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Celebrate Joshua Tree National Park’s Anniversary October 31

Joshua Tree National Park

Two distinct desert ecosystems, the Mojave and the Colorado, come together in Joshua Tree National Park. A fascinating variety of plants and animals make their homes in a land sculpted by strong winds and occasional torrents of rain. Dark night skies, a rich cultural history, and surreal geologic features add to the wonder of this vast wilderness in southern California.

Joshua Tree National Park is immense, nearly 800,000 acres, and infinitely variable. It can seem unwelcoming, even brutal during the heat of summer. Rainfall is sparse and unpredictable. Stream beds are usually dry and waterholes are few. Viewed in summer, this land may appear defeated and dead, but within this parched environment are intricate living systems waiting for the opportune moment to reproduce. The individuals, both plant and animal, that inhabit the park are not individualists. They depend on their entire ecosystem for survival.

The park encompasses some of the most interesting geologic displays found in California’s deserts. Rugged mountains of twisted rock and exposed granite monoliths testify to the tremendous earth forces that shaped and formed this land. Arroyos, playas, alluvial fans, bajadas, pediments, desert varnish, granites, aplite, and gneiss interact to form a giant mosaic of immense beauty and complexity.

Two deserts, two large ecosystems primarily determined by elevation, come together in the park. Few areas more vividly illustrate the contrast between “high” and “low” desert. The higher, slightly cooler, and wetter Mojave Desert is home to the Joshua tree. Extensive stands occur throughout the western half of the park. Below 3,000 feet, the Colorado Desert — part of the Sonoran Desert — occupying the eastern half of the park, is dominated by the abundant creosote bush. Adding interest to this arid land are small stands of spidery ocotillo and cholla cactus.

Some of the Southwest’s earliest inhabitants — members of the Pinto Culture — lived in the now dry Pinto Basin. Later, native Americans traveled through this area in tune with harvests of pinyon nuts, mesquite beans, acorns, and cactus fruit, leaving behind rock paintings and pottery ollas as reminders of their passing.

In the late 1800s cattlemen came to the desert. They built dams to create water tanks. They were followed by miners who tunneled the earth in search of gold. They are gone now, but they left behind the Lost Horse and Desert Queen mines and the Keys Ranch. In the 1930s homesteaders came seeking free land and the chance to start new lives. Today many people come to the park’s 794,000 acres of open space seeking clear skies and clean air, and the peace and tranquility, the quietude and beauty, only deserts offer.

Now you can SAVE 25% OFF the Joshua Tree National Park poster — or any National Park Poster — at Just use coupon code: NPS2017 when you check out!

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Death Valley National Park – A Land of Great Extremes

Death Valley National Park

Death Valley National Park

The Death Valley National Park poster features a view of the sunrise from Zabriskie Point. Established in 1994, Death Valley National Park is a below-sea-level basin and a land of extremes, with steady drought and record summer heat. Yet, each extreme has a striking contrast. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and offer refuge for wildlife and humans. With nearly three million acres, Death Valley National Park is the driest, hottest, and lowest point in North America. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.

Death Valley National Park straddles the border of California and Nevada, located east of the Sierra Nevada, it occupies an interface zone between the arid Great Basin and Mojave deserts in the United States. The park protects the northwest corner of the Mojave Desert and contains a diverse desert environment of salt-flats, sand dunes, badlands, valleys, canyons, and mountains. It is the largest national park in the lower 48 states and has been declared an International Biosphere Reserve. Approximately 91% of the park is a designated wilderness area. The second-lowest point in the Western Hemisphere is in Badwater Basin, which is 282 feet below sea level. The park is home to many species of plants and animals that have adapted to this harsh desert environment. Some examples include creosote bush, bighorn sheep, coyote, and the Death Valley pupfish, a survivor from much wetter times.

A series of Native American groups inhabited the area from as early as 7000 BC, most recently the Timbisha around 1000 AD who migrated between winter camps in the valleys and summer grounds in the mountains. A group of European-Americans that became stuck in the valley in 1849 while looking for a shortcut to the gold fields of California gave the valley its name, even though only one of their group died there.

