America's Great Outdoors
St. Mary Falls in Glacier National Park.Photo: National Park Service

St. Mary Falls in Glacier National Park.

Photo: National Park Service

The Milky Way and the Northern Lights dwarfed Thoroughfare Mountain (Denali National Park) last night in a grand display. Photo by Daniel A. Leifheit

The Milky Way and the Northern Lights dwarfed Thoroughfare Mountain (Denali National Park) last night in a grand display.

Photo by Daniel A. Leifheit

Frogs love a rainy day to explore new ponds. Many small young frogs have been seen lately on Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge in Minnesota. Here’s a unique find on the refuge - an albino wood frog.This 43,000 acre National Wildlife Refuge includes over 20 lakes, three rivers and hundreds of marshes and woodland ponds. The Refuge is host to over 250 birds, including nesting bald eagles, scarlet tanagers, golden-wing warblers, and ruffed grouse. Tamarac is a premier site for a growing trumpeter swan population. Visitors can search for white-tail deer, porcupine, beaver, river otter, black bear, or the elusive gray wolf along the scenic auto tour route. Observation platforms with spotting scopes enhance your viewing opportunities. An attractive visitor center offers a spectacular vista of the marshes and trees that are typical of Tamarac Refuge. A theater presentation provides orientation to the life and legends of this unique area. Your purchase at the small gift shop of wildlife books and locally made crafts serves as a fund-raiser of the Friends of Tamarac for educational programs and habitat enhancements. Enjoy hiking trails, historic sites, hunting and fishing. The Visitor Center is open weekdays year round 8am-4pm as well as summer and fall weekends 10am-5pm.Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Frogs love a rainy day to explore new ponds. Many small young frogs have been seen lately on Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge in Minnesota. Here’s a unique find on the refuge - an albino wood frog.

This 43,000 acre National Wildlife Refuge includes over 20 lakes, three rivers and hundreds of marshes and woodland ponds. The Refuge is host to over 250 birds, including nesting bald eagles, scarlet tanagers, golden-wing warblers, and ruffed grouse. Tamarac is a premier site for a growing trumpeter swan population. Visitors can search for white-tail deer, porcupine, beaver, river otter, black bear, or the elusive gray wolf along the scenic auto tour route. Observation platforms with spotting scopes enhance your viewing opportunities. An attractive visitor center offers a spectacular vista of the marshes and trees that are typical of Tamarac Refuge. A theater presentation provides orientation to the life and legends of this unique area. Your purchase at the small gift shop of wildlife books and locally made crafts serves as a fund-raiser of the Friends of Tamarac for educational programs and habitat enhancements. Enjoy hiking trails, historic sites, hunting and fishing. The Visitor Center is open weekdays year round 8am-4pm as well as summer and fall weekends 10am-5pm.

Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Happy 50th anniversary to the Wilderness Act! President Lyndon Johnson’s signing of the Wilderness Act and Land and Water Conservation Fund Act in 1964 is perhaps most important single event in American conservation history. Since its signing, Congress has designated more than 106 million acres of federal public lands as wilderness.Last week we asked you to pick your favorite wilderness photo and here is the winner. This photo was taken from the Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center within Yosemite National Park by Sean Goebel. 

Happy 50th anniversary to the Wilderness Act! President Lyndon Johnson’s signing of the Wilderness Act and Land and Water Conservation Fund Act in 1964 is perhaps most important single event in American conservation history. Since its signing, Congress has designated more than 106 million acres of federal public lands as wilderness.

Last week we asked you to pick your favorite wilderness photo and here is the winner. This photo was taken from the Tuolumne Meadows Wilderness Center within Yosemite National Park by Sean Goebel. 

As summer winds down - fall is a wonderful time to visit Great Basin National Park in Nevada - especially for the Astronomy Festival coming this September 18-20. See details at www.BestNightSky.com.Photo: National Park Service

As summer winds down - fall is a wonderful time to visit Great Basin National Park in Nevada - especially for the Astronomy Festival coming this September 18-20. See details at www.BestNightSky.com.

Photo: National Park Service

Happy Labor Day everyone! We hope you get a chance to visit America’s public lands on this holiday weekend.Photo from Isle Royale National Park by Adam Jewell.

Happy Labor Day everyone! We hope you get a chance to visit America’s public lands on this holiday weekend.

Photo from Isle Royale National Park by Adam Jewell.

Amazing sunset over Glacier National Park.Photo: National Park Service

Amazing sunset over Glacier National Park.

Photo: National Park Service

St. Mary Lake — St. Mary Lake sits within the St. Mary Valley—”the eastern gateway to Glacier National Park. Prairies, mountains, and forests all converge in the valley to create a diverse and rich habitat for plants and animals. The open meadows surrounded by dense forests can afford some great opportunities for wildlife viewing.” Photo: Kim Keating, USGS

St. Mary Lake — St. Mary Lake sits within the St. Mary Valley—”the eastern gateway to Glacier National Park. Prairies, mountains, and forests all converge in the valley to create a diverse and rich habitat for plants and animals. The open meadows surrounded by dense forests can afford some great opportunities for wildlife viewing.” 

Photo: Kim Keating, USGS

Moose in the mist.There was a heavy fog in the river valley this morning in Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge in Wyoming. This large bull moose was spotted eating his breakfast of Pacific willow leaves and branches near Headquarters. Photo: Tom Koerner/USFWS

Moose in the mist.

There was a heavy fog in the river valley this morning in Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge in Wyoming. This large bull moose was spotted eating his breakfast of Pacific willow leaves and branches near Headquarters.

Photo: Tom Koerner/USFWS

Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains some of the largest tracts of wilderness in the East and is a critical sanctuary for a wide variety of animals. Protected in the park are some 65 species of mammals, over 200 varieties of birds, 67 native fish species, and more than 80 types of reptiles and amphibians. The symbol of the Smokies, the American Black Bear, is perhaps the most famous resident of the park. Great Smoky Mountains National Park provides the largest protected bear habitat in the East. Though populations are variable, biologists estimate approximately 1,500 bears live in the park, a density of approximately two bears per square mile. Photo: Charlie Choc (www.sharetheexperience.org)

Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains some of the largest tracts of wilderness in the East and is a critical sanctuary for a wide variety of animals. Protected in the park are some 65 species of mammals, over 200 varieties of birds, 67 native fish species, and more than 80 types of reptiles and amphibians. 

The symbol of the Smokies, the American Black Bear, is perhaps the most famous resident of the park. Great Smoky Mountains National Park provides the largest protected bear habitat in the East. Though populations are variable, biologists estimate approximately 1,500 bears live in the park, a density of approximately two bears per square mile. 

Photo: Charlie Choc (www.sharetheexperience.org)