2017 – The Year in Pictures

In keeping the tradition that Jim Goldstein started over 10 years ago, I’ve selected my favorite images released in the past year. These are not necessarily my best or most popular, but each holds a special place as a moment in time not soon to be repeated or forgotten.

Enjoy! And feel free to let me know your favorites. You can click on any image for a large view, to learn more about it, or share individually. I look forward to seeing your selects in the weeks ahead, and wish everyone a wonderful holiday and Happy New Year full of beauty, adventure and photographic possibilities.

-Russ


Lava flow entering the ocean at dawn, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
Lava flow entering the ocean at dawn, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
The Three Brothers above the Merced River in winter, Yosemite National Park, California
The Three Brothers above the Merced River in winter, Yosemite National Park, California
Winter sunset over Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View, Yosemite National Park, California
Winter sunset over Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View, Yosemite National Park, California
Lush vegetation along the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii
Lush vegetation along the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii
Evening light in Manarola, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy
Evening light in Manarola, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy
The Milky Way over the Palisades, John Muir Wilderness, California
The Milky Way over the Palisades, John Muir Wilderness, California
Ke'e Beach from the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii
Ke’e Beach from the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii
Yosemite Falls after a winter storm, Yosemite National Park, California
Yosemite Falls after a winter storm, Yosemite National Park, California
Lava flow entering the ocean at dawn, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
Lava flow entering the ocean at dawn, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
Northern elephant seals at Piedras Blancas elephant seal rookery, San Simeon, California
Northern elephant seals at Piedras Blancas elephant seal rookery, San Simeon, California
Sunset over the Na Pali Coast from Tunnels Beach, Haena State Park, Kauai, Hawaii
Sunset over the Na Pali Coast from Tunnels Beach, Haena State Park, Kauai, Hawaii
Yosemite chapel in winter, Yosemite National Park, California
Yosemite chapel in winter, Yosemite National Park, California

 

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved

America’s Best Idea

Last light on Bridalveil Fall, Yosemite National Park, California (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)
Last light on Bridalveil Fall, Yosemite National Park, California (click image to view large)

August 25th is the 101st birthday of the National Park Service. Established in 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson, the National Park Service was created to “conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein…for the enjoyment of future generations.”

From its humble beginnings with just thirty-five parks administered under the Department of the Interior, today the National Park System includes over 400 units including parks, monuments, and historic sites. Ken Burns’ recent film The National Parks: America’s Best Idea rekindled the connection many feel with the parks, and is a wonderful tribute to the history and originality that first made them possible.

The National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and a great resource for staying in the loop about events and activities at nearby parks or putting the finishing touches on planning your next big adventure.

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved

Kauai’s Kalalau Trail

Lush vegetation along the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii USA (© Russ Bishop/www.russbishop.com)
Lush vegetation along the Kalalau Trail, Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii

The Kalalau Trail along Kauai’s verdant north shore is arguably one of the finest hikes in the world. Originally built in the late 1800’s to link early Hawaiian settlements along the rugged coastline, it is still the only land access to this remote part of the Island.

The trail, which starts at the end of the road at Ke’e Beach, hugs the sheer cliffs and traverses 5 valleys before ending at Kalalau Beach where the pali (Hawaiian for cliffs) create a natural terminus.

Along this mystical journey you pass verdant spires, wander through lush valleys, and are left with the feeling that you’ve truly entered the Lost World (not surprising since both King Kong and Jurassic Park were filmed here).

Whether you cover the entire 11 mile distance and camp at Kalalau Beach or take an afternoon hike to Hanakapi’ai Beach, this is the quintessential Na Pali Coast experience.

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved

Tuolumne Meadows

Sunset over Tuolumne Meadows along Budd Creek, Yosemite National Park, California
Sunset over Tuolumne Meadows, Yosemite National Park, California

John Muir referred to the Sierra Nevada Mountains as the Range of Light, and it’s hard to imagine a more fitting moniker. The play of light amid the high peaks, the unique cloud formations along the eastern escarpment, and the painterly sunsets combine in a luminous landscape to stimulate the senses. And though I have many favorites in the range, one location seems to embody the spirit of these mountains like no other – Tuolumne.

Tuolumne Meadows, in the high country of Yosemite National Park, is a pristine alpine environment of glacial-polished domes, cascading streams and lush meadows under an indigo sky. At nearly 9,000 feet it also has a short summer season between snows with virtually no spring or fall, which makes an annual pilgrimage even more special.

Days here might be spent photographing the landscape, climbing the world-class granite, exploring miles of forest trail, or just lounging by a secluded spot along the river as Muir once did. However you experience Tuolumne, when the daylight fades it’s time to find a clearing in the meadow or scramble up a dome to reflect on the day and enjoy the show as the Sierra magic hour ushers in the night.

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved