Photo gallery: Yellowstone and Tetons winter

 

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Photo gallery of Yellowstone and Tetons in winter


Photography © John Baker Photographer LLC/TravelImages.com/JayBeeStock.com

The following photo gallery represents a sample range of subjects you can expect to shoot during this particular Travel Images photography tour. Our aim is to not only help our clients meet their photographic goals, but also to learn new techniques; to master pertinent camera settings; to help clients ‘see’ new subjects; to help in translating that vision into pixels; and to generally have a wonderful time. To this end John will share everything he has learnt in a practical and friendly manner.

Please scroll down to view images created by trip leader John Baker during Travel Images photo tours. Links to client images shot on this particular photography tour can be found at the bottom of the page.

YELLOWSTONE NP, WYOMING

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
The Roosevelt Arch at the north entrance of Yellowstone at dawn. It was built 1871-2, and the mountain absorbing the first light is Electric Peak. In situations such as this one should expose for the light on the mountain so as not to lose detail, and then tweak the foreground to show sufficient detail.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Winter skies are some of the best, and one just needs some foreground interest.
 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

1 of 2: On Travel Images' winter trips to Yellowstone there are spots just north of Yellowstone where my groups have pointed their long lenses at Elk, Pronghorn Antelope and Mule Deer such as these.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
An old boat shed on the fringes of Yellowstone National Park.
Our photo tours are serendipitous in regard to subjects, so if the light is right . . . .
 

Do we see Wolves on the winter trip? Generally yes, though often distant as with the Wolf above on a frozen river bed. On one occasion just outside Yellowstone we were out at first light and stumbled on the fellow below. The group got this initial shot, and I then maneuvered the van ahead in the direction he was heading . . . and we all got a second set of images when he appeared from a gulley.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Soft snow on a Lodgepole Pine branch.
   

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
An 'edge of the fog' image from Mammoth Hot Springs on the north side of Yellowstone.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Moody mist at Canary Spring, part of the Mammoth Hot Springs terrace in Yellowstone.
 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Algae, hot water and various mineral deposits combine to form weird and wonderful textures and colors at Canary Spring.

 

Above and below left, moody and colorful Palette Spring at Mammoth Hot springs.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
1 of 3:
Into Yellowstone National Park for close-ups of Bison and more. It's tough going through the snow in the winter, so one often sees Bison using the roads to get about.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
The 'holes' in the snow reveal how the Bison move their heads back and forth to clear the snow and find food.
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
This Bison herd had just crossed the road and were heading back into the snowy wilderness.
   

The back-lighting and dark background are what give this shot its impact. If it had a light background it would be so-so. 'Us and our shadows' just waiting for spring to arrive. Sometimes it's the simplest of things that make the most successful shots.
   
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A Pronghorn Antelope grazing in the Montana section of Yellowstone.
 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Us and our shadows . . . simple, and you might agree, effective.  These trees are a remnant of the 1988 fire.
 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

Set of 3:  Big Horn Sheep rams in Yellowstone above, and left, another Ram just outside the Park. They graze in three accessible spots during our photography tour, and you generally just need a lens some 200mm range and longer.

The Big Horn below is 'pawing' to get to the food hidden by the snow.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

   

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
It looks like an ice close-up, but it's actually falling ice crystals catching the light. There wouldn't be an image without the dark background.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A Bull Elk with a nice catch-light in the eye. One can't ask for more than that!

 


An almost 'threatening' pose as this Bull Elk appears above a rise in silhouette.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

The simple, very simple.
Snow and shadow combine for a pleasant image.
 


You can find shots like these quite easily in Alaska, but in Wyoming during the winter it's rare. I opted for space at left for the bald eagle 'to look into' and focused on the eye.


A pair of Coyote studies: One howling above, and the other on the prowl below. I often ponder how the re-introduction of Wolves to the park has impacted them since 1996. Are they prey themselves, or do they benefit from what is left of the wolf kills? Maybe none of the above, or? . . .
 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A lone Coyote on the look out for his next morsel near Mammoth in Yellowstone.
 

Lower Falls in the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. Not as spectacular as when the water is in full flow, but still a mighty scene nonetheless. Another Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone image, but this one, snow on branches, shot against the colorful backdrop of the Canyon walls.
 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A rare Red Fox sighting in Yellowstone National Park.
   
Finding 'art' in the snow with shadows and texture.
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
 

A Bald eagle feeding on an Elk carcass adjacent to the Gibbon River.
 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
At some point on each tour we do I schedule a 'deliberate blur' session. There is good and bad blur, and the difference is often a very fine line. In this shot we have new growth coming through among trees that survived the great fires of 1988.

 



Above and below
, two Trumpeter Swans on the Yellowstone River.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Snow and ice-laden Lodgepole Pines in the Yellowstone interior.
 


