Glacier National Park

& North American Indian Days Powwow

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Please Join Us in Glacier National Park in 2023!

It is a living work of art—carved and honed by the forces of nature. Straddling the Continental Divide, Glacier National Park is part of an awe-inspiring landscape of towering mountains, cobalt blue lakes and windswept plains. Across Glacier’s sprawling valleys, the ruby reds, sapphire blues and citrine yellows of summer wildflowers can be so vibrant that the landscape virtually appears bejeweled. Throughout the park’s million-plus acres of snowcapped peaks, dense forests, and sparkling waterfalls are countless opportunities to create exceptional landscape images—usually just a few steps from the roadside.

Wildflowers in Glacier National ParkThe park is bisected by only one road—the famous Going-to-the-Sun Road. Completed in 1932 and designated a “National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark,” Going-to-the-Sun Road is notable as one of the first National Park Service projects specifically intended to accommodate visitation using an automobile. This spectacular sinuous route, through the very heart of Glacier, offers easy access to some of the finest scenery and photography opportunities the park has to offer. Radiating from the road are more than 700 miles of park trails that traverse a variety of scenic habitats.

Glacier is also home to a wide variety of photogenic wildlife, including pikas and marmots, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, deer, moose, and an important population of grizzly and black bears. During our photo tour, smaller summer residents like ground squirrels, chipmunks and marmots are very active and are almost always available to provide photogenic entertainment for you with your camera.

Powwow participantStarting on the park’s west side we reside at picturesque Lake McDonald where, at times, snowcapped peaks stand reflected in the mirror-smooth water. Later we head to the park’s east side where we photograph spectacular mountain landscapes and explore the transition zone between the alpine habitats and the rolling plains of eastern Montana. A boat excursion on two of the park’s picturesque lakes enhances a remarkable week of photography.

A major highlight of this western Montana photographic adventure is an opportunity to photograph at one of our largest Native American cultural gatherings—North American Indian Days. A short drive from our lodge in East Glacier brings us to Browning, Montana—the only incorporated town in the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. During the celebration, dozens of dancers and singers from the Blackfeet Nation, plus a myriad of other North American plains tribes, gather to perform traditional dances in beautifully handcrafted regalia. Throughout the event, participants compete in a variety of traditional dances accompanied by live drum music and song. Altogether, this is a powerful and energetic photography experience. This outdoor celebration welcomes photographers—making it one of the best places to capture the diversity and pride of indigenous peoples in North America.

Read Eric Rock's trip report from our latest Glacier National Park tour
For trip questions or to enroll give us a call at (206) 463-5383

Tour Itinerary

Day 1 (Jul 2)
Arrive at Glacier Park International Airport near Kalispell, Montana. Upon arrival contact our lodge in Whitefish for its complimentary shuttle service. We gather in the hotel lobby prior to dinner.  (D)

Day 2
Following breakfast we have a short drive to Glacier National Park. This morning we spend some time seeking images of the wild and scenic Middle Fork of the Flathead River on the park’s southeastern boundary. Following lunch, we shoot at several landscape photo locations around crystal clear Lake McDonald. Later in the afternoon, we check into our historic accommodations. We enjoy an early dinner to take advantage of evening light along the shores of Lake McDonald or stunning McDonald Creek.  (BLD)

Day 3
Marmot and wildflowersThis morning we’ve planned an early morning photography walk through an ancient forest along Avalanche Creek on the Trail of the Cedars. Returning to our lodge for breakfast, we pack up and then drive the scenic Going-to-the-Sun Road. The road is rated one of the world’s most beautiful drives and today’s “west side” images should attest to that. We take our time making numerous photo stops for iconic mountain scenery and more intimate nature vignettes. We stop at Logan Pass where we cross the Continental Divide at 6,647 feet above sea level and arrive at St. Mary Lodge later in the afternoon.  (BLD)

Day 4
This morning is spent photographing the stunning landscapes east of the Continental Divide on Going-to-the-Sun Road between St. Mary and Logan Pass. After lunch, St. Mary Lodge gives us easy access to areas around Rising Sun and Red Eagle Meadows for photographing scenery and wildflowers. Once night falls, and if skies are clear, a short drive takes us to the Wild Goose Island Overlook for a chance to photograph the moonlit landscape.  (BLD)

Day 5
Horses on the prarieA clear morning provides sunrise photo opportunities to shoot the peaks of Fusillade, Dusty Star, Goat and Little Chief mountains looming over St. Mary Lake. After breakfast, we take a leisurely drive to Swiftcurrent Valley on Glacier’s northeastern tier as we make our way to the Many Glacier area. Our lodging at the historic Many Glacier Hotel has us tucked in right along the shores of Swiftcurrent Lake just across from Grinnell Point.  This is one of North America’s most idyllic landscape photography settings. High above the valley, bighorn sheep and mountain goats are often observed foraging as moose and deer browse along the valley bottom and lake shore. Following lunch at our hotel, we have time for a scenic boat tour across Swiftcurrent Lake. After landing, a short walk takes us to Josephine Lake where we continue aboard our second vessel. This allows an opportunity to explore a bit further from the road and gets us deeper into the vast wilderness of Glacier Park.  (BLD)

Day 6
Today we concentrate our photography around the Many Glacier area, taking advantage of the towering mountains and tranquil lakes to create dramatic compositions—all the while keeping a keen watch for moose, deer and bears. The valley provides excellent wildflower photography opportunities in early July as lupine, bee balm and Indian paintbrush grace the meadows with their brilliant colors.  (BLD)

Day 7
Colorful rocks underwaterAfter a second morning photographing the sunrise in the Many Glacier area, we depart the valley and photograph our way to East Glacier. The road south provides many vistas of the eastern prairie and, to the west, unparalleled views of the spine of the Rocky Mountains—what the native people called “The Backbone of the World.” This is the land of the Blackfeet Nation. After a cultural photography orientation, our goal for this late afternoon is photography of the authentic, colorful and energetic dances of the Native American performers at the North American Indian Days powwow in Browning, Montana.  (BLD)

Day 8
We are up early to catch sunrise and photograph the early light as it first touches the peaks surrounding Two Medicine Lake. On mornings with good alpenglow, the rich light enhances the red rock of the mountains. We have time to photograph Running Eagle Falls before returning to East Glacier for lunch and a second opportunity to visit Browning for afternoon/evening powwow photography. Between dances, we will have an opportunity to wander the powwow grounds seeking out unique images of people, as well as colorfully adorned tipis.  (BLD)

Day 9 (Jul 10)
Our final morning begins with sunrise photography in the East Glacier/Two Medicine area. Following breakfast at our lodge, we make the scenic two-hour drive back to Glacier Park International Airport for mid-afternoon homeward departures. (B)

Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris is an Authorized Permittee of the US National Park Service

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Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris Enrollment Information

Glacier National Park

Jul 02, 2022 - Jul 10, 2022


A deposit and completed and signed Registration Form are required to reserve a place for you on a Joseph Van Os Photo Safari.


All prices are quoted in US dollars and all payments must be paid in US dollars. For deposit only, we accept Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Final payment of the trip fee is due 150 days prior to departure and must be paid by check or bank transfer. Trip deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable.

We must receive written notice of your cancellation, at which time cancellation fees in the following amounts apply:

If Written Cancellation is Received:
122 days or prior:
121 to 91 days prior:
90 or fewer days:
Cancellation Fee:
100% of deposit
50% of trip fee
100% of trip fee

No partial refunds are made for unused portions or services of a trip for any reason whatsoever. Trips are sold as a package only. This policy also applies to tour extensions and independent travel arrangements. Cancellation fees are not transferable.

Protect your travel investment and purchase a trip insurance policy that includes emergency evacuation coverage. A trip insurance brochure will be sent with your enrollment confirmation. A CANCEL FOR ANY REASON policy is available.

Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris are within the capabilities of average people in good health. Some of these trips require the capability of walking for several miles over uneven trails, stepping from a small boat to a wave-washed rocky beach, flying in small planes and helicopters, and occasionally hiking at high elevations—all while carrying an assortment of camera equipment. If you have concerns about your own capabilities and/or fitness as it relates to a trip, please inquire with our office before reserving a space. By forwarding a signed Registration Form and trip deposit, you certify that you do not knowingly have any physical or other conditions of disability that would create a risk for you or other trip participants and you agree to inform our office in writing if changes in your health occur any time prior to the tour. We reserve the right to request a doctor's statement of good health. The company's or trip leader's judgment shall provide the ultimate determination of an individual's ability to embark upon or to continue a trip. Once a trip has been confirmed, medical circumstances will not be considered as exceptions to our cancellation policy. We assume no responsibility for medical care or for special dietary requirements. “Meatless” meals are normally available at most locations. Due to the remote nature of many photo locations, and the growing diversity of today’s dietary trends, participants requiring special food items are encouraged to bring their own.

Tour members are asked to refrain from smoking with or near the group.

Participants will receive three emails before the trip departs: 1. Initial Tour Information sheet confirms the deposit and provides pre-departure information. 2. Invoice/Practical Information provides clothing and photo gear recommendations, climate data, applicable health advisories and reading list. Visa information will also be included (if applicable). 3. Final Tour Information includes arrival instructions, itinerary revisions (if any), hotel addresses, trip telephone contact information and participant list. We provide the trip leader's telephone number(s) and/or e-mail address with final documents so you can inquire about special photographic questions you may have regarding your trip. We welcome your calls or e-mail messages to

Information supplied upon enrollment describes the specific costs that are included in your trip fee. Generally these costs include lodging in double room occupancy, all meals (specified in the itinerary as BLD denoting breakfast, lunch or dinner), ground transportation during the trip in vans or small busses, air transportation as specified, meal and baggage tipping, and guide services provided by the trip leaders. Not included are airfare or other transportation from your home to the trip staging location, airport departure taxes, insurance, alcoholic beverages and bar expenses (plus bottled water and soft drink expenses on international tours outside of North America), tips and gratuities to local guides abroad, phone calls, passport or visa expenses, laundry or items of a personal nature. Gratuities to Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris trip leaders are optional and always appreciated. Rates are based on group tariffs; if the trip does not have sufficient registration, a small party supplement may be charged.

Single accommodations are available for a supplemental cost in many locations; see the pre-departure trip information or call our office for details. You will be charged the single supplement fee if you desire single accommodations or if you wish to have a roommate, but one is not available. In some remote locations, clients with single rooms are infrequently compelled to share a room due to circumstances beyond our control. In such cases, appropriate per diem refunds will be made reflecting the direct cost of the single room at the facility where clients are required to share. There is no additional single supplement fee on ship-based cruises, if you request a roommate and one is not available.

Cost increases may occur unexpectedly due to rising costs of airfares, ground transport, fuel surcharges, accommodations and currency fluctuations, among others. Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. may be compelled to amend prices, and we reserve the right to do so without prior notice. An increase in trip prices shall not be sufficient grounds for any refund of funds paid for the trip other than as determined by the terms of our cancellation policy.

Whenever possible, our trip participants are lodged in comfortable, modern hotels. We select among the best available accommodations, but refrain from extravagance. Some interesting photographic destinations are far removed from modern amenities, however, and where necessary we will be accommodated in rustic country inns, cabins or tented camps.

Meals are always a special part of our trips for the camaraderie they engender and the opportunity they provide to try new foods from different areas. Depending on the trip and specific locale, participants order restaurant meals from the full menu or, less frequently, table d'hôte. Some trips include picnic lunches in the field. Fruit juice for breakfast and coffee or tea are included with the meals. Soft drinks are included with meals on tours within North America. Participants are responsible for their own bar tab (including bottled water, soft drinks and alcoholic beverages on tours outside of North America) at restaurant lunches and dinners.

