Lone Mountain Big Sky Montana

The Mountain Village of Big Sky is blessed with amazing beauty compliments of the Gallatin and Madison Mountain Ranges and more activities than a mere mortal could ever dream of doing. During summer you can fly-fish, hike, bike, raft, horseback ride, golf, camp, watch wildlife or simply relax and enjoy the scenery while trying to figure out how to do it all. Winter provides for some of the best downhill skiing in America; offering a combined 5600 acres of pure adventure. Nordic skiing, dog-sledding, trips to Yellowstone and moonlit sleigh ride dinners complete the winter experience.

Gallatin River Winter
Gallatin River winter

Located midway between Bozeman and West Yellowstone, in southwestern Montana, Big Sky shares Gallatin Mountain splendor with its neighbor, Yellowstone National Park. In addition to extensive recreation opportunities and fine resort amenities, Big Sky is known for its breathtaking scenery, abundant wildlife, and gracious hospitality. Here you'll find much contrast, from casual fleece to western elegance from gentle meadows to the rugged magnificence of Lone Peak.

Big Sky Ski Resort is 3,812 acres of downhill skiing, snowboarding and snowshoe trails. Recognized for lack of lift lines, amazing steeps and the biggest skiing in America with the new Big Sky and Moonlight Basin interconnect.

Montana is known for its fly-fishing, and the Big Sky area is no exception. With the Gallatin River within minutes of any rental property in Big Sky or you could be fishing the World Famous Madison River in an hour, it is great for tourists and locals alike. The Big Sky Area has multiple local outfitters with trips for beginners to even the most experienced fishermen. Choose from a variety of trips including floating trips, walk/wade trips, and horse-pack trips. Please contact the following businesses for guided fishing information and locations to purchase you fishing license.

Gallatin River Fly-fisher
Fly-fishing the Gallatin River

Winter’s nearly perpetual blue skies are interrupted in a timely fashion by millions of snowflakes that blanket the landscape, 400 inches of annual snowfall or three mountains with lots of elbow room. Lift lines are nonexistent here. The skiing and riding is the ultimate experience, explore the backcountry on snowshoes or take a relaxing sleigh ride. The choice, like Big Sky itself, is all yours.

For backcountry skiing you may with to venture next door to Beehive Basin, Porcupine Creek, or other parts of neighboring Gallatin National Forest, or tour Yellowstone National Park. Stop in the local shops for area maps, advice on trails, rental equipment and updated avalanche forecasts. The Cross-country skier will find 65 groomed kilometers of' nationally ranked' cross-country ski trails at Lone Mountain Ranch. Lessons, rentals, and guided tours are available. Or check out the Rendezvous Trails in West Yellowstone.

Gallatin River Whitewater RaftingMountain biking in and around the Big Sky area means miles of backcountry scenery, wildflowers, and wildlife, with few human encounters. Ski lift mountain bike access and forest roads offer off-pavement, out-of-traffic experiences. There are trails on and around the mountain which to explore. New beginner and advanced trails are being constructed this summer. Down-hillers can also find a plethora of trails to get their thrills on.

Bighorn Sheep rams
Bighorn sheep can often be seen along the Gallatin River or on the acces road up to Big Sky Mountain Resort.

Big Sky’s proximity to Yellowstone provides dividends for the wildlife watcher and photographer, it's not everyday you get to see a bighorn sheep or bull elk, but at Big Sky it's a very frequent occurrence. Some spots that you are likely to see animals include: bighorn sheep at the entrance to Big Sky off Hwy. 191, elk and coyotes in the meadows of the Gallatin River headwaters in the northwest corner of Yellowstone Park, bison on the Madison River near West Yellowstone, moose and geese in the Big Sky Meadow Village, mountain goats in the high cliffs of Lone Peak and Beehive basin.

Most visitors get acquainted with Mother Nature during their Big Sky stay. Peace of mind will return the moment you pull on your hiking boots and explore the miles and miles of trails in our Gallatin National Forest. Right at the resort, you can elect the easier route by taking our scenic lift ride up the mountain and then enjoy a leisurely hike down to the base on our self-guided nature trails. Wildflowers, roaring streams, distant snow-clad peaks, and clean, crisp mountain air.

