Tour Reports & Testimonials
September 23 - 30, 2016: Autumn Tour
Two enthusiastic photographers, Rick and Zoltan, joined Zack for his Autumn Photo Tour. The fall color was at its peak, it was a great time to be in the parks. Not only were the landscape opportunities plentiful, but the wildlife was active as well. Throughout the week we encountered everything from bears to foxes. The moose and elk rut were in full swing, and we were able to make many photographs of the animals with the colorful foliage providing a wonderful backdrop. One of the highlights of the trip was the opportunity to photograph numerous Great gray owls.
June 23 - 25, 2016: Private Tour
Paul joined Zack for a short Yellowstone tour, with two main goals in mind, to come away with a variety of landscape and wildlife images. Spring is always a great time to be in the park, and this trip was no exception. Over the course of three days we photographed a rainbow at Lower Falls, plenty of geyser eruptions including a sunset eruption of Great Fountain Geyser, a unique fogbow at Grand Prismatic Spring, and some very cooperative Long-eared Owls, not to mention a variety of other wildlife.
Sunset by tour client Paul Kammen
June 12 - 18, 2016: Spring Tour
It's always nice to have a group of enthusiastic photographers who are up for photographing just about anything. Naturally, this makes my job as a guide easier, but it also means my clients can fully appreciate the bounty that Yellowstone has to offer during a spring tour.
Grizzly cub by tour client Oscar Dang
"As a first-time visitor to Yellowstone, Max provided a trip that will have me returning for many years to come. He is knowledgeable, professional and takes the task of providing an informative and productive tour very seriously. The wildlife opportunities that he provides, along with his experienced guidance have meant that I have taken some of my best photos on this tour." – Oscar D.
February 19 - 26, 2016: Winter Tour
Winter Tour Adventurers: Linda, Max, Wolfgang, Jack and Susanne
We were fortunate to have lovely weather throughout the week, which led to some very nice photo oppportunities both on the wildlife and landscape front. Wildlife was the primary focus of most of the group, and we scored with a variety of animal sightings, including otters, coyotes, ungulates, and even the 16 member Mollies wolf pack on one day.
Old Faithful by tour client Linda Carney
"Mother Nature laid out the white carpet for Max's winter tour! Hayden Valley, Canyon and the Madison River looked spectacular in their blanket of snow. Add in the wildlife sightings of 19 fox sightings, bald eagles, otters, big horns, swans, moose and coyotes.
"Thanks Max for another wonderful adventure!" – Linda C.
Tree abstract by tour client Susanne Moll
I liked very much traveling in a small group (4 clients): A good thing for individual interests and needs.
Red Fox by tour client Jack Bell
"I wish to thank Max for another great trip. The 2016 Yellowstone National Park winter tour was amazing. Max's knowledge Yellowstone and his ability to get us up close to the wildlife made it possible for to come home with some great shots. I have already scheduled Max's Winter tour for Yellowstone in 2017. I am already looking forward to the trip with anticipation. I know it will be spectacular." – Jack B.
October 7, 2015: Private Tour
Great Gray Owl by tour client Juan Bravo
I had one day to give them a lay of the land and set them up for the rest of their stay in Yellowstone, so it was important to cover as many areas and "hot spots" as possible.
Though things can often slow down by October we had some good luck, finding a grizzly bear on a carcass, some majestic bull elk and the elusive great gray owl. I had a great time giving Juan and Nina a lay of the land. They were eager and patient, always a good combination when searching for wildlife.
"We enjoyed every minute of our photo tour with you and we have talked about planning another one when the opportunity arises. We will be checking your website and reading your messages in order to keep abreast of your offerings.
Thank you again for making our Yellowstone vacation a fascinating one." – Juan & Nina B.
