Category Nature

Dawn Sutherland

Grand Canyon Celebration of Art

Imagine creating a painting of the Grand Canyon. You must decide which section of the massive canyon to paint. You must mix the colors to create the range of hues you need to capture the multi-colored layers of limestone, sandstone and shale and the blues of the sky. Now imagine that you aren’t painting in […]

Volunteers play key role in protecting sea turtles

Inspired by the celebration of World Sea Turtle Week, I’m sharing photos of volunteers monitoring sea turtles on Sanibel Island. The photos illustrate the important role that conservation organizations and volunteers play in protecting sea turtles and educating the public. The Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation monitors 18 miles of beach, from the Sanibel lighthouse to Redfish […]

Cedar Waxwings arrive

When the berries on the holly tree in my yard are ripe, I start looking for the Cedar Waxwings. Some years the Cedar Waxwings don’t come to town. The timing of ripe berries in the trees doesn’t coordinate with the migration of the Cedar Waxwings. Sometimes the Cedar Waxwings do arrive, but you can miss […]

red azaleas

Azaleas in bloom

Azaleas in bloom make this a beautiful time of year in North Central Florida. I want to share some of the azaleas I saw during a walk today. For those of you still facing snow, ice and cold temperatures, I hope Spring soon will arrive for you.

Summer hiking – carry enough water

Water. That is one of the most important items for a successful hike – especially in the summer. Whether I’m hiking in the Grand Canyon or the Smokies, I’m amazed — and concerned — to see so many people carrying little or no water. A couple or a family may have only one 16-ounce bottle […]

poinsettias - photo by Julie Dodd

Poinsettias add to holiday spirit

Poinsettias always make me think of Christmas and the holiday season. When I was growing up, my dad was a member of Kiwanis, a civic organization, and selling poinsettias at the holidays was one of the club’s big fundraisers for community projects they sponsored. I’d go with Dad to help him deliver the poinsettias to […]

GSMNP Little River - photo by Julie Dodd

River views in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The sun was shining as we hiked the Little River Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on a cool fall day in a time before Covid-19. We carried tripods so we could try some slow motion water photos. Stepping from rock to rock, we walked out into the river. We set up our […]

National Public Lands Day logo

National Public Lands Day and every day — hike safely

National Public Lands Day, on Sept. 26, is one of the five days when admission to national parks is free. Thousands of people will be in the parks on National Public Lands Day and millions will be in the parks this year to enjoy nature and perhaps look for a boost in spirit in the […]

Portland Japanese Garden Peace Lantern - photo by Julie Dodd

Tranquility of Portland Japanese Garden

Join me in a peaceful stroll through the Portland Japanese Garden, located in the hilltops overlooking Portland, Oregon. I toured the Garden last summer and thought you might enjoy the calmness of these garden views that I photographed. The Portland Japanese Garden is 12 acres and contains eight different styles of gardens. The idea for […]

Clingsman Dome in GSMNP

Enjoy and support our national parks

The Fourth of July is a time for those of us living in the United States to think about what makes this country special. The 62 national parks certainly are one of the country’s greatest treasures. I was fortunate to grow up less than an hour’s drive to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Hiking […]