#NationalParksUSNZ Photo Competition – and the winner is….

On October 4, 2016, the Embassy launched a photo competition, #NationalParksUSNZ, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the U.S. National Park Service. The winning entry’s prize included a $400 gift card to REI and a chance to feature in Air New Zealand’s in-flight magazine.

Contestants were asked to submit photos of U.S. National Parks they have visited— in the United States —to celebrate our common love for the outdoors.

The competition aimed to highlight the central roles national parks play in our communities, and the importance of recreation and natural, historic, and cultural conservation.

Thanks for all your photos!

NPS Photo contest
NPS Photo contest

The judges had a difficult time selecting a winner from the hundreds of stunning entries.

But there could only be one winner…

…and the winner is…

Zhuoran (Sam) Zhao from Palmerston North, with his beautiful photo from Joshua Tree National Park

Zhuoran (Sam) Zhao from Palmerston North. Joshua Tree National Park.
Zhuoran (Sam) Zhao from Palmerston North. Joshua Tree National Park.

Sam is in his final year Earth Science and Environmental Science student at Massey University.

“I love surfing, hiking and photo shooting, lying on the ground and watching milky way is one of my biggest hobby of all time. I love nature and earth science, I spent 6 weeks traveling in 23 National Parks in the U.S. during 2016; I drove over 18 States and saw some amazing views and landscape of the western part of the U.S.” – Sam.

Sam hopes his photos can bring some joy to other people.

The top 10 (in no particular order)…

 

Photo credit: @travelgalnicole. "Checking out the hot springs of Yellowstone. The terraces of Mammoth Springs were absolutely stunning #nationalparksusnz".
From: @travelgalnicole. “Checking out the hot springs of Yellowstone. The terraces of Mammoth Springs were absolutely stunning #nationalparksusnz”.
From Shannan Henson..."Visited Grand Tetons and Yellowstone in June this year, is like Waiotapu only "up-sized" american style. Whole family thoroughly enjoyed it - we will be back! #‎nationalparksusnz"‬.
From Shannan Henson“Visited Grand Tetons and Yellowstone in June this year, is like Waiotapu only “up-sized” american style. Whole fami
Zhuoran (Sam) Zhao from Palmerston North. Joshua Tree National Park.
Zhuoran (Sam) Zhao…Joshua Tree National Park.
From Megan Singleton McHattie..."This has to be the most astounding national park I've ever seen in the United States. Bryce National Park is in Utah and is famous for its hoodoos, those towering spears of rock formations. Hiking trails are moderate to extreme, or you can just take photos from the rim! This year the US celebrates 100 years of their national parks service. Congratulations for caring for these wonders so well. #NationalParksUSNZ".
From Megan Singleton McHattie“This has to be the most astounding national park I’ve ever seen in the United States. Bryce National Park is in Utah and is famou
From Samuel Zhao..."#NationalParksUSNZ Grand Teton".
From Samuel Zhao“#NationalParksUSNZ Grand Teton”.
From @kimmy__cutie..."Taking time out to enjoy the beauty of Yosemite national park, just before sunset, words can't describe how amazing that was. #nationalparksusnz #yosemitenationalpark".
From @kimmy__cutie“Taking time out to enjoy the beauty of Yosemite national park, just before sunset, words can’t describe how amazing that was. #nationalparksusnz #yosemitenationalpark”.
From John Ogier..."A couple seen walking along a trail in the Petrified Forest National Park on our 2015 trip. #NationalParksUSNZ".
From John Ogier“A couple seen walking along a trail in the Petrified Forest National Park on our 2015 trip. #NationalParksUSNZ”.
From Samuel Zhao..."#NationalParksUSNZ Grand Teton".
From Samuel Zhao...”#NationalParksUSNZ Grand Teton”.
From @thebushline..."Arches NP #NationalParksUSNZ @usembassynz".
From @thebushline“Arches NP #NationalParksUSNZ @usembassynz”.
From Rod Hay..."#NationalParksUSNZ Photo Competition. Fabulous visit to Yosemite in January 2016".
From Rod Hay...”#NationalParksUSNZ Photo Competition. Fabulous visit to Yosemite in January 2016″.