Newsletter Archive


During the week of April 18th - 26th, 2020 we will observe National Park Week.  Unfortunately this year we won't be able to visit a national park. The coronavirus pandemic has seen to that.

A national park is a park in use for conservation purposes.  Often it is a reserve of natural, semi-natural, or developed land that a sovereign state declares or owns.  Although individual nations designate their own national parks differently, there is a common idea:  the conservation of "wild nature" for posterity and as a symbol of national pride.

The first effort by the United States Federal government to set aside such protected ands was on April 20, 1832.  President Andrew Jackson signed into legislation what the 22nd United States Congress had enacted by setting aside four sections of land around what is now Hot Springs, Arkansas to protect the natural, thermal springs and adjoining mountainsides for the future disposal of the U.S. government.  It was known as Hot Springs Reservation and federal control of the area was not clearly established until 1877.  John Muir is often referred to as the "Father of the National Parks" due to his work in Yosemite.  In 1872 Yellow National Park was established as the United States' first national park and the world's first national park.

Our 62 national parks are under the management of the National Park Service which is a bureau of the Department of Interior.  Within that department it is the Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks who oversees its operation.  The National Park Service was created by Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Stephen Mather and Horace M. Albright and signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson on August 25, 1916.  The National Park service has grown from a single public reservation, Yellowstone National Park, to include 418 natural, historical, recreational and cultural areas throughout the United States, its territories and island possessions.  These areas include National Parks, National Monuments, National Memorials, National Military Parks, National Historic Sites, National Parkways, National Recreation Areas, National Seashores, National Scenic Riverways, and National Scenic Trails. It is the keeper of 418 park units, 23 national scenic and historic trails, and 60 wild and scenic rivers.  Its budget is over 3 billion dollars and employs more than 20,000 permanent, temporary and seasonal workers and in 2017 had more than 315,000 volunteers.

There are more than 4,000 national parks around the world, located in approximately 100 countries.  Australia has the most parks at 685, followed by China with 208, Thailand at 138 and India with 102.  The smallest park is Moyenne Island National Park located off the coast of the Seychelles.  It consists of 22 acres and was established in 2008.  The largest park is the Northeast Greenland National Park established by the Kingdom of Denmark in 1974 and consists of 375,000 square miles.

In the United states, the most parks are in California with 9, followed by 8 in Alaska, 5 in Utah, 4 in Colorado 3 in Arizona, Florida, and Washington, and 2 in Hawaii, Texas, Wyoming and South Dakota.  In 2019 the most visited park was the Great Smokey Mountains National Park with 12.5 million people.  This was followed by the Grand Canyon National Park with 5.97 million visitors and Rocky Mountain National Park having 4.7 million visitors.  Fewer than half of the U.S. National Parks charge an entrance fee.  On average the admission ranges from $20 -$35 per vehicle, $10-$20 per person over 16 years of age, and $15-$30 per motorcycle.  There are special passes that are available for purchase at the entrances.  For example, the Senior Pass for those 62 and older years of age costs $80 and is good for life.  Just don't loose it, as it is not'll have to buy another one!!  There are 5 days during the year when entrance fees are waived.  They are January 20th, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, April 18th, First Day of National Park Week for 2020, August 25th, National Park Service Birthday, September 26th, National Public Lands Day, and November 11th, Veterans Day.

Due to the COVID-19, the National Park Service is modifying its operations on a park-by-park basis in accordance with the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) and state and local public health authorities. While most facilities and events are closed or cancelled, many of the outdoor spaces remain accessible to the public.  Before visiting, check with individual parks regarding changes to park operations.  All campgrounds, visitors centers and restrooms are closed.  The Trump administration has waived entrance fees at the parks during this time.

We would like to share with you some of our images taken in some of our National Parks.

We give you "Budding Buck".  We captured this black-tailed deer on Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park in Washington.  They are reddish-brown in the summer and brownish-gray in the winter.  They are referred to as the "Ghost of the Pacific" for their ability to move unheard and unseen through the thick rainforests of the Pacific Coast.  Their large ears move independently.




"Poudres Canyon Stream"  was taken in the Roosevelt National Park near Fort Collins in Colorado.









"Afternoon Stroll" was captured on a horseback ride in the Grand Teton National Park at Jenny Lake in Wyoming. This moose was enjoying the water and sunshine.

  These images are available in table top to wall size, triple matted and with or without a frame.  The matted versions are yours at a 10% discount and the framed matted versions in sizes 11x14 and larger can be yours at a 15% discount.

See this website, for available sizes and prices.

Stop by and see us on Monday through Friday from 10a.m. to 12 noon and 2p.m. to 5p.m.

The gallery is open for arranged Saturday appointments.  Call us at 904-387-8710 to schedule your special visit.  Come see us and order now.

"National parks are the best idea we ever had.  Absolutely American, absolutely democratic, they reflect us at our best rather than our worst."

              Wallace Stegner, American Pulitzer Prize-winning author