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Howard West

Hover your mouse over the photos to see the bird names and photographer credit. Click any photo to view the slide show at your leisure.

Howard West, at age 18 months, arrived at the small community of Ivory Pine. This entire site was company owned with a lumber saw mill, a small grocery store and homes. It was only about 6 miles from Bly Or. This site was later owned by Mary Williams Hyde's family.


Howard took the school bus to Bly during his 1st grade, and then his family lived in Bly until the fall of 1950, when they moved to Klamath Falls.


He graduated from KUHS in 1955. Most of his working life was with Modoc Lumber Co. He retired in 1999, and still lives in Klamath Falls.

He got into photography because he used to do a lot of deer hunting, and nobody could believe what he was saying he was seeing out there. He starting trying to capture images with a little Kodak camera but soon found he needed a longer lens so the subjects of his photos would show up larger in the frame. Just getting into better camera gear made him realize that he didn’t have the time or money to both hunt and  take photos,  so he chose hunting with a camera. He generally spends most of his time taking photos in the Klamath Basin, but has traveled with his camera to the Steens in eastern Oregon, some of the better wildlife areas of Montana and Western Canada.  

He feels knowledge he has of critter behavior that evolves from his years spent hunting gives him an advantage over those that haven’t when approaching wildlife. 

Howard has no idea how many photos he has taken, but he feels he might have spent more time at Putnam’s Point than anybody who has ever lived except for the natives who used to live there. You can find him there almost everyday. He says, "I am getting old and slow and I don’t do any good in the cold.” This in spite of the fact he can often be seen out in freezing weather, all bundled up, determined not to miss documenting the lives of wildlife as seasons change. 

He is now in the process of making sure his photo archives are backed up…"I am vulnerable,” he says. He is also starting to collect his favorites for his first book, hopefully one of several.

There was a time when he was staunchly anti-tourist but he has mellowed out after finding he enjoyed visiting with them.  He looks forward to the opening of the newly updated Putnam’s Point where three new interpretive panels will feature many of his best photos of grebes and the other bids that regularly live there.

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