Big Sky Photo Spots

Big Sky is the adventure capital of Montana, where nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts gather for year-round fun. The friendly mountain community is famed for its luxe ski resorts, stunning hiking trails and Wild West vibe. Nearby are two of North America’s best national parks: Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park, making Big Sky the ideal base for a national park getaway. But when you’re having fun, it’s easy to miss all the beautiful places to take photos in Big Sky! 🌄

Here at ​​Flytographer, we easily connect people with trusted photographers for fun photo shoots and have captured over three million memories worldwide. Today, we asked our local photographers to show us around all the very best places to take photos in Big Sky.



  1. Gallatin River: This untamed river has rapids, waterfalls and shallows – there’s something for everybody! 🏊
  2. Lone Mountain Ranch: Live out your Wild West fantasies at this rustic (but upscale) Big Sky ranch.
  3. Moonlight Basin: Epic mountain views of Lone Peak make this resort one of the best places for outdoor portrait photography.
  4. Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone National Park: Experience the volcanic beauty of nature at Yellowstone’s biggest hot spring. 🌋
  5. Mammoth Hot Springs at Yellowstone National Park: A steamy, dreamy spot perfect for romantic shots.

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Lauren and family capture memories in Big Sky with a family photoshoot.

1. Gallatin River

The natural, free-flowing Gallatin River emerges from Gallatin Lake in Yellowstone and ends 115 miles later in Three Forks, Montana. Framed by forests and meandering through mountains, this is where the movie A River Runs Through It was filmed. 🎬

Depending on which section of the river you visit, the Gallatin River is serene and steady or wild and fast. It’s popular for both fishing and white-water rafting. If you’re driving along U.S. 191 as part of an epic road trip, use the pull-outs whenever you want to stop for a shot, or head to one of these spots for an up-close photo opportunity.


  • There is river access behind the Riverhouse BBQ restaurant with great canyon views. As long as there is no event taking place, the owners are gracious and more than happy to lend their land to use. The views from the restaurant’s expansive deck are spectacular, and the Texas-style BBQ is delicious, too. 🍲This is a great spot for a casual group shot with friends, or a romantic couple’s shoot. 
  • Hike the 1.6-mile round-trip trail to Ousel Falls, which is a beautiful walk year round. From downtown Big Sky, head south on Ousel Falls Road for five minutes until you get to the car park, then follow the signs for the easy hike out to the falls. During the summer, the stroll through a shady forest is a welcome break from the sun, and in winter, you can’t beat a frozen waterfall for a dramatic backdrop! This hike is one of the most unique places to take photos in Big Sky.
  • Green Bridge, about six miles south of Big Sky on U.S. 191, is a pretty structure spanning the river. It’s popular for jumping off into the clear blue waters on a summer day, and the area underneath is perfect for picnics. If you’re brave enough to make the leap, this spot is ideal for a fun action shot.

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Michael and family capture memories in Big Sky with a family photoshoot at Gallatin River.

2. Lone Mountain Ranch

When you picture Montana, you probably have a vision of golden prairies, towering snow-capped mountains and wide-open skies. This is exactly the scene you’ll find at Lone Mountain Ranch, the upscale rustic-chic lodge in the heart of Big Sky. 

Want to borrow the spectacular views for the backdrop in your photoshoot? You’ll need to stay as a guest or make a breakfast, lunch or dinner reservation at one of the restaurants.

Located in the shadow of Lone Mountain on 150 acres of meadows and forest, the whole resort is a photographer’s dream. Summer or winter, the Madison Range provides an epic background, making this one of the best places to take photos in Big Sky. If you’re the outdoorsy type, this is a great place to head out on a horseback ride in summer, go cross-country skiing in the winter or enjoy the hiking trails any time of year. 🐎

For an incredible bird’s-eye view of the Rocky Mountains, take the Lone Peak Expedition tram ride at Big Sky Resort to the peak of Lone Mountain. On a clear day, the view from the top includes two national parks and three states!

