Happy Birthday, Fort Ord National Monument! 

Three years ago today, Fort Ord National Monument in California was created by Presidential Proclamation.

The Fort Ord National Monument - a part of the BLM’s National Conservation Lands - holds some of the last undeveloped natural wildlands along the Monterey Peninsula, over 35 species of rare plants and animals, and miles of world-class recreation trails.  The BLM is committed to managing this treasured landscape in a manner that honors the nearly 2 million soldiers who passed through the gates of the former Fort Ord.

Long star trails stretch across the sky above our tent in White Sands during this 7 hour long exposure on film.  This park becomes incredibly quiet at night as they close the gates completely and only the few people who are willing to backpack into the dunes get to stay in the park.

White Sands National Monument, New Mexico - March 2015

Shot Notes:

Provia 100f 4x5, 75mm Super Angulon
7 hours at f8, no filters

Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is gorgeous in the spring! Located in south Arizona, Organ Pipe Cactus protects 516 square miles of Sonoran Desert. In the spring, the park’s landscape is carpeted in wildflowers – like yellow poppies, blue lupine and magenta common owl’s clover. Photo courtesy of Ed Cooper.


It’s International Dark Sky Week 2015!

The Grand Canyon Parashant National Monument in Arizona, jointly managed by the BLM’s National Conservation Lands and National Park Service, is a vast remote landscape where the only nighttime light comes from the stars. The International Dark Sky Association (IDA) recognized the unspoiled quality of its pristine and breathtaking night skies with an official IDA designation as “Parashant International Night Sky Province,” joining an elite group of other international Night Sky Places around the globe.

Enjoy the starry skies over the Grand Canyon Parashant along with other BLM lands that, while not official IDA sites, offer stunning views of the Milky Way. #SeeBLM #findyourpark

Photos by Bob Wick, BLM


Taking advantage of a clause in the Antiquities Act of 1906, President Theodore Roosevelt declared the Grand Canyon a National Monument on January 11, 1908. It would not become a National Park until 1919, after several frustrated attempts designate it one.

Have you ever been to the Grand Canyon?


Today, President Obama announced three new national monuments, including the gorgeous Browns Canyon National Monument pictured here. Located in Colorado, Browns Canyon will protect a stunning section of Colorado’s upper Arkansas River Valley, which features rugged granite cliffs, colorful rock outcroppings and mountain vistas that are home to a diversity of plants and wildlife. It is also one of the most popular whitewater desinations in the U.S.

The other new national monuments are Pullman National Monument in Illinois – a location iconic for its history of labor unrest and civil rights advances – and Honouliuli National Monument in Hawaii – the site of an internment camp where Japanese American citizens, resident immigrants and prisoners of war were held captive during World War II. Since taking office, President Obama has protected more than 260 million acres of public lands and waters – more than any other President – helping to ensure that our public lands preserve all of America’s history. #FindYourPark

Photos of Browns Canyon by Bob Wick, BLM (mypubliclands).


Ending the weekend with a #NatureSelfie of BLMer Bob Wick (middle photo) along with a few Wick photos of the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Arizona. 

This remote and unspoiled 280,000-acre Monument - a part of the BLM’s National Conservation Lands - contains a diversity of geologic landscapes from the Paria Plateau, Vermilion Cliffs, Coyote Buttes, and Paria Canyon.

Share your own #NatureSelfie this week for #EarthDay!