Outdoor Photographer | Christopher Boyer | October 24, 2016
Aerial photography makes it possible to collect data for conservation research that would be difficult, if not impossible, to get on foot or by other means
It’s still dark when I climb into Red Plane, Four-Six-Bravo. As it is with my cameras, vision is not necessary to operate the buttons, dials and switches—muscle memory guides me through the startup sequence: magnetos, mixture, throttle, master, prop, starter button. The engine catches after the third revolution, oil pressure climbs into the green, and moments later I’m ascending southbound over Montana’s Gallatin Valley, a faint glow on the eastern horizon.
My GPS displays a tortuous path through some of the highest, most remote and most beautiful terrain in Montana and northern Wyoming, where I will locate and photograph 145 high-elevation ice patches scattered through the Teton, Gros Ventre, Hoback and Wind River mountain ranges.