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Gabby and friends capture memories in Big Sky with a friends photoshoot in Lone Mountain Ranch.

3. Moonlight Basin

Moonlight Basin is a Big Sky ski resort with fabulous views of the Spanish Peaks. With luxurious amenities including a golf course, several high-end restaurants and luxurious ski-in ski-out lodges, it’s popular with outdoor enthusiasts heading to Big Sky country.

But it’s also one of the best places to take photos in Big Sky. With epic mountain views, it’s perfect for a romantic couple’s shoot, a fun family portrait session or a celebration with friends. The resort is also pet-friendly, so bring your pooches along too. 🐶

  • This location provides great views of the Spanish Peaks in Big Sky. Although best for morning shoots, it’s manageable for sunset as well. 

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Rachel and Partner celebrate a honeymoon in Big Sky with a honeymoon photoshoot at Moonlight Basin.

4. Grand Prismatic Spring at Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone, which sits on a dormant volcano, is home to more hot springs than any other place on earth, and Grand Prismatic Spring is the park’s biggest. Despite the superheated temperatures – ranging from 145.4 to 188.6 degrees Fahrenheit – Grand Prismatic Spring is bursting with microbial life. 

These extreme conditions make an incredible spectacle. The bright orange ring around the aquamarine pool creates a stunning colour contrast, while the drifting steam is a powerful reminder of the deadly heat below. It’s an otherworldly scene and one of the most breathtaking places to take photos in Big Sky. 

There are a couple of places to take great shots of Grand Prismatic Spring. The first is from the boardwalks in the Midway Geyser Basin, which will give you a close-up view from ground level. But if you want to see all the rainbow colours, you’ll need to go higher for a bird’s-eye view. 🌈✨

Drive a mile west to the Grand Prismatic Spring Overlook and hike a half-mile from the car park to the vista point. You’ll be rewarded with a fantastic vista of the azure and orange colours, with the pine forests stretching beyond.

Include this natural beauty in your wedding or engagement photos with a Yellowstone photoshoot – or take home a souvenir from your family vacation you’ll treasure forever! 

  • Yellowstone National Park requires a $100 CUA photo permit to legally shoot inside the park. The photographer needs to apply for the permit AT LEAST three weeks in advance, so book your photoshoot as soon as you know your travel dates.

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Chasity and family capture memories in Big Sky with a family photoshoot at Grand Prismatic in Yellowstone National Park.

5. Mammoth Hot Springs at Yellowstone National Park

While Grand Prismatic Spring has all the pretty rainbow colours, Mammoth Hot Springs brings the drama. The white limestone deposits contrast sharply with blackened, dead trees for an otherworldly landscape. If you can time your visit for sunrise or sunset, the sky provides the colour.

The hillside terraces are beautiful any time of the year. During the winter, you can snowshoe around the upper terraces for an unforgettable experience.

Mammoth Hot Springs is steamier than Grand Prismatic Spring, but you also get the dramatic mountain ranges in the background. If you’re staying in Bozeman, Mammoth Hot Springs is closer to the north entrance of Yellowstone.

For Big Sky guests, Grand Prismatic Spring is better for a day trip, as it is closer to the west entrance.

Photo: Alex in Big Sky for Flytographer. Christina and family capture memories in Big Sky with a family photoshoot at Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.

Capturing Memories in Big Sky

While Big Sky is an incredible destination for photography, there are other opportunities just outside the town! Here’s a list of other destinations within day-tripping distance of Big Sky:


  • Bozeman, one hour north of Big Sky, has a great town center for shopping, eating and entertainment.
  • Virginia City and Nevada City are two nearby ghost towns where you can discover gold-rush history.
  • Billings, a three-hour road trip away, is perfect for families and offers a llama farm, museums and beautiful hikes.
  • Missoula, a 3.5-hour drive north, is a small university town with a big art and food scene. 
  • Grand Teton National Park is just three hours south and offers more alpine terrain to explore!


Make the most of every moment, and bring home an unforgettable souvenir by connecting with a local photographer in Big Sky! 📸