Yellowstone in Winter: Wildlife and Landscapes
UPDATE: As of October 10, 2019, this workshop is sold out. Please contact us to be added to the waitlist.
Yellowstone National Park is the oldest and most picturesque National Park in the world. It is home to a vast number of unique hydrothermal wonders and contains 67 species of mammals, hundreds of species of birds, fish, amphibians, and reptiles.
Winter in Yellowstone means fewer crowds, cold temperatures, steaming geyser basins, and closed roads. But that’s OK! We travel by private snowcoach through this quiet, pristine wilderness with only six guests and two pros from Muench Workshops. You’ll always be able to get out of our vehicle quickly and efficiently when seconds count. Sometimes we even shoot from inside our vehicle where you will always have your own window seat. You will have plenty of room for you and your winter gear and photo bag. While in Lamar Valley, we travel with two very large SUVs, with only three guests per vehicle, so you can get in and out quickly as needed, to get the shot.
Wildlife: Our photo targets are many! We spend time with groups of bison, and sometimes a single bison. Each day, the winter conditions can change the look and behavior of these giant mammals, and you will learn to shoot “snowy” bison, “frosty” bison, and even “frozen” bison. Other mammals that we may see include moose, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, pronghorn, and elk. There are also predators in the park. Coyotes are usually found and photographed well, as is the red fox. Somewhat more difficult to find and capture on camera, and requiring a bit of luck, are Yellowstone’s wolves, lynx, and even the tiny long-tailed weasel! In the rivers, we hope to photograph otters, ducks, swans, and other birds.
Landscapes: We have many favorite locations to photograph, but we’re always on the lookout for interesting compositions in great light. We have sweeping vistas and smaller, more intimate scenes as well. There are thermal features, travertine terraces, geysers, mud pots, hot springs, and fumaroles. We can shoot long exposures of moving water, moving clouds, and moving steam. Of course, we’ll maximize our time at sunrise and sunset if the skies cooperate.
Whether you are a beginner or advanced shooter, we’re there every step of the way with you. We’ll help you with technical settings, composition, and shooting techniques to get the best exposures in challenging environments. We’ll make sure you are getting sharp shots of the wildlife, both fast and slow movers. And we can work on advanced techniques like motion blur, panoramas, image blending, and focus stacking as well. We’ll have our signature image reviews and post-processing sessions as much as possible.
Everything is all-inclusive, including your ride from Bozeman airport to the park. We will work hard, and you should expect that each day will be filled with photography from before sunrise until after sunset.
Muench Workshops works with the National Parks, and we always have the proper permits to operate in Yellowstone National Park.
“Authorized Permittee of the Yellowstone National Park.”
Yellowstone National Park
January 30–February 6, 2021
Itinerary and General Information
About the Wildlife: This workshop offers significant opportunities for photographing wildlife, and while we do our best to maximize our wildlife encounters—based on past experiences, local knowledge, and the current conditions—we need to impress upon you that the wildlife really is wild and that we don’t control it.
The dates of this workshop are not yet final but are expected to be what we’ve published, possibly a day or two earlier or later. We will finalize the dates in early 2020. We will let you know if there is a date change.
January 30, 2021: You should arrive at Bozeman airport (BZN) no later than 1:00 PM today. We will pick you up at the airport and transfer to hotel in Gardiner. We‘ll photograph some of the wildlife and landscapes around Gardiner in the late afternoon. After dinner, we have an introductory meeting to go over conditions and wildlife reports and shooting preparation. Overnight in Gardiner.
January 31 and February 1, 2021: After breakfast head to Mammoth for a brief stop and introduction to geological features. Travel to Lamar Valley, stopping for wildlife and at different photo opportunities along the way. Lunch in Cook City. Travel from Cooke City back to Mammoth/Gardiner via Lamar.
February 2-4, 2021: Leave early on our private snow coach from Mammoth Hot Springs on our way to Old Faithful Snow Lodge. We’ll spend the day traveling through the park looking for landscapes and wildlife. We’ve chartered our private snow coach for five full days of wildlife and landscape photography within the park. We’ll have plenty of time to visit, Old Faithful Basin, West Thumb Geyser Basin, Biscuit Basin, Grand Prismatic Spring, and many more. We’ll also be looking for Bobcat, Elk, Bison, Fox, Coyote, and more. Three full days on the private snow coach, and two nights at Old Faithful Snow Lodge.
February 4, 2021: Our third full day on the snow coach. Late this day, we’ll arrive back to Mammoth where our cars are waiting for us. A short drive back to Gardiner and to our hotel. Dinner and overnight in Gardiner.
February 5, 2021: One more full day in Lamar Valley, photographing wildlife and stopping at different photo opportunities along the way. Lunch in Cook City. Travel from Cooke City back to Mammoth/Gardiner via Lamar Valley. Overnight in Gardiner.
February 6, 2021: Breakfast and then we’ll drive you to Bozeman airport. Flights home can be scheduled for after 1:00 PM.
What to Bring and How to Prepare for Your Workshop
Please see our How To Prepare For Your Workshop page now for guidelines on workshop prep, gear, and packing. Approximately 90 days before your workshop, you will be sent a PDF with more specific instructions.
Double occupancy lodging (single available, just ask)
All transportation during the workshop including snow coach and gratuities for snow coach driver
All meals during workshop + snacks + water in the vehicles
All permits and fees during the workshop
Photographic guiding and instruction from two pros
Inspiration, fun, and a great time!
What’s Not Included?
Your transportation to and from Bozeman Montana airport (BZN), and any lodging in Bozeman before or after the workshop dates (we can make lodging arrangements for you). Travel and trip cancellation insurance (optional). Alcoholic beverages, items of a personal nature. Anything specifically not mentioned as included.
Your deposit of $3,000 is due at sign up and will hold your space in the workshop. The of $4,495 is due by October 1, 2020. If you are registering after that date, please make your payment in full. All of our other standard terms and conditions apply.