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Share your thoughts and images of the West!

Check out upcoming contest topics, and submit your essay(s) or photo(s) for others to enjoy. Viewers can vote on their favorite essays and images, and entries with the most votes will be featured on the Web site, and earn consideration from our editorial and production staff for appearing in the magazine!

The West is not just about the varied terrain in which we live, but the collection of perspectives and realities of the people who occupy this inspiring land. Add your voice to High Country News – or enjoy those of other readers – and embrace your community of fellow people who care about the West.

finishedThis contest has ended.

The Natural West

Entries: (182)
Began: Feb 01, 2010
Ended: Mar 15, 2010

Check out these fantastic landscapes of the American West! Thanks to all participants who submitted and voted on these images.
(Read more ...)

Winning Entry

votes
203
Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park

Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park

by Aaron Merritt — Photo I took of the Grand Prismatic Spring while visiting Yellowstone National Park.

by lydiawyoming 3
3

winter waning

This photo was taken in the Madison Valley, Montana in late winter of 2009.

by devawolfe 3
by Michael Hodges 3
3

Shadow of the Cross

A rustic cross marks the final Resting place of an early pioneer, near Dos Cabazos, Arizona.

by Michael Hodges 3
3

Ladder of Light

A Kiva Ladder provides access to a reconstructed Kiva at ancestral Pueblo ruins located at Bandelier National Monument near Los Alamos, New Mexico.

by Catherine Etherton 3
3

Oxbow Bend, Revisited

Surrounded in all four directions by forest fires, the smoke resulted in a beautiful sunset at Oxbow Bend in Grand Teton National Park.

by sanchez8773 3
3
1

Jake watches the sunset.

Jake watchesthe sunset, as sister Lizzie is nearby in Escalante, Utah.

by IGT 3
3

hairy woodpecker unfazed by maurading scrub jay

Mini drama captured in the juniper tree in my front yard near Dolores Colorado.

by radoak 3
3

Red Desert Sand Dunes

Sand Dunes in the Red Desert of Wyominig

by Uhlman 3
by dannerphotos 3
3

Weathered Warrior

Just about anywhere in the west, these divisional markers, bear witness to the taming of the environment.

by ekinneywy 3
3

White Mountain Wild Horses

Wild horses located on White Mountain, WY, on the Pilot Butte Wild Horse Loop. Taken May 12, 2008.

by awhite28 3
3

Gould

From the summit of Mt. Gould, Glacier National Park

by marlab 3
3

Meeting of the Minds

We know what's in the pocket and we are bigger than you.

by djschipper 3
3

Next Day Launch

Evening at Lee's Ferry on the Colorado River

by devawolfe 3
3

Kayaking Death Valley NP

Kayaking in the Badwater Basin after the El Niño rains of 2005

by djschipper 3
3

Monumental Undertaking

South on HWY 163 into Monument Valley

by eemass 3
3

Resting

Mule deer near Dry Gulch Road

by cameraqueen 3
3

Watch Out for Elk Crossing

An elk herd uses the "pedestrian" crosswalk in downtown Estes Park, Colorado. The elk have the "right of way" in town.

by marlab 3
3

Rush Hour

This is how cattle are moved in my neck of the woods...slowly, by men and women on horseback, no matter what motor vehicle comes along.

by kbearchief 3
3

time passes

photo of an old homestead on HWY 22 in south central Washington.

by atomlinson 3
3

View from Wind River Peak

Wind River Range, WY

by trb2dog 3
3

The Great Expanse

Profile shot of Rusty the golden retriever staring out into Buffalo Gap National Grassland in North Dakota. It shows one of the common interactions we have with the natural West - travels with our companions to the wide open spaces.

by graywolf28 3
by hollymac 3
3

Oyster mushrooms

Oyster mushrooms in Santa Fe, NM.

by vibramman 2
2

Late Spring in Nevada

The Santa Rosa Range in Northern Nevada

by Tommyg 2
2

Sunset

The sun peeking through the clouds as a summer thunderstorm passes by.

by sanchez8773 2
2

Barn in Utah

Barn near Capitol Reef, Utah.

by chindi 2
2

Taking it back ~ St. Elmo

A crumbling cabin in the ghost town of St. Elmo, Co, with aspen trees trying to surround it.

by wrenchy 2
2

Sand

White Sands National Monument round Christmas time.

by bobwhitson 2
2

The Brown Section

The colors of West Texas at sunrise. You have to get off Interstate 10 and walk around Balmorhea to see the beauty.

