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

Posts tagged Deb

Adventures in the American Prairie Reserve

Adventures in the American Prairie Reserve

Marty’s photo of the day #4080: Deb, Nellie, and I have returned home from the first six days of our nine-day vacation. We spent the previous days at the American Prairie Reserve (now officially known as just American Prairie) in central Montana. This was our second consecutive year renting a yurt there. The yurt sits […]

“I’d really rather chase mice.”

“I’d really rather chase mice.”

“Mom and Dad are laughing and drinking on the footbridge again. They made me stop chasing mice to pose for this picture. I’d really rather chase mice.”—Nellie Marty’s photo of the day #4053: Deb, Nellie, and I have returned from our three-day backpacking trip. When Deb and I moved to Montana, in 1996, we started […]

Flowers of waves

Flowers of waves

Marty’s photo of the day #4010: All the rain this year has made for spectacular waves of wildflowers at the Essen Wildlife Refuge, surrounding Deb’s and my house. A few weeks ago, the white flowers of the serviceberry bushes were everywhere; then they were replaced by the yellow flowers of arrowleaf balsamroots; now they are […]

Whip-scorpion photo shoot

Whip-scorpion photo shoot

Marty’s photo of the day #3978: For the cover of the first edition of my first book, Cool Creatures, Hot Planet: Exploring the Seven Continents, my wife, Deb, took over two hundred photos of me with tailless whip-scorpions crawling up my face. Even though we switched covers after the first edition sold out, traveling back […]

Nellie and the elk

Nellie and the elk

Marty’s photo of the day #3809: My dog, Nellie, gets credit for this shot. Yesterday I took her outside for a pee break and she immediately sniffed the air and charged into the woods. I assumed it was just her five-times-daily inventory of trees containing squirrels, but then she barked and froze. Just ahead of […]

French frogs

French frogs

Marty’s photo of the day #3808: French frogs! I took this photo at Parc Naturel Régional de Camargue in France. To get into position for this photo, I have my camera in one hand and am leaning over a ditch. My wife, Deb, is my counterweight, holding onto my other hand and pulling with all […]

Thanks to all . . . except the skunk

Thanks to all . . . except the skunk

Marty’s photo of the day #3797: Nellie thanks everyone for all the birthday wishes yesterday—except the skunk! Yes, last night I took Nellie outside for her final pee break before bedtime. She’s really good about staying in sight at night, but last night I stepped into the garage just long enough to toss a bottle […]

Splashing in the sunset

Splashing in the sunset

Marty’s photo of the day #3780: We adopted Nellie from an animal shelter a little over a year ago. At the time she was about nine months old. Since Deb and I live in the mountains of the Bitterroot Valley, there aren’t any lakes nearby. So last month when Nellie joined us on the trip […]

Where’s the water?

Where’s the water?

Marty’s photo of the day #3779: This is Lake Bowdoin in northeastern Montana, near the town of Malta. When Deb and I traveled to the American Prairie Reserve, we took the long way and drove north out of the Bitterroot Valley, stopped in Kalispell, where I performed a show at Flathead Valley Community College, and […]

Dogs make the trip!

Dogs make the trip!

Marty’s photo of the day #3768: When Deb and I traveled the world for my first book, Cool Creatures, Hot Planet: Exploring the Seven Continents, I loved all of our adventures. Even so, our least exotic trip, to the top of Canada, always gives me the warmest feelings when I think back about it. That’s […]

Plant life on the American Prairie Reserve

Plant life on the American Prairie Reserve

Marty’s photo of the day #3765-3767: Plant life close-ups on the American Prairie Reserve (Montana). The most nerve-racking aspect of visiting the American Prairie Reserve was all the prickly pear cactus. When hiking, Deb and I had to be careful that our dog, Nellie, didn’t step on any of it. Months before our trip, we […]

Montana’s railroad car bridges

Montana’s railroad car bridges

Marty’s photo of the day #3763: In Montana, when people need a bridge, they often go to the railroad yard and buy a used flatbed car. In fact, on the dirt road leading to Deb’s and my house, we cross both a river and a stream on bridges made with railroad cars. When we first […]

Wolf spider on the prairie

Wolf spider on the prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #3761: Whenever I’m out photographing nature, sooner or later I will end up on my hands and knees capturing an image of something small. In this instance, Deb, Nellie, and I were hiking the American Prairie Reserve, in a dry area that overlooked the Judith River. The ground beneath my […]

Elk on the prairie

Elk on the prairie

Marty’s photo of the day #3760: Stalking elk on the open prairie isn’t easy—especially when accompanied by a very active, medium-sized dog. The elk were at the beginning of their rut, when Deb, Nellie, and I visited the American Prairie Reserve earlier this month. A few times we even heard them bugling. These two bulls […]

Sunsets (Set 3 of 3)

Sunsets (Set 3 of 3)

Marty’s photos of the day #3756-3759: Never in my life have I enjoyed sunsets more than I did when Deb and I explored the American Prairie Reserve earlier this month. Montana’s “big sky” made the sunsets linger, and there was just enough haze—either blowing up from the prairie or from distant forest fires—to make the […]

Sunsets (Set 2 of 3)

Sunsets (Set 2 of 3)

Marty’s photos of the day #3752-3755: Never in my life have I enjoyed sunsets more than I did when Deb and I explored the American Prairie Reserve earlier this month. Montana’s “big sky” made the sunsets linger, and there was just enough haze—either blowing up from the prairie or from distant forest fires—to make the […]

Coyote Camp

Coyote Camp

Marty’s photos of the day #3744-3747: My favorite of the three places Deb, Nellie, and I stayed at in the American Prairie Reserve was a yurt on the western side. The yurt didn’t have running water, but it still felt luxurious compared to our previous two stays. Our yurt had three sections: one section had […]

Wind Camp

Wind Camp

Marty’s photos of the day #3730-3736: Deb, Nellie, and I stayed in three places while visiting Montana’s American Prairie Reserve. Our middle stay—two nights in a cabin at Antelope Creek Campground—was our least favorite. There the days were so windy that we renamed the location “Wind Camp.” Even so, we still enjoyed our visit. Photo […]

The fastest animal in the Western Hemisphere (disputed)

The fastest animal in the Western Hemisphere (disputed)

Marty’s photo of the day #3722: I expected to see pronghorn everywhere in the American Prairie Reserve, but instead they were a rare sighting. I attribute that more to bad luck than to the lack of animals. Pronghorn can run a little over 50 mph, making them the fastest land animal in the Western Hemisphere. […]

Relaxing on the Missouri River

Relaxing on the Missouri River

Marty’s photo of the day #3721: During our American Prairie Reserve visit earlier this month, Deb and I walked many miles, and our dog, Nellie, more than quadrupled whatever ground we covered. Despite all that exploring, one of our most enjoyable days occurred when we found a grassy section along a high, sheer bank of […]

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