September 25 - October 4, 2015: Fall Yellowstone & Grand Teton Tour
Fall Tour Adventurers: Max, Zack, Bill, Charlotte, Rick and Ed
It was a fun week-and-a-half with this group. We tackled everything from the elk rut to grizzly bears by the lake to early morning sunrise shoots in the Tetons. Everyone was even willing to endure a heavy rainstorm in order to photograph a family of beavers working hard near their lodge. Overall it was a successful trip, from many animal "firsts" to several new lessons learned by our clients. Thanks to Bill, Charlotte, Ed and Rick for a great time!
"I recently attended Max Waugh's Fall Yellowstone and Grand Tetons Tour, and it met and exceeded my expectations!
Horse and Tetons by tour client Ed McDermott
"This was my first trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons and the scenery was magnificent. The weather co-operated for the most part, but even during a rather rainy late afternoon we had lots of fun heading down to a stream in the Grand Tetons to photograph a number of beaver who put on quite a nice display for us.
Being a rather inexperienced wildlife photographer I soon learned that patience is the key and you sure don't let a little bad weather stop you from getting some great shots! I learned a tremendous amount of valuable tips from both Max and Zack on shooting wildlife as well as some good info on improving my landscape photos.
Cross fox by tour client Bill Richardson
"Max runs a great trip. I did Yellowstone spring and Yellowstone fall and now have booked Yellowstone winter. Enough said!" – Bill R.
June 13 - 20, 2015: Private Tour
Private Tour Adventurers: Phil, Cathy, Lexi, Michelle, Rob and Max
We had a fantastic week. After a couple near-misses, we managed to track down a wolf and view him from relatively close range. We spent part of one afternoon staking out a coyote den, getting some great looks as the pups came out to peek at us through the grass. Bears were still very active at this time of the spring as well, and we had multiple encounters with different sows with cubs.
Osprey with catch by tour client Robert Dien
"I had a wonderful time in and around Yellowstone with Max as a guide. We saw many more animals than we would have if touring on our own and Max's knowledge was invaluable. Whether interested in getting photographs of sunlight filtering through the trees in the early morning fog, or finding wolves, bears, owls, and bighorn sheep to photograph, Max was able to make the most of our time in the park.
Leaping bighorn sheep by tour client Cathy Dien
Making the effort and taking the time to watch and photograph the animals in seclusion while on our own (away from the roadside crowds) was priceless. I hope to take another trip with Max sometime (and somewhere) in the future." – Robert D.
"It was such an awesome experience just being near the wildlife. We thoroughly enjoyed your company and appreciate all that you did to make our trip a huge success! Thank you again!" – Cathy D.
Black bear cub by tour client Philip Dien
Max's extensive experience photographing exotic wildlife throughout the world and his enthusiasm for spotting wildlife made for an exciting and thoroughly enjoyable tour." – Philip D.
June 7 - 13, 2015: Spring Tour #2
Spring Tour Adventurers: Leighton, Pat, Betty, Brian and Max
As usual, many folks in the group had individual wildlife goals, and we met nearly all of them. We were fortunate to photograph a fox den with five cute kits, we saw a black bear swimming with her two new cubs, we saw multiple great horned owls with owlets, found an active badger sett, had plenty of good bear action, and as with the previous week's tour, we capped things off with a fantastic close wolf encounter.
Red fox and kit by tour client Betty Caldwell
"I totally enjoyed my tour with Max and highly recommend it to any photographer who wants to experience much of the wildlife of Yellowstone. Max knows where they live, where they cross the river and where they are most likely to show up. I enjoyed our forays, was excited to experience so many animals as such close range and came home a better photographer. It is a rare experience to travel with someone who has the heart and passion of Max, and I treasured it." – Betty C.
"You far exceeded my expectations. Your knowledge of the park and the behavior of the wildlife truly speaks to your expertise in wildlife photography. Glad I came, and can't wait for the next trip!" – Pat N.