Several short-lived boom towns sprang up during the late 19th and early 20th centuries to mine gold and silver. The only long-term profitable ore to be mined was borax, which was transported out of the valley with twenty-mule teams. The valley later became the subject of books, radio programs, television series, and movies. Tourism blossomed in the 1920s, when resorts were built around Stovepipe Wells and Furnace Creek. Death Valley National Monument was declared in 1933 and the park was substantially expanded and became a national park in 1994.

The natural environment of the area has been shaped largely by its geology. The valley itself is actually a graben. The oldest rocks are extensively metamorphosed and at least 1.7 billion years old. Ancient, warm, shallow seas deposited marine sediments until rifting opened the Pacific Ocean. Additional sedimentation occurred until a subduction zone formed off the coast. This uplifted the region out of the sea and created a line of volcanoes. Later the crust started to pull apart, creating the current Basin and Range landform. Valleys filled with sediment and, during the wet times of glacial periods, with lakes, such as Lake Manly.

In 2013, Death Valley National Park was designated as a dark sky park by the International Dark-Sky Association.

Click here to see the Death Valley National Park poster.

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Celebrating Mount Rushmore’s Anniversary – October 31

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Mount Rushmore National Memorial has become an iconic symbol of the United States, and is visited by nearly three million people each year. They come to marvel at the majestic beauty of the Black Hills of South Dakota and learn about the birth, growth, development and preservation of the country. From the history of the first inhabitants to the diversity of America today, Mount Rushmore brings visitors face to face with the rich heritage we all share.

Mount Rushmore features 60-foot tall sculptures of the heads of four United States presidents: George Washington (1732–1799), Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), Theodore Roosevelt (1858–1919), and Abraham Lincoln (1809–1865), which are carved into the face of Mount Rushmore, a granite batholith formation in the Black Hills in Keystone, South Dakota.

South Dakota historian Doane Robinson is credited with conceiving the idea of carving the likenesses of famous people into the Black Hills region of South Dakota in order to promote tourism in the region, ultimately settling on the Mount Rushmore location, which also had the advantage of facing southeast for maximum sun exposure. Robinson wanted it to feature western heroes like Lewis and Clark, Red Cloud, and Buffalo Bill Cody, but Danish-American sculptor Gutzon Borglum thought the sculpture should have a more national focus and chose the four presidents whose likenesses would be carved into the mountain. After securing federal funding through the enthusiastic sponsorship of “Mount Rushmore’s great political patron”, U.S. Senator Peter Norbeck, construction on the memorial began in 1927, and the presidents’ faces were completed between 1934 and 1939.

The figure of Thomas Jefferson was originally started on Washington’s right side. After 18 months of carving the figure of Jefferson had to be blasted off the mountain and restarted on Washington’s left side. Over 90% of Mount Rushmore was carved using dynamite, removing some 450,000 tons of rock from the mountain. Although the initial concept called for each president to be depicted from head to waist, lack of funding forced construction to end in late October 1941. Approximately 400 different people worked at Mount Rushmore during the carving process from October 1927 to October 1941, and although this work was dangerous, no lives were lost.

Mount Rushmore and has appeared in works of fiction, and has been discussed or depicted in other popular works. It was also famously used as the location of the climactic chase scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1959 movie North by Northwest starring Cary Grant and Eva Marie Saint.

If you haven’t had the chance to see Mount Rushmore, it’s worth the trip! And, you are in close proximity to Wind Cave National Park and Badlands National Park — two very different parks — but both worth visiting!

Click here to see the Mount Rushmore National Memorial poster.

There are also posters for my two other South Dakota favorites:

Wind Cave National Park

Badlands National Park

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Virgin Islands National Park Fund Raising

Virgin Islands National Park

Join National Park Posters in raising critical funds for Virgin Islands National Park to help recover from the devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma & Maria.

I’m donating 50% of proceeds from sales of the Virgin Islands National Park poster directly to Friends of Virgin Islands National Park as they work to recover and restore the park. Just use coupon code: VIRGIN25 at checkout and you’ll save 25% off your order AND get the “Worth Protecting” sticker, too!

