Stephen Matera Photographer@stephen_matera

Never ending curiosity to explore and see what's over the next hill.
@natgeotravel contributer
📷 Explorer @theoutbound

585 posts 102,540 followers 1,477 following

A leafless silhouetted cottonwood tree frames a sub-peak of The East Temple at sunset in late autumn, Zion National Park, Utah. Shot on 12/3/16. #sonyalpha #sunset

Zion National Park

(swipe for the full image) Mind. Totally. Blown. 100k. I can't even wrap my mind around that. Thanks to everyone who has followed along for the past couple of years. Also thanks to a few people in particular who helped me along the way. @c4arriem4rie, @scott_kranz and @denemiles you gave me some great advice and encouragement early on. And @natgeotravel for the opportunity to contribute. I'll keep posting if you keep tagging along. #crazy #humbled #thanks


Wishing all of you happy New Year and success and happiness in 2018! Thanks for all your support and feedback in 2017. #bestnine2017 #lookingforwardto2018 #happynewyear

Seattle, Washington

However you celebrate the holidays, I hope you are in your happy place surrounded by the people you love. Merry Christmas! #purcellmountains #powdercreeklodge #winter #christmas

Powder Creek Lodge

You may not be aware that I also shoot and produce videos. Here is a teaser of a video project that I finished earlier this year about the recovery of the Methow and Okanogan Valleys from the devastating wildfires of 2014 and 2015. I encourage you to check out the entire video at the link in my bio. With the horrendous wildfires that are ravaging southern California right now, I think this video is even more relevant and worth a look. The Methow Valley is a special place to me and the effects of the wildfires to the landscape and community were huge. Ironically the destruction helped bring the community closer together. Thanks to @methowconservancy for their help in making this video possible. #methowValley #wildfire @methowheadwaters

Winthrop, Washington

It's easy to take alot of things in life for granted. Mt. Rainier isn't one of them. I'll never get tired of this view. #sonyalpha #winterwonderland #volcano

Mt Rainier National Park

I'm a father of two awesome kids. They definitely keep me on my toes and life is pretty crazy sometimes (actually almost always). It's a constant challenge to balance my work as a photographer with my family life. The effect seems to be that life is constantly coming at me at 200mph. So when I look back at some shots like this one from just this past August, it feels like this shoot could have been a couple of years ago. So much has happened in the last 3 months (all good stuff!). I'm conflicted between wanting my kids to stay young and to have as much time with them as I can, and wanting them to grow up so life can slow down a bit. The good thing is that both my kids (8 and 10 years old) are very active and into the outdoors. Our entire family hikes, bikes, skis, and camps together. So while it may be overwhelming sometimes, I'm loving it and am so fortunate with everything I have. I guess this turned into a belated thanks that should have been posted at Thanksgiving! #hiking #sonyalpha #wilderness

Mt Rainier National Park

(swipe for the full image) Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. I hope you are enjoying it with good friends or family! #methowValley #thanksgiving #snow #sonyalpha

Winthrop, Washington

Aerial view of Eldorado Peak at sunrise in winter. The window of the plane was open so I wouldn't have to shoot through plexiglass. The air temperature was 3 degrees. I had difficulty just holding my camera because my fingers were numb. But it was so worth it. I've been fortunate enough to stand in the summit of this 8, 868' peak (in summer!) in the heart of the North Cascades. #aerialphotography #northcascades #winter #sunrise

North Cascades National Park

Alaska in the winter? Nope, this incredible mountain scene is in the North Cascades National Park. As one of the most beautiful national parks (IMHO), it's surprising that it is one of the least visited parks in the country. Last year less than 30,000 people visited the NCNP. Even more surprising when you realize it's only a 2-3 hour drive from Seattle. But you know, I'm not into crowds, so lets keep it on the DL. 😀😉 #winter #aerialphotography #wilderness

North Cascades National Park

(swipe to see the full image) There is nothing like solitude in the wilderness. And this experience was nothing like solitude. I was next to the road with cars flying by, standing shoulder to shoulder with about 25 other photographers. While that's not the experience I generally choose, it was still a worthwhile place to be shooting. When I see a gaggle of photographers, I usually run as fast as I can the other way! But I'm glad I didn't as I'm pleased with the results of this particular morning. What about you? Do you find comfort in being around other photographers or do you prefer solitude? #colorado #fallcolors #sonyalpha

Dallas Divide