Book and accompanying Video


A landmark, award-winning book, video and museum exhibition celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act protecting the St. Croix & Namekagon Rivers.

Co-produced by the Wild Rivers Conservancy of the St. Croix and Namekagon and Blacklock Photography Galleries.



Click here, to order yours today.


All three editions include:

• 204 pages

• 277 photographs by award-winning photographer, Craig Blacklock

• Essay by the late Vice President, Walter F. Mondale

• 24 pages of inspiring quotes, poems and song lyrics on contrasting paper.

• You will receive access to an enthralling video compiled from hundreds of Craig Blacklock’s still photographs from this project, set to music by Stillwater singer/songwriter Peter Mayer.


“Craig Blacklock’s life has been a quest for truth and beauty.  In his work we see the intrinsic value of nature and we yearn to be more a part of it.  His photographs are unexcelled for their elegance and for the spectacular moments they capture.  His recent photographs of the St. Croix River and its tributaries strengthen our bonds to the watershed and our resolve to ensure its ongoing protection.” — John Kaul, Afton Films


COLLECTORS’ EDITION   $60    Click here to order.

• Limited to 5,000 numbered copies

• Signed by Craig Blacklock inside book.

• Large size at 12 x 15 inches.

• Hand bound with linen/cotton fabric, with offset lithography print on cover.


Relive memorable river trips and astound your friends with the wonders of the St. Croix and Namekagon Rivers, taking pride in being one of the fortunate few able to attain these extremely limited edition books.


SIGNATURE EDITION — book and clamshell case  $650    Click here to order

• Hand-signed in pencil by the late Vice President Walter F. Mondale and Craig Blacklock on the cover photograph

Limited to only 120 numbered copies 

• Original, archival inkjet photograph on aluminum embedded in front cover

• Hand bound in linen/cotton with a sumptuous leather spine

• Oversized, at 17 x 21 inches, weighing over 16 pounds

• Extra-heavy 80 pound cover-weight paper

• Book comes in linen/cotton fabric-covered clamshell case

“No matter how we relate to the river, whether a Saturday float on an inner tube or kayak, fly fishing for smallmouth bass or trolling for walleye, swimming to sandy beaches, or boating on Lake St. Croix — these photographs allow us to share our stories as well as to discover places previously unknown…” — Walter F. Mondale, from the Enduring Gift essay


MUSEUM EDITION — book and clamshell case    $450    Click here to order.

• Limited to only 275 numbered copies

• Identical to Signature Edition but without signatures on cover.

• Signed by Craig Blacklock inside book.


Craig holding copy of Museum Edition. Signature Edition is this same large size.




I received your [Museum Edition] book and three prints. After unwrapping careful packaging the amazing contents revealed itself. There just aren’t words for the emotions felt for the wonder you saw and preserved… All the details regarding the book, prints, video (including the clam shells) are show-stoppers! Perfect for the times I can’t be at the Croix.  

— Carol T.






50 years ago, then U.S. Senator, former Vice President of the United States, Walter F. Mondale, together with Senator Gaylord Nelson co-sponsored the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. Mondale’s essay The Enduring Gift relives both this history, including the vital role played by Northern States Power (now Xcel Energy), and his personal ties to the rivers. The late Mr. Mondale’s autograph is available exclusively on the 120 copies of the Signature Edition.


Craig Blacklock, best known for his photography of Lake Superior. He has had many solo museum exhibitions, and won numerous awards, including the George Morrison Award, firmly establishing him as one of our nation’s most distinguished landscape photographers.

In this project, Blacklock’s photographs allow you to see this waterway through the eyes of a naturalist and artist. Each turn of a page is like having a revolving picture window bringing these rivers’ diverse beauty into the comfort of your home.