Earlier this year, hurricanes Irma and Maria caused massive devastation at Virgin Islands National Park. Maria hit with Category 5 intensity and the hurricane unleashed powerful winds and heavy rainfall, tearing off roofs, downing trees and decimating the communications and power grid across the island.

As of today, all Virgin Island National Park facilities and operations are still shut down until further notice.

Virgin Islands National Park

So join me and help make a difference! Simply use coupon code: VIRGIN25 and you’ll save 25% off your order, get the “Worth Protecting” sticker free, and I will donate 50% of the proceeds to Friends of the Virgin Islands National Park!

In the first two hours of this campaign, we’ve already raised more than $450.00. Please share this with everyone you know and click here to start making a difference!


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Lassen Volcanic National Park

Lassen Volcanic National Park

Lassen Volcanic National Park

Lassen Volcanic National Park is home to steaming fumaroles, meadows freckled with wildflowers, clear mountain lakes, and numerous volcanoes. Jagged peaks tell the story of its eruptive past while hot water continues to shape the land. Lassen Volcanic offers opportunities to discover the wonder and mysteries of volcanoes and hot water for visitors willing to explore the undiscovered.

The remarkable hydrothermal features in Lassen Volcanic National Park include roaring fumaroles (steam and volcanic-gas vents), thumping mud pots, boiling pools, and steaming ground. Water from rain and snow that falls on the highlands of the park feed the hydrothermal system. Once deep underground, the water is heated by a body of hot or molten rock beneath Lassen Peak. Rising hot water boils to form boiling pools and mud pots. Super-heated steam reaches the surface through fractures in the earth to form fumaroles such as those found at Bumpass Hell and Sulphur Works. These features are related to active volcanism and are indications of the ongoing potential for further eruptions from the Lassen “volcanic center.”

Ten Things to See at Lassen Volcanic National Park

Manzanita Lake
An easy trail winds gently around Manzanita Lake and is well shaded by looming Jeffrey pines and bordered by lush willows. You’ll see ducks, geese and the occasional muskrat and beaver. The trail is perhaps best known for its spectacular views of Lassen Peak and Chaos Crags which are best viewed in the morning.

Bumpass Hell
At the largest hydrothermal area in the park via a 3-mile round-trip hike, a boardwalk takes you through a 16-acre bowl of plopping mudpots, bubbling pools, and roaring steam vents – including the super hot Big Boiler.

Little Hot Springs Valley
Located at the bottom of a steep valley, you can view steam vents via the park road with binoculars.

Pilot Pinnacle
Steam vents, boiling pools and mudpots in this area is visible from the park road; “Fart Gulch” is a chalk-colored hillside on the north side of the road near Little Hot Springs Valley. The sulfur smells makes this area easily identifiable.

Sulphur Works
The park’s most easily accessed hydrothermal area features boiling mudpots and steam vents.

Devils Kitchen
A hiking trail in the Warner Valley area leads visitors to this bubbling cauldron. Explore steam vents, mudpots, and boiling pools on a short loop.

Boiling Springs Lake
This bubbling lake has a temperature of around 125 degrees. Mudpots and steam vents line part of the shore and drainage creeks. You must be careful to stay on clearly marked trails in this area as the ground around the lake is unstable and travel in these areas may result in severe injury.

Terminal Geyser
This gigantic steam vent, although not a true geyser, spurts steam from the middle of a creek, and provides a spectacular show!

Cold Boiling Lake
At this quaint lake near Kings Creek, “cold boiling” bubbles rise like soda water.

Loomis Museum
Located next to picturesque Manzanita Lake the historic Loomis Museum offers exhibits, an auditorium which features the park film and a Lassen Association educational bookstore. Exhibits include photos from B.F Loomis who documented Lassen Peak’s most recent eruption cycle and promoted the park’s establishment.

Use the Lassen Volcanic National Park Coupon Code

Remember to use the coupon code LAVO2017 to save 25% AND get the popular “Worth Protecting” sticker with your order!

