Rocky Moutain Front Spring – Images by Jason Savage
Here’s a few images from my trip up to the Rocky Mountain Front yesterday. Probably the best I’ve seen it this time of year. It’s super green and the arrow-leaved balsamroots are bursting out everywhere. Totally breathtaking day!
Awesome night last night in Montana. First thunderstorms of the year around here and wildlife was out everywhere. Here’s a pair of Mountain Bluebirds from last night.
I thought this was definitely worth sharing as these are some fantastic shots of plowing the Going to the Sun Road in Glacier National Park. Here’s the link to Glacier’s Flickr feed. Pretty cool stuff and I’m sure not for the faint of heart to be plowing that sucker!
My daughter and I went in search of some fox dens near home this morning. Success!
Well spring is finally here, well sort of…A good dumping of snow yesterday and spitting a little this morning with temps in the 30’s. It’s supposed to be short lived with weather back to normal hopefully by the weekend. Spring in the Rockies, got to love it!
Despite the return to winter like conditions, birds have been arriving and the Sandhill Cranes have been awesome in the Helena Valley close to where I live. More here this year than usual and lots of great action. It’s exciting each year to see what new shots I can come up with and trying to find new and creative ways to capture such an amazing bird.
Things here a starting to pick up with the spring bird migration in Montana. This week as of today there are 10,000 snow geese at Freezeout Lake and about 150 Swans. Around central Montana, ice is melting off quickly and much warmer temperatures this week. Mid 50’s, woo hoo!
Made it out a couple days ago around Helena to see what was happening and found a fair number of Pintails out and a few Swans. This next week should be really picking up and I suspect in the next couple weeks, hopefully Freezeout Lake should be prime for Snow Geese and Swans.
If you’re wondering where I might have been lately, don’t worry I haven’t fallen of the face of the earth just yet. Although this time of year it certainly can seem that way. As always I tend to be playing a lot of catch-up right now. Cataloging last year’s images, editing, and tying up a lot of loose ends left over from the busy schedule of travel and assignments.
In addition, if you happen to live in Montana in January and February, you’re probably aware that the photo ops may be a wee bit less inspiring than just about any other time during the year. So really I’ve just been hiding out, editing my rear-end off and haven’t been shooting all that much this last month. Not that it’s a bad thing, but usually if I go more than a week or so without shooting I start getting a bit antsy.
So in-between editing images these last couple weeks, I’ve been sneaking out to the Missouri River just down the road from my house for some brief moments of reprieve. And a good thing too! The last couple of weeks I’ve stumbled across some awesome flocks of Bohemian Waxwings that have been hanging out down by the river. One of the flocks must have been at least a thousand or so and there have been intermittent smaller groups of anywhere from 100-500. Very cool stuff. Intermixed I’ve also found some Cedar Waxwings as well. Not bad stuff for mid January and February in Montana.
This time of year my I think my wife humors me as I start getting all giddy like a little kid waiting for the spring bird photography to begin. I begin planning all my new locations I’m going to try, endlessly browsing the web looking at bird blinds & camo, dusting off all the gear from last… can hardly wait!
And starting next month things will be really picking up toward the middle of March with the larger migrations, especially the snow geese, up at Freezeout Lake. If you haven’t seen the thousands of snow geese that stop over at Freezeout Lake near Choteau, Montana, it’s definitely a must. Usually the last few weeks of March.
So in the meantime, I will be finishing up my editing and heading out soon for my favorite time in early spring in Montana. Actually I should probably say extended winter, but we’ll pretend it’s spring!
Spring is definitely here in Montana and it’s been fantastic so far. Fox Kits are out, things are green and wildlife photography has been top notch around the state. I know I say the same thing every year and I’m sure if you checked last year’s blog posts around this time I’m sure it’s verbatim, but you can’t beat spring in Montana, especially after the never ending winter limbo we endure in Feb and March.
I was up in central Montana a couple days back out in the middle of nowhere waiting for the sun to come up and illuminate some Fox Kits I was photographing. Gazing around me I couldn’t help but be struck by the incredible beauty of central Montana’s rugged country and big skies. Off in the distance some cowboys were rustling up some cattle, a few pronghorn grazing out behind me, sandhill cranes calling off in the distance as the early morning light was just touching the surrounding hills. All the while a few unconcerned Red Fox Kits wrestled playfully with each other out in front of me.
Definitely one of those mornings you file away and don’t forget. Montana’s certainly a vibrant place right now and a reminder to those who live here, why we live here.
This time of year I’m wrapping up a lot of the migratory bird photography and gearing up for some trips and workshops throughout the summer and fall. Coming up I will be teaching a workshop on the Rocky Mountain Front(one of my favorite places in Montana). There are a couple spots left if anyone is interested, drop me an email or visit my workshops page for more details.
Hopefully I will have some landscape images to share soon. In the meantime enjoy it out there!
Montana Migration – Images by Jason Savage
Yikes! I Hadn’t realized how long it’s been since my last post. I better get on the ball here! This last month I have been running around trying to get whatever bit of winter photography I could in. It’s been a somewhat challenging year here in Montana as snowfall has been very sporadic, with some areas really not getting much of anything. While other isolated areas did OK. For landscape photography it’s certainly been a challenge.
Right now we are switching gears and this time of year can be a very frustrating one if you’re a landscape photographer. Winter has lost it’s chill but spring really hasn’t arrived so we’re kind of just hanging in this limbo until about the end of April. Fortunately for us photographers in Montana there is a bit of a reprieve and that is the annual spring bird migration that is currently underway in the state.
Over the last few year’s I have really delevoped a love for bird photography and the challenges it presents. And I certainly enjoy being out there, especially during this time of year.
These last couple of weeks I have had the pleasure of photographing Tundra and Trumpeter swans not too far from my home here in Helena. They are truly some beautiful birds and a very awesome one to photograph. In the next couple of weeks I will be traveling up to Freezeout Lake Wildlife Management area to photograph more of the migratory birds including the Snow Geese.
If you haven’t been to Freezout yet it’s definitely one of the best trips in early spring to take around the state. There is a hotline number 406-467-2626 that provides updates on the bird numbers, making planning your trip easier.
Hopefully I should have some more stuff to share in the next week or so. Enjoy!