Welcome to the blog for Steve Hinch Photography.

On this page you'll find photographic information on the places I've photographed recently as well as some technical information on the photographs themselves. I'll also post updates on what I've seen and experienced in Yellowstone and abroad, current wildlife sightings, and anything else of interest.  Check back often for updates!


"Three Leg Peg"

September 27, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Most times nature can be truly amazing.  I've seen some pretty cool and remarkable stuff while out enjoying nature.  Some of the most memorable involve mothers protecting their young.  But sometimes what I see doesn't have to be dramatic to be amazing.  Last week while photographing the elk rut, I noticed one cow elk moving a little differently than the others.  As she turned to move away from the bull elk, I noticed she was missing a leg.  I have no idea how she lost it or if it is a birth defect and I have no intention of speculating.  But the will to survive is strong and she is able to get around pretty well on three legs, though she did keep giving the bull a pretty wide berth.  The muscle in her hind quarter is undeveloped since the leg is never used, but beyond that, she was completely healthy, kept up with the herd, and seemed to do quite well.  The bottom of the leg had hair grown over it, there was no scar or scabs, so it wasn't a recent injury and it appeared she had adapted quite well to moving about on three legs.  As long as she can avoid predators, which is never easy even for a fully healthy elk, then she should do fine.

2017 Yellowstone Wolves Calendar with Max Waugh Now Available

September 26, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

I haven't personally published a calendar in many years so when fellow Yellowstone photographer Max Waugh asked if I'd be interested in publishing a 2017 Yellowstone Wolves calendar, I was pretty excited about it.  Max has had the calendar available on his website for a while now so I thought I better get caught up and do my part.  The calendar is now available on my website and can be found on the "books" page.  Click here to visit that page.  The link to the calendar will actually take you to Max's website for ordering.  I'll also be providing an opportunity to win a free calendar on my Facebook page in the near future.


Photo of the Week- "The Golden One"

September 25, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

This week has been really busy with some non-photography things and it's kept me from getting out at one of my favorite times of the year.  But with the elk rut so close to home, I still managed to spend a little time elk watching.  I opted at this bull rather than the larger one I've been photographing all month since the bigger bull had drawn a pretty large crowd despite the early hour.  So, I headed to this guy who was busy chasing some of his ladies around.  The light was flat but I noticed the ridge in the background catching some beautiful light and it was reflecting in the river.  As the cow elk all made their way across, I hoped the bull would follow suit.  He did, but he took his sweet time in doing so!  I wasn't disappointed however as the light in the river and on the grass all came together at the right moment as the bull continued his pursuit of romance.

Photo of the Week- "Meadow in the Mist"

September 18, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

With all the precipitation that fell over Yellowstone last week, some morning fog was inevitable.  The forecast has more September snow for later this week, so I'm sure it won't be the last foggy morning.  I overhead some photographers complaining about how thick the fog was and it certainly presents challenges to shooting that aren't an issue on sunny mornings.  Getting the exposure correct is critical in this type of situation as the fog will cause the photo to be dark and muddy otherwise.  Here, the large 6x7 bull was trying to keep the cows from crossing the river.  Of course, a herd bull never really controls the herd, the best he can do is try to keep as many of the cows together as they move in a general direction, so eventually, the cows crossed and the bull worked to keep any stragglers with the rest.  The rut can be a tough time for the big bulls.  They need to have gained enough weight during the summer to not only get them through the rut but also through the winter.  While most other animals are trying to pack on a few more pounds to survive the long cold, these bulls are expending a lot of energy.  It's a dangerous gamble to pass on one's genetics in the elk world.

"Season of Change"

September 14, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Snow fell across the Yellowstone plateau on Monday, hopefully putting an end to fires in the park. While the last couple of Septembers have been unusually warm, this year we're actually having more typical weather for this time of year. Snow in September is not uncommon and for some of the park's youngsters it's their first taste of what's to come. This young elk calf looks like a miniature version of the adults now, but it wasn't too long ago it had a coat of white spots and looked very different. September is a time of change and it's a critical time for the park's wildlife to gain enough weight to survive the long winter ahead.