You’ve heard of Yosemite, Yellowstone, and Glacier National Parks—but here’s a lesser-known destination to add to your national park bucket list. North Cascades National Park celebrates its 50th anniversary today. Located about 100 miles northeast of Seattle, and stretching up to the Canadian border, it’s surrounded by two national recreation areas and other protected lands, including several national forests and wilderness areas, and by Canadian provincial parks in neighboring British Columbia. Despite all this stunning wilderness, North Cascades National Park isn’t nearly as busy as the big-name parks, and that can be a good thing. Here you’ll find the most extensive system of glaciers in the lower 48 states—more than 300 glaciers. It’s the glaciers that lend a lovely turquoise hue to freshwater lakes, like Ouzel Lake on today’s homepage. The 500,000-acre park also boasts spectacular wildlife, alpine forests, and waterfalls. See you there?
For some Monday inspiration, we’re looking to the sky. In honor of NASA’s 60th anniversary, these are the contrails from a 2007 liftoff of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, which transported astronauts to space and back for 30 years before being retired here, at Kennedy Space Center, where visitors can view it in person.
NASA opened for business 60 years ago today, and for decades has pushed the boundaries of space science–sending humans to the moon, inventing new aeronautic technology, and using space satellites to learn more about life here on Earth and beyond. As for what the future holds? The sky isn’t even the limit.