Since 2018, our annual photo contest has highlighted the people, places, beauty, culture, and unique charm of the Midwest outdoors. This year, amateur photographers from all over the region participated, submitting more than 400 entries for consideration. Here are the winners.
This seemingly smiling croaker hopped straight out of a Bud-weis-er television commercial to star in our grand-prize photo this year. “In summer, after my mom watered a flower basket, this tree frog popped out of the drain hole and was chilling like that. It looked refreshed since it was such a hot day. ” said photographer Ricky Lowrey. The image was taken at his parents house Cedar Hill, Missouri, on a Galaxy phone. “I’ve always had a love for animals and wildlife. I’ve seen a lot of frogs, but I’ve never seen a frog react that way to water. I thought it was such an expressive face for a frog to make and had a good laugh showing everyone the photo.”
For this refracted image of a black-eyed Susan taken in Webster Groves, Missouri, Amy Steinmetz wins a pair of Tifosi sunglasses and a subscription to Terrain Magazine.
A drab day didn’t dissuade Jim Miller from snapping this shot of stark beauty at Horseshoe Lake near Granite City, Illinois. He gets a gift certificate to Big Muddy Adventures guide shop and an annual subscription.
Dave Leap captured a sun-kissed spider’s web on Clark Trail at Weldon Springs Conservation Area and took home a pair of Terrain socks as well as a subscription.
This picture of a stand-up paddleboard surfer at the whitewater park in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, earned John Holdmeier a pair of Tifosi sunglasses and a one-year subscription.
Chris Hammond beat the darkness — and won a gift certificate to Big Muddy Adventures guide shop — as riders pedaled through the Flint Hills in the Unbound Gravel race in Emporia, Kansas.
This selfie of Allen Schaidle climbing “Standard” (v4) at Giant City State Park in southern Illinois gained him a pair of Terrain socks and a magazine subscription.
Kathy Duncan said of her image, “I think this common grackle has an attitude because of the rainy weather. It pretty much sums up the way I felt about it, too.” Hopefully, a pair of Tifosi sunglasses cheers her up!
James Gender snapped this shot of a spicebush swallowtail caterpillar at Wyman Center in Eureka, Missouri, and took home a gift certificate to Big Muddy Adventures guide shop.
John Taylor nabbed this image of wild horses while on a solo backpacking trip on the Ozark Trail, Powder Mills to Rocky Falls Section. It won him a pair of Terrain socks and a subscription.
Amy Steinmetz submitted this unretouched photo of frost on her window in St. Louis. “The sun was rising and reflecting off a neighbor’s window, at mine.” It won her Tifosi sunglasses and a subscription.
This single long exposure shot got Andrew Plassmeyer a gift certificate to Big Muddy Adventures guide shop. Illumination inside and outside the barn came from tiny LED lanterns.
Jane Linders used her infrared camera to capture this peaceful reflection at the Shaw Arboretum in Grey Summit, Missouri. In return, she received Terrain socks and an annual subscription.
Patrick Courtney’s granddaughter let her hair down (and up!) at Brandon’s Playground in O’Fallon, Missouri, winning him a pair of Tifosi sunglasses and a subscription to Terrain.
John Niebling earned a gift certificate to Big Muddy Adventures guide shop for this shot of his wife, Diane, and Flopsie the dog above Sam’s Throne in north central Arkansas.
Everyone gets support, even if they don’t want it, at the Leadbelt XC Mountain Bike race in Park Hills, Missouri. Photographer Chris Hammond got a pair of Terrain socks and a subscription for his submission.
About Our Prizes
The grand-prize winner in the 2021 Terrain Photo Contest will receive a GCI Outdoor Master Cook Station. Every GCI Outdoor product is created to fit the way you live. You’re not afraid to conquer the mountains, and you want to enjoy the view when you get to the top. With portability and durability built into its chairs, stools, and tables, you can spend less time packing, lugging, setting up, and fixing your gear — and that’s more time you can spend on what truly matters. gcioutdoor.com
First-place winners will receive a pair or performance sunglasses from Tifosi Optics. Born in 2003, Tifosi has grown to become one of the most recognized, relevant, and trusted brands in cycling, running, outdoor, and golf optics. Its mission is to provide technically advanced eyewear to enthusiasts of all sports and outdoor activities. It designs, tests, and tortures its products to enhance your sport, whether you’re running a 5k, riding your first century, or playing 18 holes on Sunday. tifosioptics.com
Second-place winners will receive a $25 gift certificate to the new Big Muddy Adventures guide shop located in the Central West End neighborhood of St. Louis. The shop carries an inventory heavily focused on water activities, as well as apparel and camping gear, with featured brands including Northwest River Supply (NRS), Sawyer Paddles, Nemo Equipment, and more. 2muddy.com/shop
Third-place winners will receive a pair of custom Terrain socks from DeFeet. DeFeet socks and accessories are manufactured with the highest quality sustainable fibers and are guaranteed to withstand normal conditions of cycling, hiking, and daily wear. Its proprietary twisted wool blend combines 50-percent recycled yarns and 50-percent Merino wool. By moving some of its production to these fibers, DeFeet was able to dramatically reduce its environmental footprint. defeet.com
All prize winners also receive a one-year subscription to Terrain Magazine.