Here are my most recently posted photos from my adventures. Visit my Hike 734 Flickr page for more!

42 thoughts on “Photos

  1. Jake, I finally made it to your site. Beautiful photos. The bird in the bushes above looks like a Townsend’s Solitaire. Best of luck,
    Ranger Josh

    1. Are you referring to the one I have labeled as a Swainson’s Thrush?

      1. Nevermind, I just realized what you were talking about… (these comments stay for all 9+ pages of photos) You might be right!

  2. Very good photography. I’m interested in what camera/lens/tripod you prefer for your hikes. I do a lot of photography while hiking and carry a Nikon D90 w/Nikkor 18-200 VR lens and a Bogen 190 tripod. I have lighter set-ups but those point ‘n’ shoot cameras aren’t as much fun.

    I didn’t see any close-up shots of wildflowers–do you do much close-up work? If so, what is your lens of choice?

    Congrats on your achievement. I love Glacier but haven’t spent enough time in that area to do a lot of long-distance hiking. Maybe soon…

    1. Thanks Al! I video first and shoot photos second. I have a Canon 7D with a Tokina 11-16mm 2.8 lens for wide stuff and a Canon 70-200mm 2.8 IS II with a 2x extender for long shots. I purposely chose the cropped sensor camera so that it would give me a longer lens at the expense of better low light and higher resolution.

      For my tripod, I have a Manfrotto 755 tripod (carbon fiber legs) and a 701HDV head. It ends up weighing in at 6 lbs which sucks to carry, but I’m doing video and that’s how you get great pans and makes for professional looking videos.

      Also of note is that I use the Thinktank Photo digital holster with the backpacker connection kit and have it on my Osprey pack. It ends up putting weight on my shoulders a bit, but when you have a bear or elk in front of you, you don’t have time to take off your pack and dig out your camera. 😉

      Also, I do have some closeups of flowers. I just use my long lens. I’d love to have a 35mm macro, but I don’t want to carry any more than I have to.

  3. Loved your photos! I need to go back now to see the Poet’s Narcissis. Where do they grow?

    1. Well I found it in the Apgar area. From what I can tell, it’s a Dutch flower, so not very native as far as I can tell. My guess is that it was brought over by one of the many homesteaders through the area.

  4. Nice project Jake. I’ve been a ranger in Glacier for 44 seasons and I don’t know of anyone who has actually pulled this one off. A noteworthy feat and one you can be proud of. Regards.

    1. Thanks Michael! I did a lot of checking before I embarked on this endeavor from folks that had been around a long time and, if someone did do it all in a year, they did it just for themselves and never shared.

  5. Thank you for sharing! Wonderful photos.

    1. 😀

  6. I normally go to Yellowstone(closer to home), but your travel and pictures has me planning a trip to Glacier! Thank you for sharing!

    Butte, MT

    1. We have less car exhaust. 😀

  7. love the photo captions – especially the two labeled “bird”. i’m guessing that a serious birder could identify them both for you. what a remarkable journey you’ve been on – thank you so much for sharing it with us.

    1. Thanks for watching! The best option was above by Josh McCoy thinking it was a Townsend’s Solitaire… I’m going to shoot it to a birder friend of mine as well.

  8. I love seeing the Cedar Waxwings. They look like they are so soft.

    1. I know! I love the gradient in the colors with the sharp contrast of “wax” on the wing and tail tips.

  9. Awesome! I am really jealous that you got to spend your whole summer hiking through Glacier. I am from Kalispell, too, but moved to Florida a long time ago. I still make it out there to see family, but haven’t been able to go for 2 years now. I am in withdrawals.

    My question to you is do you have these photos geo tagged with GPS? I’m sure it would make for a really cool map with all the tags in it. If you use iPhoto, or Aperture, on an Apple computer, it creates a page like that for you automatically. Were you planning on creating something like that?

    Thanks for sharing. Love the pictures.

    1. I do want to match up my GPS data with my photos. A map would be pretty dang sweet! I’ll have to see if I can figure something compelling to do with it. I love the idea!

  10. Jake,

    This is awesome! Congrats to you for finishing and what a wonderful inspirational journey you had this summer. It’s going to take me a little while to get thru all the photos!


