Our friend Ace Kvale is one of the world’s top adventure photographers. For over 30 years his action photos, striking portraits and stunning landscapes have captured the essence of wild places and diverse cultures in the far corners of the globe. Recently, Ace has used photography as an opportunity to raise consciousness. Through his latest work with vanishing cultures and international philanthropic organizations, he’s discovered new inspiration and purpose by using his skills to help people at risk. He specializes in cultural, documentary, travel and outdoor adventure photography.
The Desert Dawg Trail
In the first place you can’t see anything from a car; you’ve got to get out of the goddamned contraption and walk, better yet crawl, on hands and knees, over the sandstone and through the thornbush and cactus. When traces of blood begin to mark your trail you’ll begin to see something, maybe. Probably not.
–Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire
The first time I read those words I was living in a small cabin in the woods in the San Juan mountains of Colorado. I’ve never forgotten them. Ed Abbey left a huge impression on me. Since then I’ve been lucky to travel, ski, climb and photograph on six continents. From mountains in Tibet to rivers in Alaska I’ve been one lucky dude.
But the words of Ed Abbey have always held a grip on me. Hundreds of desert climbing trips have in no way extinguished my insatiable curiosity for the beauty of the canyon wilderness. That’s the thing right there. Wilderness. That’s the word. So simple.
Glamping. Wtf? Seriously? Yet it exists. The other day I saw a piece on the best iPhone apps for camping. No shit. But, to be totally honest I have an iPhone. I have the topo maps app with all the maps I need downloaded in it. I can press a few buttons and have my position pinpointed with incredible accuracy. It tells me right where I am on the map I’m holding in my sweaty hand. You are here. Awesome.
We see a lot of great photos and videos throughout the week. So, we thought it was high time we started rounding up some of our faves each week and highlighting one on Friday to inspire weekend adventures. We call it the Osprey Round Up.
We thought we’d give you a good dose of cuteness and a kick in the pants this Friday. Our friends at 5Gyres just released this short PSA, featuring Randall from Honey Badger fame. Take a moment to watch and then do your part to stop plastic pollution.
One hundred and forty years ago, America established it’s first National Park: Yellowstone. Just the name conjures up images of geysers, grizzlies, bison and wild landscape. So, send some love to Yellowstone today and take action to protect this incredible park for many more years to come.
See more beautiful images from Yellowstone in National Geographic’s photo gallery.
For 26 years, American Rivers has sounded the alarm on hundreds of rivers through our America’s Most Endangered Rivers report. By shining the spotlight and mobilizing the public to take action, we save rivers from urgent threats like pollution, mining and dams. The report emphasizes solutions to secure a better future for the rivers, their fish and wildlife and communities.
The ten rivers named as America’s Most Endangered Rivers of 2011 highlight an issue of urgent concern to all Americans: clean water. It is vital to the health of our families and communities. Sixty-five percent of our drinking water comes from rivers and streams, but many of our rivers are too polluted to use.
America’s Most Endangered Rivers is more than a list. It is a call to action to engage concerned citizens in the fight to protect rivers. With public support, we can directly impact the fate of these rivers and save them for generations to come.
Do your part. Take Action here.
We’re excited about the latest round of Mountainfilm guest speakers to be announced. In keeping with the 2011 Moving Mountains Symposium theme of “Awareness into Action,” the series of special guests announced last week, “have all committed their lives to rolling up their sleeves and making a serious difference in the world,” Festival Director David Holbrooke said.
Take Action: Save Wildlife In SE Asia — Vote For Trevor Frost In National Geographic Channel’s Expedition Granted
More than 100,000 nature reserves or parks exist across the globe today to protect the world’s most beautiful places and important wildlife. Many assume that these parks ensure the protection of wildlife and habitats, but reports from the International Union for Conservation of Nature estimate that up to 70% of the world’s parks are failing to do their job — these parks have come to be known as “paper parks”. With little to no on-the-ground protection, funding for park rangers or even signs to outline park borders, these parks are literally just lines drawn on a map. In Asia, and in particular Indonesia, the problem is critical — the illegal wildlife trade is rampant and rates of deforestation are the highest in the world.
