May 19, 2014

We left from Gardiner and headed to some of the usual places that we look for wildlife.  The road over Dunraven Pass still hasn’t opened yet for the season, so we took a typical route where we drive past Mammoth Hot Springs,  then go on through Swan Lake Flats, south to Norris, and east to Canyon.  We scan the terrain for signs of wildlife or see if there are other photographers stopped with big lenses on tripods.  As we were driving through Hayden Valley we saw a couple of grizzlies.  One had red ear tags and was with some ravens.  It was digging in the snow looking for something to eat.   It’s interesting that the grizzlies ignore the birds.  I wonder if they communicate to each other?  The other grizzly was on a hillside.  After spending some time with them, we continued south to Fishing Bridge and over to Mary Bay.  We checked out the area around the Lake Hotel and Bridge Marina, and didn’t see anything so we headed back to Hayden Valley to see if the two grizzlies were still there.  One looked very dark and it was too far away for photos.  The brown grizzly that we had photographed earlier was still foraging, so we stopped to take a few more photos with the crowd that had assembled there.  All of a sudden the grizzly started running and the ranger, that was keeping order and enforcing the 100 yard limit, was yelling at everyone to get in their cars.  We took some good photos of the grizzly kicking up snow while it ran. They can run 40 miles per hour, and it was the first time we had ever seen something like this happen.  It was fantastic.  Later, across from Elk Creek, we saw a large black bear and were able to answer the age-old question, “Do bears poop in the woods?”  The answer is yes and we have the photo to prove it!  We went to look for Rosie (aka White Patch) and her cubs and didn’t find them, so we went to Lamar Canyon and to look at the osprey in their nest.  Then we were off to see if we could find the black wolf but didn’t have any luck, but were happy to see a coyote.  A bald eagle and a bunch of ravens were tolerating each other while sharing a carcass by the Lamar River.  We headed on to Ice Box canyon and spotted a dusky grouse by the road.  Then we decided to head back to Rainy Lake where we saw a black bear, but it was amongst the branches of a downed tree and we decided not to take photos.  After talking about which way to go, we decided to head out to Little America, past specimen Trailhead and took photos of bison and their red dog calves and also saw some pronghorn antelope.  Then we got lucky and saw a badger amongst the sagebrush.  It’s a first for us!  As we headed back, we took a few more bison photos and headed back to Rainy Lake and took photos of the black bear that we had seen earlier, before we called it a day.  It’s a lot of driving and looking.  Sometimes we get lucky and see wildlife.  We always hope to get some good photos, but are always happy to have the opportunity to just spend time watching their behavior.  And, if we don’t see wildlife, the scenery is wonderful.  Today was another incredible day in Yellowstone!  ~ Mary & Mark

Places where we have seen Bears and More

Siting List:  2 grizzlies, 2 black bears, coyote, bald eagle, osprey, bison, badger, pronghorn

Click on a photo for easier viewing



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We love adventure and creating new memories. We travel, not to escape life, but for life not to escape us. We are loving this journey called, "life." We're living our lives fully, with gratitude in our hearts. There are kind people all over this world and we have discovered that we are more similar than we are different. The smile is the same in all languages. I love the following quote by Mark Twain: "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

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