  11. Hello Jake! I live in Southern California, but, since I was a child have ventured up to Kalispell once or twice a year to see family. Your journey, discovery & excitement for Glacier Park is inspiring & motivating. I was up there in september, my sister who has lived there her entire life had NEVER been to East Glacier, of course I made sure we went. It was one of the best days we have ever shared together. We spent a couple of days in Glacier, of course thats never enough time. We will be up there in June & I ‘m already planning our hikes. Your pictures, tales of trails & passion is contagious! Thank you for sharing your stories with the world & providing me with a therapeutic, medicinal dose of the Glacier I crave. Oh, to breathe Glacier Park in again! Thank You.

    1. Well if you have any questions, I’ll do what I can to answer them. Shoot me over a message on my contact form and if our schedules line up, I might even be up for a hike.

  12. Awesome acheivment man!! I’m heading to Glacier this August. We want to do atleast one overnite backpack trip. Was wondering what recommendations you would have. I do some photography so we were looking a hike with water/waterfalls, alpine flowers, and animals of course. I was looking at Cracker Lake but never being there have I know idea where to start. I watched your video and it looks spectactular, but curious if there is another one I mite consider. Thanks keep up the good work!

    1. First of all, thanks! As far as where to go… hmmm. That’s such a big open question. Not sure how to narrow it down. There are waterfalls all over the place. Some such as Baring, St. Mary and Virginia Falls are all pretty close together and just off the road. The waterfalls up towards Stoney Indian are fantastic, but that’s a multiple day trip. One that I really loved was Dawn Mist over by Elizabeth Lake. Animals are really everywhere. Bears may be in Many Glacier a bit more than other places (or over by Granite Park Chalet area), and goats and bighorn sheep are common at Logan Pass. It’s really a big open question. Maybe you can help me narrow it down a bit. 😉

      1. What are your thoughts on the hike up to Camus Lake from the north shore of lake McDonald? Another question I had was in a day at a leasurly pace how many miles would you say is reseasable to hike? We are in good shape also. Another one I was considering was a overnite hike from Lake McDonald to Gunsight pass and then gunsight to St. Mary. Definitly will check out Stoney Indian also thanks.

        1. The hike up and over Howe Ridge is a real bruiser, but is fine after that. I really liked Arrow Lake. The one from there to the Camas Lake campground is quite an adventure. It’s not maintained very well and there are something like 4-5 creek crossings. Be warned also that this drainage is very very much grizzly bear habitat. Don’t go in there without knowing what you are doing. It’s also pretty remote up there.

          As far as “reasonable miles”, that’s a tough nut to crack because elevation change in this country can be a huge deal and can make a 2.5 mile hike be brutal (if it gains 3,000 feet like the hike up to Elk Mountain). For reasonably fit folks, I’d recommend around 10 miles with a couple thousand feet of elevation change for trips with full packs. People that hike in this country regularly can approach 20, but that is on the upper limit of what I’d recommend. The big thing is make sure your footwear is comfortable for those miles with elevation change and a pack and make sure your pack is comfy as well.

          I love the hike over Gunsight. I’d recommend starting early and parking your car at the transit center and take the bus all around to Jackson Glacier overlook trailhead and camp at either Gunsight Lake or Lake Ellen Wilson. I did it as an overnighter with a stop at Lake Ellen Wilson which was beautiful. You could also spend the day getting to Gunsight Lake (and stopping off at Florence Falls and maybe go to Jackson Glacier overlook from camp if you want an evening stroll), then staying at Sperry and wake up and climb up to Sperry Glacier via Comeau Pass… which is all fantastic! When you get out, you can take the bus back to your car.

          1. Cool great info I have just one more question for ya. Were definitly doing Gunsight, but also were thing of doing the Belly River trail starting from the cheif mountains customs up to Elizabeth Foot camp and then thru Ptarmigan tunnel back to many glacier. Only problem is one vehicle. What kind of suggestions do you have as far as getting up to the customs while our vehicle is at Many glacier. We would like to reserve the camp site at Elizabeth Foot, but before hand it would be kinda nice to know our odds of getting a ride to customs. Not worried about paying for a ride just was curious how you would go about transportation up there? Thanks a lot!!

  13. Hello Jake! I absolutely love your photos from Glacier! Your photos inspired me to purchase the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 lens for my upcoming trip to Glacier this summer. I was wondering what filter (if you use a filter) you use on the Tokina 11-16 lens? I would like to use a circular polarizer but hear on this wide angle of a lens it may cause vignetting. Just wanted to get your thoughts!

