January 11, 2021

West Glacier Family Photographer, The Connellys

My wife and I both come from a long line of teachers, with current and retired teachers on both sides of our respective families. As such we've got an immense amount of respect for those individuals that choose such a noble profession. So whenever I get an opportunity to work with one of my daughter's teachers it's always an honor. This winter I got to reconnect with her first grade teacher who had a profound impact on my daughter, and by extension us. She and her husband have three boys so it seemed appropriate to schedule the session in a location with an epic sledding hill to close out the photos.

January 6, 2021

Glacier National Park Engagement Photographer, Sofiya & Collin

Living in the Flathead Valley—an area small in population but big on epic views—means the majority of the couples I work with tend to be from far away. This means there isn't often the opportunity to get together for engagement photos prior to the wedding. And while there are always phone calls, texts, emails, and yes videoconferencing that just about everyone grew accustomed to during 2020, there's just no better way to get to know each other than a pre-wedding photoshoot.

So when Sofiya and Collin, who live here in the valley, booked me for their wedding next year and asked for an engagement shoot I couldn't have been happier. The weather was bitter cold, but that's nothing a blanket, some snuggles, and okay plenty of hand warmers couldn't combat.

We had so much fun traipsing around West Glacier and Glacier National Park, I can't wait to party with them here in 2021.

December 11, 2020

Glacier National Park Wedding Photographer, Kaylee & Braxton’s Post-Wedding Portrait Session

Kaylee and Braxton didn't actually elope, bu they were celebrating their honeymoon here in Whitefish. And what is that saying "When in [Whitefish] you do as [Montanans] do." You put on your wedding attire and you book a portrait session in Glacier National Park!

Okay, maybe not everyone does that, but I am so happy these two Texans—by way of D.C.—ended up contacting me for said portraits. Kaylee is a photographer herself so it was really fun to talk a little shop. It was also a little different working with someone who knew just about all the prompts, and what those prompts were trying to accomplish. It made things super quick and efficient which was ideal given that it was below freezing. But I was once again blessed with a couple that was all smiles for miles.

Incidentally I'm so glad my wife insisted on buying a box of the little hand warmers to keep in the car to use for photoshoots. They've come in super handy this winter.

December 9, 2020

Glacier National Park Engagement Photographer, Michelle & Alex

Michelle and Alex were visiting all the way from North Texas and like any couple with taste, they wanted some engagement photos in Glacier National Park. They were actually my second of three Texas couples in the last eight weeks which has been really nice. It's always a pleasure to show people from the state where I grew up the area that has since captivated me. It wasn't snowing, unfortunately, but it was definitely more chilly than a couple of Texans were used to. It was actually a bit dreary this particular day, but you'd never know it from the laughter and the jokes shared during the session.

I may not be any relationship expert, but I like to think that laughter is an awfully solid foundation from which love grows. If that assumption is correct, these two are primed for many, many years of happiness. Congratulations to Michelle and Alex!

December 4, 2020

West Glacier Elopement Photographer, Ana & Steve

One thing I love about our wedding and event community here in the Flathead Valley of Northwest Montana is you often get to work with the same vendors on repeat occasions. One such occasion was getting a text from officiant Kate Berry just a couple of weeks after working with her on Ashley & Scott's perfect intimate wedding. Ana and Steve were on their way to Whitefish—with their two pups in tow!—to officially elope after a weeks-long, cross-country road trip complete with staged elopements with their respective families. Upon arrival in Montana, they encountered a freak blizzard which wasn't the most fun thing to drive through, but they made it safe and sound to the Hidden Moose Lodge, which is where I got to meet up with them for some getting ready shots and a first look. It was then off to West Glacier for the big event, some shots, and then portraits!

Lodging: Hidden Moose Lodge / Officiant: Kate Berry / Florals: Mum's Flowers

October 26, 2020

West Glacier Wedding Photographer, Ashley & Scott

Ashley and Scott had another wedding that was thankfully able to commence as originally planned despite COVID-19 and all the chaos that caused the wedding and event industry this year. From my first contact with them, they had always planned on a very intimate ceremony with just them and their immediate families at Glacier Raft Co. in West Glacier. And from there the plan was always to hop on down the road to Glacier National Park and the Apgar Village area for some "epic Montana scenery portraits," And Montana and Glacier delivered in spades. While the rain did cause the slightest bit of disruption just prior to the exchange of vows, that just meant conditions were ripe for a perfect timed rainbow while we did family photos in the park. And... well just check out the photos, because words simply won't do it justice.

Vendors

Venue: Glacier Raft Co. / Lodging: Glacier Raft Co. / Officiant: Kate Berry / Florals: Mum's Flowers

October 19, 2020

Glacier National Park Portrait Photographer, Chacey & Asia

Having grown up in Texas, hearing a Texas accent can act as an odd sort of comfort blanket. And that is just how it was this chilly morning for these ladies hailing from North Texas. Another referral from the always too-kind Jennifer Vernarsky, Chacey and Asia were on a last-gasp-of-summer anniversary/birthday whirlwind vacation to Northwest Montana and Chacey wanted to surprise Asia with a photo session.

We met up at Apgar Village in Glacier National Park, and while the early morning clouds and fog obscured the mountains, it made the setting no less dreamy and surreal for a quick min-session. They were so fun to work with, and their smiles offered all the warmth needed in the upper-30s temperatures we were dealing with. We lamented the lack of decent Tex-Mex restaurants in Montana—and really anywhere but Texas—and other superior, non-Tex-Mex dining opportunities in the Flathead Valley.

September 30, 2020

Glacier National Park Portrait Photographer, Charlotte & Dennis

The great thing about the photographer community most places I've experienced, and especially here in the Flathead Valley, is that its generally a close-knit community where people are quick to refer out jobs when they're already booked. I have Jennifer Vernasrky to thank for the opportunity to hang out with Charlotte and Dennis. Though apparently, it was the inclusion of my Xbox Gamertag in my website bio that actually sealed the deal for Dennis.

The only element of the evening that wasn't according to plan was the smoke from wildfires throughout Northern California, Washington, and Idaho blowing into the area the week they were here. No matter. Smoke or no smoke, Glacier National Park is still a dreamy landscape in which to spend time.

September 2, 2020

West Glacier Family Photographer – Fisher-Malle Family

I do a lot of talking about how awesome it is to meet folks from all over the country who come to Montana for weddings, family reunions, or just your standard vacation. What I don't often talk about is hanging out and documenting the lives of the friends we've made here in Montana. But no more! Nick & Skotti's daughter was in my daughter's first- and second-grade classes and they've become good friends. So naturally when Skotti hit me up for some potential family photos I naturally jumped at the chance. Of course it was chillier than expected—it was in the mid-40s on this late August morning—which made it necessary to just power through, but we all managed!

August 21, 2020

Glacier National Park Engagement Photographer, Meredith & John

Meredith & John came all the way from New York to escape the crowds of the city and to document their engagement in the last best place, Montana. It's a shame they only had a few days in Whitefish, as we could've spent so many more hours traipsing around to Glacier National Park's copious amounts of epic views. Alas, with the limited time we had to "make do" with sticking to West Glacier and Lake McDonald. I don't think anyone will take pity on them for that 'restriction.' Meredith and John, thank you so much for choosing me for your engagement photos, and best of luck as you begin the in-depth process of wedding planning. And if that gets overwhelming come on back to Montana and elope! 🙂

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Matt Wetzler is an editorial, motorsport, portrait, and destination wedding photographer based in Northwest Montana.

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