Glacier Nat’l Park

When I initially arrived at Saint Mary Lake in Glacier National Park my soul was rejoicing. It was so beautiful that I can scarce describe it. It wasn’t until I was beneath the night sky though, that my lens could begin to take in its magic. The first evening I just caught my friend Orion moving behind Otokomi Mountain. RBT_3963

The following image was made at 4:37am. It was cold and still and the heart of the Milky Way revealed itself to me. RBT_4011At 5:17am the sky was turning blue and mountains seemed colder. RBT_4038

You’ve heard that it’s darkest just before the dawn, it’s also the coldest right before the sun breaks over the ridge lines. I was still out at seven and rejoiced when the sun finally began to bring some warmth. It was another gorgeous early spring morning. RBT_4090

I figured I was about through for the morning when I decided to walk to the lakeshore. To my right I heard some loud crashing. Initially startled, I decided to explore and find out what was making the sound. A thin sheet of ice had formed on the lake overnight and in the morning, as the sun warmed the waters, the ice began to expand and crash into the shore and then recede. It was one of the most beautiful moments that I’ve encountered in nature. RBT_4200

I was so enamored that I decided to shoot a short video, which you can view here.

As the sun grew more harsh in the sky I turned my attention towards a few of the smaller details like this shore ice.


During the day I photographed some of the local flora and fauna and some of the creatures big and small that live near the lakes. RBT_4359RBT_3838RBT_4782

The following evening I went to the lake shore to gain a view of Wild Goose Island. There were some young grizzlies in the area so I was going to be back before dusk, but as good fortune would have it I ran across another photographer and we decided that with safety in numbers, and making our presence known, we could walk out together after photographing the night sky. I shot the rising full moon as I waited for the night. RBT_4518

I made another of my favorite images from the trip looking down lake as Orion stood proudly above Fusillade Peak. Sirius is the bright star resting on the mountain. RBT_4583

I made a quick return trip early in the morning to take it all in one more time. RBT_4678

This next image caught a favorite moment. An older couple were sitting along the lakeshore watching for birds. Besides my brief visit, they were all alone that morning.

As I type this in a small cafe in West Yellowstone, MT after being delayed by 45 minutes because of a few elk sitting along the road leaving Yellowstone, I’m reminded of the words of Edward Abbey, written in Desert Solitaire, I find that in contemplating the natural world my pleasure is greater if there are not too many others contemplating it with me, at the same time.”RBT_4703

Lake ice. RBT_4699

As I laid in my tent, looking up at the stars, I gave thanks to the Maker of the mountains. I marveled in it all and gave praise. I could have sworn that along with me I heard the trees clap their hands. RBT_5055With that the road trip came to an end and it was time to begin a second season in Yellowstone…


22 thoughts on “Glacier Nat’l Park

  1. Wow spectacular Russ! I love every single shot especially the one of the couple and the last one looking up at the trees. Our lake makes that same kind of noise in early December when it begins to freeze. Like a millions tiny bells. Lovely!!

  2. Pingback: Glacier Nat’l Park — nomadruss in words and photos – Welcome to the World of Ekasringa Avatar!

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