Tag Archives: National Park

Trivia Tuesday

Blue Star Pool

Blue Star Pool on a chilly autumn morning, Yellowstone National Park

It’s Trivia Tuesday, folks! Here’s one from Janet Spencer’s “Yellowstone Trivia”: One ranger set out to remove the pennies from Upper Geyser Basin’s Blue Star Pool. After 15 minutes of work, he removed 700 pennies. That means 700 people figured “just one penny” wouldn’t hurt.

As a National Park placard says near another hot spring in Yellowstone National Park: “Thermal features are not trash cans or wishing wells – they are among earth’s rarest geologic treasures …”

Do your part, don’t litter, pack out what you pack in, and report any vandalism to a park ranger.

 

 

 

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Filed under autumn, Geology, National Parks, Seasons, Travel, Wyoming, Yellowstone National Park

The Downfall of Local Media

A Starry SKy Over Acadia 2

A starry sky over Acadia National Park in Maine

https://www.nationalparkstraveler.org/2019/11/downfall-local-media

Ok, bear with me, here. It’s Black Friday going through Cyber Monday and then on to Giving Tuesday, and here’s the part where I’m supposed to write a post advertising my calendars or my stunning images on my website (which is still a work in progress with cleanup and keywording). I’m not going to do that. Instead, I’m using this post to advertise daily news about our national parks (of which I am a part and for which I volunteer my writing and photos).

 
If you’ve ever read any of my photo articles on the National Parks Traveler (www.nationalparkstraveler.org), maybe you’ve also taken a gander around the rest of that site and listened to one of the podcasts or read about things to do and see in national parks, book reviews, op-eds, and daily news items about national parks all over the U.S. and in some cases, in other parts of the world. Not every mainstream news outlet does that, and definitely not on a daily basis. Usually, CNN, the Washington Post, and the New York Times (to name a few) do that only with BIG news items or sensational stories. They don’t bother with letting you know about where you can make comments on something that might affect a national park near you or one you are planning to visit, and they definitely don’t go into any great detail. Heck, some of those big outlets even used the National Parks Traveler’s reporting to flesh out their stories (think about the Joshua Tree incidents during the last government shutdown).
 
The Traveler and it’s founder are award winners. Most recently, the Traveler received the Western National Parks Association (WNPA) Steward L. Udall Award for “work … carrying the park message to popular audiences and rallying broad support for the parks.” That’s a big deal and a big honor.
 
You’re getting that news for free – no subscription fee or paywall. And I’m sure you believe anything you read on the internet should be free, right? But there are hidden costs to providing you with national parks news: website maintenance, travel costs, gear costs, having to hire some journalists and photographers on commission in places that I and the other volunteer staff cannot get to. Really, there is only one full-time staffer for the Traveler, and that’s the founder and editor-in-chief himself.
 
If you want to continue reading daily news about our national parks and other protected lands, as well as all the other interesting items I mentioned above, then please consider making a donation. The Traveler is a non-profit organization so it’s tax-deductible. Heck, I donated to the Traveler and I write for the Traveler! That should tell you right there how much I believe in an organization for which I volunteer my time, writing, and imagery. And, you can donate any amount, from $5.00 on upwards, and you can make it a monthly donation, if you want. So, if you donate $5.00 per month, you’ve made a $60 donation over the course of a year. And believe me, every bit counts!
 
Think about it, anyway. I know there are tons of organizations that can use donations. Just include the Traveler in that list. And, thanks for reading this and thanks for any donation you make.
 

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Filed under National Parks, National Parks Traveler

Gobble, Gobble! Happy Thanksgiving!

Gobble Gobble CROP

Here’s to the one that got away and won’t be found on anybody’s dinner table 😉

 
For those of you who follow the tradition of Thanksgiving, it’s supposed to be a time of thinking about what you are thankful for in your life. It also is a time to enjoy the bounty of what the earth provides (aka lots of eating and snacking … and watching football).
 
I’m thankful for a gazillion things, such as my sister, having a roof over my head and food to eat and electricity and clean running water. I’m thankful for having moved back to a part of the U.S. that I love the most, and being back so close to the mountains that I’ve missed for the majority of my life. I’m also thankful for the invention of digital cameras and being able to own a few in order to capture beautiful / interesting images that tell a story and elicit emotion and share them with you all. I’m thankful for our national parks and hope nobody ever commercializes them (any more than they may already be). I could go on and on, but at least you know, I don’t take much for granted and try to find something good in every day.
 
