Marine Life

15 Stellar Hiking Trails On National Wildlife Refuges

A young hiker tackles a rock scramble along the Charon’s Garden Trail in Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. Refuges offer outstanding fall hiking, from mild to strenuous. Photo: David SmithWhy see Labor Day as a season ender? One of the year’s best hiking times is about to begin. For a treat this fall, explore some standout trails on national wildlife refuges.

Beneath Cold Seas takes readers on a journey into the underwater wilderness of the Pacific Northwest

Beneath Cold Seas cover imageIn Beneath Cold Seas, one of the most impressive photography books we’ve seen in a long time, author and photographer David Hall captures the stunning underwater world of the Pacific Coast from California to Alaska, home to the most diverse and spectacular marine life of any temperate or cold-water ecosystem on the planet.

The photographs in the book capture stunningly colorful jellyfish, crabs, kelp forests, salmon, sea lions, seals, octopi, starfish, and a diverse array of other types of sea life.

Beneath Cold Seas is unique in that it focuses on a cold water North American ecosystem. But cold water does not mean lack of color. In fact, it’s just the opposite. The photographs are filled with rich orange, yellow and blue tones. Despite the many books published each year featuring underwater photography from tropical and subtropical locations, very few books that feature photographs of cold water ecosystems have ever been published. This has much to do with the challenges associated with underwater photography in cold environments.

In addition to revealing the secretive beauty of the underwater world of the Pacific Northwest, the book is also a testament to the great talents of photographer David Hall, who worked for hours in cold, murky waters to capture the amazing life below the surface.

We’ve included a slide show of some of our favorite images here. For even more amazing shots from the book, check out this video.

Sweeney Ridge

Sweeney Ridge is a hilly hiking area of ridges and ravines between San Bruno and Pacifica, about a 25-minute drive south from San Francisco. The ridge’s 1,200-foot-high summit, covered with coastal scrub and grassland, slopes down to the bay on one side and to the Pacific on the other. Wildlife ...

Sutro Heights

Located at the westernmost point of Lands End, the historic Sutro Baths was once a lavish 25,000-person swimming facility and museum built in the 19th century by former San Francisco mayor Adolph Sutro. The facility’s six saltwater swimming tanks (ingeniously flushed by the tides), 517 private dressing rooms, restaurants, ...

Ocean Beach

Picture a 3.5-mile stretch of white beach with few tourists and no highrises. It's just you and the waves and the seabirds at Ocean Beach, on the westernmost border of San Francisco, adjacent to Golden Gate Park. Great for strolling and flying kites, but the water is frigid and ...

Muir Beach

This quiet cove, beach, and lagoon tucked into the coastline three miles west of Muir Woods—is a favorite spot among locals.Redwood Creek at Muir Beach is home to numerous shorebirds, amphibians, salmon and trout, and marshy, water-loving plants called rushes (Juncus). This expansive network of wetlands, lagoon, and dunes ...

Shelter Cove

A great spot for seaside scenery is Shelter Cove. Off-shore rocks, tidepools and kelp beds harbor opportunities for viewing sea lions, seals and gray whales. You’ll likely see one of the nearly 300 species of native and migratory birds found in the King Range, such as northern spotted owls, bald ...

Enjoy an Alaskan Escape in Kenai Fjords National Park

July 23, 2012, 11:32 am
Story and Photo By Heather Crowley Alaska is the largest state in the union, one of the most remote and in the running for most beautiful. Perhaps the last true wilderness in the country, Alaska contains a coastline 50 percent longer than both the east and west coast of the ...

Cliff House

For almost one hundred and fifty years, visitors have traveled to the Cliff House at the westernmost tip of San Francisco's coastline to experience the magnificent natural setting and to enjoy entertainment and seaside recreation. Today, the Cliff House is part of Golden Gate National Recreation Area, one of ...

China Beach

China Beach is in a tiny cove tucked between Lands End and Baker Beach in the Sea Cliff neighborhood of San Francisco. This sheltered pocket of sand features a picnic area, sunbathing, good play spots for children, and spectacular views of the Marin Headlands and Golden Gate. Legend has it ...

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