I just returned from a train trip on Amtrak's California Zephyr through the colorful canyons and gorges of Utah and Colorado. See my photo gallery "Canyons, Cliffs & Clouds" on the right sidebar, and two interesting trains I photographed along the route of the Zephyr (below). Three simple observations about the American railroading experience: Thousands of giant boulders perched on steep hillsides never tumble down when your train is passing by. People dump enormous quantities of trash alongside backyard fences and railroad tracks. People wave at arriving and departing trains, but not at buses and airplanes. If you want to see some of this gorgeous scenery for yourself, much of it accessible only by rail, get yourself an Amtrak Guest Rewards MasterCard and start racking up travel points for your next train ride.
John Maybury, Editor & Publisher
My globetrotting brother Joel Maybury recently visited Australia's rainforest. Below are his notes on the flora and fauna he photographed (see his photo gallery on our right sidebar; more photos will be added as we receive them):
The tropical rainforest region of northeast Australia is home to the greatest concentration of bird species on the continent.
The Curtain Fig Tree (see above), with its vertical fig roots forming a curtain-like appearance, is one of the largest trees in North Queensland, Australia. It's near the town of Yungaburra on the Atherton Tableland.
Different fungi in the rainforest at Lake Eacham National Park on the Atherton Tableland region of Australia's Queensland state.
An Azure Kingfisher along the Daintree River in Australia's rainforest region.
Australia's Daintree Rainforest is one of the world's oldest tropical rainforests and most fascinating ecosystems. You can stand on the beaches in that region and see where the rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef meet -- a blending of two UNESCO World Heritage sites. Pieces of bleached coral wash onshore along with assorted forest "products," creating colorful patterns on the sand.
Brushfire in Uinta National Forest created this fiery Utah sunset. Photo by John Maybury onboard Amtrak's westbound California Zephyr.
We have added seven new Sam's Castle photos by Marque Glisson of Coastside Aerial. The seven drone shots appear in the Sam's Castle photo album on our right sidebar.
Take a hike on the island of Capri, then grab a bite of pizza from the island of Procida. See the rest of John Elk's photo album on our right sidebar, including Naples, Pompeii, Sorrento, Ravello, and the Amalfi Coast.
Coastside Aerial drone photographer Marque Glisson says, "I flew the drone 151 feet above Egg Rock. No wildlife was harmed or agitated. I spoke with a park ranger at Devil's Slide about this. I flew 10 feet lower than where I launched; he wanted to alert me about not going any lower. I didn't get his name, but he was quick and on the job to warn and inform me. Kudos to him!"
Above: Muelle de Pegasos, Cartagena, Colombia. (See the rest of John Elk's Colombia photo album on our right sidebar.)