As for the photo, this is a wild turkey that was roaming around with its flock (or whatever you call a group of wild turkeys) near a Park Service storage building along a trail near the Court of The Patriarchs. Those guys were not afraid of me at all. I should have been afraid of them because thtey were pretty darned big. I followed them around to get still images and video, and it was then that I learned they could fly. Well, from the ground up to a branch in a tree, which is where I photographed this guy (or gal). I also learned that they are very colorful and, despite their faces only a mother could love, are actually kinda pretty.
Happy Thanksgiving, Everybody!
 
Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under birds, Holidays, National Parks, nature, Photography, Thanksgiving, Travel, Utah, Zion National Park

It’s Waterfall Wednesday!

Fairy Falls

Fairy Falls, Yellowstone National Park

It’s #waterfallwednesday ! So here’s a photo of a lovely, tall waterfall on an overcast autumn day, the trail of which nearly killed me to get to. Ok, I’m exaggerating. The trail to this tall waterfall is easy and well-maintained. I was just (as usual) lugging along a pack full of camera gear and a heavy tripod. I’d just finished photographing Grand Prismatic from that new overlook and was hiking onward toward Fairy Falls. Having never been there before, I didn’t have any idea (because I hadn’t done my homework) and checked to see how far it was from the overlook. As I was hiking down from the overlook, this very nice couple looked back at me and asked if I was continuing on toward the falls. I said I was and they invited me to hike with them because they didn’t feel right about me hiking alone, with a bear frequenting the area. So, I did, blithely hiking at or around their pace (I think they slowed down a little for me – both were veteran hikers). We had a lovely time talking and we finally got to the trailhead for the falls, itself, and the mileage was 1.6 one way. My brain hesitated but my legs did not. Had I been alone, I might not have hiked even that relatively short distance with all the stuff I was hefting with me, but I was enjoying my visit with this nice couple, so I kept on with them. You know, it’s always such a reward to see whatever sight it is at one’s end destination, when you are pooped and sweating and think the damned trail is never going to end 😆

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

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Filed under 5DSR, autumn, Canon, Canon Lens, National Parks, Photography, Seasons, Travel, Wyoming, Yellowstone National Park

Bringing It All Together In Yellowstone

Grazing In An Autumn Snow Storm

Grazing In The Snowstorm, Yellowstone National Park

If you enjoy photography in the national parks, then you should read my latest photography column published today in the National Parks Traveler. It brings together the techniques I use the most for my photography using images I captured during my recent Yellowstone trip for examples.

To read the article, click on the image above.

 

 

 

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Filed under autumn, Canon, Canon Lens, National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Photography, Seasons, Travel, Wyoming, Yellowstone National Park

National Parks Traveler Podcast #41: Addressing The Backlog, Out In The Parks, Spaceport Secrecy

Reflection Lake Scenery

A Reflection of “The Mountain” on Reflection Lake, Mount Rainier National Park

I write and photograph for the National Parks Traveler, a non-profit media site dedicated to daily reporting on national parks and other protected lands. Since about February of this year, the Traveler has also been producing weekly podcasts that air every Sunday. Today’s podcast talks about the National Park System’s $12 BILLION maintenance backlog with John Garder, the senior director of budget and appropriations for the National Parks Conservation Association, interviews Moon USA National Parks author Becky Lomax, and offers up some thoughts about efforts to build a commercial spaceport just west of Cumberland Island National Seashore.

To listen to this approximately 50-minute long podcast (or download it for later listening), click on the image above.

Oh, and you’ll be hearing me on a future podcast or two. I interviewed with the Traveler’s founder and editor-in-chief yesterday about winter photography, and I’m scheduled to talk to him again about favorite spots of mine for photography in the national parks I’ve visited.

 

 

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Filed under National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Podcast

Withstanding Time And The Elements In Zion National Park

Withstanding Time And The Elements

I may be an SLR gal, but I freely admit that point-and-shoots are great at capturing national park images, too. When I am out in the parks, I always carry one of my two little point-and-shoots in my pocket. They are not only backup in case the photographic unthinkable happens, but they are great at getting macro shots.
 
This photo of a ponderosa pine growing atop a cross-bedded red-rock knoll (probably a little lithified sand dune) and framed by other trees, was captured with my Canon GX7 MkII. While it’s not the most sturdy of cameras around the lens area (the dainty little shutter blades that made up the “lens cap” and opened and closed when the camera was powered on and off broke off when the camera accidentally fell out of my vest pocket. Thankfully, it still works and I purchased a push-on lens cap to protect the lens.
 
So, don’t knock the point-and-shoots. They produce some nice little images, too.
 
Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Canon, Equipment, GX7 Mk II, National Parks, Photography, Point and Shoot, Seasons, Travel, Utah, winter, Zion National Park