The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) has been protecting our wild places since 1965. Now, with Congress back in session, the time is right to voice support for permanent funding for the LWCF.
Support legislation now before the U.S. Senate that guarantees permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund — the U.S. government’s key program for protecting land and water…
The program is authorized to receive up to $900 million a year. But despite an increase in energy production, funding for land and water protection has been low and unpredictable — diverted elsewhere by Congress…
Some of America’s most important natural areas are supported by the Fund:
- National parks and forests such as the Grand Canyon and Petrified Forest
- Working farms and ranches
- Fish and wildlife refuges
- Neighborhood parks
- Beaches and land around rivers and lakes.
And the program also benefits people — through ensuring clean water supplies, supporting jobs, reducing the cost of firefighting, and protecting the great outdoors for wildlife and recreation.
Let your Senator know you support legislation for land and water conservation.
Our ocean. It generates most of the oxygen we breathe. It gives us food. It regulates our climate and cleans the water we drink. And for anyone who has ever stood on the beach and closed their eyes, listening to the waves crash—our ocean is exhilarating and provides limitless inspiration.
It’s our ocean, so we need to protect it. Today is World Oceans Day. What are you doing to celebrate and protect our oceans?
Today is Endangered Species Day, and tomorrow is the International Day of Biodiversity, so do something to celebrate our incredible community of species. And while you’re at it, do something to protect it.
What exactly is biodiversity? The International League of Conservation Photographers put together this great multimedia piece that showcases what biodiversity is and why it’s important. Watching it, you’ll quickly realize that biodiversity is something that affects all of us… and that’s why we have a duty to do something to ensure its protection.
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5 Ways to Celebrate Endangered Species Day
- TAKE ACTION – Tell the Secretary of the Interior to protect critical habitat for endangered polar bears and stop Shell Oil from off-shore drilling, or urge President Obama to save the West’s most iconic salmon species from extinction.
- Update your Facebook profile pic – Show your support for endangered species with a photo of your favorite wildlife species. Both National Wildlife Federation and the Endangered Species Coalition have some species snaps to choose from. Let us know you did it by including @Endangered Species Coalition or @National Wildlife Federation in your status message.
- Help spread the word via Twitter – Share an Endangered Species Day message or wildlife fact with your friends and family. Make sure to include #speciesday in your tweet.
- Attend an Endangered Species Day event! Events are held across the country to highlight endangered species stories.
- Get Outside! Take a hike on your favorite trail, climb your favorite pitch or shred up the last of that spring snow. What species live there? And what can you do to make sure that they will be there for future generations?
The catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico caused late last month by the explosion of an offshore oil rig has put local economies, wildlife and the Gulf’s delicate coastal ecosystem at risk. And unfortunately oil is still spilling. This could easily be one of the worst environmental disasters in our nation’s history.
As part of the outdoor community, we understand firsthand how important it is to safeguard this country’s natural world. This country’s unparalleled wildlands and waters form the bedrock of our industry — they are the places that inspire us to manufacture the highest-quality products so that our customers can enjoy the best-possible outdoor experiences. These wild places — along with the plants, animals and ecosystems they support — are also an integral part of the outdoor spirit, and we take very seriously our industry’s responsibility to help protect them for generations to come.
So, take a moment today to do something to help the wildlife that’s hurting in the Gulf today. Here are some tips from the National Wildlife Federation:
1. Text “WILDLIFE” to 20222 to Donate $10 – You can help wildlife threatened by the oil spill by donating via your mobile phone. Your donation will help support National Wildlife Federation’s on-the-ground volunteer and restoration efforts.
2. Speak Up for Cleaner Energy Choices – Tell your senators that now more than ever we need to pass comprehensive legislation that provides America with cleaner and safer energy choices.
3. Help Spread Messages Online – There are tons of groups out there working hard on the ground. Give a follow Friday to these folks @NWF, @waterkeeper, @NRDC for updates about the BP Oil Spill and how people are taking action.