I like to post things that inspire me in hopes that you might also be inspired to write, draw, sculpt, create a poem, dance or whatever is your creative task in the world. These photographs remind me of the rare beauty in “wild” natural places. Beauty ALWAYS inspires me. Here are the Top Ten Natural Wonders in America, as put together by Eric Peterson from Frommer’s Travel. (first published in October 2012)

Amazing places where dramatic beauty calls

by Eric Peterson | from: Frommer’s Travel  natural wonders in america

 

Yellowstone Caldera, Wyoming and Montana

The Yellowstone Caldera is the beating heart of a supervolcano. It’s also the hot spot that fuels all of the amazing thermal features in Yellowstone National Park, including geysers, such as Old Faithful, and the numerous hot springs, gurgling mud pots and steaming fumaroles.

Yosemite Valley, California

This is one of the most national parks on earth. The panorama includes El Capitan, the world’s largest monolith of exposed granite; the distinctive Half Dome granite formation; and Yosemite Falls, the tallest waterfall in North America, measuring 2,425 feet from top to bottom.

natural wonders in america

 

Bryce Canyon, Utah

Of all the stunning geology in the southern reaches of Utah, Bryce Canyon stands out. The distinctive and otherworldly sandstone formations known as hoodoos that populate the valley floor were once arches that slowly lost their tops to the erosive forces of water and air.

 

The Everglades, Florida

In wet season, Florida’s southern tip essentially becomes a massive, slow-moving river that’s roughly 60 miles wide and 100 miles long. The wildlife that call this swamp home include alligators, panthers, armadillos and manatees.

 

Mount Denali, Alaska

The tallest mountain in North America, Denali (aka Mount McKinley) looms above 6 million acres of national park and preserve. Grizzly bears and other wildlife are rife on both the low-elevation taiga and the alpine tundra.

 

Death Valley, California

The lowest and hottest place in North America, Death Valley bottoms out at Badwater Basin (282 feet below sea level) and has topped out at 134 degrees Fahrenheit. But it’s not all scorching desert: Telescope Peak (11,043 feet) towers over the valley floor.

 

Great Sand Dunes, Colorado

Rising from the sage-studded floor of the San Luis Valley in southern Colorado are the tallest sand dunes in North America. The aptly named 650-foot High Dune offers persevering hikers an amazing view into the heart of the dune field, an amazing byproduct of water, wind and time.

natural wonders in america

 

Mammoth Cave, Kentucky

The only subterranean spot on our list of top 10 natural wonders, Mammoth Cave is the largest known cave system on the planet. The natural labyrinth consists of nearly 400 explored miles of serpentine tunnels.

 

Teton Range, Wyoming

The most iconic mountains in the West rise 6,000-plus feet above the floor of Jackson Hole, home to the meandering Snake River and unforgettable vistas around every bend. South of Grand Teton National Park is the world-class skiing mecca Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

 

Redwood Coast, California

This rugged, wild coastline is home to the world’s tallest trees: the coast redwoods, which can top out at 350 feet or more. The location of the tallest one, the 379-foot Hyperion, is a closely guarded secret to keep crowds away.

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I’ve experienced The Great Sand Dunes and The Everglades. Both were amazing and wild in different ways. (I’m surprised the Grand Canyon isn’t on here.) How about you? Are there any places you would add?

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Website & books: www.susangabriel.com

 

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