Archive for the ‘Travel’ Category

Lace cactus, Laredo Texas, Photo by nature photographer, Jeff Parker

Escape Texas’ Summer Heat ~ Head to the Davis Mountains

A late-summer Star Party at McDonald Observatory merges the Perseid Meteor Shower with west-Texas’ dark skies. The annual meteor show takes place around August 12th each year when the wide tail of the Swift-Tuttle comet intersects Earth’s orbit. / © Jeff Parker / Explore in Focus™ Escape Texas’ summer heat by heading to the Davis Mountains — specifically Davis Mountains State Park, Chihuahuan Desert Nature Center & taking in a Star Party at McDonald Observatory.…
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Green Jay in South Texas

Time for South Texas Photography!

Now that summer’s pretty much here it’s time for South Texas photography! The hotter it is the more active the wildlife grow and the better shots you’ll get. The desolate landscape of the South Texas Brush Country doesn’t look like much, but the biodiversity makes it one of North America’s best places for wildlife photography.…
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Winter Nature Activities in Texas

Finding winter nature activities in Texas may seem tough even though our Lone Star winters aren’t always cold. (In fact, as I write this at the tail-end of December the temperature is a balmy 80 degrees!). But the Lone Star actually offers plenty to do in nature this time of year.…
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Nature Photography 101 Workshop

Artist in Residence ~ Togiak NWR

Togiak Lake, Togiak NWR Alaska I was an Artist in Residence at Togiak National Wildlife Refuge as part of the Voices of the Wilderness Program. Here are some thoughts from my time in southwestern Alaska: WILDERNESS? My first afternoon I’m with just one person: Allen Miller, a Supervisory Park Ranger.…
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Bat Viewing in Texas

Bat viewing in Texas heats up in the summer, especially in August. Bats live on every continent except Antarctica. Of the 1,000 or so unique species worldwide, 70% eat insects. In Texas, we have 32 species of bats statewide. (Learn about 10 of them here.) In Texas, our most numerous species is the Mexican Free-tailed Bat (Tadarida brasiliensis).…
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Explore Texas ~ Book Release Event ~ June 2016

It’s now finally official:“Explore Texas: A Nature Travel Guide,” the book that my wife, Mary O. Parker and I have been working on for a few years will be out at the beginning of June. It’s being released by Texas A&M University Press.…
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Beauty of Bosque del Apache NWR

My wife, Mary O. Parker, and I have been thinking of the beauty of Bosque del Apache NWF. This is about the time of year when Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge begins to come fully to life. That got my wife Mary to reminiscing about the tours and visits we enjoy there.…
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Fall Foliage in McKittrick Canyon

The fall foliage in McKittrick Canyon makes a great subject for nature photography. Now that it’s actually cooler than 90 degrees here in central Texas, I can finally wrap my mind around photographing Texas in autumn. Below, you’ll find some info about one of my favorite autumn destinations.…
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Pumas & Peaks of Patagonia photo tour with Jeff Parker/Explore in Focus™

Year of the Cat

Adult female puma ~ ©Jeff Parker It seems that instead of “birders,” Mary and I have become “catters.” In the last 12 months, we have seen five species of big cats in the wild and I got a glimpse of a smaller one—Geoffroy’s cat—during the Patagonia trip in April.…
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Sea Turtle Hatchlings Run for Water at North Padre Island National Sea Shore, Texas

Sea Turtles and Such

I thought since mid-summer is the time for sea-turtle releases along the Texas Gulf, this would make a timely blog post. As many of you know, Mary and I have a book coming out titled, “Explore Texas ~ A Nature Travel Guide” through Texas A&M University Press.…
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Jeff Parker's photo tour of Pumas of Patagonia.

Pumas in Patagonia

Wild adult puma, Torres del Paine National Park, Chile ~ ©Jeff Parker“There he is!” whispers my wife Mary O. We’re near Torres del Paine National Park, Chile sitting in a van in the cold rain. Mary O. has just spotted a large male puma making his way down the hill to the guanaco kill we’ve been watching for the last hour.…
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Big Bend Photo Tour ~ Trip Report

Terlingua cemetery entrance ~ ©Jeff ParkerThis year’s Big Bend Photo Tour took place over the second weekend in April 2015. I have never seen the park so green nor have I ever witnessed the profusion of wildflowers that we had. We couldn’t have timed the tour better!…
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Why I Love the Desert

Cholla Cactus Garden at Joshua Tree National Park. © Jeff Parker Recently, I meandered my way to and from the NANPA Summit, which was held in San Diego in February. My route took me through the backcountry of San Diego, the deserts of southern-California, and much of the Southwest.…
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Best Nature Destinations near El Paso

I’ve been working steady getting images ready for the book that Mary and I are doing for Texas A&M University Press. It’s tentatively titled “Explore Texas — A Nature Travel Guide” and will be out in spring 2016. I thought I’d share some of the best nature destinations near El Paso that we’ve featured in the book.…
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