Contact us Monday through Friday 8:00am CST to 4:00pm CST at 715-327-4402

Racing Bikes on Snow?!?

“Intensity” by Margaret Ann


It’s true. The sport of Fat Biking has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years. Athletes float across the snow on bikes with over sized frames and tires expressly designed for that purpose. The young women of Northwest Passage Prairieview (previously known as Northwest Passage III) captured images of racers at the Solstice Chase, the inaugural race of the Great Lakes Fat Bike Race Series. CyclovaXC, a local ski and bike shop and good friend of Northwest Passage hosted the event and invited us to be there to enjoy and document it. The Race took place at Big Rock Creek Retreat north of St Croix Falls, WI. It was a very exciting day and a first for all of us from Northwest Passage (myself included).  Racers role modeled camaraderie, perseverance, and a sense of humor in the face of challenging and chilly conditions. We hope you enjoy the photos!

-Ian Karl, NWP In a New Light Counselor


"Call of the Wild" by Abby

“Call of the Wild” by Abby

"Determination" by Talise

“Determination” by Talise

"Ghosts of the Past" by Abby

“Ghosts of the Past” by Abby

"If You Stop Smiling You'll Only Cry," by Talise

“If You Stop Smiling You’ll Only Cry,” by Talise

"Exhilaration" by Margaret Ann

“Exhilaration” by Margaret Ann

NOW AVAILABLE – In a New Light : The Art and Nature of Healing

In a New Light : The Art and Nature of Healing follows the youth of Northwest Passage, a mental health residential treatment center for children and teens, on their journey of hope and healing.

This new book is a beautiful photographic account of expeditions to six national parks, including Badlands, Yellowstone, Apostle Islands, Rocky Mountain, Isle Royale, and St. Croix National Scenic Riverway. The photographs tell a story not just of the beauty of America’s natural places, but also the story of youth finding renewed hope in their lives.

To celebrate, the In a New Light Gallery will be hosting a Book Release and Signing Open House on December 18th, from 1:00PM – 6:00PM. Several of the young In a New Light Photographers will be in attendance to sign copies of books – which are available for 25% off during the open house. The book can also be purchased online.


Order your copy of the book HERE

please note you will be redirected to an external site.
In a New Light is conducted in partnership with the National Park Service, and is funded through a grant from the National Park Foundation. The new book is funded through the popular crowd source funding website, Kickstarter. 

Introducing Dooskaabi

Dancing – by Cody, 17


In June, 2013, Northwest Passage launched its newest photography project, Dooskaabi. Centered at our Hayward Group Home, Northwest Oasis,  Dooskaabi aims to empower Native American youth to tell the story of the natural and culture landscape of their community, with a special focus on the Lac Courte Orielles Reservation. The project blends training in nature photography and photojournalism, and connects youth with leaders in their community. “Dooskaabi” is the Ojibwe translation of “open eyes.”  We hope this small sample of photos opens your eyes, and know that there are many more to come. Enjoy!


Ordinary and Beautiful, by Jack, 17

Ordinary and Beautiful, by Jack, 17

“When I look at these leaves, it makes me wonder how something so simple and ordinary can be also be so beautiful.   Maybe nothing is ordinary.”

A Simple Bug, by Aaron, 17

A Simple Bug, by Aaron, 17

“A simple bug, no more than a basic form of life.  Yet at the same time, keeps going on day and night.”

Beautiful Bug, by Jack, 17

Beautiful Bug, by Jack, 17

“This bug is beautiful, even though it was as small as an ant. Nobody really notices something like this on a leaf. When you take the time to pay attention you can see the natural beauty in all things.”

"Eagle in Flight," by Brent, 16

“Eagle in Flight,” by Brent, 16

This is a beautiful sculpture at the LCO Ojibwe Veteran’s Memorial.

Run Away, by Cody, 17

Run Away, by Cody, 17

“Run away from your problems.  But when you look back they’ll still be in front of you.  When you look forward they stay behind.”

Beautiful, by Trent, 16

Beautiful, by Timmy, 16

“When you look out over the lake, the sun looks very graceful.”

Youthful Flower, by Aaron, 17

Youthful Flower, by Aaron, 17

“A youthful flower at its prime.  Of course, like all life’s things, it will die, but the earth will remember it through the tunnels of time.”

Rescue In a New Light

Northwest Passage Prairieview (previously known as Northwest Passage III) teamed up with the Humane Society of Burnett County to take these gorgeous portrait photos of the animals awaiting adoption. The young photographers used this as an opportunity to learn truly top notch studio portraiture techniques to capture the personalities of their subjects. The photographs were used in marketing materials (posters, flyers, etc.) to help find these amazing pets new homes within our community.Ten percent of all proceeds from this exhibit will be donated back to the Humane Society of Burnett County to help them in continuing the amazing work that they do.

