Melissa holds an esteemed position as an NHA Staff Naturalist, a title she earned through her extraordinary knowledge of the natural world and her magnetic personality. Melissa was raised in southern Indiana and grew to love nature at an early age. The mountains beckoned, and she traveled to Montana where she received her BS degree from Montana State University in environmental education with special emphasis on the sciences. She was a naturalist and assistant director at Woodleaf Outdoor School in central California and has worked as a rafting, fly-fishing and hiking guide. Melissa began guiding for Nat Hab in 1987 in Glacier National Park and continues to lead our trips in that region, as well as in Churchill, the canyons of the American Southwest and Mexico's Baja Peninsula. Melissa loves the great outdoors for its wildlife, flora and magnificent natural landscapes, and maintains a deep passion for environmental education and conservation.
She is also an accomplished photographer and enjoys helping guests capture exceptional images of nature and wildlife. Her immersion in photography began in 1987 when she bought a used Canon AE-1 camera, inspired by the natural beauty of Glacier National Park. Having come from America's heartland, she was overwhelmed with the beauty and grandeur of Glacier's landscapes. "Attempting to capture but a small piece of what enveloped me was the consummate challenge," she says. Initially "failing miserably," she has since invested "much time and many hours behind the lens to capture the essence of this magical place" and others. In the process, she has become an outstanding nature photographer, aspiring to share all she has learned with travelers, so that they may be similarly motivated to preserve not just images but the places themselves on this planet we all call home.
Upcoming Adventures with Melissa:
Polar Bears of Churchill
The Wild Side of China: A Nature Odyssey
Great Gray Whales of Baja
Glacier National Park
Natural Habitat's Base Camp Greenland
Canyons Photography in the American Southwest
Praise from Natural Habitat travelers:
"Melissa was one of the best guides I've ever had the pleasure to travel with. Seriously. She was gracious, accommodating, exceptionally knowledgeable about all things Glacier National Park from the flora and fauna to the geology and history. She worked very hard to include everyone and still make alternate arrangements for those who weren't up to some of the hikes. I can't find a single negative thing to say about her."
"Melissa went the extra mile (and took us happily along). Her knowledge was astounding, told us wonder stories of local happenings, took us off the beaten track to see some really cool things. Melissa was attentive, helpful, and always willing to change plans if the group wanted to do or see something."
"You have a real treasure in Melissa. We have been lucky enough to have traveled with her 3 times. She is patient and sensitive to everyone's needs - physical and emotional. She is an incredible resource, full of information about the area's history, culture, geology, plant and animal life. She shares this knowledge easily and informally. She has obviously researched the entire area and bent over backwards to expose all of us to a rich variety of experiences."
"I honestly do not think I've ever had a better trip leader from any company on any trip I've ever taken - really appreciated her taking an interest in everyone and filling every minute with activities."
“Melissa Scott is unbelievable. Her knowledge and expertise with the mammals and birds is incredible. It is one thing to know the species but to be able to imitate their calls was amazing. She is so thoughtful of all the guests and went out of her way to include everyone. Of all my trips with all the different companies she is definitely one of the best. I will look for her as a guide on future trips. Did I mention how funny and appropriate she and her stories are?? I was a single traveler and never felt alone. Thank you Melissa."