NPS National Landmarks Photo Contest Winners

Second place winner, "Dunes Nature Preserve, Indiana," by Christopher Jordan of Indianapolis, Ind. (Image copyright: Christopher Jordan)

A vibrant desert sunset, light cascading across dune vegetation, and the stillness of a northern quaking bog are just a few of the visual splendors captured by photographers in the National Park Service’s 2010 National Natural Landmarks (NNL) Photo Contest.

Sixty-seven images representing 56 landmarks across 28 states were submitted in the 7th annual contest. Top honors went to John H. Pilarski of Milwaukee for his photograph of Grapevine Mesa Joshua Trees in Arizona.

Second place went to Christopher Jordon of Indianapolis for a photo of Dunes Nature Preserve in Indiana, and third place to Rodrigo Roesch of Glenview, Illinois, for his image of that state’s Volo Bog Nature Preserve.

These photos and 10 Honorable Mentions will be featured in next year’s NNL calendar to increase awareness of natural landmarks and celebrate the great diversity of our nation’s natural history.

“These stunning photographs highlight the beauty of these spectacular places,” said National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis.

Third place winner, "Volo Bog Nature Preserve, Illinois," by Rodrigo Roesch of Glenview, Ill. (Image copyright: Rodrigo Roesch)

“Our National Natural Landmarks Program was established in 1962 to encourage the preservation of the best remaining examples of the major biotic communities and geologic features composing the nation’s natural landscape. It is the only national natural areas program that identifies and recognizes the best examples of biological and geological features in both public and private ownership.”

There are 586 national natural landmarks across the United States, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. NNLs are designated by the Secretary of the Interior following rigorous scientific study, and include features on private, state, municipal, and federal lands. Participation in the program is voluntary.

To view the 13 winning photographs from this year’s contest, please visit

A complete list of national natural landmarks and additional information about the program can be found at

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