Rescue In a New Light is the newest exhibit to the In a New Light Gallery, located just south of Webster off of Highway 35.

Rescue In a New Light

Rescue In a New LightRescue In a New LightRescue In a New Light

Wildlife Safari at Northwest Passage Riverside

Waterfall – by Eric

Eric: My name is Eric and I’m from Waukesha, Wisconsin.  I am 17 years old and I have learned that photography is my favorite activity.  It allows me to see new things and be able to sit back and enjoy my surroundings and not worry about things going on in my life.  After being in photography, I would like to buy my own camera when I leave Northwest Passage.


Dancing Swan – by Micah

Micah: My name is Micah B.  I am 14 and I live in Hudson, Wisconsin. I chose this picture because it captures nature in action. Photography helps me because it gets me away from stresses in my life.  It also gives me a chance to see stuff that I would not get to see on a regular basis. Photography has taught me many different skills, like patience.


Pheasant – by Fabian

Fabian: My name is Fabian R. I was born in Chicago but I live in Minneapolis. I came to Northwest Passage mainly because my behaviors were going to affect my future in a negative way.  Photography has helped me to see stuff with a different point of view.  It has also got me interested in nature which is new to me.  I hope to continue to use the skills I have learned in photography to steer me in a positive path the rest of my life.


Glance through the Trees – by Austin

Austin: My name is Austin P and I am 15 years old, and I am from Anoka County.  I came to Northwest Passage to work on my anger and drug problems.  Photography has helped me to learn many skills needed to get my life going in a positive direction.  Being out in nature and the thrill of capturing the perfect image takes my mind off my problems.  I am grateful for this experience.

Taking Off - by Austin

Taking Off – by Austin

Swans - by Fabian

Swans – by Fabian

Majestic Eagle - by Micah

Majestic Eagle – by Micah

Two Swans - by Eric

Two Swans – by Eric

And stay tuned! Northwest Passage Riverside (previously known as Northwest Passage I) has just started working with pottery – here is a sneak peek!


Autumn in Passing

Frigid air crystallizes and beds over the marshes and swamps around the St. Croix and Namekogan River Valley. Leaves scurry by like tumble weed with crisp Northern winds from Canada. The ice on Rooney Lake builds larger every morning stretching out from shore to shore. Canadian geese fly South over head in a well formed V-shape. A 10-point buck runs across the logging road in search of his soul mate before the winter flurries fly.

The young men at Northwest Passage Lakeshore (previously known as Northwest Passage II) bundle up for an exciting morning. Of course a photo adventure, but excitement settles in just as the first snow fall of the year blankets the ground. Everything looks different; the trees sit silently, the sun peaks from behind the clouds, and the animal tracks from that morning glisten off the fresh snow. The sense of adventure is in the air to make the next bend in search of the next beautiful photograph.

– Erik Thue, photography instructor at Northwest Passage Lakeshore

Beautiful, by Austin R.

Beautiful, by Austin R.

Good Memories, by Michael

Good Memories, by Michael

My name is Michael. I’m 15 and I live in Neopit, WI.  In the past I did all kinds of drugs and alcohol.  I always ran away from home and got in trouble. In the future I would like to play with my favorite band. I like photography because I like wilderness and it makes me happy.

I like this photo because it brings me good memories. When I was a kid I used to see water push on the rocks when my mom and I were at the bridge. My mom said she wouldn’t let me fall.

First Snow, by Michael C.

First Snow, by Michael C.

Frosty Namekagon, by Payton

Frosty Namekagon, by Payton

What photography means to me is that I have found a new hobby that I never thought would be something I would enjoy. Now I do and I might take classes in school after I graduate from NWP2. It has been such an experience for me to go out in the woods, learn new things about photography and nature. It has been amazing to take great photos and come back to edit them professionally on the computer. To see all the photos I have taken and what I have learned in photography has been a great experience. When I leave NWP2 I get to take my photos home. This is what photography means to me at NWP2. –Payton

Always Smiling, by Jamahri

Always Smiling, by Jamahri

I feel that this fish is like my little brother

Always smiling

Loves his mother

One day this fish will end up in heaven

So will I, so we’ll be together

Hi, my name is Jamahri. I’m 15 years old and live in Chicago, IL. I love to swim. All my life I’ve struggled to go to school. One day I hope to become a chef. Photography, to me, is happiness.

Tree with Sun Flare, by Drake B.

Tree with Sun Flare, by Drake B.

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