The hard-working Beaver doing it's thing in the far reaches of Yellowstone.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Young Lodgepole Pine trees scattered about on a hillside above Gibbon Falls.
 


An Otter playfully slides down a snow bank adjacent to the Yellowstone River.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Firehole Falls framed by snow-laden Lodgepole Pine branches.  Having everything in focus makes it a bit busy, but that is alleviated somewhat by the use of a slow shutter speed to achieve a soft water effect.

 

A rare sighting of a Bobcat shot during a snowcoach trip into the Yellowstone interior.
 

VIA MONTANA AND IDAHO

 

We can pretty much guarantee you Wolf and Bear shots before we leave West Yellowstone as we spend some time at the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery center. The reason these Grizzly Bears don't hibernate is because they are fed by the center.  There are of course fences in the background to contend with, but with careful framing and a good camera angle, one can avoid the distractions. If the 'intrusion' is minimal one can finish the shot off in PhotoShop and suchlike.

 

On the Yellowstone and Tetons winter photography tour we have take the long way to Jackson, Wyoming, from Gardiner as the interior of Yellowstone national park is closed to road traffic. This in turn leads to additional photo ops, i.e. a scheduled detour to the ghost towns of Virginia City and Nevada City. The image below received the olde worlde treatment via Smart Photo Editor.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A long lens composition of Hebgen Lake, Montana, not too far from West Yellowstone when moving from Yellowstone to the Tetons.

 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

There is a spot on the Madison River, see below, that we frequently see Bald Eagles flying by. So, while shooting the 'Christmas card' landscape one also should be ready with a longer lens on a second camera body. The alternative is to quickly get from landscape mode and mood, and into action mode. There are custom function settings for this, but as I hadn't got them set I did it all manually as fast as I could.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

 

Then in Idaho, this shot from near Driggs, has only the foreground in Idaho, as the remainder of the shot is in Wyoming.
 

GRAND TETON NP, WYOMING

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

A trio of images at Oxbow Bend in Grand Teton national park - two winter sunrises and one sunset - at Oxbow Bend, and each featuring Mount Moran.


Second sunrise.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Sunset.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Another of our dawn locations is the Snake river Lookout. Some broken cloud could have given this shot more drama, but one takes what one is given!

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
This is a large chunk of the range as seen from the middle of the Jackson Hole valley.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
A lone Bull Elk forages near the Gros Ventre River in the Tetons.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

Part of the Yellowstone and Tetons photography tour includes a sled ride to photograph Elk on the National Elk Refuge just outside Jackson. Above, two Bull Elk 'joust' to get in shape for the rut later in the year, while below, a Coyote oversees a fresh carcass on the refuge as Ravens and six additional Coyotes, not in view, wait patiently.

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
 


The magnificent Grand Teton peak in cloud, but looking majestic as it juts from the valley floor.


We can't go without the winter perspective of Alan Ladd's 'Shane' cabin now can we?! The mountain is Moran.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Grand Teton peak, above and below left, shortly after dawn with all the elements cooperating for a pleasing image, i.e. sunlight, and cold air that induces the fog.

 

Fresh snow and back-lit fog. Place something in the foreground for perspective, and voila!
 
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
Frosted trees in the Tetons provide a monochromatic moment to be savored.
 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

When Grand Teton National Park was open in the 1920's there were a number of ranches that were allowed to remain. This is the entrance to one, and the gate makes a nice frame for Mount Moran at right.
   
Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons

Above, this is a Bull Moose, and above the eye you can just make out the base remnant of its antlers which are dropped every winter, often by the end of January, but not in every case. See image below right which was shot in February.
Below, just outside Grand Teton national park we know of two additional areas where one can often photograph Moose.


A female Moose in a creek as snow falls.
   


The frost on the young Aspen tree in the foreground stands out because I placed it against a dark background. The rest is down to cold morning atmospherics and being there! Shot in Grand Teton National Park.

 

Winter photo tours of Yellowstone and Tetons
OK, so it's overcast and snowing heavily. Are you going to stay in the vehicle or get out and shoot?!
This shot has a nice 'Christmas card' feel to it, and is the reality of changing light and weather.

 

  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Julie Kitzenberger
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Reimar Gaertner
  Tetons winter by Alan Ainsworth
  Yellowstone winter by Alan Ainsworth
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Mike Caplan
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Bill Wisecup
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Bob Spalding
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Alan Ainsworth
  Yellowstone + Tetons winter by Usha Peddamatham


Yellowstone + Tetons winter brochure

Yellowstone + Tetons autumn brochure  |  Yellowstone + Tetons autumn photo gallery

 

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Travel Images' small-group photo tours with John Baker
 
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