Start the holiday weekend with a night under the stars at Amargosa Wild and Scenic River, located at the south end of California’s Tecopa Valley, east of the southeastern corner of Death Valley National Park. The area has a harsh climate, unobstructed views of desert mountains, and few human settlements.

The narrow Amargosa Canyon is known for its dense greenery and the shallow Amargosa River, complete with “hanging gardens” and a small waterfall. The river flows year-long, dropping south from Nevada, and finally flowing into Death Valley National Park.

Recreational activities in the area include hiking, bird watching, rock climbing, rock collecting, horseback riding, scenic touring, nature study, astronomy, and photography. Amargosa Canyon, with its wide open spaces, is a perfect place to seek tranquility. In contrast to the abundant off-highway vehicle opportunities available immediately to the south at Dumont Dunes, this area is appropriate to the serious hiker, horseback rider, and casual weekend explorer.

Learn more:

Photo: Bob Wick, BLM

It’s National Get Outdoors Day!  Why not celebrate on any of the more than 245 million acres of public lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, like the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument in Montana?

The Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument holds a spectacular array of plant life, wildlife, unique geological features, endless recreational opportunities and significant historical and cultural values. The rugged landscape has retained much of its unspoiled character over the centuries and, as a result, offers outstanding opportunities for solitude and dispersed recreation.

The 149-mile Upper Missouri National Wild and Scenic River flows through the monument. The land and the rugged, surrounding uplands (commonly call the Missouri Breaks) are defined in part by their history. The entire region was the homeland and lifeblood of American Indians. The river served as the pathway for Lewis and Clark, then the waterway for steamboats and a drawing card for fur trappers and traders. Later, the river and the Missouri Breaks were sanctuaries for desperados trying to stay a step ahead of the law. The land was also a source of hope and inspiration for several generations of homesteaders. Today the public lands in the monument make a significant contribution to the local lifestyle and the regional economy.

Within the monument you can float the river, fish, hike, hunt, drive for pleasure, find a little solitude, enjoy a sense of exploration or simply marvel at the variety of resources around you. If you cannot float the Upper Missouri or visit the backcountry, you’ll still be able to experience the cultural and natural history of the monument at the Missouri Breaks Interpretive Center at 701 7th Street, Fort Benton, Montana.

For more information, visit

Photos by Bob Wick

California Coastal National Monument at Crescent City, California — Bob Wick, Instagram Guest Photographer 

About the photo: Using a very slow shutter speed (several seconds or more) softens moving water and helps convey a sense of movement.  In addition to using this technique on rivers and waterfalls, it works great to capture ocean and large lake waves as shown here on California’s far north Coast. This image was taken in Crescent City, the northernmost town along the 1,100 mile California Coastal National Monument. The National Monument and the tall trees in nearby Redwood National Park make this a photographers paradise.

Camera Settings: Lens focal length: 70mm, aperture: f22, shutter speed: 6 seconds, ISO 50

anonymous said:

You live in Bwick right? Me too! I hope one day I happen to pass you on the street so I can say "Hi I'm a boy. Sorry we're all terrible but I'd like to kiss you, too!" Major Tumblr crush. :]

I don’t live in bush wick; I live in south Brooklyn! but I hope u do too cuz I’m really down for some smooches.


Happy Anniversary Antiquities Act!

On June 8, 1906, President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Antiquities Act into law, which authorized all future presidents to protect historic landmarks or objects of “scientific interest” on public lands as national monuments.

While most national monuments are established by the President, Congress also has established national monuments protecting natural or historic features. Since 1906, the President and Congress have created more than 100 national monuments. They are currently managed by multiple agencies, including the National Park Service, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Bureau of Land Management.

The photo collection here reflects the diversity and beauty of the BLM-managed national monuments, a part of the BLM’s National Conservation Lands. Photos by Bob Wick, BLM Wilderness Specialist.


Today we celebrate national “Take Your Pants for a Walk Day”  ……

Yes, really.  And it’s easy.  Just put on some pants and #getoutdoors - from #backyard2backcountry.  Here are a just a few of our favorite BLM-managed lands for walking, hiking, biking and more.

Check out last summer’s bucket list posts to learn more about these and other amazing BLM-managed lands:

The California Desert is certainly full of surprises. I took this photo on BLM lands in the Silurian Valley in the very dry floodplain of Salt Creek.  Seeing that this is a major drought year, I was completely surprised to see anything blooming anywhere, let alone in one of the driest parts of the desert, not far from Death Valley.  There was a flash flood here last summer and that must have added enough moisture to allow the flowers to sprout.

This is a beautiful valley that drains north into the Amargosa Wild and Scenic River.  The lower part of Salt Creek (about 10 miles north of here) is perennial and provides great wildlife habitat (especially birds) so is an Area of Critical of Environmental Concern (ACEC).  Once you get away from the highway,  the area looks much the way it did when the Old Spanish Trail was the main thoroughfare through the area.

-Bob Wick, BLM-California


The famous Giant Gap run of the even more famous North Fork American Wild and Scenic River is one of the most challenging runs in Northern California. Cliffs tower 2,000 feet above clear green streams smashing a path through rapids choked with boulders. Heaps of mine tailings and an old cabin ruin border the course of this roller coaster ride through the historic Mother Lode.

Learn more about this BLM-managed river:

Photo: Bob Wick, BLM


Nine BLM Wilderness Areas Make Wilderness Society’s “15 of America’s Most Photogenic Wilderness Areas”

This year, the Bureau of Land Management and other land management agencies, non-government partners and the American public celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.  For this anniversary, the Wilderness Society has been featuring beautiful wilderness areas across the United States.  Their latest feature, “15 of America’s Most Photogenic Wilderness Areas,” include nine BLM-managed wilderness areas, all a part of the BLM’s beautiful National Conservation Lands


Happy Birthday, Wyoming! 

On this day in history, Wyoming became the 44th state in 1890. The Bureau of Land Management administers more than 17.5 million acres of public lands and 40.7 million acres of federal mineral estate in Wyoming.

The state’s rugged and historic lands are rich in legend of outlaw activity in the late 1800s, most notably Butch Cassidy and the Wild Bunch Gang. BLM Wyoming manages the Middle Fork, Hole in the Wall and other infamous western sites as well as the longest and most intact segments of the National Historic Trails System which includes 1400 miles of the Oregon, Mormon Pioneer, California, Pony Express and Nez Perce trails

The National Historic Trails Interpretive Center in Wyoming is a cooperative partnership between BLM, the National Historic Trails Center Foundation and the City of Casper. The Trails Center interprets the significant role of the area’s historic trails in the history of the United States, and seeks to promote public understanding of both America’s western Native cultures and historic westward expansion while highlighting BLM’s role as active stewards of public lands.