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Adverting around Yellowstone
Greater Yellowstone News
Yellowstone roads are opening, come on up
Bald eagle, eaglet, Greater Yellowstone
The babies are begining to show up all over Yellowstone.
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Save Our Grizzles

Are egos endangering some of our bears?

I was in Yellowstone when a text from a friend at 5am gave me the good news of COY (new bear cubs), then my heart sank because I knew what was ahead upon a moments reflection of which sow it was, after 34 years here I had seen this movie before. ..... rest of article

Addendum, The cubs lived through the hazing but it continues as does the irisponsible gratuttus Facebook faming of this bear family. A link to the USF&W about possible plans to euthanize the bear family Link

Is social media ruining our nature excursions?

Social media, the curse and blessing of the twenty-first century. A focus on the evolution of the problem inflicted on nature, ways of to mitigate how it affects our beautiful places, our wildlife, our experience. Dichotomies and conundrums to ponder.  Since the advent of the digital photography and its ease of use and economy after initial investment, America and the world have hit the road and the road comes back to us on our social media. .................... rest of article Addendum, this is getting worse than ever.

 

Charging Mountain Lion
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Study: More elk killed by cougars than by wolves in Idaho: More elk are being killed by cougars than by wolves in Idaho, a study by the state Department of Fish and Game has found.The study found that wolves accounted for 32% of adult female elk deaths and 28% of elk calf deaths, while cougars accounted for 35% of adult female elk deaths and 45% of elk calf deaths. The study also found ............ rest of story

Crying wolf, or cause for alarm?

Whether a wolf evokes terror, admiration or curiosity, advocates for the animal are focusing on a single question: Can humans and wolves co-exist in Colorado?

High Country Conservation Advocates (HCCA) in collaboration with the Rocky Mountain Wolf Project hosted a panel discussion this past Friday that revisited the controversial conversation of wolves in the Western United States.However, this time around, wolf advocates are taking the question to the ballot rather than federal and state wildlife managers — with hopes of Colorado voters welcoming the animal. “Colorado is the gap,” .............Rest of article

Hungry Wolves

 

Huge Yellowstone Cutthroat trout
Huge Yellowstone Cutthroat trout

Return of the Yellowstone cutthroat trout by Kelsey Dayton

The water in Atlantic Creek in the remote Thorofare region of Yellowstone National Park was clear. So clear that Dave Sweet could see the fish before he even cast. They were everywhere: dozens of beautiful trout with distinctive red slashes under their jaws. Sweet had journeyed for two days on horseback to the major spawning tributaries of Yellowstone Lake for those fish. Over the next few days he and his daughter would see thousands of Yellowstone cutthroat trout and catch some as long as 25 inches. But just as exciting were the younger, smaller fish. They, Sweet realized, mark a turning point in a battle to save a species..................... Rest Of Story

Yellowstone region grizzly bears delisted; see you in court

As announced in June, the U.S. government lifted protections for grizzly bears in the Yellowstone region today, though it will be up to the courts to decide whether the revered and feared icon of the West stays off the threatened species list.The Humane Society of the United States and its affiliate the Fund for Animals, filed a notice of intent on June 30 to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over removing federal protections for grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.  Other anti-hunting or animal welfare groups are expected to follow suit, so to speak.................... rest of story

Grizzly Bear Photos
Livingston Montana

The Resort Town Curse
by Daryl L. Hunter

In 1962 as a child my family went through Carmel California, and after my exclaimation how beautiful the place was, my mother explained to me that it was against the law to cut down a tree in the town and it was so beautiful. I wondered why every town didn't do that. A few years later my hometown, San Luis Obispo, did enact all kinds of restricted zoning like Carmel's as a part of an urban renewal plan, and now I couldn't afford to move back there if I wanted to. This town is now populated with what they call "Grey Gold", rich retired people that ran up the property values so high that native born could no longer afford to live there. I have lived in many resort towns since, and I have noticed a trend. I am attracted to them when they are still little, quaint and undiscovered, but it usually isn't long before word spreads about the next great place. ..............   Rest of story

A Protective Firewall For Grizzlies
By Daryl L. Hunter

The delisting of the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear is imminent and this we should celebrate (''''dancing''''). Now that our happy dance is complete, we must ensure the grizzlies' recovery is permanent. To ensure "continuity of achievement," the grizzlies need a firewall to protect the success of this achievement from human foible.

The Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee was formed in 1983 to help ensure recovery of viable grizzly bear populations and their habitat in the lower 48 states through interagency coordination of policy, planning, management, and research. Many people have been working on this recovery for decades, for some; it has been most of their career. I can understand why the delisting of the grizzly before their retirement is their goal. A metaphorical gold watch if you will.

Many will argue differently,................. Rest of Article

Blondie the Grizzly Sow and her three cubs, where these four bears roam in the Teton Wilderness is likely to open to hunting someday soon, this must not happen.
Grizzly sow and cub

Yellowstone roadside grizzlies worth rangers' hassle???

Yellowstone visitors would pay an additional $41 to ensure seeing roadside grizzlies, a study shows, and the attraction creates 155 jobs and more than $10 million a year for the regional economy. The $41 visitors would pay is on top of the $25-per-vehicle entrance fee. If Yellowstone no longer allowed grizzly bears to use roadside habitat — and instead chased, moved or killed them — the regional economy would lose more than $10 million a year and 155 jobs according to the paper "The economics of roadside bear viewing."............................Rest of story

Some Yellowstone wolves would be protected under Montana bill

Some wildlife have an “outsized value,” such as wolves that wander from Yellowstone National Park into Montana, argued Sen. Mike Phillips, D-Bozeman, on Thursday. Consequently, those animals should be protected from hunters and trappers in two wolf management units in Park County, which borders Yellowstone..............Rest of story

Three Wolves

Helpful ebook for photographers

The Grand Teton Photo and Field Guide is an encapsulation of the flora, fauna, and photography of Jackson Hole Wyoming and Grand Teton National Park. Also included are thumbnails of the history and geology of the valley. This book is for all visitors with a desire to seek out wildlife, photograph the landscape, or merely learn about the history, geology, and lay of the land of Grand Teton National Park. The author provides general overviews including hot links with more in-depth descriptions of subjects of individual interest.

In the “Lay of the Land” section, includes the obvious highlights along the loop through Grand Teton Park. Hot links to side roads will give you more in-depth description of side roads and feeder roads and their highlights. Also included are descriptions of all two-rut roads that are legal to travel on in Grand Teton Park. GPS links to Google Maps are provided throughout.

As a field guide, profiles of most of animals and birds in the area are described. Jackson Hole is full of wildlife but there are places where animals are, and there are places where they are not. It is a waste of time to scrutinize a landscape devoid of what you are looking for, so this guide narrows options down to the hot spots. I provide maps of the likeliest places to find the popular critters of Grand Teton National Park. I also touch on trees, shrubs, and wildflowers with minimal explanations.  

flying Gees and grizzly cub

Grizzlies and geese, click to see larger

The grandeur of Grand Teton Park has made it one of the most photographed places in the world. The opportunity to harness multiple juxtapositional elements has drawn photographers for over a century since William Henry Jackson took the first photos here in 1878. Grand Teton Park’s plethora of famous vistas are profiled as well as many which are less clichéd that can bring new perspectives of a well-documented landscape. Grand Tetons’ iconic landscape photo opportunities are described in detail; however, they barely scratch the surface of opportunities as it takes a photographer with an artist’s eye to unveil as they follow their own intuition and vision.  The author who shies away from clichéd landscapes provides a chapter of his favorite places that aren’t landscape clichés.

In the photography section the author includes chapters on composition, exposure basics, when to shoot and why. Daryl has summarized what he teaches in his, half day, Grand Teton workshops in a simple concise way.

If you are only in Grand Teton Park for a day there is a chapter called the “Portfolio Packer Morning Trip,” that does just that, all the icons and several favorite places in a five our blitz.  But it is better to spend more time and dig deep into the embarrassment of riches of Grand Teton National Park................. More Info

Fine Art Panorama Landscapes by Daryl L. Hunter
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The Greater Yellowstone Resource Guide

I have spent thousands of hours researching for, and creating content to create a market for my photography, for 35+ years I have been roaming this land for landscape and adventure photos and content for this effort. although this was the  greatest of adventures exploring every corner of the Greater Yellowstone and sharing it some compensation would be greatly appreciated.

Many photos have link to a shopping cart, custom prints available upon request. Click on logo below to go straight to website.

If you don't need any wall art consider a small donation. Thank you. Fine Art Photography by Daryl L. Hunter

 

jumping trout