Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
The North Central Climate Science Center (NC CSC) recently partnered with the National Conservation Training Center (NCTC) to provide a regional offering of the Climate Change Vulnerability Assessment training. This three-day class took place in Jackson, WY, April 22-24, 2014. The training included three additional events outside of the standard curriculum including 1) a talk on national-level climate change strategies, by Paul Wagner with the White House Council on Environmental Quality, 2) a summary of an existing Vulnerability Assessment from Colorado's Gunnison Basin, by Renee Rondeau with the Colorado Natural Heritage Program, and 3) a field trip to beetle infested white bark pine communities.
Team members from two of the three management-focused projects funded by the NC CSC attended the course as well as members from multiple tribal communities. The USGS provided a facilitator (Geneva Chong) and two instructors (Laura Thompson and Jeff Morisette). The NC CSC host institution, Colorado State University, provided funding and logistical support as well as one instructor (Brian Miller). Others involved in the course include NCTC facilitator, Ashley Fortune, and Jennie Hoffman with Adaptation/Insight.