2021 Public Lands and Waters Photo Contest Results

Results from the 2021 Public Lands and Waters Photo Contest results are in, and we at Backcountry Hunters & Anglers couldn’t be more excited by the entries we received. From the high peaks of the Rockies to the marshlands of the South, amazing entries from our fellow public lands and waters lovers told stories of their outdoors experiences. The winners from each category will receive a pair of Diamondback HD 8x42 Binoculars from Vortex Optics, a Benchmade Steep Country knife and a $100 gift card to GOHUNT! Our four judges have picked their top photos...check out the results below. Thank you for sharing your backcountry experiences with us!


Hunting Photography

First up, our Hunting Photography Judge Tony Bynum offers his thoughts on our winning hunting photograph:

First Place – Hunting – Photographer – Remie Cherepak

“I can feel the cold and imagine the story," says Tony. "I like the use of multiple people, one telling the story to the other; there is good use of light and shadow with the foreground (hunters), middle (basin) and background (sunrise and mountains), the composition and leading lines (tracks to hunters) and bright hillside (right side of the screen). It tells a nice, simple story.”

 Second Place – Hunting – Photographer – Dan Konzek

Third Place – Hunting – Photographer – Riley Roberts


View more of Judge Tony Bynum's work on his website, follow him on Instagram and read his tips on hunting photography on the BHA blog!


Wildlife & Wild Places

Our Wildlife & Wild Places Judge Colleen Miniuk had a hard time picking out a winner for this category, but she was delighted with her final choice!

First Place – Wildlife & Wild Places – Photographer – Jordan Lefler 

“The second I saw this image I felt as if I too were standing at that water’s edge and watching the remarkable beauty of the day’s light unfold," says Colleen. "The composition immediately pulled me into the essence of this place. The line of the river pulled me through the frame and into that explosive sky. The slower shutter speed helped to retain structure in the rapid while at the same time conveying the rushing motion over the rocks. I can almost hear the rumble! In addition, in especially challenging lighting conditions from an exposure perspective, the photographer retained the perfect amount of detail in the highlights and in the shadows. This clean, well-balanced, and well-executed image was certainly worthy of the top honor.”

Second Place – Wildlife & Wild Places – Photographer – William Smith

Third Place – Wildlife & Wild Places – Photographer – Brandon Moore


View more of Judge Colleen Miniuk's work on her website, follow her on Instagram and read her tips on landscape photography on the BHA blog!


Backcountry Experiences

Our Backcountry Experiences Judge Chris Daniel had this to say about our Backcountry Experiences winning photograph.

First Place - Backcountry Experiences – Photographer - Brian Bay

"It’s composed so well," says Chris, "great color and detail throughout and very nicely done to show scale of the landscape with the model in the image. Killer shot.”

Second Place – Backcountry Experiences – Photographer – Gentry Squier

Third Place – Backcountry Experiences – Photographer – Jordan Lefler


View more of Judge Chris Daniel's work on his website, follow him on Instagram and read his tips on wildlife and fishing photography on the BHA blog!



And our Fishing Judge Lael Johnson was fishing for a winner from among our Fishing Category entries.

First Place – Fishing – Photographer – Ryan Braly

“Making the person who sees your photo say 'WOW' is exactly the reaction you are going for when it is first shown to them," says Lael. "This photo did just that! The photo's composition is great, and there are so many things to look at in the picture that draw your attention so you do not miss all that is shown. I chose this photo as the winner because it brought me into the moment of hooking into a fish at sunrise. Congratulations on a winning shot!"

Second Place – Fishing – Photographer – Michael Brennan

Third Place – Fishing – Photographer – Jordan Lefler


View more of Judge Lael Johnson's work on his website, follow him on Instagram and read his tips on fishing photography on the BHA blog!

BHA thanks our judges for offering their expertise and visionary perspective in support of our public lands and waters. We thank our contest sponsors for supporting BHA and the public lands experience. Not already a BHA member? Join today and raise your voice in support of North America's wild public lands, waters and wildlife. 

About Travis Bradford

Travis has been in the outdoors since he was young, but its the fish inhabiting North America's waters that hold his attention throughout the year. When not fly fishing, he can be found with his golden retriever Sal and a camera in-hand chasing stories.

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