by lenstewart 2
2

Devil's Canyon

Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness, Grand Junction, CO. New Year's Day 2010

by Zudiere 2
2

Morning mist on the Flatirons

Flatirons of Boulder, as seen in the morning mist.

by jfenicle 2
2

Canyon reflections

Red cliffs reflecting in the Dolores River, Gateway Canyon, Colorado

by Zudiere 2
2

High Country Columbine

Gorgeous orange Columbine, found near Ward, Colorado. One of my personal favorites that truly depicts mountain living.

by omerpearlman 2
2

Elk Crossing

A female elk boldly crossing the road outside Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

by janaweber 2
2
1

bloom and bust

The sad history of the desert around Rock Springs, Wyoming with its ever hopeful return to the rejuvenation that only nature promises.

by MSchasteen 2
2

Piney Creek Dreaming

This is an oil painting I created from a series of trips painting en plein air at Piney Creek in Story, Wyoming. Since I was a teenager, this spot has been among my most favorite places in all the world to seek out peace and serenity. Enjoy!

by Jeannie 2
2

Perfect Columbine

The trail to Mica Basin in the Zirkel Wilderness Area has always been a favorite. Annually I make the hike with the intention of capturing the perfect columbine photo for that year. This is from 2009.

by havelina 2
2

Sunset over the Grand Canyon

A last minute capture of sunset over the western edge of the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

by atomlinson 2
2

Columbia River, OR

Hood River, OR

by wbeye 2
2

Moose Creek Idyl

Autumn scene at Moose Creek Ranger Station, deep in the Selway/Bitterroot Wilderness of Idaho; sprinklers gravity fed

by hollymac 2
2

Santa Fe sunset

Santa Fe, NM sunset.

by chindi 1
1

Isn't my canyon grand?

An early spring dusting of snow added to the majesty of The Canyon.

by IGT 1
1

aspen and snowberry tapestry

This photo was captured on the west side of the La Plata mountains in October of 2008.

by radoak 1
1

Yellowstone Elk

Bull elk in Yellowstone Park

by dhold2 1
1

Cactus, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico

An unusual type of cactus. Shot at F22 to keep background in focus. Canon 5D Mk II, Sigma 50mm macro lens.

by psychohalicslag 1
1

Turtle Mountain

Sunset in Catron County, New Mexico

by donwtaylor 1
1

A Fine Fall Day in the Aspens

This is the ground-level perspective of the view that everyone stops for along the Peak to Peak Highway above Nederland CO each Fall.

by psychohalicslag 1
by donwtaylor 1
1

A Fine Fall Day in the Aspens - Floating Gold

This is one of the ground-level perspectives of the view that everyone stops for along the Peak to Peak Highway above Nederland CO each Fall.

by ensner 1
1

WINTER HOME~Trap Door Spider

TRAPDORIS ARACHNIDA GIGANTIS keeps an eye out for its potential evening meal. Mostly subsisting on small rodents and birds, they have been known to dart out and grab deer, coyotes, or the unsuspecting cross-country skier!

by rusdun 1
1

Southwestern SpottedOwl

Southwestern (or Mexican) Spotted Owl in lower Sabino Canyon, Santa Catalina Mountains, near Tucson, AZ

by wrenchy 1
1

Sand - again

White Sands National Monument round Christmas time.

by myersphoto 1
1

Aspens, Kenosha Pass, Colorado

Late afternoon biking on the Colorado Trail at Kenosha Pass, Colorado

by snead233 1
1

Sunrise in Colorado

sun rise on Mt. Evans taken at 5:45 an

by atomlinson 1
1

Forest Fire, Granby CO

Taken from Camp Chief Ouray

by lauriJeanne 0
0

Feb 2010

a freak 2 day snow storm in February brought this in.... The poor birds kept diving into the snow on the bird feeder.

by jhawk77 0
0

New Mexico Impression

Taken from the foothills of Sandia Mtn. Looking west toward Mt. Taylor.

by wrenchy 0
0

Sand - yet again

White Sands National Monument round Christmas time.

The topic: Do you have an image that reflects a quintessential example of the West's intrinsic natural beauty? Submit it here!

About submitting images: Entrants may submit up to three (3) photos for each photo contest, in JPEG, PNG and GIF file formats only; each image submitted may be no larger than 2 megabytes in size.

About voting on images: Instead of making you choose only one entry to vote for, we decided to allow viewers to vote positively for any entry they want to -- one vote per viewer, per image. But be careful - you can't undo your vote once you've clicked the "vote" button, so CHOOSE CAREFULLY!