Marmot and marmot-shaped rock by tour client Brian Legge
My second spring photo tour in a row didn't disappoint. Max has an easy-going demeanor that contributes to a relaxed atmosphere of the tour, while at the same time putting in the extra hours and miles to maximize viewing and photo opportunities. Be prepared to get up early and spend a lot of time in the field with Max, you'll certainly be rewarded." – Brian L.
May 30 - June 6, 2015: Spring Tour
Spring Tour Adventurers: Rick, Steve, Dee, Sheila, Jack, Bill and Max
We had a fantastic week, checking off numerous goals and "firsts" for this great group of clients. Highlights included black bear cubs, a grizzly bear walking right at us in nice morning light, a hunting fox, a very cooperative beaver and even a mountain goat. This group proved to be fantastic at spotting and their enthusiasm for Yellowstone wildlife was infectious. I can't wait to work with some of these folks again on future adventures.
"I have not stopped talking about this trip since I got home. Thank you Max for being such a fantastic tour guide, you never stopped working hard, finding the wildlife we most wanted to see and more. Getting to spend time with so many different animals, including bears, wolves, badgers, elk, moose and many more was amazing—and I'll not forget the trip to the Beartooth Highway. Every day was an adventure.
Red fox with prey by tour client Sheila Lewis
"For as long as I can remember, seeing wildlife has been my greatest passion. When asked what my dreams were as a young boy, I invariably replied "to go to Africa." I was fortunate to live that dream for the first time a decade ago. I've been traveling the world to experience nature and its amazing creatures for many years. My favorite place to explore in North America is Yellowstone National Park. I've been there numerous times and always return home with a smile on my face. This year I decided to do something different and elected to forgo exploring the park on my own in favor of participating in a Tour hosted by renowned photographer Max Waugh.
Beaver by tour client Steve Santel
Max is the consummate guide and his wildlife knowledge as well as his familiarity with and passion for Yellowstone made every second of this trip truly enjoyable. I saw a greater variety of wildlife than I've ever experienced on my own in the park. The great variety of species sightings was only exceeded by the quality of the aforementioned sightings. All of my realistic goals for this trip were accomplished and then some. Even a couple of "pie in the sky" dreams such as sharing the same small parcel of Earth with a red fox came true. Now, some two weeks after returning home I find my thoughts continuing to return to the recent time spent in Yellowstone. It was a very special experience and one I'll never forget. Thanks to Max and the great group we had for making this my best trip to YNP." – Steve S.
Black bears by tour client Dee Weston
Thanks so much for your fantastic tour. I have been telling all of my photographer friends that this an experience not to be missed! This was my first nature photography tour, and I was not sure what to expect. I had many animals on my "to see and to photograph" list, and thanks to your knowledge of the park, of the animals and their habits I was lucky enough to check off all them.
Sunrise by tour client Bill Richardson
"Great trip! Max offers door to door service which is a necessity for me because I do not drive. Very well organized and dedicated to the guests' success. Going back soon!" – Bill R.
May 24-27, 2015: Private Tour
Richard joined me for a short Yellowstone tour that had one goal: Wolves! He had visited the park three times before, and had never seen a wolf, much less come away with decent photos. So the pressure was on...
Lamar Canyon wolves by tour client Richard Barrett
We did see more than just wolves, of course. Bears also provided some nice photo opportunities, including a mother with cubs from 20 yards (photographed from the safety of the vehicle!) and a grizzly bear crossing the road in front of us. Overall, the trip was a rousing success given Richard's very specific goals! View more of Richard's photos from the trip here.
"Many many thanks for such an excellent job guiding me these last few days. It was a superb experience. I know you said we were lucky with the wolves, but I think your skill at anticipating where they were heading, and moving to the right spot each time was the difference that turned a mildly useful encounter into a really excellent encounter. Great job! It was a pleasure and privelige to be with such an expert for my time in Yellowstone." – Richard B.
