Rose Houk

Land Lines
Gary Beverly

In many parts of the country Del Rio Springs wouldn't get much attention. But because it's a reliable spring in an arid quarter, this little oasis has been attracting people for a long time.

National Park Service

More than a century ago, a Harvard undergraduate named Alfred Vincent Kidder came out west. He came to volunteer at some archaeological sites that had just been excavated - places like Mesa Verde and other ancient ruins.

Nicknamed Ted, he had little more than a tape measure, a cheap compass and a Kodak camera. But the experience changed his life - and the course of southwestern archaeology.

National Park Service

As winter approaches, some species of bats settle in to hibernate in caves. Lack of food and dropping temperatures drive them inside, where “carpets” of bats congregate on cave ceilings.

Michael Collier

  

The world’s largest ponderosa pine forest stretches across higher elevations from the San Francisco Peaks to the Arizona/New Mexico border. But in the last century, human intervention has threatened its health.

Ron Nichols, / U.S. Department of Agriculture

Early on fall mornings, a piercing screech echoes across meadows in northern Arizona. It’s the frenzied bugle of a big bull elk in rut, trying to lure a harem of cows to breed and continue his line.

John Anderson / Hedgerow Farms

If you’re out searching for one of North America’s most famed butterflies, the beautiful orange and black monarch butterfly, try looking in a patch of milkweed.

Michael Collier

If you stand at the brink of Toroweap Overlook and toss a penny into the Grand Canyon, the falling coin would hit the Colorado River two minutes later.

Reusing old clothes isn’t a new habit. Americans have long donated out-of-fashion or too-small clothing to charities or resale boutiques. Creative quilters, weavers, and seamstresses cut up old dresses and restitch them into something new. Some creative, eco-conscious artists even remodel threadbare garb into couture garments and bags.

But it’s estimated that much of the nearly twelve million tons of clothing, shoes, and textiles that Americans discard each year does end up in landfills.

Michael Collier

Look at this–a crinoid stem. How can this be? A sea-floor fossil perched at 9000 feet in a volcanic field that stretches for miles in every direction?

Just north of Flagstaff, Mount Humphreys stands 12,633 feet above sea level, the highest summit in Arizona. Humphreys and the rest of the San Francisco Peaks are old volcanoes. Surrounding them is a necklace of dome-shaped mountains—Sugarloaf, O’Leary, Kendrick, the Dry Lake Hills, and Elden Mountain. They’re volcanic too, but they formed in a different way.

Michael Collier

When geologists see a straight line running across a landscape, they get suspicious.  Straight lines don’t happen by accident; they usually mean something.  Such a line, about 155 miles long, leads north out of Grand Canyon country into Utah. It’s called the Hurricane Fault.  Nineteenth-century geologist Clarence Dutton declared this one of the Earth’s most interesting “dislocations.”

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