    Thank you and congratulations on your achievement! 🙂

    1. Hmmm, I don’t think I had any vignetting with my images. I honestly didn’t use filters very much, but when I did, it was either a polarizer for glare (and it stops down the image a little bit for waterfalls) as well as an ND filter. ND or neutral density filters stops your image down a bit (basically makes them darker) without messing around with the color so you can set up your camera with a slower shutter so you can get the lacy looking waterfall.

      1. Ok great! Thank you for the information! Happy trails 🙂

  14. Hey Jake! First off, awesome website (and accomplishment)! I’m coming out to Glacier for the first time for a week in early July. Plan on seeing as much of the park and doing as much hiking as I can in that short time. I’m coming out with my girlfriend and I know she really wants to see some moose. From your experiences, is there anywhere in the park that you have a better chance of seeing them?

    1. Thanks! I’m trying to make the info as easy as possible to access. As far as moose, yes there are better places than others. First of all, Kootenai Lakes is almost a slam dunk for seeing moose. That can be done as a day hike with the boat ride from the Canadian town of Waterton. Guaranteed sweet trip! (bring bug spray though as early July will be buggy… moose like buggy areas). Another spot that is pretty well known for moose (although I didn’t see any that day) was up in Many Glacier up between Lake Josephine and Grinnell Lake (wait until you see the footage I got when we did the Grinnell Glacier trail) as well as in the Bullhead Lake area. People before me saw them and that was a day hike as well. If you’re doing a little bit longer trip, up the Stoney Indian drainage tends to have moose. That being said, I saw a lot on lakes in the morning and late in the evening… you doing any backpacking?

      1. Thanks for the response and thank you for the info Jake! I’ll do some more research on those areas and see which best fits our trip. I want to do at least one backpacking trip but haven’t finalized any plans yet, especially since I don’t know what all trails will be open in early July. I’ll definitely keep checking back to this site to see what you have added and will hopefully have some experiences as good as yours! Thanks again!

  15. Hi Jake,
    Thank you so much for this website. It is so informative and inspiring, especially for a first timer to GNP like me. I am visiting GNP along with two other friends on the week of July 16th. We have booked campsites at St. Mary’s for the first three nights and then two nights in Fish Creek.

    I have been studying the map and trails for the past few weeks trying to come up with a plan. So my question was, since I have 4 days at the St. Mary’s area, I wanted to visit the Many Glaciers area for at least 2 days and one day to hike the shorter trails along the GTSR. The fourth day, may be drive around the Two Medicine valley on our way to the Fish Creek campground. Do you have any suggestions? I read somewhere that the trails in the Many Glacier area is closed frequently due to bear activity, so what other options can I have as plan B?

    Am I missing out something on my very first trip?


    1. So I would definitely go over to Two Medicine, but I wouldn’t do that on your way over to Fish Creek. Do the little hikes off Going to the Sun Road on your way to Fish Creek. That will help minimize your car time and if you’re going over Logan Pass anyway, you might as well make that your trip to Fish Creek…. unless you’re starting and ending in the west side. So before I go into a few suggestions, what can you do physically? Does a 5 mile day sound like a big day or does a 20 mile day sound like a big day? Where are you coming from (as in state)? Which side of the park are you coming/leaving? Reply back and we’ll go from there!

      1. Thanks. We are coming from Ohio and are students. A 20 mile hike sounds like a big one for us. We plan on entering the park from the east side, and will enter the park around 1 pm or so. So that should give us some time to hike around St. Mary’s. And we plan on leaving the park from the West side.

        1. Well then you’ll probably pass through East Glacier first. Swing by the old Glacier Lodge over there and then drive past Two Medicine (maybe even swinging down there) on your way to St. Mary… the drive is stellar. If you don’t head down to Two Medicine, you’ll want to walk the stretch of trail from Sun Point to St. Mary and Virginia Falls. I’d do that on a different day than when you drive Going-to-the-Sun road because you’ll want to stop a lot that day and spend some time up at Logan Pass and this is a good evening walk. Sun Point is fantastic as the sun is getting lower in the sky. You can park your car at one end and either hitch a ride from someone or wait for the free shuttle system that goes through there.

          In regards to the St. Mary side, I’m in love with the Piegan Pass and the Siyeh Pass trips as well as Hidden Lake and the Highline at the top of Logan Pass. Siyeh Pass and the Highline are usually one way trips, but the bus system can be used to help out, but plan your timing accordingly so you don’t end the trip too late. (the sky stays lighter longer than the buses run) 😉

          Another trip you can do if you’re up for it is Otokomi Lake, but I’d probably do Siyeh Pass first if I had the choice. Greater views and greater variety… although you’ll get to watch big trout in Otokomi!

