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Photo Set



National Landscape Conservation System


March 24, 2010

This year, we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of one of America’s newest conservation legacies, the National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS). First established by Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt in 2000, and expanded and made permanent under the leadership of President Barack Obama, the 27-million-acre National Landscape Conservation System encompasses some of our nation’s most treasured lands and waters.


  • Located off the 1,100 miles of California coastline, the California Coastal National Monument comprises more than 20,000 small islands, rocks, exposed reefs, and pinnacles between Mexico and Oregon. The national monument provides habitat for about 200,000 breeding seabirds, as well as for southern sea otters and California sea lions.  Photo by BLM.
    Visitor viewing sunset at Pilot Rock, Trinidad, Calif.
  • The Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument in central Montana holds a spectacular array of plant life, wildlife, unique geological features, and significant historical and cultural values. 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. Photo by BLM.
    The sun, sky, and cliffs — and their reflection in the Upper Missouri River.
  • The 1.2 million-acre Steese National Conservation Area in Alaska includes Birch Creek National Wild River, wildlife habitat and diverse recreational opportunities. Its Alpine tundra, tussocks and boreal forest provide crucial caribou calving grounds and home range, as well as habitat for Dall sheep, moose, grizzly and black bear, and Peregrine falcons. Photo by BLM.
    A cluster of cone-shaped tent-rock formations with boulder caps at Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument.
  • The 1.2 million-acre Steese National Conservation Area in Alaska includes Birch Creek National Wild River, wildlife habitat and diverse recreational opportunities. Its Alpine tundra, tussocks and boreal forest provide crucial caribou calving grounds and home range, as well as habitat for Dall sheep, moose, grizzly and black bear, and Peregrine falcons. Photo by BLM.
    A panoramic shot of the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area’s scenic canyons and mountains.
  • One of the newest units of the National Landscape Conservation System, Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area in Colorado offers scenic panoramas, rafting on the Gunnison River and mysterious clues to the area’s ancient past. Red-rock canyons and sandstone bluffs hold geological and paleontological resources spanning 600 million years, as well as many cultural and historic sites. Photo by BLM.
    A panoramic shot of the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area’s scenic canyons and mountains.
  • Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Arizona is a geologic treasure of towering cliffs, deep canyons and spectacular sandstone formations. It contains Paria Plateau; Vermilion Cliffs; Pariau Canyon, and Coyote Buttes, which is home to “the wave,” a swirling mass of stone. Photo by BLM.
    The “wave,” a colorful, swirling mass of stone at Vermilion Cliff National Monument’s Coyote Bluffs.
  • Located at the crossroads of the Cascade, Klamath, and Siskiyou mountain ranges, Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument has a tremendously varied landscape and remarkable biological diversity. Its many archaeological and historical sites provide clues to Native American use of the area and trace portions of the historic Oregon/California Trail. Some of the best ways to explore this unique landscape include hiking the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail. Photo by BLM.
    Hiker and dog enjoying the view at Hobart Overlook within Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument.
  • The Headwaters Forest Reserve in California protects groves of thousand-year-old redwoods and provides habitat for the threatened marbled murrelet and the threatened coho salmon.  Visitors to the preserve hike, bike, or just enjoy the grandeur of the reserve. Photo by BLM.
    Old-growth redwoods soaring within the Headwaters Forest Reserve.
  • Spanning 1.9 million acres, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah’s bold plateaus and multi-hued cliffs run for distances that defy human perspective.  Scientific study of formations within the monument has yielded more information about land-based ecosystem change at the end of the dinosaur era than almost any other place in the world. Photo by BLM.
    Aerial view of White Canyon in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.
  • Located near the Oregon, Mormon Pioneer, California and Pony Express Trails, the National Historic Trails Interpretive Center in Wyoming seeks to increase visitor understanding of Western expansion and its impact on American history.  The center houses special interpretive exhibits and performs history reenactments that depict life on the trail. Photo by BLM.
    Visitors at the National Interpretive Center learning about the everyday chores of those who traveled the trails.
  • Containing more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape, the Sonoran Desert National Monument in Arizona presents an extraordinary array of biological, scientific and historic resources. The Sonoran Desert is the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts. One of the most striking aspects of the plant community within the monument is the extensive saguaro cactus forest. Photo by BLM.
    Containing more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape, the Sonoran Desert National Monument in Arizona presents an extraordinary array of biological, scientific and historic resources. The Sonoran Desert is the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts. One of the most striking aspects of the plant community within the monument is the extensive saguaro cactus forest. Photo by BLM.
  • Visitor viewing sunset at Pilot Rock, Trinidad, Calif.
  • The sun, sky, and cliffs — and their reflection in the Upper Missouri River.
  • A cluster of cone-shaped tent-rock formations with boulder caps at Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument.
  • A panoramic shot of the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area’s scenic canyons and mountains.
  • A panoramic shot of the Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area’s scenic canyons and mountains.
  • The “wave,” a colorful, swirling mass of stone at Vermilion Cliff National Monument’s Coyote Bluffs.
  • Hiker and dog enjoying the view at Hobart Overlook within Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument.
  • Old-growth redwoods soaring within the Headwaters Forest Reserve.
  • Aerial view of White Canyon in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.
  • Visitors at the National Interpretive Center learning about the everyday chores of those who traveled the trails.
  • Containing more than 487,000 acres of Sonoran Desert landscape, the Sonoran Desert National Monument in Arizona presents an extraordinary array of biological, scientific and historic resources. The Sonoran Desert is the most biologically diverse of the North American deserts. One of the most striking aspects of the plant community within the monument is the extensive saguaro cactus forest. Photo by BLM.