The process of choosing a cover photo can be a long one.
We receive hundreds of photos for each issue from an impressive group of professional photographers that help tell the stories we feature across Montana. As we go through the photos, dozens of photos pop out as potential covers.
We test a couple. We print them out. We try them with different headline and logo color schemes. Until it’s just right. For the Jan/Feb issue, the photo of the snowy bobcat made by Jaime and Lisa Johnson jumped out at us immediately and beat out several others to earn the top spot.
But how do you find a bobcat in Montana so you can share it with MT magazine readers? As the Johnson’s told me, they can be very shy and spook easily. But luckly for us, the our cover star (which our Facebook fans voted to name Bob) was very friendly.
Here’s what they had to say about their experience finding Bob:
- We were heading home after a full December day out in the woods photographing Great Horned Owls. We decided to take a back road that was just outside of Bonner. Road was icy and we were cold and a little disappointed from a day with little success. As it got closer to dark, Lisa noticed a coyote or fox running really fast across a field. But, something didn’t look right – it seemed to have no tail. We stopped and looked thru binoculars to see what was up. It turned out to be a Bobcat! It continued to run until it disappeared into a small grove of cottonwood trees in the middle of the field. Since it was public land, we decided to grab our gear and hike out to the trees (just in case we got a chance for pictures). We see two or three cats a year and they all act differently, some are real spooky, some are almost social. As we got to the trees, Lisa spotted the bobcat peeking out from around a tree about 30 feet away. We took several images over the next hour until it was too dark to continue. The bobcat was amazing, really friendly – walking around and eventually jumping to a low branch in the tree to just sit and watch us. He was still sitting on the branch watching us as we walked away that night – it was a wonderful experience.