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January 2012: National Bison Range, Montana

From the Photographer...

Robert Granzow  

The National Bison Range near St Ignatius, Montana is one of my favorite places to take photographs. It’s situated near the southern end of the beautiful Mission Valley with a spectacular view of the Mission Mountains. In addition to the obvious bison herds, there are elk, pronghorn antelope, bears, mule, white-tailed deer, an incredible variety of wild flowers and many bird species. It’s the perfect place for a nature photographer. 

The photo you see here is an example of the incredible scenery at the National Bison Range. In August, my wife Linda and I were on a drive through the range in an area where Mission Mountains provided the backdrop for this photo. It was quite warm that day and the bison in this photo seemed to have had enough of the heat and settled down for a nap. 

When I look at this photo I find myself wondering what might be going through this animal’s mind. In a way, it’s humbling to be so close to a magnificent creature like this and have it acknowledge our presence and accept us being there. 

For those who have not visited Montana, I recommend staying at The Nature Conservancy’s Pine Butte Guest Ranch on the Rocky Mountain Front. Make sure you plan to visit Glacier Park, the Mission Valley and other scenic spots in Big Sky Country. 

For the technically curious, the shot info is: ISO 400; 70-200mm lens @75mm; f5.6 @ 1/3200.  

Robert Granzow splits his time between Mesa, Arizona, and Polson, Montana. Retired from the United States Army, Robert used to fly airplanes but now takes photographs. His photos occasionally appear in Nature Conservancy literature and are on display in the non-profit Sandpiper Art Gallery in Polson, Montana.

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