From Survivors: A New Vision of Endangered Wildlife, 1989.
In our January 2013 issue, Outside executive editor Sam Moulton profiled James Balog, who has spent his career pushing the artistic and adventure boundaries of nature photography. Here, a selection of 20 images from more than 20 years of his career.
ChimpanzeeFrom Survivors: A New Vision of Endangered Wildlife, 1989.
OrangutanFrom Survivors: A New Vision of Endangered Wildlife, 1989.
Fremont CottonwoodMan leaning against Fremont cottonwood trunk near Patagonia, Arizona, October 2000. From Tree: A New Vision of the American Forest.
Kilauea VolcanoOn Hawaii's Big Island, lava flows over a cliff and into the Pacific Ocean; this location is known as the Highcastle ocean entry. This is the process by which the Hawaiian Islands are building up from the sea floor and creating new land. The flow is part of an eruption ongoing since May 2002, an eruption known in aggregate as the Mother's Day Flow, from Pu'u 'O'o crater of the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. The temperature of the lava is approximately 2,100 degrees Fahrenheit.
Giant Sequoia"Stagg," a Giant Sequoia tree, is the fifth largest single living organism on earth at 25.5 feet in diameter, 242 feet tall, 44,100 cubic feet by wood volume. Camp Nelson, California, December 2001. From Tree: A New Vision of the American Forest.
Texas Live OakNational champion Texas Live Oak tree. Rio Frio, Texas, December 1998. From Tree: A New Vision of the American Forest.
Tanglewood Eastern White PineEastern White Pine tree. Lenox, Massachusetts, October 2002. From Tree: A New Vision of the American Forest.
Banda AcehNature reclaims its own: In the west part of Banda Aceh, an Asian elephant picks through rubble of the Lamjame neighborhood devastated by the 2004 tsunami. Elephants were brought in to pick up heavy debris during clean up efforts in early 2005.
Banda AcehAt the extreme northwestern edge of Banda Aceh, where the tsunami first came ashore, the destruction is essentially total—except for one incredibly sturdy tree that managed to stand against the onslaught of the waves. The waves reached to the height of its lowest branch, approximately 45 feet above sea level.
Mendenhall GlacierAlaska, USA, September 2010.
Columbia GlacierExtreme Ice Survey time-lapse cameras in action, August 2009.
Columbia GlacierAlaska, USA, June 2009. Layers of eroded sediment stripe an iceberg.
Ilulissat IsfjordIlulissat Isfjord, June 2007. Icebergs calved from Ilulissat Glacier float to sea. This glacier dumps more ice into the global ocean than any other glacier in the Northern Hemisphere, and is thus Greenland's single biggest contributor to the global sea level rise of one-eighth inch per year.
Greenland Ice SheetGreenland, July 2008. Silt and soot blown from afar turn into black "cryoconite" and absorb solar heat and melt down into ice.
North-North LakeGreenland Ice Sheet, July 2008. A lake bed, bare after the lake drained, shows moulin that swallowed millions of gallons of meltwater.
Ilulissat IsfjordGreenland, August 2007.
JökulsárlónIceland, February 2008. A 500- to 700-year-old block of ice calved from Breidermerkursjokull, polished by the action of glacier, river, and seawater, on the way to raising global sea levels, is seen on the beach at the mouth of the stream draining the Jökulsárlón.
SvínafellsjökullIceland, February 2008. An EIS team member provides scale in a massive landscape of crevasses on the Svínafellsjökull Glacier in Iceland.
Birthday CanyonGreenland Ice Sheet, Greenland, June 2009. Adam LeWinter surveys the Birthday Canyon. Black deposit in bottom of channel is cryoconite. Birthday Canyon is approximately 150 feet deep.
- Start over
Vote for America's Best Town! →
Open a World of Adventure
Our Dispatch email delivers the stories you can’t afford to miss.