Nature photography, political rants, and Martyman laughs from the ten-time award-winning author Marty Essen

Monthly archives for September, 2022

A rare bird sighting?

A rare bird sighting?

Marty’s photo of the day #4099: When I saw this bird earlier this month, in Utah’s Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area, I was struck by its beauty. I shot multiple photos, but I didn’t think of the bird as a rare sighting. Then, this morning before posting, I consulted various sources to confirm the ID—because […]

Birds vs. Speedboats

Birds vs. Speedboats

Marty’s photo of the day #4098: From where Deb and I live, in Montana, one of the closest major concert venues is the USANA Amphitheater in Salt Lake City. So we’ve found it fun to take three days and mix rock and roll with nature. Six years ago, the concert was Joan Jett, and earlier […]

The sad state of the Great Salt Lake

The sad state of the Great Salt Lake

Marty’s photo of the day #4097: Today I’m going to rip Republicans a new one. Deb and I have visited Antelope Island, located a little outside of Salt Lake City, twice. Both visits were in conjunction with concerts. The first was in late August 2016, as an add-on adventure after seeing Joan Jett; the second […]

Blowin’ grass

Blowin’ grass

Marty’s photo of the day #4096: Earlier this month, Deb and I were sitting near the water in Utah’s Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area, waiting for a pod of pelicans to move close enough for a photo. While waiting, this grass, gently blowing in the breeze, presented itself for an artsy picture.

Plateau side-blotched lizard

Plateau side-blotched lizard

Marty’s photo of the day #4095: I photographed this plateau side-blotched lizard earlier this month on Antelope Island, in Utah.

Little Dog on the Prairie

Little Dog on the Prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #4094: “The Little Dog on the Prairie.” Okay, at 58 pounds, Nellie is more of a medium-to-large-sized-dog, but you get the point. I shot this photo during a long hike in the American Prairie Reserve, after Deb and I discovered that Nellie could successfully dodge all the cactus and gave […]

Damsel fly on the prairie

Damsel fly on the prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #4093: I shot this photo earlier this month along the Judith River in the American Prairie Reserve. The challenge here was not to spook the damsel fly while achieving focus on a subject perched on a swaying piece of grass.

Nellie and the prickly pear

Nellie and the prickly pear

Marty’s photo of the day #4092: Two years ago, before Deb’s and my first visit to the American Prairie Reserve (now officially called “American Prairie”) in central Montana, we were concerned about our newly adopted dog, Nellie, stepping on the cactus there. So months ahead of time, we patiently tried to get Nellie used to […]

Antelope Island bison

Antelope Island bison

Marty’s photo of the day #4091: Between 500 and 700 bison live on Antelope Island (located in the Great Salt Lake of Utah). Two weeks ago, Deb and I hiked toward the far end of the island, passing by a herd with a huge bull. Then, as we approach the island’s tip, we came across […]

Frogs, frogs, everywhere!

Frogs, frogs, everywhere!

Marty’s photo of the day #4090: There is probably not a better sign of a healthy ecosystem than an abundance of frogs. When I was in the American Prairie Reserve of central Montana earlier this month, I spotted more frogs along the Judith River than I had spotted at any time since I was about […]

Doctor Refurb: More great reviews!

Doctor Refurb: More great reviews!

Great reviews keep coming in for my new science-fiction political-comedy, Doctor Refurb! This one, from Indies Today, arrived this morning. Reminder: If you live in western Montana, I will be telling stories and signing all seven of my books at 6:00 p.m., this Wednesday, at Chapter One Book Store in Hamilton. Please stop by! For […]

The half-moon shot

The half-moon shot

Marty’s photo of the day #4089: When visiting the American Prairie Reserve earlier this month, Deb, Nellie, and I spent all five of our evenings there, lying on our backs, drinking adult beverages, and watching the stars. (Well, as responsible parents, Deb and I didn’t actually let our dog, Nellie, have any of the adult […]

Evanescence with 25,000 of my closest friends

Evanescence with 25,000 of my closest friends

Marty’s photo of the day #4088: During the first part of September, Deb and I enjoyed an unusual split vacation that included six days in the American Prairie Reserve of central Montana, two days at home, and then three days in Utah that included exploring the Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area and Antelope Island. Those […]

Aw! It’s a baby yellow-bellied racer.

Aw! It’s a baby yellow-bellied racer.

Marty’s photo of the day #4087: Aw! It’s a baby yellow-bellied racer. I shot this photo two weeks ago, while on vacation in the American Prairie Reserve. Deb (wife), Nellie (dog), and I were near the end of a long hike—just at the point where we were hot, tired, and thirsty—when I spotted this snake […]

Rolling in cow shit

Rolling in cow shit

Marty’s photo of the day #4086: Remember the children’s stories about leprechauns and how they’d disappear if you blinked? Nellie has the same power when it comes to cow poop. Of all the dogs I’ve had over the years, Nellie rolls in shit less than any of them, so when she does it, she makes […]

This year’s prairie dog

This year’s prairie dog

Marty’s photo of the day #4085: During last year’s vacation at the American Prairie Reserve (in central Montana), I was able to capture some outstanding prairie dog images. Midway through this year’s five-day-stay, I was getting discouraged. The prairie dogs seemed more skittish than the previous year—although having Nellie, a very active actual dog with […]

Antelope Island sunset

Antelope Island sunset

Marty’s photo of the day #4084: I shot this sunset photo last Saturday, while standing on Antelope Island, overlooking the Great Salt Lake. If you look closely, you will see what appears to be a jagged piece cut out of the bottom of the sun. That’s the top of a mountain, obscured by smoke from […]

Walking on water

Walking on water

Marty’s photo of the day #4083: Nellie thinks I can walk on water, and I think she can walk on water too. And when you both believe—anything can happen! My wife, Deb, shot this photo of Nellie and me a little over a week ago, at the American Prairie Reserve in central Montana. We were […]

Burrowing Owl

Burrowing Owl

Marty’s photo of the day #4082: Our vacation is over . . . sigh. First, Deb (wife), Nellie (dog), and I spent six days in the American Prairie Reserve of central Montana. There we stayed in a remote yurt, with no running water, no phone, no internet, and limited solar power. It was awesome! Then […]

The bluff on the prairie

The bluff on the prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #4081: Deb, Nellie, and I just spent six days in the American Prairie of central Montana. On Sunday, we enjoyed a spectacular high prairie hike that climbed to an outcrop, which overlooked an entire valley. Nellie raced to the edge of the bluff and started barking and growling at something […]

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