The National Park Foundation names winners of 2022 Share the Experience photo contest

National Park Foundation awards winners of its photo contest

The National Park Foundation and partners announced the winners of the 2022 Share the Experience photo contest and launch the 2023 contest.

The Share the Experience photo contest invites amateur photographers to share photos of their favorite views, moments, memories, and adventures from national parks and public lands across the United States, with safety top of mind.

“America’s national parks are home to a tremendous diversity of natural landscapes, wildlife, history and heritage,” said Will Shafroth, president and CEO of the National Park Foundation.

“Congratulations to this year’s contest winners whose images capture the beauty of parks inspired by each photographer’s unique personal connection to these places we share.”

Nearly 8,000 photos were submitted to the contest which ran from June 22, 2022 through December 31, 2022.

National Park Foundation awards winners of its photo contest

The winning image is featured on the America the Beautiful: The National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Annual Pass, which covers entrance and standard amenity fees for participating federal locations throughout the country.

Top Three Winners

First place:

 A colorful Eastern Collared Lizard stands out bright and beautiful among the desert landscape of Wupatki National Monument.

This photo, captured by Paulette Donnellon, will be featured on the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass.

Second place:

A photograph by Aaron Enloe of a sunlit creek with a backdrop of snow-covered mountains in Inyo National Forest.

Third place:

Josh Keogh’s photo captures a peaceful moment while kayaking at sunset along the minor islands at Isle Royale National Park.

The National Park Foundation is also excited to launch the 2023 Share the Experience photo contest with co-sponsor Booz Allen Hamilton, the contractor and partner for the platform.

National Park Foundation awards winners of its photo contest

This year’s contest invites amateur photographers to submit their favorite recent shots. The grand prize for the winning image is $10,000, followed by $5,000 and $3,000 for second and third place.

Winners also receive outdoor gear provided by Celestron and Hydro Flask, hotel vouchers courtesy of Historic Hotels of America®, and an annual National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass.

The categories to be awarded

Prizes will also be awarded for the following six categories:

Outdoors for All

Demonstrate how public lands welcome and connect us by highlighting the diversity of locations, activities, and visitors. This category spotlights people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities, exploring and enjoying the spectrum of experiences available at our public lands and waters.

Everyday Adventures

An incredible experience doesn’t require visiting an iconic destination. Adventure can be found in the everyday. Discover new places and capture activities and imagery from lesser-known public lands and waters across the country.

History & Heritage

National Park Foundation awards winners of its photo contest

From monuments and battlefields to re-enactments and cultural celebrations, this category is meant to showcase the rich history and diversity of the United States and the special places and traditions that preserve and promote them.

Scenery & Seasons

The scenic vistas, sweeping landscapes, and beautiful flora of public lands can be found in far-off locales or closer to home than you think – capture fall foliage, forests, winter wonderlands, flowers, mountains, deserts, canyons, lakes, seashores, rivers and more.


Take a walk on the wild side with photos of the incredible array of animals that call federal lands and waters home. Remember to always keep your distance and stay safe!

Night Skies

Starlight and starbright, capture the magic of a night out under the stars. Slow the shutter speed down and see what develops! Remember to stay in designated areas and follow all guidelines about hours for visitation.

The 2023 Share the Experience photo contest is hosted by the National Park Foundation and Booz Allen Hamilton in partnership with the National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management.

The Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service, and

Share the Experience is the official photo contest of America’s national parks and federal recreational lands and waters, showcasing the more than 500 million acres of federal lands and waters and drawing entries from across the United States. The 2023 contest is now open and accepting entries through December 31.

View the collection of winning photos here.