National Geographic

Flying Photographers And Watery Deserts

National Geographic

In addition to featuring research expeditions and remote, indigenous cultures, National Geographic also often devotes its pages to simply stunning landscapes. Granted, Lencois Maranhenses National Park is something of a geographic anomaly and worth a feature story; it's basically a watery desert in Brazil. But it's George Steinmetz's photography in this story that is most remarkable.

  • Ribbons of sand dunes trap the rains in Brazil's Lencois Maranhenses National Park.
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    Ribbons of sand dunes trap the rains in Brazil's Lencois Maranhenses National Park.
    George Steinmetz/National Geographic
  • Water dark with tannin inspired the name Rio Negro, or "black river," makes patterns on virgin sand. In the park's ponds, algae can turn the water blue or green.
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    Water dark with tannin inspired the name Rio Negro, or "black river," makes patterns on virgin sand. In the park's ponds, algae can turn the water blue or green.
    George Steinmetz/National Geographic
  • In a land still soaked from the rainy season, a river stained with tannin from a nearby forest swirls across the sand.
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    In a land still soaked from the rainy season, a river stained with tannin from a nearby forest swirls across the sand.
    George Steinmetz/National Geographic
  • A fisherman pedals at dawn over waves of sand firmed by an overnight rain.
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    A fisherman pedals at dawn over waves of sand firmed by an overnight rain.
    George Steinmetz/National Geographic
  • Raised by residents of the park, goats graze freely on wild vegetation during the lush months of rain. During the dry season, fishermen turn to farming.
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    Raised by residents of the park, goats graze freely on wild vegetation during the lush months of rain. During the dry season, fishermen turn to farming.
    George Steinmetz/National Geographic

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Steinmetz has been on this blog before. Last fall, National Geographic published photos of his aerial Sahara photographs, which he took from an ultralight paraglider. The only thing more surprising than a watery desert is a flying photographer. Learn more about how he does it on his website.

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