National Parks Collection: Yellowstone & Crater Lake

American novelist and environmentalist Wallace Stegner once said, "Whatever landscape a child is exposed to early on, that will be the sort of gauze through which he or she will see all the world afterwards." 

Our hope at Gus +Steel is that our sustainable, eco-friendly clothing not only contributes to the protection and preservation of our ecosystem, but also instills in future generations a profound love and respect for the earth. Our National Parks Collection features iconic park symbols, and represents what we love most about this awe-inspiring land we call home. 


Yellowstone National Park

Hemmed in by majestic mountain peaks, Yellowstone National Park's vast landscape stretches across 3,500 miles. It is located primarily in the northwest corner of Wyoming but also reaches into parts of Idaho and Montana. Established in 1872, Yellowstone was the first national park to be created not only in the United States, but in the world. Cradled in an active volcano, it is a scientific marvel. Steaming geysers spray plumes of water high into the sky, their mists sending shimmering rainbows dancing through the air. Although Old Faithful is the most visited due to the predictability of its eruption, the park boasts over 500 geysers. At the Grand Prismatic Spring, rings of radiant color surround the brilliant turquoise waters of the thermal hot spring, creating a stunning masterpiece of vibrant beauty. The Mammoth Hot Springs Terraces are home to thermal pools of water that spill over the rocky ledges creating what appears to be frozen waterfalls. These heated waters' ever-changing formations are works of art and can completely transform from one day to the next.  

Considered the Serengeti of America, Yellowstone is home to the greatest number of animals per square mile in the entire United States. Geese take flight over serene lakes, teeming with fish, playful otters dart in and out along the riverbank, and moose drink from the cool water. Summer brings a profusion of wildflowers, lush green meadows, and baby critters of all kinds. Curious bear cubs tumble through the flowers chasing bumblebees, wolves emerge from their dens with new pups in tow, and newborn elk calves hide among the golden Sage Grass while their mothers graze nearby. With its rich diversity of wildlife and abundance of natural marvels, Yellowstone is a photographer's dream. Photography is a great way to encourage your kids to interact with nature.

Crater Lake National Park

Crater Lake National Park is a 180,000-acre park in southern Oregon and is home to Oregon's most remote and well-protected forests. Over ten distinct species of conifers can be found here, including Ponderosa pines, sugar pines, whitebark pines, and white fir. Hiking trails meander through flower-laden meadows, and shady forest paths lead to cascading waterfalls. But the true heartbeat of the park lies nestled amidst the pines. Formed over 7,700 years by the eruption and collapse of Mt. Mazama, Crater Lake is ringed by the steep bedrock walls of the caldera and fed by rainwater and snowfall. A stunning sight to behold, this lake contains some of the world's purest and most beautiful water. Because of the water's crystal clear clarity and tranquility, it reflects the sunshine and sky, giving it a striking, brilliant blue hue. 

Crater Lake experiences an annual snowfall of 43 feet, making it one of the snowiest places in the United States. Snowstorms are possible as late into the summer as June. The park has over 90 miles of hiking trails, but if you are visiting earlier than July, be prepared for snow-covered paths. Snowshoes, snowmobiles, and cross country skiing offer a way to view the park during snowy months. 

There are many different options for taking in the breathtaking vistas of Crater Lake during the warmer summer months. If driving is your preference, the Rim Drive Road circles the lake entirely. 

Crater Lake is home to unique wildlife such as the Mazama newt. Crater Lake is the only place in the world where this unique breed may be found. Other possible wildlife sightings include black bears, yellow-bellied marmots, pine martens, and pika.

Hopefully, this summer, you'll have the opportunity to visit one of our great National Parks. But whether your kiddos are snuggled up in the backseat of the car as you head off on a grand adventure, or snuggled up on the couch imagining a future trip, Gus + Steel's National Park lounge sets will keep them comfy and dreaming of adventures to come.

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