Protect Your Favorite Outdoor Places By Sharing Your Photos Online

Clif Bar, a company known for creating tasty and nutritional energy bars, has launched a new initiative that invites us to share our favorite outdoor or travel moments online. The program isn’t just about posting pretty pictures on the Internet, however, as it also serves as an opportunity for us to protect our favorite outdoor places.

The company recently launched, which serves as the hub for this new program. Visitors to the website are encouraged to upload images that best encapsulate their favorite outdoor adventures and share details of what made that particular moment so special. For each image that is uploaded, Clif Bar will then donate $5 to one of five non-profit organizations that focuses on protecting our outdoor spaces. Visitors to the site are also encouraged to share their favorite images on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, and each time they do another $1 will be donated to the organizations. The non-profits that will be the recipients of those donations include the Access Fund; International Mountain Bicycling Association; Leave No Trace; Surfrider Foundation and the Winter Wildlands Alliance.

The program runs through the end of October, at which time a panel of judges will examine the 25 moments that were shared the most often. Their selection of the best overall moment will determine a grand prize winner who will have an additional $10,000 donated to the non-profit of their choice in their name. They’ll also receive a year’s supply of Clif Bars too!

This is an incredibly easy way to not only share your favorite travel or outdoor adventures with others but also generate some cash for five organizations that work hard to keep our favorite outdoor places healthy and pristine. I can’t think of a much better cause than that.

National Geographic announces photo contest for students

Earlier this week, National Geographic launched their first ever Student Photo Contest by inviting high school students to submit a photo that they think best captures the essence of exploration. Entrants into the competition will be competing to win a trip on a Nat Geo Student Expedition later this summer.

Aspiring shutterbugs are encouraged to comb through their photo library to find up to five images that they wish to enter into the contest. Then they simply visit the submissions page where they’ll be asked to upload the photos and write a brief 100-word description of each image and how it defines exploration for them. Once that step is complete, they’ll be able to share their photos online with friends and family as well.

The winning image will earn the photographer an all expense paid trip to London to attend this summer’s London Photography Workshop. That 12-day program will allow students to hone their skills while learning from one of National Geographic’s top photographers. Mornings are spent in the classroom studying new techniques, while afternoons are spent out in the field where they’ll be able to put their newfound skills to the test. The trip is valued at approximately $6500 and is a once in a lifetime opportunity for a lucky photographer of any age.

The photo contest is open to U.S. residents who are currently in grades 9-12. Submissions are being accepted through April 1st with a winner being notified via email by April 16. For more information, including the official rules, click here.

National Geographic photo contest highlights

Everybody likes a good ol’ National Geographic photo contest. The magazine attracts the finest photographers and by the same token, the magazine attracts those with a taste for the finest photography. Thousands upon thousands of people enter National Geographic’s photo contests and, as you might suspect, there are plenty of great photo entries that don’t win the contest. Luckily for all of us photo-appreciators, National Geographic highlights some of their favorite shots as the contest goes on. And even more luckily for us, The Atlantic’s In Focus gathered 45 of their favorite entries thus far for our viewing pleasure. Featuring impressive photos in full size, you can check out the In Focus round-up from the contest here on The Atlantic’s website.

National Geographic photo contest open through the end of November

Attention photographers: there’s a National Geographic photo contest open until November 30th. The esteemed magazine is famous for spectacular photography and simultaneously famous for spectacular photo contests. The most recent photo contest is themed People, Places, and Nature. Judged by National Geographic photographers, the grand prize winner will received $10,000 as well as a trip to the National Geographic headquarters in Washington D.C. The photos will be judged on both creativity and photographic quality. National Geographic requests that the entries reflect real life, captured as it was at the moment in time that the photo was taken. If you have a great shot, enter it! (The subtext being… why not?).

Find more information on the contest here on the National Geographic website.

‘Only in Chile’ contest could send you to South America to sip some wine

Chile truly is an amazing travel destination, offering snow capped peaks, beautiful coastlines, sprawling deserts, and so much more. Whether you’re looking to experience an unforgettable outdoor adventure or be spoiled at a luxury resort, the country can provide both options, and just about everything in between.

The diversity of travel options in the South American country is the basis of a new contest sponsored by The Wines of Chile Experience. Their “Only in Chile” photo competition invites travelers to submit an album of images to the organization’s Facebook page, and then rally their friends and family to vote for the submission. The person who garners the most votes will be swept off to Chile for a wine-themed adventure of their choice.

All submissions must fall into one of five themes, which include: For the Love of Chile; Wine & Stars; Urban Wine Retreat; Harvest Holiday or Horses & Huasos. All entries must include five photos to their gallery that adhere to these themes. The contest, which is open to U.S. residents only, runs through November 5th, with a winner being announced on November 14th.

That lucky winner will receive airfare for two to Chile, five nights stay in a hotel, food and beverages, wine tours, and other activities based on the theme of their choice. The total prize package is valued at roughly $15,000.

As of this writing, there are only five entries listed on the contest’s Facebook page. (View the competition here!) That means, with just over two weeks to go in the contest, anyone can still win this fantastic prize. I was fortunate enough to visit Chile earlier this year, and had an amazing time. It truly is one of my favorite travel destinations and this is a great opportunity to explore the country for yourself.

Just remember, it includes airfare for two. When you win this contest, don’t forget who tipped you off to it.