great Barrier Reef is one of the world’s great natural wonders & now it is part of the largest marine park encompassing 1.2 million square miles of ocean surrounding the continent. It’s always good news to hear of a preservation of our planet of this proportion.
Save 20% on any Heart of the Sea print purchased this month. They are printed on EPSON Premium Photo Luster paper using archival EPSON Ultrachrome inks, and I hand sign them with a silver acid-free pen. Get more information about my Fine Art prints here.