You glide with Blacklock through rapids in his kayak and soar with eagles and trumpeter swans looking down with wonder at the meandering, island-strewn river far below. Discover the breadth of the rivers in magnificent panoramas, as well as woodland birds and spring ephemerals you might otherwise miss. The St. Croix watershed is comprised of hundreds of tiny bogs, lakes and small streams lined with alder, pine, hardwoods, silver maple flood plains and flower-filled prairies. Craig has ventured with his cameras throughout these ecosystems in all seasons: witnessing golden-eye ducks happily fishing along hoar frost covered ice at 27° below Zero, fiddleheads unfurling, summer thunderstorms roiling over the rivers, and the crescendo of autumn colors. Blacklock has also trained his cameras on our human interactions with these places: from historic buildings of Stillwater and Marine on St. Croix, to cabin life along the river, and sailing regattas in the wide sweep of Lake St. Croix.



Everything starts with great photography. Blacklock’s artistic talent has long been established, but for this publication he utilized three recent technological advances in photography: super high resolution captures; drone mounted cameras; and updates to digital editing that allow every nuance of the original capture to carry through onto the pages of the book. The results are views of the rivers from previously-unseen vantage points, and hyper-real details retained even in the over-sized book editions and large museum photographs.


“Wow!! Beautiful beyond belief. But then that’s what we all have come to know and expect from all your previous works. Look forward to receiving my copy.”

Best — Gretchen and Mark Banks


To achieve higher resolution, panoramic formats, greater tonal range, more depth of field, or action shots of wildlife within a high-resolution landscape, Blacklock often combines several original captures into one final photograph. Whether made up of one or twenty captures, Blacklock personally digitally masters each photograph. He also designed this book, carefully selecting and paginating images creating a sensory experience truly greater than the sum of its parts.

Blacklock has worked with Friesens Printing in Altona Manitoba for many of his previous 17 books. He knows and trusts Friesens, and they have gotten to know what he expects as he works side by side with the press operators to adjust the color for each page before signing off. Besides great printing, the books are printed using the highest quality, sustainably-harvested paper.

Gaze into the original cover photograph of the Signature and Museum editions, and you will perceive a sharpness and depth like nothing you have ever encountered on a book cover. Blacklock achieved this by printing directly onto perfectly flat and smooth aluminum panels using the same Epson printer with which he makes his museum prints. He and Vice President Walter F. Mondale hand signed each aluminum panel of the 120 Signature Editions in pencil prior to their being laminated beneath a scratch-resistant gloss laminate. The panels were shipped to Roswell Bookbinding in Arizona, where they were hand bound into the covers. Blacklock worked closely with Mike Roswell to select the linen/cotton fabric and leather that complements the cover photograph, to create books that will be valued by generations to come.  Upon seeing a preliminary selection of the book images, Mike wrote, “…we have been binding photography books since the 1960’s, starting with Ansel Adams…your images rank up at the top with the very best…they are stunning photos that really capture the spirit of the great North.”




Craig Blacklock set out to make these the very highest quality books possible, and to bring them to you at a fair value.  Selling though traditional markets would have meant pricing all three editions at about twice the price. A quick search of other “sumo” sized books will show what a tremendous value these are. While many other “limited edition” sumo-sized books are printed in edition sizes as high as 10,000 copies, often costing over $10,000 each, there are only 120 copies of the Signature Edition, 275 of the Museum Edition, and 5,000 Collectors’ Edition, guaranteeing that only a fortunate few will become custodians of these hand-crafted volumes.

Imagine the pride you will feel, entertaining friends with a copy one of these rare books as the centerpiece of your home.



You love these rivers. If you didn’t, you would not have read this far. Many of your best experiences, fondest memories, and happiest times with friends, family and loved ones are likely tied to times on or beside the water. What are those memories worth? How much have you invested in creating them over the years? The Enduring Gift will multiply those memories as you gather around the book, each turn of the page bringing exclamations, and stories. Because we know how much the rivers mean to you, we are going to make you an incredible offer.

Our promise:

We promise to deliver to you the highest quality photography, reproduction, and binding, no matter which volume you purchase.

Our Guarantee:

If for any reason you are not thrilled with your purchase, simply return the book for a full refund of your purchase price, including shipping.


Click here to order. 



Orders may be placed on the web site, or by calling 218-460-6351.

Each order will be logged in by time. Times from phone and web site reservations will be compared to determine in which order they are received. Once confirmed, each order will then be assigned an edition number.


This activity was made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, thanks to appropriations from the McKnight Foundation and the Minnesota State Legislator’s general arts and cultural heritage fund.