February 27 - March 6, 2015: Winter Tour w/Zack Clothier
Three seasoned photographers joined Zack for his "Winter in Wonderland" photo tour in Yellowstone. Explorations included the northern range, as well as an overnight snowcoach trip into the steamy, geyser-filled park interior.
Winter bison by tour client Robert Warrington
We arrived at Old Faithful just in time to catch two eruptions, one at Old Faithful, and another at Castle Geyser at sunset. After dinner we set out into the dark for a night session at Old Faithful. A cloudless sky, combined with a waning gibbous moon, provided us with ideal conditions for the shoot. Later when we downloaded the images to our laptops we all noticed what appeared to be faint auroras on the horizon. The color was not visible to our naked eye, but our camera sensors were able to pick it up.
Fox and bighorn sheep by tour client Jack Bell
"Anyone who says Yellowstone isn't good for landscape photography hasn't met Zack. Being local to the area, he knows the place like the back of his hand. Not only does he show you the best places, he tells you what he's "seeing" and will go step by step with you through his technique. Then, over dinner he'll take you step by step through his post-process workflow. I can't recommend Zack enough." – Robert W.
Soda Butte Creek by tour client Paul Zaretsky
"This was my first trip to Yellowstone and I can't imagine a better way to experience this amazing National Park. Zack is a fantastic guide and his knowledge of the park and wildlife really helped me get the most out of the time I spent there. I'm already looking forward to a return trip and connecting with Zack again." – Paul Z.
September 22-28, 2014: Fall Yellowstone & Grand Teton Tour
Fall Tour Adventurers: Linda, Max, Karin, Zack, Gustav, Kel,
Jack and Robert
We spent the first half of the trip in Yellowstone, and enjoyed some nice shoots with rutting elk, pronghorn and even the threatened trumpeter swan. We also spent time on the Beartooth Pass, seeking out pikas and photographing spectacular mountain landscapes. The second half of the trip was spent in the Grand Tetons, where there were more wildlife sightings for us to enjoy. Elk clashed at dawn in the sage flats, and bull moose roamed riverside areas. We even had a great horned owl (one of four on this trip!) pose for us late one afternoon.
"Thank you Max, Zack and the rest of the group for making it a very memorable visit to the great Yellowstone Park!" – Gustav E.
Rainy bull moose by tour client Robert Warrington
Having the very talented Zack Clothier along with us was a fantastic bonus. Zack too has immense knowledge of the area and is an incredibly talented landscape photographer. He wasn't shy in sharing his ideas, tips and techniques, and that doesn't come at a better time than fall in the Tetons. Add in an incredibly funny and talented group of fellow travelers and this made for an extraordinary tour. I highly recommend it!" – Robert W.
Trumpeter swans by tour client Karin Occhialini
Max tirelessly ensured that our experiences viewing bull elk with their harems, moose, and other wildlife—including the rare Trumpeter swans—were met and exceeded. Sunrise at Oxbow Bend and and a bull elk with cows on a hillside silhouetted against an orange, dawn sky were unforgettable. Owls, pronghorn, bison and horses grazing with the Grand Tetons as a backdrop were special opportunities to photograph. Max and Zack were both available to help and, as a new photographer, that was so appreciated. Toss in a great group of fellow photographers and it became a week to remember. Thank you Max!" – Karin O.
Oxbow Bend by tour client Kelvin Blake
This is the first time I have ever travelled with a group of photographers and it will definitely not be the last. Overall I had a fantastic time, and I would highly recommend anybody considering travelling to Yellowstone consider joining a group with Max Waugh photography tours. Once again Max thank you for a very enjoyable and educational experience." – Kelvin B.
Elk at Sunrise by tour client Jack Bell
The real highlight of the tour for me was that I was traveling with a wonderful group of fellow photographers with the same aim. Everyone in the group understood the need to be at the right locations with the right light. The group was always cheerful about the early mornings and the late evenings as we pursued photographic opportunities. We had a great deal of fun together, discussed our love of photography, and shared the excitement of capturing images.
