Debuting June 10, 2013 is the Great Basin National Park Quarter, representing the third of five new coins that are part of the United States Mint America the Beautiful Quarters™ Program for 2013.
The program started in 2010 and features 56 total coins, with this Great Basin quarter number eighteen in the series.
On June 10, these latest America the Beautiful Quarters launch into circulation via the U.S. banking system and also go on sale within a number of roll and bag products from the United States Mint.
Great Basin quarters that are eventually found in circulation will have been produced at the U.S. Mint facilities in Denver or Philadelphia. Mint marks of "D" and "P" will denote from where the quarter-dollar came. The U.S. Mint (www.usmint.gov) offers these P and D quarters in 100-coin bags and in two-roll sets. The San Francisco Mint also strikes circulating-quality versions — each with an "S" mint mark, but these are not released into circulation. Instead, they are produced specifically for coin collectors. 100-coin bags and 40-coin rolls of them are sold.
Buyers have the option of getting America the Beautiful Quarter rolls from each U.S. Mint facility through its three-roll set, a new product for 2013.
Designs of 2013 America the Beautiful Quarters
Designs for the 2013 America the Beautiful Quarters were unveiled by the U.S. Mint in December 2012. Real images of them, like the one seen above, have since been published.
Each Great Basin National Park Quarter is described by the Mint as depicting the "beauty and unique qualities of a single Bristlecone Pine tree and the rocky glacial moraines where the trees grow." The design was created by Ronald D. Sanders and executed by Renata Gordon. Inscriptions found around the reverse include GREAT BASIN, NEVADA, 2013 and E PLURIBUS UNUM.
Five ounce silver versions of the coin are also struck in bullion for investors and in uncirculated quality for collectors. As of this writing, the U.S. Mint has not published an on sale date for the 2013 Great Basin National Park Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coin.
The four other 2013-dated America the Beautiful Quarters are:
- White Mountain National Forest Quarter – January 28, 2013
- Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial Quarter – April 1, 2013
- Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine Quarter – August 26, 2013
- Mount Rushmore National Memorial Quarter – November 4, 2013
Great Basin National Park in Nevada
Consisting of 77,000 acres in Nevada, Great Basin National Park is located about 290 miles north of Las Vegas, though it sees less than 100,000 visitors annually.
One of the best known features of the park, its limestone caverns, was also the reason for its initial federal protection when the Lehman Caves National Monument was created in 1922. They are named after the individual who is thought to have discovered the caves in 1885, Absalom Lehman.
Despite its desert climate, hundreds of species of flora and fauna are present within the park boundaries, including jackrabbits, ground squirrels, mountain lions, bobcats and mule-deer. Some of this diverse collection is due to the varied elevation seen within the park that ranges from 8,000 feet from the valley floor to Wheeler Peak, the highest point within the park.
Great Basin National Park also contains groves of ancient bristlecone pines that are estimated to be over 5,000 years old.
Due to its remote location, it has proven to be one of the best areas for night-time sky viewing. This is because very little man-made light is created in the region so it is one of the darkest spots at night in the national park system.