Our itineraries are intended as examples only. Participants should allow for flexibility due to changes in weather, natural history or cultural events, or other logistical arrangements deemed necessary by Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. or our leaders.

The second tour leader (and any subsequent additional leaders) listed for each trip on the website will be added as the group size warrants. If only one space remains on a trip, and logistics permit, we accept two persons traveling together, even if it exceeds the trip maximum.

Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. and/or their Agents act only as agents for the passenger (trip participant) in regard to travel including, but not limited to, sightseeing, meals, lodging, transportation, and all other services whether by railroad, motorcar, motor coach, boat, ship or aircraft or other conveyance, and they assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned either by reason of defect in any vehicle or for any reason whatsoever, or through the acts, bankruptcy or default of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the trip.

They can accept no responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay, cancellations or changes in flights or other tour services, and by force majeure including sickness, weather, strike, war, volcanic eruption, terrorist acts, political unrest, quarantine, epidemics and outbreaks, or other causes.  All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger, as trip fees provide for arrangements only for the times and locations stated. Baggage is at the owner's risk entirely.

The right is reserved to 1) substitute hotels of similar category for those indicated and to make any changes in the itinerary or transport where deemed necessary, or caused by changes in flight schedules or equipment substitution; 2) cancel any trip prior to departure due to low enrollment, in which case full refund of the paid trip funds will be given, but Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. is not responsible for any other trip preparation expenses such as penalized or non-refundable air tickets, visa fees and medical related expenses; 3) At the company’s sole discretion, suspend or postpone any trip due to force majeure in which case the trip may be rescheduled, or a refund issued less any non-refundable deposits paid to tour component providers on behalf of the passenger, or a travel credit given, but Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. is not responsible for any other trip preparation expenses such as penalized or non-refundable air tickets, visa fees and medical related expenses; 4) substitute trip leader(s) for the leader(s) originally specified, in which case the substitution is not a basis for participant cancellation or refund other than provided by our normal cancellation policy; or 5) accept or retain any person as a member of any trip.

Trip prices are based on tariffs and exchange rates in effect at the time of publication and are subject to adjustment in the event of any change therein.

A Registration Form including the Enrollment Conditions and Release and Assumption of Risk sections must be signed by each participant prior to the commencement of the trip. Participation by any trip member will be declined in the absence of the signed Registration Form including the Release and Assumption of Risk section, with no trip fee refund. No modification to the Registration Form including the Release and Assumption of Risk section will be accepted.

Should Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc., or anyone acting on their behalf be required to incur attorney's fees and costs to enforce this agreement, the enrolling trip participant(s) agree(s) to indemnify and hold them harmless for all such fees and costs. In the event a lawsuit is filed, the enrolling participant(s) agree(s) to do so solely in the County of Lewis in the State of Washington. Certain ship owners require the use of pre-printed ticket forms that limit the ship owner's and operator's liability. When such tickets are used, the passenger is bound by the terms of these tickets with respect to the passenger's legal relationship to the owners and operators of the ship, their agents (Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc.), and the ship's crew.

Glacier National Park: Moderate Activity Level

Photography from the road, and trails with rocks, roots, and uneven surfaces. Possibility of several short hikes up to 3 miles total per day . Opportunity for additional hiking is possible depending on group ability and interest. Participants should be prepared for some activity at an elevation of 6,647 ft. while carrying photography equipment.
Trip Details
Jul 02 - Jul 10, 2022
Fee: in double room occupancy from Whitefish, Montana
Deposit: $1,000
Limit: 7 participants
Activity Level: ModerateModerate
Please join our waitlist!
  • Trip is timed to photograph at wildflower season
  • Photograph authentic tribal dancing during the Browning, Montana Indian Days powwow
  • Stay in three classic park lodges during the tour with historic Old West atmosphere—Lake McDonald Lodge, Many Glacier Hotel, and Glacier Park Lodge
  • A boat excursion brings us deeper into the park's scenic back country
  • Includes all meals, lodging, ground transportation, national park fees, photo guide and instruction
Tour Leaders
Eric Rock

Eric Rock