I returned home with a large number of images and have been reliving the experience as I complete the processing. I plan to join Max next year for his 2015 Yellowstone Spring Tour." – Jack B.
June 7-14, 2014: Private Tour
Spring Private Tour Adventurers: Mark, Tracey, Amy, Ruth, Cherry,
Ross and Max (Not Pictured: Jules)
This was an experienced group of photographers that had met and traveled together in the UK and abroad, including a previous winter trip to Yellowstone. Despite traveling to a number of top wildlife destinations around the globe, they wanted to experience the wonders of Yellowstone in spring. Thankfully, the park was up to the task.
As with the tour the week prior, the wildlife action was non-stop. We enjoyed sightings and photo opportunities with most of the park's major species, including mating grizzly bears, multiple black bears with cubs, prancing elk calves, playful pronghorn fawns and more. We were also treated to some rarer sightings, including mountain goats, great horned owlets, an active badger den and a cooperative long-tailed weasel. It was a spectacular week for wildlife photography!
It was a real pleasure guiding this group. Their experience traveling for wildlife photography and working together on past adventures led to a relaxed and very fun atmosphere. I can't wait to see them again on a future adventure.
Long-Tailed Weasel by tour client Tracey Lund
"I still can't express what a fantastic trip it was and I didn't want to come home. You have been by far the best guide I have traveled with so far. There is no doubt you will be seeing us again, whether it be as a group or individuals on your trips. There are so many trips that you do that is on our list and even if it's not on your list I'm sure we could persuade you to organise something." – Tracey L.
Badger family by tour client Mark Spridgeon
"I cannot express in words just how much I enjoyed the trip, and your style suited me perfectly. I knew you would help if I needed it, but ultimately you were focused on getting us the opportunities we so desperately wanted." – Mark S.
"I would like to thank you for the great trip that you put on for us. I certainly know that I enjoyed myself and I feel confident in saying that we will be hoping to join another one of your tours in the future." – Ross S.
May 31 - June 7, 2014: Spring Tour
Spring '14 Adventurers: Sharon, Richard, Max, Brian, Jean-Philippe
The many, many highlights included a black bear climbing a tree to dig out a bird nest, courting grizzly bears close to the road, a moose cow and calf dramatically trying to cross a flooded riverbed, and numerous smaller species such as beaver, foxes, owls and other spring birds. And we capped the trip with a marathon session with three cute black bear cubs!
Brian, Jean-Philippe, Richard and Sharon were wonderful clients throughout the week. Though a couple members of the group had spent considerable time in Yellowstone before, they all shared a common enthusiasm for seeking out and photograph the incredible variety of wildlife Yellowstone offered up.
Grizzly Bear by tour client Sharon Powell
"Thank you so much for the wonderful Yellowstone wildlife tour. I got the best pictures of my life and had a great time. I really appreciate your knowledge, professionalism and everlasting patience! Thanks so much for the help with my camera skills too. I had the time of my life—especially loved all the bears and the owls!" – Sharon P.
"I have fond memories of the welcome you have given me and the great atmosphere that reigned during this week. Sincerely and thank you." – Jean-Philippe B.
"This was my first trip to Yellowstone.
Black Bear digging out a nest by tour client Richard Bergey
To top it off we saw baby antelope, baby buffalo, baby moose and yes, bear cubs too. Beavers, foxes, coyotes, and my list of wildlife sightings never ended. I saw my first Western Tanager, first Black-Billed Magpie, first American Pelican and had great opportunities to photograph them all.
All of this was possible because Max worked his butt off, we left every morning well before sunrise and several days it was dark when we returned.
Great Horned Owl by tour client Brian Legge
"This trip was a great opportunity to photograph wildlife. Max kept finding more and more wildlife for us to photograph, and it was a lot of fun sharing these encounters with some great people. It was a pretty amazing experience. I'd recommend Max as a tour guide if you ever have a chance to visit Yellowstone." – Brian L.
