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Blog posts tagged with 'nature'

The Places Where Life Begins
ARC360
Kindly contributed by Michael Engelhard, author of the forthcoming Ice Bear, The Cultural History of an Icon. The product of meticulous research, his cultural narrative examines over 8,000 years of polar bear history. Engelhard probes the narratives of the Inuit, hunters and settlers as well as modern science to show the many forms the powerful, elusive animal has taken. In his book American Wild Engelhard documents his travels between the two areas of the world he identifies as his "soul-scapes," canyon country of the American Southwest and Alaska's great wilds.
The Naturalist
There are myriad ways that a president can leave a legacy. Darrin Lunde’s new biography The Naturalist: Theodore Roosevelt and the Rise of American Natural History examines the life, legacy and political career of Theodore Roosevelt through the prism of his fascination with nature and valiant efforts to preserve wildlife for future generations. As Supervisory Museum Specialist at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, Lunde is especially interested in Roosevelt’s study of the natural world, which began at a surprisingly young age.
Twin Lakes, Alaska
coverKindly contributed by author and photographer Carl Johnson. In his new book Where Water is Gold, Johnson brings to light the struggle between developers and ecologists in southwest Alaska's Bristol Bay. A key habitat for millions of seabirds, salmon, otters, seals, walruses and endangered whale species, Bristol Bay also contains fine particles of precious metals (gold, copper and molybdenum) that industrialists wish to extract.
  When hiking 2,500 feet up the side of a mountain, the view often consists of just the details in the tundra below, from the vibrant pink blooms of moss campion to the bristly, crunchy details of caribou lichen.
Films from National Geographic
NAT175You know we recommend what books to read before you travel, but we can also tell you what movies to watch! Browse our wide selection of place-based films, including these fascinating documentaries from National Geographic. Some favorites are featured below, but you can see an even wider selection here. Happy viewing! Darwin's Secret Notebooks.
An Interview with David Gessner
In his latest book, All the Wild That Remains, David Gessner follows in the footsteps of two great environmentalists, Edward Abbey and Wallace Stegner, from Stegner's birthplace in Saskatchewan to the site of Abbey's pilgrimages to Arches. His homage to the West and to the two writers who celebrated and defended it inspires and entertains while asking important questions about our role in cultivating a meaningful relationship with the wild. Gessner agreed to discuss some of our own questions about the intersection of ecology and travel, of wandering and the wild.
Naturalists in Paradise
When they arrived at the mouth of the Amazon River in the late 1840s, Russel Wallace, Henry Walter Bates and Richard Spruce were not experts in science. They had little experience outside of their provincial English towns, only basic education and all three were of humble means (they planned to support their adventures through the sale of specimens). Wallace and Bates were in their 20s and Spruce only 32, yet these three adventurers were destined to become famous naturalists. Their discoveries in the Amazon, where they would spend the prime of their lives, would have an influence that outlasted even their highest hopes as they began their journeys in, as Wallace put it, “a fever-heat of expectation.
The Earth Is My Witness
“The Earth is my witness,” Siddhartha said, and with that acceptance of the Earth and acknowledgement of what is owed to it, he became the Buddha. The phrase is a fitting title for Art Wolfe’s latest book, The Earth Is My Witness, an artful celebration of the planet's fast-disappearing landscapes, wildlife and cultures as captured by the lens of the veteran photographer. Having studied both art and anthropology, Wolfe’s work displays a diversity of animal life, natural landscapes untouched by modernity and intimate portraits of indigenous peoples.
Melting Away
A widely published and celebrated photographer, Camille Seaman has built a career on majestic portraiture. Over a 10-year period, she traveled to the poles as an expedition photographer to document the rapidly changing face of the Arctic and Antarctic regions. In her new book Melting Away, Seaman offers a masterful series of 75 photos of beauty and historical significance, presented alongside accompanying essays, which evocatively reveal climate change at work.
Beautiful Whale
An aquanaut of the first order, Bryant Austin creates mesmerizing high resolution portraits of the great whales in breathtaking life-size. With nothing more than a Hasselblad studio camera, snorkel, a lot of time and an inspired idea, the California-native traveled to Tonga, the Great Barrier Reef and Dominica in the West Indies, loitering with these great giants.
Paramaribo, Suriname
Kindly contributed by John Gimlette, author of Wild Coast, Travel's on South America's Untamed Edge.
"If I were to design the perfect city, it would be white and have a river running through it. There’d be plantations and fruit trees all around, and little canals would come seeping through the center. There’d be no business district or overbearing banks, and nothing would be taller than a church. At the heart of it all would be a little purple fortress, like a hat full of mansions. There’d be no trains or tubes or public toilets. This would be one of the greatest cities of the eighteenth century.