Worth Protecting Sticker

Click Here for the Lassen Volcanic National Park poster!

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Just 70 Days Until Christmas! Check Out Our Holiday Gift Guide!

I know it’s still October, but the calendar doesn’t lie, and with just 70 Days Until Christmas, it’s not too early to start thinking about holiday gift ideas!

Here are a couple of ideas for the National Park lover on your list!!!

Artist Proofs

These Limited Edition prints are in High Demand!

Yosemite National Park Artist ProofArtist Proofs are extremely popular and typically sell out quickly — there are only 25 from each print run! I’ve just reprinted several posters for 2017, so there are new Artist Proofs for:

• Yellowstone • Yosemite • Glacier • Grand Canyon • Crater Lake

And, there’s a brand new Artist Proof for:

• Golden Gate National Recreation Area

Click Here to See the Artist Proofs

Worth Protecting Stickers

These will make awesome stocking stuffers!

Worth Protecting StickerThe Worth Protecting sticker is 3″ x 4″ and printed on white polypropylene with a UV laminate. The sticker is based off of the ever-so-popular “Worth Protecting” poster, created in the style of the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Stickers can be slapped on outdoor gear, vehicles and more for people to voice their desire to protect America’s National Parks.

Click Here to See the Worth Protecting Stickers

Canvas Prints

Ready-to-hang wall art — now in two sizes (16″ x 24″ and 24″ x 36″)

Yosemite National Park Canvas PrintPrinted on superior-quality, artist-grade canvas, designed for museum display and gallery exhibitions. This 350 gsm, acid-free canvas has a tight, natural weave which maximizes image quality, while also revealing the texture of an artist’s canvas. Canvas prints are available in two sizes: 16″ x 24″ and 24″ x 36″, are shipped free and are ready to hang.

Click Here to See the Canvas Prints


4 x 6 Postcard FrameLimited on wall space? Postcards are the perfect solution. Just find a frame for 4″ x 6″ photo prints, and you can make a custom display of your favorite parks!

Postcards are also great for sending to friends, use in PostCrossings, Save the Date or other announcements!

Click Here to See the Postcards

Gift Certificates

Gift CertificateNot sure what to get that special someone? Let them choose! Gift certificates can be used for Posters, Artist Proofs, Canvas Prints, Stickers and Postcards. Gift certificates are a thoughtful, flexible choice. You choose the brand, the recipient chooses the gift. Gift certificates are delivered by email and contain instructions to redeem them at checkout. Our gift certificates have no additional processing fees and never expire.

Click Here to See the Gift Certificates

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Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns National Park

Carlsbad Caverns National Park lies beneath the Guadalupe Mountains and the Chihuahuan Desert of southeastern New Mexico. Carlsbad Caverns includes a large cave chamber — The Big Room — a natural limestone chamber almost 4,000 feet long, 625 feet wide, and 255 feet high at the highest point. It is the fifth largest chamber in North America and the twenty-eighth largest in the world. Carlsbad Caverns is one of over 300 limestone caves in a fossil reef laid down by an inland sea 250 to 280 million years ago — formed when sulfuric acid dissolved limestone leaving behind caverns of all sizes.

A Little History…

Carlsbad-area cowboy, Jim White, explored the cavern with his homemade wire ladder. He named many of the rooms, including the Big Room, New Mexico Room, Kings Palace, Queens Chamber, Papoose Room, and Green Lake Room. He also named many of the cave’s more prominent formations, such as the Totem Pole, Witch’s Finger, Giant Dome, Bottomless Pit, Fairyland, Iceberg Rock, Temple of the Sun, and Rock of Ages.

Until 1932, visitors to Carlsbad Caverns had to walk down a switchback ramp that took them 750 feet below the surface. The walk back up was tiring for some. In 1932 the national park opened up a large visitor center building that contained two elevators that would take visitors in and out of the caverns below. The new center included a cafeteria, waiting room, museum and first aid area.

The park has two historic districts on the National Register of Historic Places – the Cavern Historic District and the Rattlesnake Springs Historic District. The park museum, including the park archives, contains approximately one million cultural resource artifacts that are being preserved and protected.