May 21, 2014: Private Workshop
Chipmunk and Golden-Mantled Squirrel by tour client Karen Napoli
"Just wanted to say thanks again. We are really hoping we can meet up with you somewhere in the park on our future trips. We've really enjoyed our time with you and have learned so much about Yellowstone wildlife and wildlife photography. We have gotten totally hooked on Yellowstone." – Annette P.
"I was a repeat customer for a private Yellowstone workshop in May. Once again Max outdid himself, from spotting pointers to composition and lighting tips, to ongoing camera function tutorials and so much more, Max has it all covered. He has a casual professionalism that invites questions and I felt there was no question too 'dumb' to ask (and ask, I did). I hope I will have an opportunity to shoot under Max's guidance yet again some day. I encourage anyone considering a tour or workshop to do it. You will be glad you did!" – Karen N.
January 17-23, 2014: Private Winter Tour
Winter Private Tour Adventurers: Samantha, Michelle, Ben and Max
"My kids (18 and 15) and I just came back from a winter Yellowstone tour with Max. I have traveled around the world photographing wildlife with professional guides for some years now, and I would say that Max is the best guide I have ever had. It's not just about his enthusiasm, knowledge and experience. All photography/wildlife guides have that. To put it simply, he was such a pleasure to be with. He was thoughtful, kind, generous, helpful, funny. He was really focused on ensuring we all had a good time. He was wonderful with the kids and was always happy to help them learn more about their cameras and excited them with some cool techniques. We really enjoyed his company and felt very relaxed with him. This is so important when you are in someone's hands for 5 days and you've come so far for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. I did extensive research on the internet before choosing Max out of all the guides available, but of course, until you actually meet the person, you really have no idea what you are getting into. As soon as we met Max, it was clear I had made a great choice. Thanks Max!!" – Michelle L. (Note: Read an essay by Michelle about the magical Yellowstone winter experience.)
January 11-17, 2014: Winter Tour
Winter '14 Adventurers: Max, David, Jane, Richard, Bill and John
Wildlife was often scarce throughout the week, but we managed some nice photo opportunities with moose, elk, bison and had close encounters with a cooperative coyote and trumpeter swan.
Despite the occasional challenges with the animals, the landscape opportunities were bountiful. Yellowstone presented some gorgeous photo sessions during our week, especially in the park interior. From the various thermal areas to the nice sunset and moonrise/moonset viewing, winter scenery dominated the week.
"Don't miss an opportunity to take a photography tour with Max. I just returned from a wonderful winter adventure in Yellowstone National Park and it was the trip of a lifetime. Max was the consummate guide right from the beginning with excellent advise on clothing and gear to keep this Florida boy warm enough to enjoy every minute. Beyond being always willing to help with technical questions, Max added so much with his complete knowledge of the park and its inhabitants. He also know the locals and had fresh updates daily on the best places to visit. He had a plan but was always sensitive to what the group wanted to do. I can't imagine a better guide and I know I had the best photo tour of my life. I hope to do another tour with Max soon." – Bill L.
Coyote by tour client David Douglas
Once in the park Max kept us informed and was a wealth of knowledge on Yellowstone's winter wildlife. Once the tour ended we stayed on in the park for an additional week and used the knowledge gained from Max to come away with many wonderful photos of this magical land." – David D.
"Joining Max Waugh on a winter tour into Yellowstone proved to be one of the great adventures of my life. Max brings a knowledge of wildlife that can benefit photographers of every level. Despite dealing with photographers of different skill levels, Max showed a genuine interest in making sure each member of the group had the best opportunity to experience and photograph their specific interest. The trip exceeded my expectations." – John S.