          In Many Glacier, if Swiftcurrent Pass is cleared, that is a great hike, but loads of vertical… then again, most of the sweet hikes have some vertical too them. If you have it in you and it’s open, Swiftcurrent lookout has some of the best views. I’d also try to get to Iceberg Lake and/or Ptarmigan Tunnel. These are frequently closed to bear activity, but are fantastic. I’m not sure if the snowfield will be cleared to Grinnell Glacier. If it is, then go there… it’s sweet! There are mixed reviews on Cracker Lake because the amount of horses going through there can make for a nasty trail, but that early might not have that trail be too gross and I had a great trip. Anyway, those trails should keep you busy while you’re up there. If everyone is complaining of elevation loss/gain and sore legs/knees, Cracker lake is the more mild of them and you could always do the Grinnell Lake trail which is level and beautiful. (I’d keep your eyes peeled for moose in the Grinnell/Josephine drainage…. I saw them a lot down there)

          If you’re up for it, on one of your St. Mary days, I’d head down really early and do the Dawson-Pitamakan loop. (do the Pitamakan side first) It is super amazing fantastic! If you go early, you can take the boat back at like 5:20 (look at the times). If that seems too ambitious, I’d do Scenic Point. It’s also great! (look for Bighorn Sheep at the saddle right when you stop gaining elevation)

          Like I said before, I’d work your way to Fish Creek over Going to the Sun Road instead of Marias Pass. You don’t want to spend a day driving when you can be driving AND watching. Stop for pictures and stuff. If you’ve already hiked the St. Mary Falls and such, then you can hustle up to the Logan Pass visitor’s center pretty fast and get a parking spot before the hoards come and then you can walk out to Hidden Lake. If you want, I’d recommend walking just for a ways on the Highline Trail. It’s worth it. Hike out and hike back since you probably won’t do the whole thing. It’s sweet… the beginning part is fun.

          On your way down, there are loads of fun places to pull out and take a few photos. Notice how different the West and East of the divide are…. especially down low.

          As far as hikes on the West side, Avalanche Lake is super popular and a great hike. It’s busy, so early mornings for hikes like that. I like Mt. Brown Lookout, but get ready to sweat! Apgar Lookout is also nice… the views aren’t as cool, but the hike is way more forgiving. Huckleberry Lookout has a nice grade to it and gives you some really nice views up the North Fork. Of course while you’re at Fish Creek, make sure you head on out to Rocky Point and a walk through Apgar Village is nice. I love Sperry Glacier, but that might be too big of a day to do a day hike up to it.

          I can pepper you with a little more if you’d like. If you want to head on up to the North Fork, I think Bowman Lake is great and the hike up to Numa Ridge Lookout would be sweet. I’m a big fan of lookouts on the West side, otherwise you’ll spend a lot of time in trees, but with what I’ve told you, that should keep you busy and smiling for your first time.

          1. Thank you so much for that detailed reply. I will definitely have to note all that down and make plan B, C and Ds :p I feel that I have so limited time and so many things to do. Very excited for the trip.

            1. Well don’t worry about having to see it all… it took me all summer to do that! Just pick one or two and have a great time. (I do know what you’re feeling. Just got back from my first visit to Maui on my honeymoon and need to go back to see more!)

  16. […] Throughout the course of the thousand-plus-mile trip, Bramante saw and captured pictures and video of elk, moose, pika, bear, and many types of birds and flowers. […]

  17. Jake,
    I found your website while researching GNP for an early October trip to the park. If you were to recommend one 30-50 mile hike (doesn’t have to be a loop), what would it be? By the way, my original reason for coming to Montana in October was to compete in a 50-mile ultramarathon, but I’m considering not doing the race, and instead do an epic “fast hike” (mostly running, except when going through areas with limited visibility around corners…ex. where grizzlies might get surprised). Just so you don’t get the wrong impression, I also don’t intend to be a nuisance to other hikers on the trail during this quest. Great blog/videos.

    1. The first one that comes to mind is the Highline trail from Logan Pass to Waterton. You could then take shuttles back to Logan Pass. You may want to contact Tristan Scott who’s a reporter for the Missoulian. He does a bunch of stuff like that and may have some other fun ideas for mixing off trail features as well. 😉

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