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!
June 28, 2016 • Leave a Comment
I recently added several new photos to my website last week. Most of the images were from my time in the Dakotas, but there's a few from the region outside Yellowstone National Park as well. Above, a grey stallion leads it's band up a hillside in Theodore Roosevelt National Park. He was such a beautiful animal, I felt very fortunate to have seen and photographed him While below, in Badlands National National, a male burrowing owls gives his mate a peck on the cheek!
June 26, 2016 • Leave a Comment
There hasn't been a lot of good news from Yellowstone this summer. From tourists walking off the boardwalks in thermal areas, bison calves put into cars, record crowds, and a plethora of other topics that have been all over social media this summer, one would think Yellowstone is doomed. But the vast majority of visitors never leave the developed areas and out in the backcountry, the wildlife continues to exist unmolested. I was fortunate to catch a glimpse of this backcountry grizzly as he crossed the road early one morning. A large male, he probably rarely comes to the roads and prefers to avoid people. He looked nervous as he came up to the road and then ran quickly to get across and move away, back into his realm. I never left the safety of my vehicle, photographing from my car, in a pullout, with a 500mm lens. As he moved quickly away from the road, I thought about how many other wild animals live in Yellowstone but stay away from the chaos of the developed areas and how for them, Yellowstone is, and hopefully always will be, a safe refuge.
June 19, 2016 • Leave a Comment
On a recently camping trip to Beaverhead National Forest in Montana, I came across this otter while kayaking. I had seen the otter before, but had lost sight of it when it popped up near my kayak and swam towards me among the reeds. The photo was taken with a 600mm lens. When kayaking, extra precautions must be taken so a lens or camera doesn't end up wet or on the bottom of the lake. So often I don't take the camera gear in the boat. But it paid off on this day with this fun shot.
June 18, 2016 • 2 Comments
Twenty years ago this month, I made a decision not knowing how significantly it would change my life. In 1996, I was working in real estate management in North Carolina, having just become interested in nature photography a few years before. I hiked and photographed the southern Appalachians extensively but I was really naïve about our national parks. I made my first trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and fell in love with it. Over the years, I would hike almost every trail in the park. But as my love for and interest in nature grew, I began researching a trip to Yellowstone National Park. In June 1996, I stepped foot in Wyoming for the first time and over the next nine days I would experience many of the wonders that Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons offer. I'll never forget the impact of my first view of the Teton range. While I loved the southern Appalachians, nothing had prepared me for the sight of the Grand Teton towering to 13,770 feet above sea level. I would see elk, bison, bears, coyotes, and many other animals along with the geysers and hot springs, and huge (and not so huge) waterfalls. I was hooked. I read all I could about Yellowstone and it's wild inhabitants and studied countless photos of the region.
My first trip led to a second, which led to two trips a year, one in early summer and one in autumn. When I wasn't in Yellowstone, my thoughts were always there. Finally, after reaching a level of frustration with my job that was unbearable, I quit without any plan of what to do next. in 2005 I decided I'd move to Wyoming for one summer and work in Yellowstone. That one summer has led now to my 12th year living in the greater Yellowstone area. If I could go back twenty years and tell myself back then that one day, you'll be working as a photographer full time, living near and photographing Yellowstone National Park, I would think myself nuts. The books I looked at in the visitor centers, the prints being sold in the gift shops, those will be my photos. "Twenty years ago Steve" probably wouldn't believe me but then would wonder why it's going to take twenty years! Perhaps it's been a long journey, but to be so extremely fortunate to live where I live and to do and see the things I get to do and see makes me extremely blessed. To top it all of, I met my wife while working in Yellowstone. And all because twenty years ago, I made a decision to visit a place that at the time seemed as exotic as any place on earth. I think about where I was then, where I am now, and the journey in between, and I still can't believe it. How it changed my life!
June 15, 2016 • Leave a Comment
June is a time for baby animals, and not only in Yellowstone. A nursery of bighorn lambs honed their skills running and jumping on the ledges and cliffs of the badlands in South Dakota while I was there. In fact, there were eleven little lambs and their skills, even at such a young age, were quite impressive as they maneuvered over the rugged terrain. This image was taken with a 600mm lens, giving the sheep plenty of space so they wouldn't be stressed.
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