"My week spent with Max, along with four other very keen photographers was just incredible. To see Yellowstone in all her winter glory was something I had been looking forward to for a long time and it was everything and more of what I had imagined. Although not all creatures' great and small came out to play we had some very up close and personal encounters with a few of the amazing animals that call Yellowstone their home.
Ice formation by tour client Jane Motley
Whether an amateur photographer like myself or a more, avid professional photographer, this tour would suit you. For me it was truly inspirational and one of the most enjoyable weeks of my life. I would highly recommend this fantastic winter wonderland tour, a unique adventure in one of the most spectacular places on earth!!!!!!" – Jane M.
"P.S. - Loved the Huckleberry Sundae at Silver Gate."
June 1-8, 2013: Spring Tour
Spring '13 Adventurers: Anirban, Robert, Kathy, Chris, Linda and Max
We were afforded good opportunities to photograph grizzly and black bears, foxes (including an active den), migrating birds and even a badger. There were even some nice scenic photo opportunities mixed in, from the rainbow hitting Yellowstone Falls to misty sunrises to a trip up the scenic Beartooth Highway.
For many, the highlight of the tour was our visit to an active great gray owl nest. We were on hand when the male owl flew in to feed the female, and during a later visit we were afforded a peek at one of the owlets, only a day or two old.
"I wanted to thank Max for bringing us all on this wonderful trip. It was indeed one of my most memorable trips so far. I was mesmerised by the sheer beauty of this vast expanse. For me it was a dream come true, having waited for so long. I hope to visit again sometime." – Anirban D.
Fox kits by tour client Kathy Barnhart
Max is a marvelous teacher in a relaxed way, in addition to being a kind and thoughtful person, full of knowledge, experience, patience and enthusiasm. He was always generous with his information and just loves sharing the park and the animals, as well as his experiences from the past.
It would be great to go on another trip with him, or even to repeat this one. I also loved the small size of the group, which really helped things work well." – Kathy B.
Great gray owl with chick by tour client Linda Carney
I can't thank you enough for carrying my tripod, checking my camera settings and taking us to see the owls was over the top. It has been an incredible week. Another Max trip is on my 'bucket list.' I will be talking about you for months to come." – Linda C.
"Thanks to Max for being such a great guide, teacher, inspiration and, well, just one heck of a nice guy. He put everyone at ease, gave great help, answered any question asked and not just verbally, but by explaining it then doing it right along with you.
Getting to see and experience a bit of his ideas and thought processes was truly a fantastic learning experience. I also learned that he never stops and does quite well with minimal sleep.
The trip itself was one for the ages." – Robert W. (Note: See Robert's photos from the tour here.)
May 22, 2013: Private Workshop
Bighorn sheep by tour client Laura Cole
"Max was an incredible guide to have during our short time in Yellowstone! He brought to the table experience and knowledge about the park's wild animals and their habitats, giving us a rich overview of the park as well as the chance to witness a number of incredible sightings. With our untrained eyes, Max undoubtedly helped us to see far more wildlife than we could have dreamt of encountering on our own. Aside from the wildlife itself, Max was also a great photography teacher who was able to offer practical and useful tips on the spot to help me improve the shots that I was getting. We had a great time, and definitely made the most of our tight schedule with Max's tour." – Laura C.
May 20-21, 2013: Private Workshop
Sassy pika, by tour client Karen Napoli
"I must start this 'testimonial' by stating I do not normally gush about anything. But any time I describe my experience with Max, that seems to be what I do since my two-day YNP workshop. The experience far exceeded any expectations I could have had. Max's casual professionalism put me at ease immediately. I have been a serious wildlife amateur for years – my pictures were decent... almost there, but not quite. I knew most of the technical points, but was just never disciplined enough to put it all together to reach that next level. Well, two days with Max connected many of the dots for me. With his guidance in the field, we experimented with various settings and seeing the immediate results was fantastic.
