正在巨石间走扁带的人，加利福尼亚毕晓普 Slacklining between giant boulders in Bishop, California (© Evgeny Vasenev/Aurora Photos)
Walk the line
Our homepage today shows two climbers slacklining between boulders near Bishop, California. Look closely and you’ll see something very similar to tight-rope walking: the slackliners anchor a thin strip of webbing between two points and then walk across (very carefully, of course). Bishop is near the Sierra Nevada mountain range and is a popular destination for climbers interested in both slacklining and bouldering. What's bouldering? That's rock climbing without ropes or harnesses. Instead, climbers simply shimmy up rocky crags and free-standing boulders—but no higher than 20 feet, for safety’s sake. And where there are rock climbers, you’ll likely find slackliners.
Greetings from Asbury Park
The warm waters of the Atlantic and a long stretch of sand bring thousands of visitors, but Asbury Park also draws waves of art, culture, and music that shine brightly in the summer months. Bruce Springsteen, has played here regularly since the 1970s, performing everywhere from The Stony Pony, an iconic music venue, to a benefit show at Asbury Lanes, a bowling alley that was in dire need of sprucing up. Springsteen, who grew up near here, clearly finds this place special—the name of his 1973 album inspired the title for today‘s image. But the rich history of the music scene predates The Boss, with the sounds of jazz, gospel, and rhythm and blues spilling out from clubs dating back to the 1920s, when the area was developed as a seaside community. Musicians Arthur Pryor, Clifford Johnson, and many others helped Asbury Park be rooted in America‘s rich musical history. The tradition continues today with a ‘Jams on the Sand‘ summer concert series and plenty of other events around town. Whet
Florentine garden brings generations together
Hidden from view, many tourists never realize that the Corsini Garden, featured in today's image, lies just beyond the walls of the Palazzo Corsini al Prato. You'll find the garden and palace in Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance and capital of Tuscany. Designed by architect Bernardo Buontalenti in the early 1590s, the Palazzo Corsini al Prato and Corsini Garden will host the 3rd annual New Generation Festival this week. The festival, which features a new generation of musical talent from around the world performing a different musical genre each night, is designed to break down barriers between generations. For four nights, young and old will enjoy opera, jazz, and classical music in an Italian garden that has enchanted visitors for more than a dozen generations.
Over two days in late August 1883, Krakatoa—an uninhabited island near Indonesia—experienced one of the most destructive volcanic explosions of modern times. Ten times more powerful than the eruption of Mount St. Helens, the explosion obliterated all but a third of the island. The blast could be heard 3,000 miles away—it's still the loudest sound ever recorded—and triggered massive tsunamis. More than 36,000 people lost their lives, and the explosions impacted the entire world: Global temperatures dropped and skies darkened for years, causing huge crop failures. Sunsets turned a vivid red and the moon was often blue or green for years after the event due to the volcanic debris circling in the atmosphere.
The volcano we're featuring today emerged from the ruins of the giant that exploded on this day in August 1883. Anak Krakatoa, or ‘child of Krakatoa,' began to rise in 1927. Though it has yet to be as destructive as its predecessor, the juvenile volcano is highly active, and a collapse of the lava dome in December 2018 caused a massive tsunami, a reminder of just how dangerous this part of the world remains.
Royal Albert Hall during the annual BBC Proms festival in London (© Oli Scarff/Getty Images)
Classical music takes center stage
We're looking at the West–Eastern Divan youth orchestra rehearsing for a performance in the BBC Proms. The Proms (short for promenade concerts) annual music festival is held in London over eight weeks from July into September. The first Proms took place on August 10, 1895 in the Queen's Hall in Langham Place, London. After the Queen's Hall was destroyed by a bomb during the London Blitz, The Proms moved here to the Royal Albert Hall in 1941. This year marks the 125th festival and includes 150 concerts and educational events. While the focus is on classical music, the Proms in the Park event closes out the season with performances from Barry Manilow, Chrissie Hynde, and other pop artists.
Satellite image of the Burning Man Festival in Black Rock City, Nevada (© DigitalGlobe/ScapeWare3d/Getty Images)
A desert arts pop-up, just popped up
Today we're viewing North America's largest arts and music festival—dust free—from a satellite lens. Welcome to Black Rock City, the pop-up home of Burning Man, a raucous festival that takes place in late summer each year on the sun-scorched alkali flats of Nevada's Black Rock Desert. It's an unusual set-up, a counterculture mecca where gifts reign supreme and money has no value.
Festival goers are called ‘burners' in honor of the massive wooden effigy of a man they build each year, only to set ablaze on the penultimate eve of the event. Attendees may come as individuals or entire communities, planning months in advance to construct grandiose art installations, fantastical floats, cars, and other experiences that defy the logistical constraints of the harsh desert landscape. To do this they must pack in everything they'll need for nine days, with the full knowledge that it must all be packed out. Any litter left behind is considered MOOP (Matter Out Of Place), so glitter and other items difficult to retrieve from the desert floor are forbidden. Once inside, goods or services can't be bought, however volunteering and gifting are expected. Part of the mission behind Burning Man is to build a creative and connected community. A worthy goal, especially for those spending a week in the desert with 70,000 of their closest, weirdest, and dustiest friends.
华盛顿州帕卢斯地区的农田 Farmland in Washington state's Palouse region (© Art Wolfe/Getty Images)
Harvest time in the Palouse
The Palouse region of inland Pacific Northwest is an unusually hilly prairie that straddles the state line between Washington and Idaho. Farming seems an unlikely endeavor here, but the land, and the weather patterns, make it ideal for wheat and lentil farming. This time of year, the soft white wheat harvest is on, as the crop turns from green to gold, and for the farmers, from harvest to profit. Before Europeans and early US settlers arrived, the Palouse was occupied by the Nez Perce people, who bred and raised horses with spotted coats—a breed that would eventually come to be known as 'appaloosas'—a gradual permutation of the name 'Palouse.'
Dancing waters of Dubai
With the 2009 opening of the Dubai Fountain, featured in today's image, the city of Dubai claims another record to the books—'world tallest performing fountain’—located appropriately enough at the foot of the Burj Khalifa, currently the world's tallest building. Designed by the same company that created the fountains at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas, everything about the Dubai Fountain is impressive. Over 900 feet long and located in the 30-acre Burj Lake, the fountain has more than 6,600 lights and 75 color projectors, which are used to create over 1,000 different 'water expressions' and provide a full spectrum of color all perfectly choreographed to a carefully crafted musical playlist.
Lakeside serenity in Finland
Hikers and campers in Finland, where today's photo was taken, are allowed on nearly 90 percent of the nation's wilderness, regardless of the property's ownership. This practice is called Everyman's Right, or 'freedom to roam.' It's not really written down in Finland's laws, but is used as a sort of social pact: Those who want to enjoy the outdoors are free to roam just about anywhere, as long as they obey a few basic good-behavior rules. It's a practice that's observed to varying degrees across many parts of central Europe, Scandinavia, the Baltic region, and Scotland.