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New Photos: Yellowstone Winter 2020 Wolves

I shared the first batch of photos from my stellar winter Yellowstone trip last week. Now it’s time for the main event: wolves! My best-ever winter visit to the park was great in many regards, but what really put it over the top was the multiple good wolf encounters. It’s rare enough for me to have one close (i.e., within 200 yards) sighting during a trip. You’ll recall that one of my favorite moments in all of 2019 occurred when I had a single wolf to myself at about 100 yards. That just doesn’t happen too often. So to have several such moments—much less prolonged encounters with multiple wolves—is simply special.

It’s the first time I can recall putting together a dedicated wolf gallery from a trip, but the amount of content warranted that decision. So if you’d like, check out the full gallery of 76 new wolf photos in the photo archive. A short preview of some of the highlights is below.

Gray Wolves

This was an incredible trip for wolves.

Gray Wolves

On my very first day I was fortunate to see members of the Wapiti Lake Pack near the road.

Gray Wolf and Ravens

They had returned to a carcass to grab some food, something I was not expecting at that time of day.

Gray Wolves

This sighting coincided with the 25th anniversary of the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone. A nice way to mark the occasion!

Gray Wolves

The Wapiti Pack featured prominently throughout my trip. We saw sixteen of them a few times. Fourteen are visible in this shot.

Gray Wolves

It’s rare for me to see more than one or two wolves together at this range, so this was a special treat.

Gray Wolves

It was snowing fairly hard during most of this encounter, but it was a lot of fun watching the wolves frolic in the snow.

Gray Wolves

Eventually several members of the pack went down to the river, presumably looking for a way to cross to a carcass on the other side.

Gray Wolves

The Wapitis kept getting closer and closer.

Gray Wolves

Stationed high on a cliff on the opposite side of the river, I had a pretty nice view.

Gray Wolf

I had to head into the park interior for the start of my photo tour. A few days later, the Wapitis joined us!

Gray Wolf

Perhaps the most memorable (and nerve-wracking) moment occurred when one member of the pack popped out of the woods in front of us.

Gray Wolf

A fitting end to the best two weeks of wolf photography I’ve ever experienced.

View the full Yellowstone Winter 2020 Wolves gallery.

Remember that you can purchase prints of nearly any image off this website. Use coupon code MPZAGR here or in my Pixels/FineArtAmerica store between now and the end of April to save 20% on prints.


  1. Don February 8, 2021 Reply

    Really great shots, you know your subjects well and also your gear. On my bucket list to get there one day. I’ve been to Denali, but didn’t see any wolves. I did see grizzlies alone and with cubs and other wildlife.

    • Author
      Max February 8, 2021 Reply

      Thanks Don. I’ve only been to Denali as a kid. Did the bus tour and loved it, but I think as a photographer these days it would be much more difficult having a good experience there.

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