In addition to the photography workshop, Max is a wealth of information on all things YNP and wildlife, enlightening us about the animals and giving clues to maximize our sightings. Peppered in with tons of fun and exciting stories, the two days literally flew by. If at all possible I will definitely repeat a workshop with Max, and can't recommend it enough to others who want a top-notch guide and teacher. And there I am gushing again..." – Karen N.
Grizzly bear, by tour client Annette Piechowski
Along the way, Max also provided us with valuable information about the natural history of YNP wildlife that you could never find in a book! I hated to see our 2 day photo workshop end but I will definitely be calling on Max in the future for a 'refresher.' I can't say enough about his knowledge and professionalism and would definitely recommend his photo tour/workshop!" – Annette P.
January 14-19, 2013: Private Workshop
Blacktail Pack alpha male "Big Brown," by tour client Steve DeRose
"Thank you for serving as tour guide extraordinaire for my private Winter Yellowstone Photo Safari. Your knowledge of the park and its birds and animals was of vital importance in putting me in the right places at the right times to photograph the amazing wildlife. My primary reason for attending the tour was to improve my photography skills. I am confident that the numerous pointers and demonstrations you offered will benefit me greatly in the future. I especially appreciated our nightly image review sessions in which you provided constructive suggestions which will remain with me for years to come. Another unexpected but welcome addition to the tour was your spending a portion of one evening teaching me, in classroom style, the essential elements of quality photography. I could not have asked for a more skilled, patient and respectful guide and very much enjoyed getting to know you over the course of the tour. I hope to team with you on another adventure in the near future.
Thanks again for a great trip!" – Steve D.
January 4, 2013: Private Workshop
Napping coyote in the Lamar Valley, by tour client Lance Gilliland
We were fortunate to be able to work with moose and coyotes quite close to the road, and finished with a nice session photographing American dippers as they dove in and out of Soda Butte Creek in some golden afternoon light.
"I found the workshop informative and practical, and Max certainly knows Yellowstone well, including sources of information as to wildlife movement." – Lance G.
September 22-26, 2012
Ryan joined me for a few days in the park in autumn, staying at the Silver Willows Cabin. Though it was not a long trip, we pack in a lot of sightings. We found not one, but two weasels, several pikas up in the Beartooth Pass, a great gray owl and rutting pronghorns. It was a great way for Ryan to put his little-used SLR camera and gear through their paces.
Long-tailed weasel, by tour client Ryan Groce
Although I was familiar with basic operations of my photography equipment used in everyday settings, Max was patient with my questions about how to set up my equipment up for wildlife encounters. He was comfortable and gentle about making suggested lighting settings, shutter speed, etc. for unique conditions so that you don't miss an opportunity or come away with poor shots when you have less than optimal conditions. He gives particularly good advice on how to observe when birds are readying to take off so that you are ready to fire away.
Max also remains in touch with many people who he knows are currently in the park or have recently left in case they might have information about wildlife activity. All of this makes for a very fruitful and fun experience." – Ryan G.
June 8-14, 2012
Phil was a friend and past client of mine who happened to be visiting the States for an extended period. I agreed to bring him to the park for his first Yellowstone experience. We had a tremendous amount of success searching for and photographing spring wildlife. On our first couple hours of exploration (after driving all the way from Seattle) we saw a great horned owl, an elk calf, and a rare mountain goat at close range. Things only got better the rest of the way. During the trip we saw six different black bears with new cubs, had an osprey catch a trout right in front of us, and encountered loads of other species.
Osprey with trout, by tour client Phil Yates
Max has many years experience of visiting Yellowstone throughout all seasons of the year and this experience was invaluable in maximising the photographic potential of each day—from assessing the weather conditions in order to decide which area of the park to visit to anticipating the behaviour of any wildlife encountered. Max also has great connections within the Yellowstone wildlife photography community and these connections, along with his own experience, enabled us to make the most of each day's wildlife encounters. I would heartily recommend Max as a guide to anyone considering a photographic tour to Yellowstone." – Phil Y.