Carlsbad Caverns National Park’s cultural resources represent a long and varied continuum of human use starting in prehistoric times, and illustrating many adaptations to the Chihuahuan Desert environment. Human activities, including prehistoric and historic American Indian occupations (some of their cooking ring sites and pictographs have been found within the present day boundaries of the park), European exploration and settlement, industrial exploitation, commercial and cavern accessibility development and tourism have left reminders of their presence, and have contributed to the rich and diverse history of the area.

Twelve to fourteen thousand years ago, Native Americans lived in the Guadalupe Mountains. By the 1500s, Spanish explorers were passing through present-day west Texas and southeastern New Mexico. Spain claimed the southwest until 1821 when Mexico revolted and claimed independence. Mexico, fighting the westward expansion of United States in the late 1840s, lost the southwest to the US. In 1850, New Mexico Territory was created, and for the next 30 years the cultural conflict between Native Americans and the US government continued. Eddy, New Mexico, the former name of Carlsbad, was established in 1888 and New Mexico became a state in 1912.

The Flight of the Mexican Free-Tailed Bats

Seventeen species of bats live in Carlsbad Caverns, including a large number of Mexican free-tailed bats. It has been estimated that the population of these bats once numbered in the millions but has declined drastically in modern times. The cause of this decline is unknown but the pesticide DDT is often listed as a primary cause. Many techniques have been used to estimate the bat population in the cave. The most recent and most successful of these attempts involved the use of thermal imaging camera to track and count the bats. A count from 2005 estimated a peak of 793,000. The Mexican free-tailed bats are present from April or May to late October or early November. They emerge in a dense group, corkscrewing upwards and counterclockwise, usually starting around sunset and lasting about three hours.

About the Carlsbad Caverns National Park Poster

The Carlsbad Caverns National Park poster is an original work by Robert Decker and features the iconic Temple of the Sun in the Big Room, nearly 80 stories beneath the surface. The poster measures 13″ x 19″ and is created in the style of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) of the 1930s and 1940s, posters are printed on “Conservation,” a 100% recycled, domestically produced (80 lb.) paper stock with soy-based inks. From start to finish, each poster is 100% American Made.

Click here to see the Carlsbad Caverns National Park Poster

Carlsbad Caverns National Park Artist Proofs are the first 25 posters pulled from each print run. They are numbered 1-25, and are dated and signed. Each print features the color bars used by the pressman to make sure that the print stays registered and colors stay consistent throughout the print run. Carlsbad Caverns National Park posters are 13″ x 20″.

Click here to see the Carlsbad Caverns National Park Artist Proof

Carlsbad Caverns National Park Canvas Prints are printed on superior-quality, artist-grade canvas, designed for museum display and gallery exhibitions. This 350 gsm, acid-free canvas has a tight, natural weave which maximizes image quality, while also revealing the texture of an artist’s canvas. Carlsbad Caverns National Park canvas prints are available in three sizes: 16″ x 24″ 20″ x 30″ and 24″ x 36″, are shipped free and are ready to hang.

Click here to see the Carlsbad Caverns National Park Canvas Print

About the Artist

Photographer and graphic artist Rob Decker studied photography with Ansel Adams in Yosemite National Park during the summer of 1979. The experience solidified his love of photography and our National Parks. Now he is on a journey to photograph and create iconic WPA-style posters of all 59 major national parks as we celebrate the next 100 years of the National Park Service.

“I feel that it’s important to protect America’s special places, and to connect people with nature. And it’s up to all of us to pitch in. Perhaps more importantly, we need to inspire the next generation of park stewards. I’m trying to make a difference by giving back to the amazing organizations that support our National Parks. I donate 10% of annual profits, so when you buy one of these original works, you’re helping these trusts, conservancies and associations, too.”

Learn more about our Giving Back program.

Robert B. Decker retains the sole copyright of the original Carlsbad Caverns National Park poster image. Any unauthorized reproduction violates international copyright law.

Robert B. Decker – Limited Edition Carlsbad Caverns National Park Posters –

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